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November 26, 2014 / 4 Kislev, 5775
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Posts Tagged ‘haniyah’

About That Poll of Palestinian Arabs Favoring Peaceful Solution

Monday, March 24th, 2014

Don Futterman, whom I know and with whom I worked on the Begin Center’s “Junior Knesset” project more than a decade ago, is program director for Israel for the Moriah Fund, a private American foundation working to promote social justice and peace in Israel.

Futterman wrote this in an article in Haaretz:

The majority of West Bank Palestinians polled today, according to Dr. Shikaki, favor a peaceful resolution to the conflict. When surveyed about which democracy they admire, Palestinians rank Israel first, above the United States, and place the Palestinian Authority last.  Such admiration bespeaks the mixed and complicated feelings toward Israel that would naturally result from years of occupation and close proximity, not monolithic hatred.  Few Israeli Jews hear these voices, perhaps because peaceful Palestinians threaten our government’s narrative more than violent ones.

Let’s take a look at some polls on the question of “violence”:

Public Opinion Poll Number 80 – November – 2013

Q15. In general, what is the best method to achieve the Palestinian people’s goals of ending the occupation and establishing a state?  Total 1200 Palestinian Arabs questioned. 750 in Judea & Samaria, 450 in Gaza 450 Peaceful negotiations ALL: 32.3%, J&S: 35.2%, Gaza: 27.6 % Armed resistance (armed Intifada) ALL: 29.3%, J&S: 22.3%, Gaza: 41.1% Non-violent resistance (peaceful Popular Intifada) ALL: 27.1%, J&S: 29.5%, 23.1% Other ALL: 2.5%, J&S: 1.7%, Gaza:3.6% I don’t know or No answer ALL: 8.8%, J&S 11.3%, 4.6% Note that above, “peaceful negotiation” does not necessarily negate, and may be in tandem with “armed resistance” so the “majority” is quite unclear.

And in this next one, “armed resistance” isn’t included so how can it be measured as opposed to non-violence?

Q16. In your opinion, as an individual, which of the following options is most beneficial to improve the situation of the Palestinian people? 1200 Total Palestinian Arabs, 750 in Judea and Samaria, 450 in Gaza.

Joining a Palestinian political party ALL: 21.8%, J&S: 18.3%, Gaza: 27.6 % Becoming involved in a non-violent movement or organization (non-affiliated to a political party) (e.g. popular committee against the wall)ALL: 22.7%, J&S: 20.9%, Gaza: 25.6% Taking part in regular non-violent demonstrations against the Israeli occupation ALL: 34.1%, J&S: 33.9%, Gaza: 34.4% I don’t know ALL: 16.9%, J&S: 21.1%, Gaza: 10.0%, No answer ALL:  4.5%, J&S: 5.8%, Gaza: 2.4% In a December 2012 poll, these results were recorded:

Hamas gains in strength among the Palestinian public. If new presidential elections were held in the PA, Haniyeh would win with 48% of the vote of those participating, to Abbas’s 45%. Three months ago, Abbas received the support of 51% and Haniyeh 40%. The percentage of vote for Haniyeh is the highest since Hamas’s electoral victory in 2006.

In legislative elections, 35% of those who would participate say they would vote for Hamas and 36% for Fatah. These results indicate a sharp increase in Hamas popularity compared to our September results when it stood at 28%; Hamas is not non-violent.

Yesterday (March 23, 2014), we heard from Haniyah:

“Stop negotiating with the enemy,” he told the PA. “We will not recognise Israel.”Mushir al-Masri, a top Hamas leader, told the crowd that the group opposes peace talks with Israel and is always prepared for battle.  “Our fingers are on the trigger to defend our people,” said al-Masri.

and thousands of Hamas supporters who attended a major rally in Gaza City [yesterday] that was held under the motto, “Loyalty and Persistence on the Path of the Martyrs” heard Haniyah say:

that the Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of the resistance movement Hamas, is using tunnels as a new strategy in resisting Israel.  “Palestinian resistance fighters will face the Israeli occupation both from on the ground and beneath it until they liberate Palestine,” Haniyeh told thousands of Gaza residents who rallied to mark the 10th anniversary of the assassination of Hamas spiritual leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin.

And in 2010, there was this

1. With regards to rebuilding confidence in the peace process please indicate which of the following options you consider to be ‘Essential’, ‘Desirable’, ’Acceptable’, ‘Tolerable’ or ‘Unacceptable’: Resist occupation through violence to achieve a state: Essential 36.7%; Desirable 18.7%; Acceptable 16.8%; Tolerable 14.0%; Unacceptable 13.7% In 2008

A new poll shows that an overwhelming majority of Palestinians support the attack this month on a Jewish seminary in Jerusalem that killed eight young men, most of them teenagers, an indication of the alarming level of Israeli-Palestinian tension in recent weeks.

