The indecisive and confusing state of the Palestinian leadership

It is perhaps high time that the Palestinian leadership put its house in order, and decides whether it wants peace with Israel or constant unending tension and violence.

April 12, 2016 20:58
2 minute read.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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Who is not utterly confused by the Palestinian leadership? Presumably the Palestinian public is no less perplexed than are the Israelis.

In all likelihood, the international community itself is even more confused and fatigued by the recent, unending Palestinian self-contradicting attempts to gain attention, faced as it is with the massive threats of ISIS terror, the ongoing war in Syria, tension between Russia and Ukraine and other major crises.

The Palestinian policy is curious.

One the one hand, PA Foreign Minister Riad Malki formally announces, while on a visit to Japan in February, that the Palestinians no longer intend to return to negotiations with Israel and prefer to urge the UN to impose a solution to negotiation issues.

On the other hand, Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and his assistant Saeb Erekat, secretary-general of the PLO and head of the Palestinian Authority ‘negotiation’ department, initiate a draft UN Security Council resolution calling for resumption of the very negotiations that their foreign minister has declared to be dead.

Similarly, while calling in the same draft resolution “to observe calm and restraint and refrain from provocative actions, incitement and inflammatory rhetoric,” the PA repeatedly and demonstratively dispatches Malki to the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court to complain against Israel’s actions in the territories and its response to the recent wave of Palestinian incitement and terror.

One may wonder, in this context, whether the Palestinian leadership is not attempting to abuse the International Criminal Court and turn it into its own “back-yard tribunal” at the expense of the genuinely serious issues with which that court is intended to deal.

While calling, in their recent draft Security Council resolution, for “de-escalating the situation on the ground, rebuilding trust and confidence, demonstrating… a genuine commitment to the two-state solution, and creating the conditions necessary for promoting peace,” the Palestinian leadership have nevertheless initiated and instituted false and libelous allegations at the UNESCO governing board, accusing Israel of violating Muslim graves and holy sites in Jerusalem.

If “refraining from incitement and provocative actions” includes the honoring and glorifying of terrorists shot by Israeli security forces while stabbing Israeli citizens, and the consistent refusal to condemn such acts of terror, then it’s no wonder that the Palestinian public is confused with its leadership.

When the Palestinian leadership repeatedly abuses the bona fides of the international community, and claims that the territories are “occupied Palestinian territory,” while at the same time committing itself to negotiate the issue of the permanent status of the very same territories, it is no wonder that the Palestinians themselves, as well as the international community and the Israelis, do not really understand what the Palestinian leadership really wants.

It is perhaps high time that the Palestinian leadership put its house in order, and decides whether it wants peace with Israel or constant unending tension and violence.

It is also high time that the Palestinian leadership chooses to invest the considerable funding it receives for the purpose of serving the needs and interests of the Palestinian public rather than wasting funds on senseless political and public relations exercises and exhaustive and expensive travel for the sole purpose of perpetuating conflict and Palestinian victimhood.

But regrettably, it is highly unlikely that this can happen.

In the meantime we all remain confused…

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