Expressing his frustrations with the peace process, Lenny Ben David suggests, not learning from the past, but returning to it in "After the Roadmap" Arafat's return to Gaza was a portent of the failure to come:
When Arafat rode into Gaza from Egypt for the first time in July 1994 â€” another great "moment" in modern history â€” Israeli intelligence officers noted how low the car was riding and how high up in the seat Arafat was sitting. Crammed into the Mercedes with (and under) Arafat were contraband weapons and terrorist operatives who were banned from entering the Palestinian territories. Israeli security sources also believe Arafat smuggled weaponry in his private jet after the Gaza airport opened with much media hoopla.
(Another similar view of this event was provided by the late Michael Kelly in "Promises but Never Peace."
Ben-David summarizes his conclusion in a neat paragraph.
Yasser Arafat has spoiled, poisoned, corrupted, and undermined every peace proposal presented over the last decade. Every envoy tasked with advancing the Palestinian-Israeli peace process in recent years â€” George Mitchell, Anthony Zinni, and most recently John Wolf â€” have all returned home empty-handed. No wonder the late King Hussein of Jordan said of Arafat, "He never came to a bridge he didn't double-cross."
What to do? Ben-David suggests some sort of an arrangement with Gaza, Judea and Samaria reverting in some way to their previous owners, Egypt and Jordan.
Crossposted on Israpundit and Soccer Dad.