ADL Slams Abbas for Using “Age-Old Anti-Semitic Stereotypes” in Address to EU

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ debunked allegation that “certain rabbis in Israel” issued a call to poison Palestinian wells is “reminiscent of age-old anti-Semitic stereotypes,” Jonathan Greenblatt, CEO of the Anti-Defamation League, said in a statement released Thursday.

Abbas repeated the discredited charge, propagated by the PA’s Foreign Ministry earlier this week, while addressing the European Union’s Parliament.

“President Abbas reportedly came to Europe to talk peace. Instead, he interspersed claims of an interest in reconciliation with Israel with base allegations against the Jewish state, which are reminiscent of age-old anti-Semitic stereotypes. Unfortunately, conspiratorial incitement by the Palestinian Authority is not new. His charges of an Israeli effort to poison Palestinian water, and claims of Israel serving as the root of terrorism worldwide, are particularly disturbing and significant,” Greentblatt said.

Greenblatt also criticized the EU Parliament for failing to respond to Abbas’ remarks, noting “that President Abbas’ speech was met with a standing ovation by the parliamentarians present. As the international community, particularly European leadership, grows increasingly active in trying to promote an Israeli-Palestinian agreement, they must forcefully and publicly reject such offensive and dangerous incitement. How can Israel see Europe as an honest broker when its elected officials applaud a speech laden with lies and mischaracterizations?”

In addition to repeating a libel about Israel, Abbas refused to meet with Israeli President Reuven Rivlin while the two men were in Brussels, despite encouragement by EU President Martin Schulz.

In a speech to the EU’s parliament on Wednesday, Rivlin criticized the French proposal for restarting talks between Israel and the Palestinians as flawed, but offered suggestions as to how the EU could play a constructive role in building the conditions for peace.

Abbas’ speech in Brussels was not the first time that the Palestinian president spread anti-Semitic canards.

In Abbas’ doctoral dissertation on the Holocaust — which was analyzed by Edy Cohen in May 2016 issue of The Tower Magazine — the now-Palestinian premier wrote that “the number of Jewish victims is supposed to be six million. But it was likely much smaller, perhaps less than a million.” He added that “it is in the interest of the Zionist movement to exaggerate the numbers of those tragically killed in the war for the sake of the [political] profits it received from making the number as large as possible.”

He also claimed that Zionists saw Jewish persecution as “something desirable” and that Zionists gave “a green light … to every racist in the world, first and foremost Hitler and the Nazis, to do whatever they wanted to the Jews, as long as it ensured immigration to Palestine.”

“The Zionist movement was not satisfied with all this, but also secretly undertook widespread incitement against Jews located in lands under Nazi occupation in order to provoke the Nazi authorities into taking revenge on them and expanding the mass extermination actions,” Abbas charged.

There is no credible scholarship that supports Abbas’ claims.

[Photo: Hadas Parush / Flash90 ]