A central pillar of the Obama administration’s Middle East policy paradigm was shattered at the Fatah conference in Bethlehem – but don’t expect the White House to notice.
At the conference, Fatah’s supposedly feuding old guard and young guard were united in their refusal to reach an accommodation with Israel. Both old and young endorsed the use of terrorism against Israel. Both embraced the Aksa Martyrs Brigades terror group as a full-fledged Fatah organization.
Both demanded that all Jews be expelled from Judea, Samaria and Jerusalem ahead of the establishment of a Jew-free Palestinian state.
Both claimed that any settlement with Israel be preceded by an Israeli withdrawal to the indefensible 1949 armistice lines and by Israel’s destruction as a Jewish state through its acceptance of millions of foreign-born, hostile Arabs as immigrants within its truncated borders.
Both demanded that all terrorists be released from Israeli prisons as a precondition for “peace” talks with Israel.
Both accused Israel of murdering Yasser Arafat.
Both approved building a strategic alliance with Iran.
In staking out these extremist positions, both Fatah’s old guard and its younger generation of leaders demonstrated that Fatah’s goal today is the same as it has been since the its founding in 1959: Liberating Palestine (from the river to the sea) by wiping Israel off the map.
Fatah leader Mahmoud Abbas’s decision to remove both his own mask and that of his organization should cause the Netanyahu government to reassess its current policies toward the group. For the past four months, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and his government have quietly barred all Jewish construction in eastern, northern and southern Jerusalem neighborhoods, as well as in Judea and Samaria. The government’s unofficial policy has been implemented in the hopes of pleasing the Obama administration, which argues that by barring Jewish building, Israel will encourage the Fatah-controlled Palestinian Authority to moderate its policies and so engender an atmosphere conducive to a peaceful settlement of the Palestinian conflict with Israel. The Fatah conference put paid to that fiction.
Fatah’s message to the Netanyahu government is important. But even more important is the message it conveys to the Obama administration. For Netanyahu, the Fatah gathering bore out his prior assessment that the group is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. For US President Barack Obama, the message of the Fatah conclave was that his administration’s assumptions not only about Fatah, but about terrorists and terror-supporting regimes in general are completely wrong.
For the Obama administration, Fatah was supposed to be the poster child for moderate terrorists. Fatah was supposed to be the prototype of the noble terrorist organization that really just wants respect. It was supposed to be the group that proved the central contention of the Obama White House’s strategy for dealing with terror, namely, that all terrorists want is to be appeased.
But over the past week in Bethlehem, Fatah’s leaders said they will not be appeased. To the international community whose billions of dollars in aid money and boundless goodwill and political support they have pocketed over the past decade and a half they sent a clear message. They remain an implacable terror group devoted to the physical annihilation of Israel.
Fattah’s candidates for inner council
more honest than Obama’s campaign
That’s it in a nutshell. Fattah is no more a moderate force for change in relations between the Arabs and Israel, than Hamas and Al-Qaida. It never was. Here’s a clue: the only moderation one can gauge in Fakestinian politics is the frequency in the murders, maiming’s and kidnappings of Israelis. They just love to kill Jews, pure and simple.
Only the deluded think that they can be tamed or moderated through discourse and carrots…lots of carrots. Caroline Glick takes a razor sharp slice into the myth slowly arising from last weeks Fattah congress, that depicts a “changing of the guard” within the Fattah terrorist movement. Glick correctly analizes that nothing has changed, except perhaps some of the names and the faces filling the seats in their congress. Read on. KGS