Dichter: Palestinians don’t deliver
Photo: Alex Kolomoiski
‘Mr. Sort Of’ – Jibril Rajoub
Photo: Zoom 77
‘Mr. Definitely’ – Saeb Erekat
The Palestinian Authority has failed to live up to even one agreement reached with Israel over the last five years, former Shin Bet Chief Avi Dichter charged Thursday.
During a lecture in Jerusalem, the former security chief addressed the five years of intifada and developments in the Palestinian arena. In his talk, he extensively described the Palestinian culture of lies and failure to deliver on agreements.
“This cannot go on,” he said. “It’s important not to allow the Palestinians to work with us while resorting to the culture of lies.”
Dichter said Israeli trust in Palestinian pledges has been gravely undermined in the past five years as a result of the Palestinian tendency to bend the truth.
“We must not accept their culture of lies, but we must be familiar with it,” he said. “They are our partners for better or for worse. Lately, it was more on the ‘worse’ side.”
When asked to provide concrete examples for his charges, Dichter shared two stories.
“In October 2001 we sat with the Palestinians in the presence of CIA Director George Tenet and Egyptian Intelligence Chief Omar Suleiman. We submitted a list of 114 terrorists who were in Palestinian prisons and but were released when the intifada started. Jibril Rajoub (currently the PA’s national security advisor), who was in the meeting, knew the details were accurate, but his colleague, Yasser Abed Rabbo, insisted that all of them were still in jail. As the argument continued, I suggested that Abed Rabbo put down a 100 dollar bill for every name of the list that’s in jail. Abed Rabbo replied: ‘I don’t occupy myself with money.’”
“Another, more serious example, was when Yasser Arafat pledged to President Bush that an activist who fired mortars was detained…I arrived at a meeting and heard the news from the Palestinians: ‘Avi, you can be certain, the man is in prison,’ Abu Ala (Palestinian Prime Minister Ahmed Qureia) told me. PA negotiator Saeb Erekat added: ‘definitely.’
“The thing is, Jibril Rajoub attended that meeting, and he knew the man wasn’t in jail, he knew that I know that the man isn’t in jail, and he knew that I know that he knows the man isn’t in jail. When he was asked whether the man was detained he replied ‘sort of’ – covering the entire range between yes and no. The next day, that man reached heavens after a missile hit his car in Bethlehem.”
Later, Dichter turned his attention to Palestinian terror organizations and said the groups are doing everything in their power to reestablish infrastructures in the West Bank, while continuing to develop Qassam rockets.
“The moment the Hamas can carry out an attack, it will do it,” he said.