Israeli Arab journalist Khaled Abu Toameh on Saturday night twitted a flurry of notes regarding Arab public opinion and the state of affairs in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza, including a report that PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas has declared he is ready to work with the Trump Administration to achieve peace on the basis of a 2-state solution and the Arab Peace Initiative – meaning Israel gives back every last stitch of land it liberated in 1967 in return for recognition by the Arab states. At the same time, according to Abu Toameh, 64% of Palestinians want Abbas to resign. Though his tweets about the poll results are unsourced, Abu Toameh is considered a reliable journalist, who is remarkably unbiased. In the 2009 UN World Conference Against Racism (WCAR), a.k.a. Durban II, Toameh criticized Israeli Arab MKs for supporting extremism and calling Israel a “state of apartheid” rather than fighting for the rights of Arab citizens of Israel. Abu Toameh says he is routinely subject to condemnations, and is often threatened, more often than not by sources outside the Middle East that don’t deny that he is telling the truth, they just want him to “shut up.”
Also according to Abu Toameh, the same poll found that 65% of PA Arabs believe the 2-state solution is no longer practical. 62% are in favor of abandoning the Oslo Accords; and 53% support an armed intifada against Israel.
Similarly, according Abu Toameh, 37% of PA Arabs believe an armed action (against Israel ) is most effective, while 33% favor negotiations to establish a state.
Abu Toameh on Saturday night also twitted an English translation of a Quds Press report saying 11 have been wounded in a clash between the Abbas PLO forces and Mohammed Dahlan supporters in Gaza.
Perhaps they should decide first who should run the PLO, before they launch an armed intifada against Israel?
Israel’s Channel 1 News’ Middle east correspondent Oded Granot on Tuesday night cited a secret protocol published by Egyptian media with “smoking gun” evidence showing the UN Security Council resolution against Israel was composed in a meeting of Secretary of State John Kerry, National Security Adviser Susan Rice, PA Chief Negotiator Saeb Erekat and PA UN envoy Ryad Mansour.
According to Granot, Egyptian media published the secret protocol of the clandestine meeting that took place in Washington Dec. 15, which provides irrefutable proof the anti-Israel resolution was concocted by Kerry, Rice, Erekat and Mansour.
According to the Egyptian report, Kerry and Rice told Erekat and Mansour that President Obama would support a “balanced” Palestinian resolution at the Security Council. They also assured them that Prime Minister Netanyahu had no intention to live up to his commitment regarding a two-state solution.
Kerry advised Erekat the PA should ask for parameters to a forced permanent solution, after discussion with the Saudis, who a few years ago had advanced a two-state based Middle East peace resolution. Rice objected, because, she said, President Trump would kill such a resolution.
“The Trump administration is dangerous,” Rice warned the two senior PA officials, adding that “Trump’s opinions about Israel and the Palestinians would be different from all previous administrations.”
The four officials then discussed Trump’s intention to.
Rice asked Erekat how the PA would react should President Trump move the US embassy to Jerusalem. Erekat told her the PLO would withdraw its official recognition of the State of Israel, dismantle the Palestinian Authority and demand that Israel go back to ruling it directly. He also suggested the PA might demand that Arab states retaliate by cutting their relations with the US.
That last quote, unrealistic as it is, shows the level of grandiose thinking in the PLO leadership, no doubt a measure of their despair.
Both Rice and Kerry advised against any move that would irritate and provoke President Trump, especially returning to suicide attacks on Israel, dismantling the PA, or suing Israel for “war crimes” at the International Criminal Court in The Hague. They said the PA should avoid steps that would “harm the Palestinian cause.”
Of course, if they knew how to do that they would have had their own state years ago.
Both Rice and Kerry also stressed the content of their discussion be kept a secret. But, apparently, that didn’t happen.
Israeli ambassador to Washington Ron Dermer told US Media this week that his government had evidence showing the Obama administration had orchestrated the anti-Israeli UNSC resolution. He said Israel planned to pass on the information to the incoming Trump Administration to disclose or keep it a secret.
