What the U.S. Does Not Want to Know About Abbas
Abbas's autocratic rule and the frustration of many Palestinians do not seem to bother Kerry. The U.S. seems to want to bring Abbas to the negotiating table with Israel at any price. Kerry seems to be seeking to cut a deal with just one person -- who does not even have the backing of his people.
As U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry pursues his efforts to revive the peace process in the Middle East, Palestinian officials in the West Bank are complaining that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas is keeping them in the dark and refusing to brief them about his plans.
For these officials, Abbas's autocracy has turned the Palestinian Authority into a one-man show called Mahmoud Abbas.
President Abbas has become the president of everything related to the Palestinians and the Palestinian cause, complained Sufyan Abu Zayda, a senior representative of Abbas's Fatah faction. He is the head of the PLO, President of Palestine, President of the Palestinian Authority, head of Fatah, and commander of the Palestinian Authority security forces.
Moreover, in the absence of a functioning Palestinian parliament, Abbas has taken it upon himself to issue his own laws.
The Palestinian parliament, known as the Palestinian Legislative Council, has been paralyzed ever since Hamas drove Abbas's Palestinian Authority out of the Gaza Strip in 2007.
Abbas sometimes meets with members of the PLO Executive Committee and the Fatah Central Committee to discuss latest developments surrounding the Palestinian issue.
But these two bodies are dominated by unelected Abbas loyalists, including many old-guard leaders whose only concern is to continue receiving monthly funds from the Palestinian Authority leadership so they can rent offices and hire several aides and secretaries, as well as drivers and bodyguards.
Then there is the Palestinian government in the West Bank, whose prime minister and ministers have no say in political matters.
Some Palestinians are also complaining that Abbas does not consult with the PLO's Negotiations Department, which is in charge of the peace talks with Israel.
Abu Zayda and other Palestinian officials say that Abbas's autocratic regime reminds them of the days when Yasser Arafat ran the Palestinian Authority as his private fiefdom.
No one dreamed that we would reach a situation where all the powers and top positions would be concentrated in the hands of one man, said Abu Zayda. Today, Abbas even has more powers than Arafat.
Abbas, according to Abu Zayda, has also appointed himself as the chief judge and prosecutor, making a mockery of the Palestinian judicial system.
Take, for example, the case of Ghazi Jabali, the former commissioner-general of the Palestinian Authority police force.
For many years, Jabali was wanted by the Palestinian Authority for corruption and theft. After fleeing to Jordan, the Palestinian Authority requested Interpol's help in the arrest of Jabali.
A few weeks ago, Palestinians were surprised to see Jabali staying at a luxurious hotel in Ramallah. It transpired that Jabali was able to return to the West Bank after receiving a written document from Abbas clearing him of any wrongdoing.
Abbas is surrounded by three or four people who are making important decisions on behalf of all Palestinians, noted another Palestinian official in the West Bank. These are the only people he consults with. Most PLO and Fatah leaders have no idea about Abbas's strategy.
The growing resentment about Abbas's autocratic regime and refusal to share powers and plans with other Palestinians cast doubt on his ability to win the support of a majority of Palestinians for resuming peace talks, let alone signing a peace treaty with Israel.
Abbas's autocratic rule and the frustration of many Palestinians do not seem to bother Kerry.
The U.S. seems to want to bring Abbas to the negotiating table with Israel at any price.
Kerry seems to be seeking to cut a deal with just one person -- who does not even have the backing of his people.
Unlike Kerry, Abbas is fully aware of the increased criticism at home -- and why Abbas is now telling his people that if and when he resumes peace talks with Israel, it will be only because the U.S. has exerted immense pressure on him.
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|Failures to understand Islam [80 words]||Bart Benschop||Jul 9, 2013 01:57|
|Is Abbas the legitimate leader? [55 words]||Amonseyman||Jul 1, 2013 23:22|
|So why no Arab Palestinian Spring? [131 words]||Lori Lowenthal Marcus||Jun 30, 2013 21:47|
|↔ The Only Reason [25 words]||Ethan P.||Jul 1, 2013 13:23|
|↔ Ethan, that does not answer my questions [55 words]||Lori Lowenthal Marcus||Jul 1, 2013 13:52|
|↔ It is the answer. [148 words]||Ethan P.||Jul 2, 2013 14:26|
|Cutting one's own throat [52 words]||Charles||Jun 30, 2013 15:52|
|Obama has learned nothing from the past Democratic administration - the PLO's total corruption [201 words]||Phillip Pasmanick||Jun 30, 2013 09:16|
|The Wrong Horse [50 words]||Ethan P.||Jun 29, 2013 23:28|
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by Khaled Abu Toameh
It is important to note that these cease-fire demands are not part of Hamas's or Islamic Jihad's overall strategy, namely to have Israel wiped off the face of the earth.
Many foreign journalists who came to cover the war in the Gaza trip were under the false impression that it was all about improving living conditions for the Palestinians by opening border crossings and building an airport and seaport. These journalists really believed that once the demands of Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad are accepted, this would pave the way for peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians.
To understand the true intention of Hamas and its allies, it is sufficient to follow the statements made by their leaders after the cease-fire announcement this week. To his credit, Ismail Haniyeh, Hamas's leader, has never concealed Hamas's desire to destroy Israel.
Hamas and its allies see the war in the Gaza Strip as part of there strategy to destroy Israel. What Hamas and its allies are actually saying is, "Give us open borders and an airport and seaport so we can use them to prepare for the next war against Israel."
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Why did we not hear one single Turkish voice protest the death of 300,000 Muslims in Darfur?
Hamas's Charter is must-read fun.
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The world seems not to understand that Hamas, like ISIS and the Muslim Brotherhood, does not exist in a vacuum. It is one cog in the radical Islamist wheel that threatens the Arab and Muslim world and the major cities of Europe.
The Western world also seems not to understand that it has to incapacitate or totally neutralize the countries funding terrorism, such as Iran, Qatar and Turkey, for whom the Palestinian problem is only a pretext on the way to destroying the Western world as we know it and replacing it with only Islam.
by Burak Bekdil
Hamas spokesman Sami Abu-Zuhri said: "All Israelis are legitimate targets." What would the Palestinian death toll have been if Mr. Netanyahu's spokesman declared all Palestinians as legitimate targets?
Underdog-nation romanticism tells us Israel should not respond when under rocket attack because it is capable of intercepting the rockets.
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by Soeren Kern
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"The spectrum of recruits for the conflict in Syria is ethnically diverse. The motivation, however, appears to be uniformly jihadist." — Austrian intelligence agency BVT.
"Allah also gives you the opportunity to wage jihad in Austria." — Austrian jihadist Firas Houidi.
"We are proud that Allah has chosen us. We feel like lions." — Austrian jihadist Abu Hamza al-Austria.