Though much ado is being made in the press about how disastrous the killing of three Americans is to the Palestinian leadership, Elliot Chodoff raises another angle:
Why would any one want to bomb an American convoy on a mission to interview prospective Fulbright scholarship candidates? Isn’t this exactly the type of American aid that should be welcomed and encouraged by all Palestinian factions who want to see their people develop a more affluent society? Simply put, the answer is that in the Mafia-style world of Palestinian politics, money allocation is equated with direct influence, and that is the last thing any of the factions wish to see given to the US. It may be ok for Saddam or the Iranian Ayatollahs, but it would be disastrous to have anything that looks like democracy gaining any sway on the Palestinian street.
One of the fundamental assumptions of the media and Western diplomats is that Palestinian leaders want their own, democratic state. But such a state would mean accountability, and loss of their power and influence, so Arafat and co. actually undermine any movement in that direction. When will the media catch on to this? Write your local editor, encouraging recognition of this fact in their next editorial.