A Hustler playing Three Card Monte on a street corner is very good at manipulating the cards, but not nearly as good as the Palestinians.


For those of you who’ve never heard of Three Card Monte; a dealer shuffles three cards, one of them being an Ace of Spades which he shows a few times as he shuffles the three cards face down.

“Watch the Ace” he keeps saying as he dazzles you with his quick of hand.

The trick is to follow the Ace until he stops moving the cards. And when he lays the three cards on the table face down, you have to pick which of the three is the Ace of Spades.

A really smart Three Card Monte hustler sucks in the bettor by purposefully losing a few times until the “sucker” is prepared to lay down a big bet. And that’s when the dealer lowers the boom.

Three Card Monte isn’t cheating, since all the cards are really there and in play. But, what the sucker doesn’t know, is that the Ace of Spades is palmed during the shuffle and lands where the sucker would never imagine it to be.


First, there’s this alluring possibility of peace which the Palestinians hold out representing the Ace of Spades. The other two cards represent TERRORISM and concessions.

Not finding the Ace means concessions at best. TERROR attacks at worst.

A Hustler playing Three Card Monte on a street corner is very good at manipulating the cards, but not nearly as good as the Palestinians who rarely have an Ace amongst the three choices.

And that’s the beauty of their game.

The Palestinian version of Three Card Monte is played without a winning card for the sucker. They tell you that there’s an Ace of Spades amongst the three choices, but unlike the street players, they never show it.

You believe there’s a winning card in Palestinian Three Card Monte, especially if you’re an international sucker who never demands to see the Ace.

But every now and then, even a sucker asks to see the Ace. So, when no one’s looking, the Palestinians temporarily palm the Ace back into the three card mix.

They did it at Oslo in 1993. And then again at Camp David in 2000.

And when that’s not enough to keep all the suckers playing, they change the dealer.

This time though, the Palestinians made a very bad choice for a new dealer, who just might not be able to keep the cards in play with or without an Ace of Spades.

Sometimes even the suckers catch a break.

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