Tuesday, May 03, 2005


Mahmoud Abbas, "Moderate"

The American press would have you believe that Mahmoud Abbas is a moderate that we can do business with. They want you to believe that the Israelis are the problem. Here is what the SAEN editorial board had to say back in January of this year:
Sharon can help Abbas by refraining from actions that provide militants with an excuse to challenge his authority and carry out terrorist operations.

According to the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, the Sharon government is considering enforcing a 1950 law that would allow for the large-scale confiscation of Palestinian land in East Jerusalem.

That move would be a tragic error, ensuring more terrorism and making the prospects for a peace agreement even more distant.

And here is what our favorite columnist, Mansour El-Kikhia had to say about Sharon and the peace process:
He will not willingly relinquish chunks of the West Bank and Jerusalem or accept a viable Palestinian state. After all, he instigated the second Palestinian uprising by going to the Haram Al-Sharif, known as the Temple Mount to Jews. The resulting turmoil gave him the cover he needed to engage in settlement building.

Unsurprisingly, not a whiff of blame for the PA or Palestinian terrorists, but Abbas is clearly not blameless. Here is what passes for news at the Palestinian Authority's official news agency:
The PA's state television has been accusing Israel of poisoning Palestinians with radiation. Gaza TV reported on Saturday, April 30, that Israeli machines killed a 55-year-old Palestinian woman who apparently died of a heart attack after being searched with an American-made device.

That story was depicted in the print media with a cartoon that in western countries would be condemned as anti-Semitic propaganda: A hand with a Star of David on its sleeve holds up a red colored machine called "Rafah crossing", emitting waves that are called "death and illness".

The cartoon appeared in a newspaper, Al-Hayat-Al-Jadeeda, a paper owned and controlled by the Fatah faction of the PLO, headed by Mahmoud Abbas.

Moreover, the official news agency of the PA, claimed on Thursday that Israel deliberately killed "an aged woman" with an American made "radiation machine". The Palestinian Authority itself, announced last Tuesday that it was closing the Rafah (Rafiah) crossing to protect Palestinians against "Israeli use of a radiation device for searching Palestinian travelers."

In fact, things have gotten worse in some respects on the watch of the "moderate" Abbas:
Widlansky asserts that under Abbas, the Palestinian media have actually stepped up the use of incendiary mosque speeches broadcast on Palestinian radio and television where both Israel and America are regularly attacked as well as increased use of code words in Arabic such as "resistance operations" to describe attacks on Israelis.

Incitement against Israel is not the sole prerogative of the PA media, however. Abbas' administration has also done virtually nothing to stem an alarming rise in anti-Israel hatred spewing out of campuses in the PA administered areas of Judea, Samaria, and Gaza.

And to be fair, hope in Abbas' moderation wasn't confined to the left. Here is what Senator Hutchison had to say in November of 2004:
"I think we have a better chance to succeed than we ever had before," said Hutchison, R-Texas, who spoke at a World Affairs Council luncheon at the University of the Incarnate Word on Thursday.

Hutchison said she met with "moderate Palestinian leaders," including then-Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas, last year.

The experience persuaded her that Palestinians want peace as much as everyone else, she said.

It is time for the SAEN to report the whole story on the "moderate" Mahmoud Abbas.
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