The Nudnik File

Nudnik - n. U.S. colloq. Esp. in Jewish usage: a pestering, nagging, or irritating person

Monday, January 10, 2005

              President Abbas
As was pretty much known by all - such is Palestinian democracy - Mahmoud Abbas won the election for President of the Palestinian Authority. And as would be expected, his victory was hailed as the beginning of a "moderate" and "democratic" leadership for the Palestinians. In this excellent article, Efraim Karsh traces back Abbas's political heritage through Arafat all the way to the Nazi-supporting Haj Amin al-Husseini, and shows that with leadership like this there is no more chance of peace now than there was a year ago. Until a new generation "untainted by terror", as Bush stated in his speech of June 24 2002, takes over control of Palestinian society, there will not be peace. To think otherwise is wishful thinking and willful ignorance.
For all their drastically different personalities and political style, Arafat and Abu Mazen are warp and woof of the same fabric: dogmatic PLO veterans who have never eschewed their commitment to Israel’s destruction and who have viewed the “peace process” as the continuation of their lifetime war by other means. (A younger and more direct reincarnation of Arafat is Marwan Barghouti, the jailed Fatah terrorist with undisguised political ambitions.) As late as July 2002, Abu Mazen described Oslo as “the biggest mistake Israel ever made,” enabling the PLO to get worldwide acceptance and respectability while hanging fast to its own aims. Shortly after Arafat’s death this past November, in his address to a special session of the Palestinian Legislative Council in Ramallah, he swore to “follow in the path of the late leader Yasir Arafat and . . . work toward fulfilling his dream. . . . We promise you that our hearts will not rest until the right of return for our people is achieved and the tragedy of the refugees is ended.”
So long as the Palestinian territories continue to be run by men of this kind and by their terrorist organizations, there can be no true or lasting reconciliation with Israel. And so long as the territories continue to be governed by Arafat’s rule of the jungle, no Palestinian civil society, let alone a viable state, can develop. Just as the creation of free and democratic societies in Germany and Japan after World War II necessitated, above and beyond the overthrow of the ruling parties, a comprehensive purge of the existing political elites and the reeducation of the entire populace, so the Palestinians deserve a profound structural reform that will sweep the PA from power, free the territories from its grip, eradicate the endemic violence from political and social life, and teach the virtues of coexistence with their Israeli neighbors. Until this happens, there will be no lasting peace in the Middle East.
|| Nudnik 3:01 PM
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