But the General el-Sisi regime refused to wait, according to Granot, and published the secret protocol of the meeting Tuesday evening, probably because they were angry at President Obama for making them look bad in the eyes of the Arab world. You’ll recall that last Wednesday night, the Egyptian UN delegation withdrew its own version of the anti-settlements resolution following the personal intervention of President-Elect Trump with President el-Sisi. Now they appeared like Israeli collaborators, as the US and other USC members managed to push the resolution through behind Egypt’s back.
Granot cautioned that the Obama Administration might still use the weeks ahead before Trump’s inauguration to inflict some more damage on Israel. to prepare more measures against Israel. Indeed, Secretary of State John Kerry has announced Tuesday that he would deliver “remarks on Middle East peace” Wednesday, at 11:00 AM, at Foggy Bottom’s Dean Acheson Auditorium.
The Ramallah Anti-Corruption Crimes Court on Wednesday sentenced Muhammad Dahlan, a former senior member of Fatah now living in UAE and a longtime rival of PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, to three years in prison for embezzling $16 million.
The court, which tried Dahlan in his absence, added a fine of $16 million to the sentence as payment for embezzling the money, declared him a fugitive from justice.
Ma’an recalled Dahlan’s fierce opposition to Hamas and his “merciless crackdown” on the rival group in the 1990s, when his PLO units rounded up thousands of Islamists who refused to recognize the legitimacy of the PA. Then Dahlan fell from grace in June 2007 after Hamas trounced his fighters in Gaza street battles, expelling Fatah permanently from the territory.
In 2010, after his election to the Fatah central committee, Dahlan was suspended, and an inquiry was launched to examine his finances, accusing him of setting up his own private militia.
In 2011, Dahlan was accused by Fatah leaders of poisoning Yasser Arafat – an honor he shared with Israeli security at the time.
Then, in 2015, the notorious anti-Hamas Dahlan called for integrating all the Palestinian factions, including Hamas and the Islamic Jihad, into the PLO. Meanwhile, several Arab regimes began to push his candidacy to replace Abbas when the time comes. Dahlan then began to accuse Abbas of holding on to his seat without popular support and without democratic elections (his term ran out around 2009).
Back in October, Dahlan told Ma’an the failures of PA leadership could bring the end to the Arabs’ hope for independence. “If this situation continues,” he warned, “we will either yield to the occupation’s conditions and rules – which is impossible at the popular level – or have a popular uprising, which will be very dangerous.”
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke by phone with French President Francois Hollande Wednesday, Dec. 7 2016, and told him that if there is no international conference in Paris, he would come to meet with Abu Mazen for direct talks without preconditions.
Israel has already announced it would not attend an international conference, which it says would not contribute to achieving peace.
Mahmoud Abbas say the PA will NEVER RECOGNIZE ISRAEL AS JEWISH – Do we cow to his opinion and throw Jews out of their homes?!
Mahmoud Abbas, the PA’s dictator for life calls for the repeal of the Balfour Declaration, Howie calls for an all-Jewish Israel devoid of Arabs while Sharon claims that land for peace is the only option.
While Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas was accepting praise for sending Palestinian firefighters to help put out fires in Israel, the PA Finance Ministry was busy doing the paper work to start paying salaries to the Palestinian arsonists who were arrested for setting many of those same fires. So far Israel has arrested 23 suspected arsonists connected to the hundreds of fires that raged across Israel last week burning more than 500 homes and 32,000 acres of forests and national parks. According to Palestinian law documented by PMW, anyone imprisoned for “resisting the occupation” receives a high monthly salary. Therefore, all of those convicted and imprisoned for arson will receive PA salaries “from the day of arrest until the day of release.”
Of course, it is not only arson-terrorists who receive a PA salary. All Palestinian, Israeli Arab and Arab terrorists from any country who are imprisoned are rewarded with high salaries from the PA. (See PMW Special Report) According to PA law and practice, “resisting the occupation” includes any Arab imprisoned for attacking Israelis by any means, including throwing a stone at a car, driving a car into people at bus stops, building bombs for suicide bombers to blow up at cafes, or shooting and stabbing civilians to death in their sleep. Since the PA automatically includes anyone who attacked Israelis or their possessions as “fighters” who are “resisting the occupation,” there is no justification under Palestinian law and practice not to include last week’s arsonists among the Palestinian “heroes” who receive monthly salaries.
