Mahmoud Abbas’ speech to the United Nations on Wednesday has made the headlines for its seeming rejection of previous agreements with Israel. Less noted is that the speech is a veritable tissue of lies. Below are only a few of the most egregious examples taken from news reports.
“As long as Israel refuses to commit to the agreements signed with us … and as long as Israel refuses to cease settlement activities and to release of the fourth group of Palestinian prisoners in accordance with our agreements, they leave us no choice but to insist that we will not remain the only ones committed to the implementation of these agreements, while Israel continuously violates them.”
Israel and the Palestinians never agreed to a settlement freeze in any form. The “fourth group” of Palestinian prisoners were not released because Abbas torpedoed the last round of negotiations before the release could take place. In fact, it was Abbas who violated the Palestinians’ agreements with Israel by unilaterally joining a host of international organizations without prior consultation, as the Oslo Accords demand.
Israel has made “repeated, systematic incursions upon al-Aqsa mosque, aimed at imposing a new reality.”
Israel has not in any way changed or sought to change the status quo on the Temple Mount. All of the recent violence at the site was instigated by Palestinians, many of whom routinely harass Jewish visitors to the Mount and attack Israeli security forces.
“We do not respond to the Israeli occupation’s hatred and brutality with the same. Instead, we are working on spreading the culture of peace and coexistence between our people and in our region.”
The modern Palestinian national movement, from its inception, was a terrorist movement that thrived on “hatred and brutality.” It claimed thousands of Israeli and non-Israeli lives in shootings, suicide bombings, aircraft hijackings, and innumerable other war crimes and acts of inhuman violence. Though Abbas himself has rejected the use of violence, many other factions of the Palestinian national movement have not, and Hamas remains openly genocidal in its stance toward the Jewish state.
“The Israeli Government insists on continuing its destruction of the two-State solution and on entrenchment of two regimes on the ground: an apartheid regime that is currently imposed on the territory of the State of Palestine.”
Two Israeli Prime Ministers, Ehud Barak and Ehud Olmert, offered the Palestinians a peace deal that would result in a two-state solution based on the 1967 borders. They were both rejected, first by the late Yasser Arafat, and then by Abbas. There is no “apartheid regime” imposed on a “State of Palestine.” First, because no state of Palestine yet exists. Second, because apartheid was a hierarchical system of government based on skin color alone. Nothing of the kind has been imposed on the West Bank.
“How does a nation that claims to be a bastion of democracy accept the existence of ‘price tag’ gangs?”
Israel does not “accept” anything of the kind. The “price tag” gangs composed of Jewish extremists have been labeled terrorists by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon, and Israelis from across the political spectrum. Recently, security forces have been given expanded powers to detain and arrest suspected price-taggers, including the use of administrative detention, which is also used against Arab terrorists.
“Is it not time for the racist annexation wall to be dismantled?”
There is no “annexation wall.” Abbas is referring to the security barrier built on the border between the West Bank and Israel proper. It was erected in order to stop waves of suicide bombers from committing terrorist atrocities motivated, ironically, by bitter anti-Jewish racism. The wall is widely seen as an extremely successful method of stopping terrorism, and has likely saved hundreds of lives.
“Is it not time to end the racist, terrorist, colonial settlement of our land, which is destroying the two-state solution?”
Quite often, what people hate the most is what they see in themselves.
“Racist”: Mahmoud Abbas is a lifelong member of Fatah, the largest party in the PLO. The PLO’s charter is openly racist, as it denies the existence of the Jewish people and their national rights, and originally called for the ethnic cleansing of all Jews who immigrated to Israel after 1948.
“Terrorist”: The PLO was also, for many years, one of the foremost terrorist organizations in the world. As noted above, it was involved in numerous war crimes and atrocities. After supposedly renouncing violence in the 1990s, the PLO returned to terror in 2000, launching a campaign of mass murder against Israel that often targeted women, children, and the elderly.
“Colonial”: This is the most ironic. Abbas is an Arab nationalist, but Arabs are not indigenous to the land of Israel. They came to the region as imperial conquerers and stayed under the auspices of an Islamic empire. That is, they were colonialists who succeeded in replacing the native population. None of this negates their rights as the current residents of the West Bank, but it does put the lie to Abbas’ ahistorical and defamatory rhetoric.
[Photo: The New York Times / YouTube ]