In a development that should surprise no one, Israel's war in Gaza is undermining any moderate Palestinian authority:
But with each day, the authority, its leader, Mahmoud Abbas, and its leading party, Fatah, seem increasingly beleaguered and marginalized, even in the Palestinian cities of the West Bank, which they control. Protesters accuse Mr. Abbas of not doing enough to stop the carnage in Gaza — indeed, his own police officers have used clubs and tear gas against those same protesters.
The more bombs in Gaza, the more Hamas’s support seems to be growing at the expense of the Palestinian Authority, already considered corrupt and distant from average Palestinians.
As noted in the report, even though some Palestinians are indeed angry with Hamas, that anger pales in comparison to their rage against Israel and their contempt for Fatah. Israel's war in Gaza will produce an even more polarized and divided Palestinian population, encourage an even more militant Hamas, and discredit the moderate factions that are amenable to persuasion. Oh, and in the process, our support for this massive retaliation will make even more Middle Easterners hate us even more. So much for "the birth pangs of a new Middle East".