A 'Palestinian Spring'? The Protest Nobody Noticed
Protests raged all week against politicians and high prices
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 16, 2012 3:36 PM CDT
Palestinians demonstrate against the high cost of living in the West Bank city of Ramallah, Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2012.    (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed)

(Newser) – One wave of Middle East protests received little attention this week: Angry Palestinians demonstrated across the West Bank for seven days, but not against an anti-Islamic film. They were opposing their own politicians and economic policies in what could be called a "Palestinian Spring," reports Foreign Policy. The magazine lists their grievances:

  • Dire economy. The US held back $200 million in aid over Palestine's bid for unilateral statehood at the UN, which forced the Palestinian Authority to postpone wages for 153,000 civil servants. Add high prices and alleged corruption among the ruling classes, and you have an economy in crisis.
  • Palestinian Authority. The PA has "squandered one opportunity after the next," from the 2000 Camp David summit to 2008 talks with Israel. Intended as an interim fix while Palestine awaits statehood, the PA has lost its purpose without a peace process. Some want it dismantled.
  • Mahmoud Abbas and Salam Fayyad. President Abbas tried to show sympathy with demonstrators, saying "the Palestinian Spring has begun," but some are calling for his resignation. Others want Prime Minister Fayyad, an independent, to step down, but he "is still among the PA's best bets to enact political and economic reform."
Click for further analysis from Foreign Policy.
 

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