Self-rule for the residents of the West Bank and Gaza Strip under a Palestinian authority (PA) without renouncing Israel’s sovereignty over the two regions was the answer. The PA was a product of the occupation to control the population and reduce its economic and political cost on Israel.
Noam Chomsky pointed out that the PA was not intended as an instrument of decolonization but rather a framework that changed the means of Israel’s control in order to perpetuate the occupation. According to Chomsky, Prime Minister Yitzchak Rabin noted in an interview that the PA would be able to control the population “without all the difficulties arising from Supreme Court appeals, human rights organizations like B’Tselem, and all kinds of leftist fathers and mothers.”
Since the establishment of the PA, especially after the second intifada, Israel has been operating primarily to downgrade the value of the Palestinians to people whose lives can be taken with impunity, enforcing laws that legalize the incarceration and torture of political prisoners, permitted deportations, house demolitions, and curfews. The executive and judicial branches of government coordinated to rationalize the inhumane Israeli policies.
The PA promised that the Gaza Strip would be transformed into “the Middle East’s Singapore” and the Palestinians would enjoy the fruits of their agreements with the Israelis. Ironically, these agreements have been reasons the wishful promises did not materialize.
Israel uses its power over the flow of laborers to collectively punish the public for any form of resistance. It was used to pressure the PA to clamp down on Hamas, Islamic Jihad, PFLP and other groups that resist the occupation.
The agreement states that the PA does not have jurisdiction over Jerusalem, the settlements and the military locations.It gave Israel a veto power over any regulation or legislation enacted by the PA that Israel considers exceeding the PA powers or inconsistent with other agreements. Israel must approve all employees authorized by the PA to inspect and monitor compliance with the laws and regulations.The PA agreed not to have authority over settlers or any non-Palestinian residing or travelling within the occupied territory.
When the Israeli civil administration surrendered the management of the school system including the higher education institutions and vocation schools to the PA, it was on condition that they refrain from incitement against Israel.