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Photo: Yariv Katz
Guy Bechor
Photo: Yariv Katz
Mahmoud Abbas
Photo: AP
End Palestinian game
Op-ed: Israel should make it clear that Abbas will pay heavy price for his two-faced game
There are naïve people among us who are impressed by Salam Fayyad’s and Mahmoud Abbas’ condemnations of the Itamar massacre. However, the time has come to understand that the current Palestinian Authority plays a much more sophisticated and dangerous game against Israel than Yasser Arafat’s PA.

 

Arafat played a two-faced game, engaging in both a diplomatic process vis-à-vis Israel and terror against it simultaneously. However, Abbas and Fayyad realized that terror against Israel in fact strengthens the Jewish State, both domestically and internationally. Hence, they shifted to a more refined game, engaging in both a diplomatic process vis-à-vis Israel as well as a de-legitimization campaign against it.

 

Abbas’ Palestinian Authority is the one that manages an anti-Israel campaign in the United Nations, at other international forums, and in global public opinion. In September of this year, the PA also wants to force a Palestinian state upon Israel. Indeed, Abbas’ PA makes an effort to embarrass us at every opportunity and work against our very existence.

 

This de-legitimization is more dangerous than Hamas’ terror, so paradoxically Hamas rule in the Arab parts of Judea and Samaria is better for Israel than Abbas’ duplicitous game, as it would make clear to the world who the good and bad guys are in this story.

 

The time has come to put an end to this game. Those who engage in peace negotiations cannot at the same time work against the other side’s right to exist. That is, not only fail to recognize it, but undermine its existence, embarrass it, and insult it at every opportunity.

 

Israel keeps PA alive

The Palestinian Authority is currently being kept alive by Israel. Had it not been for the IDF’s presence in the West Bank and had it not been for the arrests of wanted suspects night after night, this Authority would no longer exist. Hamas would topple and eliminate it within a few days, as it did in Gaza in 2007.

 

At the time, Hamas activists threw down their Fatah “brethren” from high-rises to their death. Strangely, no international inquiry was established in the wake of that massacre, just like no commission of inquiry will be formed in the wake of massacres committed by authorities against their own people in Libya, Egypt, Bahrain, Yemen and so on and so forth throughout the Arab Middle East.

 

Israel must not accept the Palestinian Authority’s two-faced game, played at the Jewish State’s expense, while the latter keeps the PA alive only to be hit with insults and anti-Israel activity. We should also not wait until September for the PA’s international moves against Israel. The time has come to exert counter-pressure.

 

At this time we should already make it clear to Abbas that should his game of de-legitimization continue, Israel will change realities: It will fully withdraw from populated Palestinian areas in Judea and Samaria and set a new boundary in the territories, even at the price of moving isolated settlements. The world shall laud this move, yet by undertaking this step Israel will leave Abbas and his comrades at the mercy of Hamas, which will not treat them as kindly as Israel does.

 

This should not just be a threat. The government must prepare to carry out this move, thereby putting an end to the Palestinian Authority’s existence. Hamas will finish the job, as it was able to do in Gaza.

 

This warning should be presented to Abbas and Fayyad now. Should they continue to embarrass Israel and the United States and demand a unilateral state at the UN, they will pay an existential price. Even condemnations of a despicable massacre won’t help them.

 

 

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