|A younger Abbas was Arafat's protege. |
His current positions parrot Arafat's own.
Abbas' Radical Political Doctrine -Lt. Col. Jonathan D. Halevi
- Mahmoud Abbas, chairman of the Palestinian Authority and leader of the PLO and the Fatah movement, presented a radical political doctrine in his speech on January 4, 2013, honoring the anniversary of Fatah's establishment.
- In his speech Abbas avoids all mention of a historic compromise with Israel that would bring the conflict to an end. Nor does he mention the land-for-peace formula or the establishment of a Palestinian state beside Israel. Instead, Abbas chose to reemphasize that the Palestinian people remain on the path of struggle to realize "the dream of return" of the Palestinian refugees and their millions of descendants.
- Abbas pledged to continue the path of struggle of previous Palestinian leaders, mentioning the Mufti of Jerusalem, Hajj Amin al-Husseini, who forged a strategic alliance with Nazi Germany, and heads of Palestinian terror organizations who were directly responsible for the murder of thousands of Israeli civilians. All are equal and suitable partners in the Palestinian struggle, and their ideological platform, even if it is terrorist and/or radical-Islamist, is a source of inspiration for the Palestinian people.
- Anyone who expected that Abbas would follow a more moderate course after the UN General Assembly resolution upgrading the status of the PLO, was undoubtedly disappointed with Abbas' remarks. He was not preparing the Palestinian people for making peace, but rather escalating the conflict.
The writer is a former advisor to the Policy Planning Division of the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
What's Behind Abbas' New Tone -Dore Gold
What happened to Mahmoud Abbas? Wasn't he always regarded by Israeli leaders for the last twenty years as a moderate who was interested in reaching a peace agreement? What is important is not the vapid debate over whether Abbas can still be regarded as a partner for peacemaking, but rather to internalize that the political environment in 2013 no longer resembles what the Middle East looked like when Israel began talking to the Palestinians in 1993.
The next Israeli government must accept the fact that given what is going on in the Middle East, it is completely unrealistic to propose a negotiation to reach a full-blown final status agreement with the Palestinians.
Given the regional dangers on the horizon, any political arrangement in the future must have a much stronger security component than what was proposed in the past. More than ever, Israel needs to preserve the ability to defend itself, by itself, no matter how the declared intentions of its neighbors change.
The writer is president of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs.
Portrait of Palestinian Democracy - 2013 -Rick Richman
This week Mahmoud Abbas began the ninth year of his four-year term of office, having originally taken office on January 15, 2005, after a quickie election held a few weeks after Yasser Arafat died in the ninth year of his own four-year term.
Being elected Palestinian president means you never have to run again.
Palestinian democracy has been a bit of a disappointment: each of the peace-partner presidents [Arafat & Abbas] were offered a state on virtually all of the West Bank and Gaza, with a capital in Jerusalem, and each of them walked away.