Significantly, these salaries for terrorists rise the longer terrorists are in jail. Terrorists convicted of murder and serving life sentences will reach a high salary of NIS 12,000 a month – more than four times the average Palestinian salary.
The PA has already paid the five Hamas terrorists who murdered Eitam and Naama Henkin in front of their four children last October in total NIS 91,000 as reward for their murders. And terrorist Abdallah Barghouti has already received NIS 645,000 for building the bombs that murdered 67 Israelis at the Sbarro pizza shop, Sheffield Club, Moment Café, the triple bombing at the Ben Yehuda pedestrian mall, Hebrew University and No. 4 bus in Tel Aviv.
If Abbas was ever serious about stopping the PA’s ongoing support for terrorism, he now has the perfect opportunity to make a difference. Instead of merely enjoying complimentary headlines and nice photo ops of Palestinian firemen with Israelis, Abbas should decree that the arsonists will not receive PA salaries.
Even though this is contrary to current Palestinian law and practice.
Should Abbas insist on adding the imprisoned arsonists to the PA payroll, his hypocrisy in sending a few fire engines to Israel will be exposed to the world.
Should Abbas decide to deny salaries to the arsonists this may indicate the beginning of a fundamental change in the PA attitude toward terrorism. However, if Abbas cancels salaries only to the arsonists, it will not be enough. If he says to the world that the PA will not pay salaries those who burned trees, rocks and homes while it continues to pay salaries to murderers of men, women and children, his values and behavior, which cause many to see him as a terrorist leader, will remain unchanged.
If Abbas’ act of sending fire trucks to help Israel was a sincere act indicating that he is no longer a terrorist leader, he now has a great opportunity to prove it.
Right now while he has the world’s attention, having made this small gesture in the direction of peace, let him take a serious step. Abbas should announce that not only will the arsonists not be rewarded with PA salaries, but he is changing Palestinian law and canceling the payments to all imprisoned terrorists altogether.
And what better opportunity than now to announce this, during Fatah’s Seventh General Conference.
If Abbas continues to pay salaries to murderers and arsonists, his gesture of sending fire trucks to Israel must be seen as an act of contemptuous hypocrisy.
In an astonishing move that caught the world by surprise, about 1,250 Fatah party politicians opened their seventh conference in Ramallah on Tuesday by reappointing Mahmoud Abbas chairman. At 81, an invigorated Abbas, a.k.a. Abu Mazen, was voted in unanimously, despite speculations that this time the ruling party of the PA would entertain serious discussions of a post-Abbas future.
Fataḥ, formerly the Palestinian National Liberation Movement, is the largest faction of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO). Abbas was elected in January 2005 as President of the Palestinian National Authority until January 2009, but in December 2009 was voted into office indefinitely by the PLO Central Council.
An estimated 75 Fatah representatives from Gaza were not granted permits by Israel to leave the Strip to attend the conference. But its doubtful the vote in Ramallah would have been any different had they been allowed to go through.
The date picked for the conference, as it is done every conference, was November 29, the anniversary of the last time the Arabs in the Land of Israel had a real chance for statehood, which they blew, in the spirit of the late Abba Eban, who said, The Arabs never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity. For the record, Eban did not focus solely on the Arabs who call themselves Palestinians, since he made his immortal observation after the 1973 Geneva Peace Conference with Arab countries (which Syria refused to attend).
November 29 was commemorated by the UN on Tuesday, as the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. UN General Assembly president Peter Thomson honored the occasion by wearing a Palestinian flag scarf, just like the one Yasser Arafat wore when he first appeared at the General Assembly back in 1974 as the chief of Fatah – which was established back in 1959 to “organize the armed resistance against Israel,” almost a decade before the 1967 war.
Which brings to mind another Abba Eban immortal observation, from 2004: If Algeria introduced a resolution declaring that the earth was flat and that Israel had flattened it, it would pass by a vote of 164 to 13 with 26 abstentions.