On March 12, 2014, the eve of President Mahmoud Abbas' departure for the White House and a meeting with American President Barack Obama, Fatah Central Committee's Abbas Zaki went on Palestinian national TV and presented his vision for the future of the Jews in the State of Israel. According to Zaki, "Allah will gather them [the Israelis] so that we can kill them." He said that "every killer has to die, there is no other option."
His sweeping declaration represented the true vision that a great many Palestinian leaders have for the Jews, based on Surah 17, Al-Isra (The Night Journey), Verse 8 of the Qur'an, which deals with the bitter fate of the Jews condemned to hell.
Fatah Central Committee member Abbas Zaki speaks on Palestinian Authority TV , March 12, 2014. (Image source: Palestinian Media Watch)
Those leaders also repeat – endlessly – the hadith (a saying attributed to Muhammad) claiming that Judgment Day will be delayed until the Muslims have slaughtered all the Jews, the last of whom will be revealed by the stone or tree behind which he is hiding, so that the Muslims can kill him. That is what the Jews can expect, what the Palestinians tell each other even as their smiling leaders convince the world they want peace with the Jews.
While the Palestinians refuse to recognize Israel as the national homeland of the Jews, they admit that in fact, the Holy Land belongs to the Jews. They invented a word, "Judaize," and use it to define the Israelites in Israel. The Palestinian leaders call Israel's construction in Jerusalem the "Judaization of Jerusalem." The flyers distributed by the Palestinian terrorist organizations always call for the murder of all the Jews in "Palestine." The sheikhs and commanders of the Islamist terrorist organizations use the pulpits of the mosques to preach the slaughter of the Jews in "Palestine," as they were slaughtered by Muhammad. Even Palestinian intellectuals display the link between the Jews of "Palestine" and world Jewry as an aspect of The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.
The Palestinian refusal to recognize Israel as a Jewish state is based on the claim that it would deny Israeli Arabs their rights to the land and cancel the "historic rights" of the Palestinian people in Palestine. If the Palestinian leaders had any real interest in Israeli Arabs, they would have agreed to the proposal given by Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman and accepted them and all their property and land, as Lieberman offered, as citizens of Palestine. The truth, however, is that despite the claims that Israel is discriminatory, colonialist and an apartheid state, even Israeli Arabs have no desire to exchange Israeli citizenship for a Palestinian Authority passport. By refusing to recognize Israel as a Jewish state the Palestinians are in fact admitting that they have no intention of ending the conflict. The Palestinian leaders claim they are willing to recognize the fact of Israel's existence, but not its right to exist.
The Israeli demand for Palestinian recognition of Israel as a Jewish state is legitimate: It signals Palestinian acceptance of Israel's existence, the waiving of the so-called "right of return" and the end of the conflict. The verbal acrobatics of our leaders deceive us and perhaps the world at large, but not the Israelis. Mahmoud Abbas' reasons for the refusal are unclear. After all, Arafat himself was documented and photographed recognizing Israel as a Jewish state.
With regard to religion, Palestinian recognition of the State of Israel is more serious than its recognition of Israel as a Jewish state. For us as Muslims, the word "Israel" and our recognition of it and its inhabitants as "Israelis" mean we verify and confirm the fulfillment of the Qur'an prophecy according to which the blessed land is the divine heritage of "Bani Israail," "the Israelites." That means we give Israel Islamic religious sanction with the full weight of Qur'anic blessing.
Therefore, Mahmoud Abbas' evasion of recognizing Israel as a Jewish state is nonsensical. Arafat himself, who founded and led the PLO and engineered the establishment of the Palestinian Authority through the Oslo Accords, declared that Israel was a Jewish state. For that reason, President Abbas' stubborn resistance seems spiteful and underhanded, and is firm proof that he does not really want peace.
The day after Abbas Zaki gave his speech, Mahmoud Abbas told the 13th annual Fatah Revolutionary Council, held in Ramallah, what his plans were for peace with Israel. He said, "No recognition of Israel as a Jewish state, no waiving of the right of return and no abandoning Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine." Those three "No"s also show that the Palestinians have no interest in a peace process and seek to continue the conflict with Israel. They still hold the onto the hope that they will be able to blackmail the Jews into giving more for nothing in return -- backed by the generous and freely-given assistance of the American administration and the European Union.
The truth is that the stronger Russia, China and Iran become, and the longer the list of American failures (Iran, Afghanistan, Iran, Egypt, Soviet Union and the Ukraine), the less the Palestinians will be able to rely on the Obama administration.
The more American society becomes polarized and its economy destabilized by its catastrophic debt, the less the pro-Palestinian elements in Washington will be able to extort compromises and concessions from Israel, which is still considered a strategic asset of the United States.
