According to the self-styled advocates for their rights in the West, Palestinians’ greatest concerns are preventing the construction of housing for Jews in the West Bank, an end to the Israeli presence in territory acquired during the Six-Day War, and obtaining national independence—an impression confirmed implicitly by most reporting on the region. But a recent survey by a highly regarded Ramallah-based polling center suggests different priorities altogether. Hussain Abdul-Hussain writes:
Better living standards top the priorities of Palestinians in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, whose majority cares little about democracy or human rights and supports conflict with Israel. . . . Twenty-nine percent of Palestinians said that their top priority was “the unification of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.” Second came “the improvement of economic conditions” at 25 percent. Combating corruption [among Hamas and Fatah authorities] was third, with 15 percent, while 14 percent answered that their priority was the “lifting of the siege and blockade over the Gaza Strip.”
Only nine percent said that “strengthening the resistance to occupation” was their priority, showing that anything connected to “occupation,” the obsession of Palestinian-Americans and their progressive American sympathizers, does not even get 10 percent of Palestinian interest.
[T]the majority of Palestinians in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip do not think it is Israel that is violating their human rights. According to the . . . survey, 71 percent of West Bankers said that people in their area cannot criticize the Palestinian Authority (PA) without fear. In the Gaza Strip, inaccessible to Israel, 62 percent of Palestinians said that people in the strip “cannot criticize Hamas’s authority without fear.”