Derbyshire vs. The Palestinians…

John Derbyshire announces to the world that he doesn’t care much for the Palestinians. Well, at least he earns points for honestly, but I’m sure his e-mail box isn’t a pretty sight right now.

Derbyshire makes this argument:

Even if their lives had not been poisoned by the ministrations of a huge welfare bureaucracy, though, I doubt the Palestinians would have got their act together. None of the other Arabs have. Everywhere you look around the Arab world you see squalor, despotism, cruelty, and hopelessness. The best they have been able to manage, politically speaking, has been the Latin-American style one-party kleptocracies of Egypt and Jordan. Those are the peaks of Arab political achievement under independence, under government by their own people. The norm is just gangsterism, with thugs like Assad, Qaddafi, or Saddam in charge. It doesn’t seem to be anything to do with religion: the secular states (Iraq, Syria) are just as horrible as the religious ones like Saudi Arabia. These people are hopeless. We are all supposed to support the notion of a Palestinian state. Why? We know perfectly well what it would be like. Why should we wish for another gangster-satrapy to be added to the Arab roll of shame, busy manufacturing terrorists to come here and slaughter Americans in their offices? I don’t want to see a Palestinian state. I think I’d be crazy to want that.

I agree that the Palestinians are not ready for a state now, and probably won’t be for generations. Until they can stop hating their neighbor and start turning Gaza into the next Hong Kong, the Palestinians will always be second-class citizens, even if Israel makes every concilliation to them. It’s not that the entire Arab world is hopeless, it’s that a virulent and self-destructive worldview has covered the region like a bad plague. Sooner or later, those regimes are going to fall, and they will fall hard. Perhaps, with a great deal of luck, something better will come out of it. Quite frankly, it would be hard to image anything much worse than what they’ve got now. It’s not that the Arab world isn’t capable of escaping the 14th Century, it’s just that those with the will do make the necessary steps are a small minority.

Perhaps the Palestinians will get their crap together and start building banks and casinos over suicide belts and rockets. Until then, Derbyshire is right; building a Palestinian state now doesn’t benefit anyone.