Are the Palestinian Arabs Fulfilling President Bush’s Conditions for Statehood? A Survey of Week #42: April 8, 2003 – April 14, 2003
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April 14, 2003


THE BUSH PLAN:


On June 24, 2002, President Bush set forth the conditions that the Palestinian Arabs must fulfill in order to merit U.S. support for the creation of a Palestinian Arab state. Among the major obligations are that the Palestinian Arabs must “dismantle the terrorist infrastructure,” “end incitement,” “elect new leaders not compromised by terror,” and unequivocally embrace democracy and free market economics.


This report analyzes Palestinian Arab actions during the 42nd week following President Bush’s speech, April 8 – April 14, 2003.



I. “Dismantle the Terrorist Infrastructure”


What They Must Do: President Bush said that the Palestinian Arabs must “engage in a sustained fight against the terrorists and dismantle their infrastructure.” Those terms were previously defined in the Oslo and Wye accords as including arresting and imprisoning terrorists; shutting down bomb factories; seizing terrorists’ weapons; extraditing terrorists to Israel; punishing factions of the PLO that engage in terrorism; and outlawing terrorist groups.


A report by the Israeli Foreign Ministry on February 20, 2003, revealed: “Documents found recently in the Gaza offices of the Palestinian Preventive Security Service (PPSS) expose not only the corruption and mismanagement of the Palestinian Authority, but also reveal the channeling of PA funds toward the financing and implementation of terrorist operation.


“Among the documents found during the IDF’s Operation Guardian Fortress in Gaza were hundreds of receipts along with photocopies of cheques and other documents. These relate to the transfer of sums of money, ranging from hundreds of dollars to hundreds of thousands of dollars, to senior and lower-level operatives and other elements. These funds, originating from the budgets of the Preventive Security apparatus and its independent sources of income were used not only for preventive security (such as intelligence gathering and preventive operations) but also to finance and initiate terrorism.”


The Bush administration has also said that in rebuilding its police and security forces, the PA must reform them so they fight against terrorists instead of taking part in terrorism. The training, under the supervision of U.S., Egyptian, and Jordanian security officials, began on Sept. 19, 2002; however, Israel has protested the fact that at least 100 of the 150 PA security officers in the course “were involved in attacks on Israeli civilians.” (Middle East Newsline, Sept. 17, 2002)


What They Did During Week #42:


A. No Terrorists Arrested: There were no reports of terrorists being arrested or imprisoned.


B. No Terrorists Extradited: The PA continued to ignore Israel’s 45 requests for the extradition of terrorists.


C. No Terror Groups Outlawed: The PA did not outlaw Hamas, Islamic Jihad, Fatah, or any other terrorist groups.


D. No Terrorists’ Weapons Seized: There were no reports of the PA seizing terrorists’ weapons. .


E. No Closing of Bomb Factories: There were no reports of the PA shutting down any bomb factories.


F. No Punishing of PLO Terror Factions: There were no reports of the PLO leadership punishing PLO factions that are engaged in terrorism, such as the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) and the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP).


G. New Terrorist Attacks: During week #42, April 8 – April 14, 2003, there were at least 20 terrorist attacks or attempted attacks, in which 2 people were murdered and 11 were wounded:


April 8: Two shooting attacks on Israeli motorists near Ofra … Shooting attack on Israeli soldiers along the Israel-Egypt border.


April 9: Rocket attack on the city of Sderot; one wounded … Rocket attack on a Jewish neighborhood in Gush Katif … Rockets fired at an Israeli Army outpost near Nevei Dekalim … Shooting attack on Israeli soldiers along the Israel-Egypt border … Terrorists intercepted while preparing a rocket attack between Beit Hanoun and Jebalya … Bomb attack on Israeli soldiers in Gaza … An Israeli Army bulldozer in Gaza; one wounded.


April 10: Shooting attack on Israeli soldiers in the Jordan valley; two murdered, nine wounded … Shooting attack on an Israeli motorist near Shaked.


April 11: Missiles fired at Israeli soldiers near the Israel-Egypt border … Rocket fired near a Jewish neighborhood near Gush Katif … Suicide bomber interrupted on his way to carry out an attack near Shechem (Nablus).