In addition, the economic downfall of the European countries will weaken the European Union and eventually stop the funds pouring into the Palestinian Authority and its mostly corrupt leadership. The Palestinian attempts to destroy Israel through the boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign will fail and the unscrupulous pro-Palestinian organizations, NGOs and agencies like UNRWA will close their doors.
Our hope that the international situation, especially in view of America's weakness, will lead the West to boycott Israel in the service of the Palestinians, as was done against against South Africa, is in vain. The only people who will suffer from the boycott of the Jewish settlements in the West Bank are the Palestinians who work there and support their families with their jobs in the settlements' factories. The BDS campaign, in its efforts to put the settlements out of business, has swollen the ranks of unemployed Palestinians. In the past, tens of thousands of Palestinians came from the West Bank and the Gaza Strip every day to work in Israel. The two intifadas took away their job; we took away their jobs by boycotting Israel and its manufactured goods. To us, it is clear that the international community cares less about helping Palestinians than trying to destroy Israel.
Mahmoud Abbas is a disappointment and without vision. In calling himself a leader who will not betray the interests of his people he trapped himself. The truth is that he does not have a general Palestinian consensus to lead and he does not have legal constitutional standing. He cannot advance the Palestinian cause even one inch forward and instead promotes showy but meaningless public relations ploys, such as the release of Palestinian security prisoners from Israeli jails. The release of prisoners is all he wants; once he has them, he will be through with negotiations.
Whoever called the Mahmoud Abbas era a unique opportunity for peace was mistaken. Peace does not depend on one individual, it must represent the general agreement and wishes of the people who will still be in the Palestinian street long after Mahmoud Abbas is gone. His refusal to recognize Israel as a Jewish state (as he conveniently ignores the fact that his regime exists only because of the security support he receives from the Israeli army) is unnecessary and petty, and is a major cause of concern and suspicion for the Israelis.
His unwillingness to reach a peace agreement was essentially the theme of the speech he delivered to Fatah's Revolutionary Council the day before he left for the United States to meet with President Obama. He and others in the Palestinian Authority refuse, in fact, to compromise on any issue. They refer publicly and often to the return of all the refugees to "occupied Palestine." Unfortunately, the morning after, the Palestinians will be left with the legacy of a "leader" whom history will show to have been a coward with no vision, no real concern for his people and no political backbone. Since the Jews in Palestine will never agree to the implementation of the right of return, which would mean the physical destruction of Israel, the Palestinian problem will most likely remain without a solution forever.
The Palestinians claim that the Jews themselves cannot answer the question "Who is a Jew?" and therefore that there is therefore no reason for the Palestinians to recognize Israel as a Jewish state. They claim that they arrived in Palestine before the Jews and that they are the descendants of the original Canaanites. The claims, even if they were valid and not imaginary, would still be irrelevant. The fact is that UN General Assembly Resolution 181, determined one state for the Jews and one for the Arabs (the name of the Palestinian state was not mentioned). We rejected it out of hand and attacked Israel in 1948.
If I were an Israeli, I would ask who those Palestinians are who have gathered in Palestine during the past hundred years, brought in by the British to build roads and by landowners from Syria and Lebanon to work in the fields. Are they the people supporting Mahmoud Abbas when he claims he wants peace, or are they a collection of terrorist operatives of the Hamas-Palestinian Islamic Jihad type, who smuggle weapons from Iran and rain rockets on Israel's cities and its civilians from the Gaza Strip? If I were an Israeli I would also be worried about the recent mudslinging bouts of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and his former minister of the interior and commander of preventive security Muhammad Dahlan. The arguments and mutual accusations expose a Palestinian leadership that is rotten to the core, corrupt, thieving, engaged in mutual murders and betraying the Palestinian people. If I were an Israeli I would think twice before entering into any agreement with such people.
The most recent decision of the Arab League to back Mahmoud Abbas as the elected and only president of "Palestine" and to demand the establishment of a Palestine state with east Jerusalem as its capital was wise. However, the unfortunate and rather stupid decision not to recognize Israel as a Jewish state prolongs the Arab political fixation and is an obstacle to peace. It reflects an Arab disregard for historical truth and the prophecies of the Noble Qur'an regarding the establishment of the Jewish state in Jerusalem and its environment, called by the Qur'an "the Blessed Land." Anyone who disregards what is written in the Qur'an is an enemy of Allah. The only outcome of the Arab League's unfortunate decision will be that the Jews in Palestine will continue to flourish while the Palestinians continue to suffer.
 "It is expected, [if you repent], that your Lord will have mercy upon you. But if you return [to sin], We will return [to punishment]. And We have made Hell, for the disbelievers, a prison-bed."