Edmund Burke, who supported the war against his mother nation, was once asked if he would support the French Revolution. His answer was negative, because “the end is the means in process”. To paraphrase Edmund Burke, a regime conceived in terror would adopt a policy of terror against its own people.
The PLO reality is such that it is a nation state in formation, for better or for worse.
The PLO now operates its own army and rules villages, cities, refugee camps, farms, industries and schoools, with all the responsilbilities inherent in statehood.
The PLO’s new Palestinie Authority benefits from the direct and personal prestige of the President of the United States, along with the recognition of almost every nation on the face of the earcth.
Indeed, the PLO now communicates with every level of Israeli society and every segment of Israeli politics, openly or covertly.
However, since its ascendence to power, the PA has also established the precedent of welcoming killers and car thieves within its miudst, while all the PA outlets of communication continue incitement for war against Jews and the state of Israel. Leading the pack is Arafat, who, with the exception of one single speech delivered on the day that he took over in of Hebron, continues to address his people in the most warlike of terms against the Jewish state.
The newfound status and recognition of the “PLO state in the making” makes it difficult and almost counterprodcutive fprt Israel to engage in a frontal media campaign against the PLO.
The prestige of statesmen and reporters around the world are now tied in to the PLO.
The PLO itself is now on the center stage of the world, yet that very exposure can provide the hint to Israel as to how to conduct its media relations in the near future.
The time has come to move the realm of Israeli public relations into the private business, so that new ways can be pioneered that will report the reality of what Israel now faces for the Jewish world, at least, to understand what is going on.
And the way to project any idea to the Jewish mind remains the mainstream media, especially because Jews remain the greatest news junkies in the world, especially in regards to Israel.
With the PLO at center stage, I would suggest that Israelis work with Palestinian media professionals who are also disaffected with Arafat to promote media productions in the following areas:
- Human rights and civil liberties within the Palestine Authority
- Public funds and corruption in the PA
- PA arms supply of Hamas and the Islamic Jihad
- PLO involvement with narcotics trafficking.
- UNRWA regulations that keep Arab refugees in a situation of squalor
- Continuing Arafat incitement
- Anti Israel curricula in PA schools and media
- Orders carried out by the PA army to kill dissidents within the PA
And in the positive realm, Israel can continue to project the possibilities for better and positive relations with between Jews and Arabs in the future, once the PA is deemed to be obsolete. The untold story of Jewish-Arab cooperation in the realms of trade, commerce, education, health and dialogue can provide the media with newsworthy stories, ad infinitum.
What Israel needs is a proactive approach, privately funded, for the media to be presented with the news stories that will reflect another reality in Israel.
A framework exists, known as the Institute for Peace Education Ltd, just waiting for partners to build a new level of news coverage for Israel in the next few years.