Israeli Defense Dept.: Rethink strengthening Abbas
New York The Olmert government waited until after the Annapolis meeting to announce the fact that Palestinian policemen belonging to Mahmoud Abbas Palestinian Authority (PA) were behind the shooting attack on November 19 — one week before the Annapolis summit — which killed Ido Zoldan, a 29 year-old father of two from Shavei Shomron. Fatahs Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades took responsibility for Zoldans murder the same day but the fact was only revealed by the IDF spokesman yesterday (IDF Spokesman, December 2, 2007).
The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) and Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) revealed on Sunday that the three members of the cell who carried out the killing were members of the Palestinian National Security Force, which Israel and the United States have been investing in as part of the international effort to strengthen Abbas his Fatah government. The day after the attack, acting on intelligence, IDF soldiers and Shin Bet operatives raided the village of Kfar Kadum, near al-Pundak and arrested Daper Barham and Abdullah Barahm, both 22-year-old Palestinian policemen and members of Fatah. The third suspect, Fadi Jama, also a policeman, was in Palestinian Police custody. During their interrogation, the two confessed their involvement in the attack and handed over the weapon used in the shooting to the Shin Bet. Israeli Defense Department officials said however that the IDF expected the political echelon to rethink its policy of strengthening Abbas while his policemen were involved in terrorism (Jerusalem Post, December 2, 2007).
ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said, It is deeply troubling that the Fatah identity of Ido Zoldans murderers was withheld until after the Annapolis meeting between Fatah leader and PA president Abbas and Prime Minister Olmert had taken place. To reveal the fact that Abbas own Fatah security personnel carried out this killing, just as they have carried out countless other killings in the past, would have given another major reason why the Olmert governments strategy of treating Abbas and Fatah as moderate, genuine peace partners makes no sense. Yet this single incident exposes the sad truth that Abbas and Fatah are not part of the solution to terrorism but part of the problem. We call on Prime Minister Olmert to explain why this critical fact was withheld for nearly two weeks.
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