Former IDF Chief General Yaalon Agrees With Defense Minister Mofaz: Mahmoud Abbas Is No Peace Partner
November 9, 2005

ZOA: End negotiations
and funds to PA

New York – Former Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff, Lt.-Gen. Moshe Yaalon, addressed the Washington Institute for Near East Policy and stated that he has changed his mind and no longer believes that Palestinian Authority (PA) chief, Mahmoud Abbas, will make peace: “We thought, and I was one of them, that Mahmoud Abbas will lead the Palestinian Authority in another direction than Yasser Arafat … I haven’t seen leadership on the Palestinian side that is ready for a two-state solution.” Gen. Yaalon also said that Abbas “appears as weak. He is not so weak … He uses weakness as an excuse” not to take necessary steps like dismantling terrorist groups within the PA, preferring “to keep them in power as a tool.”

The former Chief of Staff also warned that while Iran posed the major threat to Israel, “do not underestimate the Palestinian threat” (Israel Insider, November 5). Less than two weeks ago, Israeli Defense Minister, Shaul Mofaz, also publicly rejected Mahmoud Abbas as someone who is not a peace partner, saying that Israel will have to wait for a generation before finding a Palestinian leadership willing to make peace with Israel (Jerusalem Post, October 28).

ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said, “General Yaalon has rightly made it clear that Mahmoud Abbas is not a peace-maker. We at ZOA have always warned that Abbas, who was Yasser Arafat’s close advisor for forty years and who wrote a PhD thesis of Holocaust denial (published as a book in 1984 with the title, The Other Side: The Secret Relationship Between Nazism and Zionism), would turn out to be simply Yasser Arafat in a suit and that is what he has proved to be.

“Mahmoud Abbas masterminded the Munich and Ma’alot massacres and has been a career terrorist, always working towards Israel’s destruction, and his actions of the last year prove conclusively that he hasn’t changed. In nearly a year since he took over the PA, he has not dismantled the terrorist organizations, jailed terrorists, seized their weaponry or ended the glorification of terrorists as “heroes” or the promotion of hatred and murder of Israelis and Jews in the Palestinian media, mosques, schools and youth camps. He has not renamed Palestinian schools, streets and sports teams named after suicide bombers.

“When two of Israel’s top military experts, Yaalon and Mofaz, publicly state that Abbas is a fraud when it comes to peace making and is not the moderate that so many in the world continue to believe, then it is time to listen and reassess our strategy towards the PA. The ZOA strongly urges the Bush Administration to heed these considered verdicts on Mahmoud Abbas from Mofaz and Yaalon.

“The U.S. should put in place a definite time period in which Abbas must fulfill his commitments instead of leaving Palestinian compliance as something that is open-ended. If Mahmoud Abbas fails to take the steps necessary to meet his obligations under signed agreements and the Roadmap peace plan to end terrorism and incitement, then the appropriate conclusion should be drawn that he is not a peace partner and all U.S. financial aid to and negotiations with the PA ended.”

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