The Making of the Palestinian Political System
The battle of Karama had turned the guerrilla groups into a mass movement, and in doing so brought new debates about ideology, organization, and policy forcefully to the fore. The active political agents within Palestinian society were now in direct contact with a much wider constituency, at a historical juncture in which alternative models of Palestinian proto-nationalism had been severely weakened and external circumstances offered an opportunity for the construction of autonomous institutions. The guerrilla movement was now able to assert its own discourse, symbols, and sources of legitimacy, all structured around the central theme of armed struggle. At the same time, the attempt by the different guerrilla groups to incorporate various social forces, acquire material resources, and institutionalize their political practice led to intense competition and increasingly complex internal politics.
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