ZOA: Martin Indyk Wrongly Paints PA Leader Mahmoud Abbas As Moderate Who Fulfilled Requirements For Peace
March 2, 2007

New York — The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) strongly disagrees with the recent comments made by former Middle East advisor and U.S. ambassador to Israel in the Clinton Administration, Martin Indyk, who wrongly depicted Palestinian Authority (PA) president Mahmoud Abbas as a moderate and peace-maker who has met his obligations for peace with Israel. In fact, Holocaust-denier Abbas has not met any of his obligations to the Oslo, Hebron, Wye and Roadmap agreements. There is still not even a single official Palestinian map that shows Israel’s existence as a sovereign state. Indyk, during testimony he gave before the House Subcommittee on the Middle East and South Asia of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, responded to a proposal by another witness, Middle East scholar and director of the Middle East Forum (Philadelphia) Dr. Daniel Pipes, that Palestinian Arabs must rid themselves of their hatred of Israel and desire to commit violence against it by saying:

If we accepted Daniel’s requirements, then I think a fair case could be made that Abu Mazen [Mahmoud Abbas’ nom de guerre], the Palestinian president–who’s the elected Palestinian president–has met all of those requirements, including removing, once he became president, ending the incitement of Israel in the Palestinian media and beginning the process of dealing with the demonization of Israel in Palestinian curricula. He has led the effort to bring the Palestinians around to acceptance of Israel; he has a clear history of having done that over a period of the last 25 years; he has not played a double game like Yasser Arafat did. And so that’s why I think that, as I said, the Israelis are prepared to deal with Abu Mazen, prepared to accept that he does accept Israel’s right to exist, not just its existence. The problem is he doesn’t have the capabilities to enforce his will. He is, as we all agree, I think, weak, and the challenge, therefore, is to see whether it’s possible to ensure that he does get the capability so that his way can prevail (Hearing of the Subcommittee on the Middle East and South Asia of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, February 14, 2007, DanielPipes.org, February 20, 2007)

Mahmoud Abbas own statements on Jews, Israel, terrorism and peace-making:

  • On fighting Israel: “We have a legitimate right to direct our guns against Israeli occupation … Our rifles, all our rifles are aimed at The Occupation” ( Jerusalem Post, January 11, 2007; Independent Media & Review Analysis, January 12, 2007).

  • On Hamas: “We must unite the Hamas and Fatah blood in the struggle against Israel as we did at the beginning of the intifada. We want a political partnership with Hamas” ( Jerusalem Post, February 5, 2007).

  • On Jews: “The sons of Israel are corrupting humanity on earth” ( World Net Daily, January 11, 2007).

  • On Israel: “the Zionist enemy” (Associated Press, January 4, 2005; CNN.com, January 7, 2005).

  • On recognizing Israel: “It is not required of Hamas, or of Fatah, or of the Popular Front to recognize Israel” (Al-Arabiya [Dubai] and PA TV, October 3, 2006, translation courtesy of Palestinian Media Watch).

  • On suicide bombers: “Allah loves the martyr” (Wall Street Journal, January 5, 2005).

  • On wanted Palestinian terrorists: “heroes fighting for freedom” ( Age [Melbourne], January 3, 2005); ” Israel calls them murderers, we call them strugglers” (Jerusalem Post, December 25, 2004).

  • On Yasser Arafat: “It is our duty to implement the principles of Yasser Arafat” ( Haaretz, January 3, 2005); “We will continue in the path of the late president until we fulfill all his dreams” (Agence France-Presse, November 11, 2005); “The Palestinian leadership won’t stray from Arafat’s path” (Yediot Ahronot , November 11, 2006)

  • On disarming Palestinian terrorists: a “red line” that must not be crossed (Washington Times, January 3, 2005)

  • On jailed Palestinian terrorists: “our heroes.” (Israel National News, May 26, 2006).

  • On the so-called ‘right of return’ of Palestinian refugees and their millions of descendants which, if implemented would end Israel as a Jewish state: “The issue of the refugees is non-negotiable” ( Jerusalem Post, January 11, 2007); “We won’t give up on this issue” (Yediot Ahronot , November 12, 2006).

  • On the Hizballah terrorist group: During the 2006 war unleashed by Hizballah’s attacks upon Israel, he praised it is a source of pride that sets an example for what he termed the “Arab resistance” (Jerusalem Post, August 6, 2006).