April 12: Shooting attack on Israeli soldiers in Gaza. April 13: Shooting attack on Israeli Army outposts in Gush Katif … Attack on Israeli motorists between Kiryat Arba and Gush Etzion.


April 14: Attempted bomb attack at Beit Berl College, near Kfar Saba … Bomb discovered and dismantled near Psagot.



II. “End Incitement”


What They Must Do: President Bush stated that the Palestinian Arabs must “end incitement to violence in official media and publicly denounce homicide bombings.”


What They Did During Week #42:


The PA’s official newspapers, television, and radio continued to broadcast a steady stream of anti-Israel, anti-American, and pro-violence incitement, and PA officials continued to make inciting statements.


For example, on April 9, 2003, official PA Television began repeatedly broadcasting a music video titled “Be Strong Baghdad,” which, according to Palestinian Media Watch, “glorifies the ‘heroic’ fighting of the Iraqis and celebrates the casualties inflicted on the U.S. forces.” Pictured twice are scenes of US soldiers carrying away a body of a killed comrade, and the last picture in the video is a coffin draped with American and British flags.


The following refrain is sung repeatedly: ‘Be strong, Baghdad, be strong
Pressure the evil ones.
Don’t fear bombings and siege
Pull the trigger.
The despicable ones must go.’


The video shows numerous scenes of cheering Iraqis holding their automatic rifles aloft and includes Iraqis celebrating near a downed U.S. helicopter.


Click Here to view the video



III. “Elect New Leaders Not Compromised by Terror”


What They Must Do: President Bush stated that the Palestinian Arabs must hold “fair multiparty elections by the end of the year, with national elections to follow,” in which they “elect new leaders, leaders not compromised by terror.”


What They Did During Week #42:


After previously announcing that it will hold elections for chairman of the PA and members of the Palestinian Legislative Council on January 20, 2003, the PA subsequently declared that those elections will be indefinitely postponed because Israeli forces are continuing to pursue terrorists in various parts of Judea, Samaria, and Gaza. Even if those elections are eventually held, it remains to be seen if they will be free and fair, as President Bush has required, or will be marred by ballot-stuffing and intimidation of voters and potential non-PLO candidates, as were the last PA elections, in 1996.


On March 19, 2003, Arafat’s number two man, Mahmoud Abbas (aka Abu Mazen) became prime minister of the PA. While PA officials claimed this fulfilled President Bush’s requirement for “new leaders not compromised by terror,” Abbas told the Arab newspaper Alsharq Al-Awsat on March 3, 2003: “We didn’t talk about a break in the armed struggle … It is our right to resist. The Intifada must continue and it is the right of the Palestinian People to resist and use all possible means in order to defends its presence and existence. I add and say that if the Israelis come to your land in order to erect a settlement then it is your right to defend what is yours.”


The interviewer then asked: “Including using arms?” Abbas replied: “All means and arms as long as they are coming to your home, as this is the right to resist. The restriction applies only to ‘Shahada -Seeking’ [suicide] operations and going out to attack in Tel Aviv or Jerusalem. There is no justification to go out [of the territories] to fight the army.”


Thus Abbas supports murdering all Jews in the territories, both soldiers and civilians whom he defines as “settlers”—that is, Jews who reside in (or happen to be visiting) Judea, Samaria, Gaza, the Golan, the Old City section of Jerusalem (where the Jewish Quarter, Western Wall and Temple Mount are situated), and Jerusalem neighborhoods such as Gilo, Ramat Eshkol, French Hill, and the Hebrew University campus.



IV. “Build Democracy Based on Tolerance and Liberty”


What They Must Do: President Bush said that the Palestinian Arabs must “build a practicing democracy based on tolerance and liberty,” with “a new constitution” and “a truly independent judiciary. He said they must “confront corruption,” and “the Palestinian parliament should have the full authority of a legislative body.” They must implement “market economics,” and create “a vibrant economy where honest enterprise is encouraged by honest government.” In addition, there must be “an externally supervised effort to rebuild and reform the Palestinian security services” with “clear lines of authority and accountability and a unified chain of command.”


What They Did During Week #42:


Despite President Bush’s conditions, corruption continues to be the norm in the Palestinian Authority.




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