Peace as a pit stop on the road to war

The Washington Times Weekly - - Commentary -


say­ing, Peace, peace; when there is no peace.”

— Jeremiah 6:14

There was an in­ter­est­ing state­ment by Mah­moud Ab­bas of the Pales­tinian Author­ity on the sixth an­niver­sary of Yasser Arafat’s death. He will not rec­og­nize Is­rael as a le­git­i­mate Jewish state and that he planned “to con­tinue in Arafat’s foot­steps.” These are two prom­ises Ab­bas ap­pears to be in­tent on keep­ing.

Two weeks ago, Khana Amira of the Pales­tine Lib­er­a­tion Or­ga­ni­za­tion and Ab­bas’ Fatah ter­ror­ist group an­nounced the Pales­tinian Author­ity will stop co­or­di­nat­ing its se­cu­rity with Is­rael. In­stead, it will push for uni­lat­eral ab­ro­ga­tion of all peace ac­cords and com­mit­ments to the so-called “road map” to peace as a re­sult of failed ne­go­ti­a­tions.

This is ex­actly what Arafat did when Is­rael es­sen­tially granted him 99 per­cent of all his de­mands. He knew he could not ac­tu­ally live up to his com­mit­ments for peace be­cause they re­quired him to rec­og­nize Is­rael as a le­git­i­mate Jewish state.

That’s what it al­ways comes down to with the Pales­tinian Author­ity. It will not, it can­not, rec­og­nize Is­rael. It will not, it can­not, agree that Is­rael has a le­git­i­mate right to ex­ist as a neigh­bor, no mat­ter what con­ces­sions the Jewish state ulti- mately makes.

Of course, Ab­bas and the Pales­tinian Author­ity have an ace up their sleeve.

They know that walk­ing away from the bar­gain­ing ta­ble means one thing is cer­tain: Barack Obama will use his in­flu­ence to push Is­rael for even more con­ces­sions and of­fer more fi­nan­cial aid to just keep talk­ing.

Ab­bas and the PA also plan to go to the United Na­tions Se­cu­rity Coun­cil for recog­ni­tion of a Pales­tinian state on all territorie­s cap­tured by Is­rael in 1967.

“We can’t re­main com­mit­ted to the agree­ments that were signed with Is­rael for­ever,” said Abed Rabbo of the PA.

That is a re­veal­ing state­ment. Aren’t agree­ments for­ever? Or are they just tem­po­rary tac­ti­cal ma­neu­vers?

The man whose foot­steps Ab­bas is fol­low­ing made it very clear years ago.

It was in 1994, eight months af­ter Is­rael and the Pales­tini­ans had signed the so-called “Dec­la­ra­tion of Prin­ci­ples,” that Arafat ex­plained in a Jo­han­nes­burg mosque that the agree­ment was noth­ing to worry about.

It was iden­ti­cal, he said in Ara­bic, to the peace treaty signed in the year 629 be­tween Muham­mad and the Qu­raish tribe of Mecca, the fa­mous Hud­abiya treaty. In the an­nals of Is­lam, this is fa­mous. It was a tem­po­rary, tac­ti­cal mea­sure made with the sole pur­pose of buy­ing time with an im­pla­ca­ble en­emy so that Mus­lim forces could be strength­ened for the ul­ti­mate show­down, when the en­emy’s guard is down.

Arafat said it again in 1998 to a youth group of Fatah: “The Peace of Oslo is the Peace of Hud­abiya.” This kind of code, trans­par­ent to any­one who un­der­stands Is­lamic his­tory, went right over the heads of U.S. State Depart­ment di­plo­mats and Bill Clin­ton.

In­stead of rec­og­niz­ing they were be­ing scammed by Arafat, they merely kept push­ing for re­turns to the “peace process.”

In­deed, Ab­bas truly is fol­low­ing in the foot­steps of the mas­ter de­ceiver that was Arafat. And there’s not a chance in Hades that Barack Obama is go­ing to change course.

Joseph Farah is a na­tion­ally syndi­cated colum­nist.

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