A new poll of Arabs living in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, conducted by a pro-Palestinian organization, shows 64 percent of the population supports suicide bomb attacks on Israelis.

The poll by the Jerusalem Media and Communications Center also showed 57.6 percent of the respondents oppose a cease-fire with Israel while 80 percent support the continuing uprising or “intifada.”

How is this possible? How could any group of people demonstrate such a propensity to terror and to senseless violence?

Let me explain. It’s really quite simple.

Terrorism is the leading industry in Yasser Arafat’s Palestinian Authority.

What do I mean by that statement?

Arafat gets most of his financial support from Arab oil states such as Saudi Arabia. They pay Arafat a king’s ransom annually for the same reasons the Saudis supported the Taliban in Afghanistan for so many years.

  • The Saudis want to spread Islam throughout the world. Saudi Arabia is one of the most closed societies in the world. Christianity and Judaism are not tolerated. All the churches have been destroyed. Even quiet, discreet Christian worship in the home is forbidden by law. Do not underestimate the regime’s commitment to spreading this brand of radical intolerance.

  • At the same time, the Saudi royal family fears the radical brand of Wahabbi Islamism bred in its own kingdom. For this reason, the regime pays guilt money to causes popular among the more militant population. This is a way of buying peace within the country.

In other words, the Saudis support terror abroad to avoid terror at home. The day Arafat actually renounces terrorism and means it, is the day the money flow from Saudi Arabia and other Arab states dries up. And that’s how terrorism became the leading industry of the Palestinian Authority.

Terrorism actually maintains the economy, such as it is, in the fledgling terror-state of Palestine. That’s why it is so popular among the people. Terrorism provides the jobs. Terrorism provides the growth. Terrorism is the very currency of the Palestinian Authority.

Meanwhile, tourism is the leading industry of the Israeli economy. And this is why there can never be peace between an Arab Palestine headed by Yasser Arafat and the Jewish state. Tourism and terrorism don’t mix.

There’s an old joke that suggests maybe what Arafat really said when he supposedly renounced terrorism is that he was renouncing tourism. The two words sound very similar when they come out of Arafat’s lying mouth.

In the U.S. State Department, there are still people wondering why Arafat isn’t arresting Hamas terrorists and those of his own Fatah organization. The poll by the Jerusalem Media Communications Center provides the obvious answer: 71.9 percent of his people oppose such detentions and roundups. It’s not going to happen – at least not beyond a few show arrests where terrorist leaders are confined to their own homes with telephones, fax machines and computers so they can carry on their work.

Terrorism is big business for Arafat. He has skimmed, according to some estimates, billions of dollars off the aid he receives from Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries for his personal accounts in Swiss banks. But what is more astonishing than the Arab state support of this terrorism business is the fact that the U.S. and European Union continue to support it with taxpayer dollars.

The sums provided by the West may be paltry in comparison to what the oil states give in direct aid, but it continues nevertheless – despite the suicide bombings, despite the relentless attacks on civilians, despite Arafat’s recently expressed willingness to sacrifice 70 Arab martyrs for even one dead Israeli.

It’s time for the West to ask itself some sobering questions: What kind of a Palestinian state will be created with a population so committed to continued death and destruction? What kind of government will a people wedded to suicide bombings maintain? If the civilized world is really waging a war on terrorism, why does it appear so eager to create yet another terrorist state – in fact, the first one whose main industry, whose main economy, whose sole currency is indeed terrorism?

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