Mahmoud Abbas’ career record regarding peace and reconciliation with Jews and Israel:

  • Holocaust denial: He wrote a PhD thesis and published a book denying the Holocaust, entitled The Other Side: The Secret Relations Between Nazism and the Leadership of the Zionist Movement.

  • Terrorist group Fatah: He co-founded with arch-terrorist Yasser Arafat the terrorist group Fatah, whose Constitution to this day calls for the destruction of Israel (Article 12) and the use of terrorism against Israelis as an indispensable part of the struggle to achieve that goal (Article 19).

  • Funding terrorism: as senior PLO official, he funded the Munich massacre of Israeli Olympic athletes in 1972.

  • Terror & incitement to violence: He has refused to implement the signed Oslo agreements and the 2003 Roadmap peace plan which requires him to fight, arrest, extradite and jail terrorists and confiscate their weaponry and end the incitement to hatred and murder in the PA-controlled media, mosques, schools and youth camps that feeds it.

  • Does not accept Israel as a Jewish state: Abbas rebuffed President Bush’s call at the 2003 Aqaba summit to publicly accept Israel as a Jewish state.

Mahmoud Abbas’ record on fighting terrorism and incitement to hatred and murder within the PA:

  • Money for suicide bombers’ families: In December 2005, he approved legislation mandating financial benefits to be paid to families of killed Palestinian terrorists.

  • Supports terrorists’ plan for more violence: In May 2005, he endorsed the so-called ‘Prisoners’ Plan’, a document produced by jailed Palestinian terrorists, that endorses continued terrorism against Israel, legitimizes the murder of Jews, does not accept Israel’s existence as a Jewish state, abrogates Palestinian obligations under the signed Oslo agreements and the 2003 Roadmap peace plan, and insists on the ‘right of return.’

  • Appoints terrorists to his hierarchy: Named a wanted terrorist, Mahmoud Damra, to command Force 17, a PA military force with a long record of terror. Damra is wanted by Israel for leading shooting and roadside bomb attacks against Israelis, including the killing of IDF soldiers near Neve Tzuf in 2000 and of an Israeli citizen near Tapuach, in Samaria, in 2001. (Israel National News, May 30, 2006).

  • Praise for terrorists: Examples: The PA Radio station, ‘Voice of Palestine,’ referred to a suicide bomber who murdered several people as having been being “heroically martyred” (Jerusalem Post, December 29, 2005). Abbas did not condemn the murder by a Palestinian Arab terrorist of an Israeli couple, criticizing it only tactically as not serving the “Palestinians’ interests”, while the PA-controlled media hailed the two attackers as “martyrs” and “resistance fighters” (Jerusalem Post, July 24, 2005).

  • Releasing terrorists: Palestinian police released a member of a Hamas rocket squad on Tuesday, a day after he was detained, despite a pledge by Abbas to get tough with those violating a truce with Israel. (USA Today, May 3, 2005); Two terrorists arrested under foreign pressure after a February 2005 suicide bombing in Israel “escaped” from PA custody ( Palestinian Media Watch, April 28, 2005).

  • Does not arrest terrorists: In June 2005, a female would-be suicide bomber from Abbas’ own Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, Wafa Samir Ibrahim al-Biss, was apprehended by Israeli forces before she succeeded in detonating a bomb in an Israeli hospital at which she had been receiving on-going treatment. Israel gave Abbas detailed information of the plan, but the PA did nothing. (Haaretz, June 21, 2005). In November 2005, Israeli forces killed Hasan al-Madhoun, a senior figure in Abbas’Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, after providing Abbas with information on his whereabouts and after his failure to tale him into custody ( New York Times, November 2, 2005).

  • Honors terrorists: Named the PA’s newly-opened Rafah border crossing in honor of Al-Moayed Bihokmillah Al-Aqha, who was killed in December 2004 carrying out a terrorist attack that killed five Israelis (Palestinian Media Watch, December 15, 2005); described Palestinian terrorist leaders Yasser Arafat, Hamas’ Ahmad Yasin and Abdel Aziz Rantisi and Palestinian Islamic Jihad’s Fathi Shikaki as “martyrs” ( Palestinian Media Center, September 9, 2005); Named a major sports center, constructed with U.S. funds, in honor of Salah Khalaf (Abu Iyad) the second-in-command of Yasser Arafat’s PLO and head of the Black September PLO terrorist sub-group, which was behind the murders of Israelis athletes at the Munich Olympics in 1972 and the murder of two American diplomats in Sudan (PA newspaper Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 30, 2004).

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