The survey also shows unprecedented support for the shooting of rockets on Israeli towns from the Gaza Strip and for the end of the peace negotiations between Palestinian and Israeli leaders.

The pollster, Khalil Shikaki, said he was shocked because the survey, taken last week, showed greater support for violence than any other he had conducted over the past 15 years in the Palestinian areas. Never before, he said, had a majority favored an end to negotiations or the shooting of rockets at Israel. In other words, Futterman is taking refuge in a one-time flash-in-the-pan poll, one which itself is unclear about the question and surely does not point to a conclusive trend, whereas the recent history is consistent in favor of terror and violence.

Why Salam Fayyad Stood No Chance against Fatah

Sunday, April 14th, 2013

Originally published at the Gatestone Institute.

In recent weeks, the U.S. Administration has resumed its efforts to achieve peace not only between Israel and the Palestinians, but also between Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and his prime minister, Salam Fayyad.

These efforts, however, seem to have failed: Fayyad is apparently out.

Over the past few years, Abbas and his Fatah faction have been trying to get rid of Fayyad, but to no avail.

Abbas and Fatah leaders see the U.S.-educated Fayyad, who was appointed prime minister in 2007 at the request of the U.S. and E.U. countries, as a threat to their control over the Palestinian Authority in general and its finances in particular.

Some Fatah leaders, such as Tawfik Tirawi and Najat Abu Baker, are even convinced that Fayyad is plotting, together with the U.S. and other Western countries, to replace Abbas as president of the Palestinian Authority.

Were it not for U.S. and E.U. intervention, Abbas and Fatah would have removed Fayyad from his job several years ago.

Each time Abbas considered sacking Fayyad, U.S. and E.U. government officials stepped in to warn that such a move would seriously affect foreign aid to the Palestinian Authority.

President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry, who made separate visits to Ramallah recently, also found themselves devoting much of their time trying to persuade Abbas to keep Fayyad in his position.

But U.S. and E.U. efforts to keep Fayyad in power seem to have been counterproductive. These efforts further discredited Fayyad in the eyes of many Palestinians.

Fayyad’s enemies have cited these efforts as “proof” that he is a “foreign agent” who has been imposed on the Palestinian Authority by Americans and Europeans.

Fatah’s main problem with Fayyad is that he has almost exclusive control over the Palestinian Authority budget.

In other words, Fatah does not like the idea that its leaders and members can no longer steal international aid because of Fayyad’s presence in power.

The Fatah leaders are yearning for the era of Yasser Arafat, when they and others were able to lay their hands on millions of dollars earmarked for helping Palestinians.

In a bid to regain some form of control over the Palestinian Authority’s finances, last year Abbas exerted heavy pressure on Fayyad to appoint [Abbas loyalist] Nabil Qassis as finance minister.

Until then, Fayyad had held the position of finance minister in addition to the premiership.

Earlier this year, Fayyad, in a surprise move, announced that he has accepted the resignation of Qassis without providing further details.

Shortly afterwards, Abbas issued a statement announcing that he has “rejected” the resignation of the finance minister.

Fayyad has since refused to comply with Abbas’s demand and reinstate Qassis.

But the dispute between Abbas and Fayyad is not only over financial matters.

In fact, much of it has to do with the feeling among Fatah’s top cadres that Fayyad is seeking to undermine the faction’s influence and probably end its role in the Palestinian arena.

They accuse him of cutting funds to Fatah’s members and refusing to pay salaries to former Fatah militiamen.

In this power struggle between Fatah and Fayyad, the prime minister is certain to emerge as the biggest loser.

Fayyad has no grassroots support or political power bases among Palestinians.

He does not have a strong political party that would be able to compete with Fatah.

Nor does he have his own militia or political backing, especially in the villages and refugee camps.

In the 2006 parliamentary election, Fayyad, who graduated from the University of Texas at Austin, ran at the head of an independent list called Third Way. He won only two seats in the Palestinian Legislative Council.

Most Palestinians did not vote for Fayyad because he had never played any active role in the fight against Israel. For Palestinians, graduating from an Israeli prison is more important than going to any university in the world. Fayyad, however, did not sit even one day in an Israeli prison.

Had Fayyad killed a Jew or sent one of his sons to throw stones at an Israeli vehicle, he would have earned the respect and support of a large number of Palestinians. In short, Palestinians do not consider Fayyad a hero despite his hard efforts to build state institutions and a fine economy.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/columns/khaled-abu-toameh/why-salam-fayyad-stands-no-chance-against-fatah/2013/04/14/

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