Michael Kelly reminds us of the bastard birth of the Palestinian Authority:
On July 1, 1994, Yasser Arafat entered Gaza to establish the Palestinian Autonomous Region — betwixt-and-between creature of the Oslo peace process that was supposed to become, under the guiding light of the Oslo peace process, the physical base of another ambivalent notion, the Palestinian National Authority. I went as a reporter to Gaza a few hours before Arafat arrived, and I stayed there for about five weeks, observing the early days of life and governance under the Palestinian Authority.
Arafat’s entry into Gaza was an object lesson: a purposely uncaring display of brute power. He arrived from the Sinai in a long caravan of Chevrolet Blazers and Mercedes-Benzes and BMWs, 70 or 80 cars packed to the rooflines with men with guns. The caravan roared up the thronged roads and down the mobbed streets, with the overfed, leather-jacketed, sunglassed thugs of Arafat’s bodyguard detail all the time screaming and shooting off their Kalashnikovs to make their beloved people scurry out of their beloved leader’s way.
And this is the man we