Op-Ed: Abbas Is Not The Answer by Morton A. Klein, National President of the ZOA
September 4, 2003

Giving American money or Israeli land in order to “strengthen” Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas will not bring peace to the Middle East.

Abbas is a career terrorist, not a peacemaker. For more than 40 years, he has been second-in-command to mass murderer Yasser Arafat. He and Arafat co-founded the Fatah terrorist movement, which has perpetrated many of the suicide bombings and other attacks of recent years. Abbas is also a Holocaust-denier; he authored a hate-filled book denying the Nazis murdered 6 million Jews. Abbas still pledges loyalty to Arafat, stating on May 22: “We do not do anything without his approval.”

Abbas has ignored the requirements of the 1993 Oslo accords and President Bush’s “road map” that he arrest and disarm terrorists, dismantle terror groups and halt anti-Jewish and anti-Israel incitement. Abbas has not even changed the names of the many streets, parks and summer camps named for suicide bombers and terrorists.

Providing U.S. money and other material benefits to the Palestinian Arabs will not end terrorism, because poverty is not what drives terrorists to kill. A recent study of 250 “aspiring Palestinian suicide bombers and their recruiters” found “none were uneducated, desperately poor, simple-minded or depressed.” They are motivated by hatred of Jews and rejection of a non-Muslim state in the Middle East. The issue is not borders or settlements; their goal is to destroy Israel.

To give the Palestinian Arabs a sovereign state, as the Bush road map proposes, would result in the rise of a dangerous terrorist state. That would undermine America’s war against terrorism by showing terrorists that terrorism pays.

A recent poll found that 71% of Americans oppose the creation of a Palestinian Arab state. History teaches that appeasing haters and warmongers never brings peace — only military victory does. It was a military victory, not negotiations, that put an end to Hitler’s Nazi regime. It was also a military victory, not negotiations, that brought an end to slavery in America.

Just as the United States put an end to the Taliban regime in Afghanistan and Saddam Hussein’s regime in Iraq, the U.S. should support Israel in defeating the terrorist Palestinian Authority regime. Expelling Arafat and Abbas would be a justifiable first step.

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