Ab­bas still full of lies

The Washington Times Daily - - EDITORIAL -

Pales­tinian leader Mah­moud Ab­bas’ so-called apol­ogy for his re­cent anti-Semitic speech was re­ally no apol­ogy at all (“Pales­tinian pres­i­dent apol­o­gizes over anti-Semitic re­marks,” Web, May 4). In his speech, Mr. Ab­bas blamed Jews for bring­ing the Holo­caust on them­selves with their “so­cial be­hav­ior,” and de­nied the Jewish peo­ple’s an­ces­tral pres­ence in what is to­day Is­rael. Af­ter be­ing widely re­buked, he said he apol­o­gized “if peo­ple were of­fended” (yes, he ac­tu­ally said “if”). What he point­edly did not do was ac­knowl­edge that his state­ments were false.

Nor, for that mat­ter, did Mr. Ab­bas re­tract his pre­vi­ous, fal­la­cious, an­ti­Semitic re­marks about the Holo­caust, in­clud­ing calling it “the Zion­ist fan­tasy, the fan­tas­tic lie that six mil­lion Jews were killed.” He claimied that the ac­tual num­ber of Jews killed was “only a few hun­dred thou­sand,” in­sisted that “the Zion­ists” were the Nazis’ se­cret part­ners in ex­ter­mi­nat­ing Jews and as­serted that a “sci­en­tific study” proved no Jews had been mur­dered in Nazi gas cham­bers.

Even the New York Times, af­ter decades of ig­nor­ing or down­play­ing Mr. Ab­bas’ lies, fi­nally con­demned him in an ed­i­to­rial that de­cried his “rep­re­hen­si­ble anti-Semitic myths and con­spir­acy the­o­ries” and said he had “shed all cred­i­bil­ity as a trust­wor­thy part­ner.” This was a re­mark­able ad­mis­sion, con­sid­er­ing that just four years ear­lier, on April 26, 2014, a New York Times ar­ti­cle shame­lessly in­sin­u­ated that the Pales­tinian leader was the vic­tim of an un­fair Is­raeli smear campaign, stat­ing: “Mr. Ab­bas has been vil­i­fied as a Holo­caust de­nier” be­cause “he chal­lenged the num­ber of Jewish vic­tims.” Vil­i­fied? Chal­lenged? His views were Holo­caust re­vi­sion­ism, plain and sim­ple.

Mr. Ab­bas’ re­cent speech wasn’t just of­fen­sive, it was a hate­ful lie. Until he pub­licly ad­mits this, he re­mains un­re­pen­tant and morally un­fit to par­tic­i­pate in any “peace process.” He cer­tainly won’t be vis­it­ing the new Amer­i­can em­bassy to Is­rael in Jerusalem any­time soon.

STEPHEN A. SILVER San Francisco

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