...what can be said for certain is that the Palestinians were the party with absolutely nothing to gain and much to lose from Alan's permanent removal from the scene. And they had much to lose on two counts.
On Count One, Alan was not only the BBC's man, he was the only permanent foreign correspondent in Gaza. He was, in short, the best and most informed provider of news about the Palestinian side of the story; a story which, in many of its details, is an embarrassment to Israel and those governments, most notably the Bush and Blair regimes, which support Israel's efforts to break the will of the Palestinians to continue their struggle for an acceptable minimum of justice.
On Count Two, and if he has been murdered, Alan's death, if it could be blamed on a Palestinian or a pro-Palestinian Arab and/or other Islamist group, would be a huge political setback for the legitimacy of the Palestinian struggle and the present leadership of it. (The Al Qaeda franchise would not give a damn about harming the Palestinian cause).
There is a case for saying (repeat a case) that the party with most to gain from Alan Johnston's permanent disappearance was Israel. It would not be the first time that Israeli agents had dressed as Arabs to make a hit.
Media Backspin put together a funny list of equally plausible kidnappers, explaining what they have to gain, like Rachel Corrie's parents and the royal family.
The argument of "who stands to gain the most" is very popular among conspiracy theorists, and their explanations always leave Occam's Razor in the dust. Once a person comes from an anti-Israeli viewpoint to begin with, along with fantasies of an all-powerful Mossad and impermeable cabal of Elders who never reveal their secret plans to the goyim, it is ridiculously easy to come up with ways to blame Israel for everything on the planet. In fact, this is exactly what Arabs do routinely:
- Every single disaster from WTC to earthquakes are attempts by Israel to divert attentiojn from its daily crimes against humanity.
- Suicide bombs in Israel are attempts by Israel to gain world sympathy and allow Israel to go on with its business of daily crimes against humanity.
- "Accidentally" killing Palestinian Arab children allows Israel to practice genocide against PalArabs while pretending that it is an accident.
UPDATE: Asharq Alawsat reports that Johnston's kidnappers are demanding $5 million for his release. I can't wait for Hart's next blog entry about those greedy Zionists.