Thursday, December 01, 2005


From Israel: Arlene Kushner, December 1, 2005

From Israel

Arlene Kushner

December 1, 2005

[] More on the protests by Defense Minister Mofaz because of what's going on at Rafah.

According to today's Jerusalem Post, Mofaz is upset because Israel was supposed to get real time information on who is crossing at the Egyptian-Gaza border, but instead we're getting lists of identity numbers without names, 5 to 8 minutes late, so that by the time the identities are secured by Israel, the person has long gone through. In theory, according to the agreement, Israel has the right to protest the passage of someone who presents a security risk, and that person will be detained for up to six hours while Israel makes the case. The PA, presumably taking Israeli concerns into consideration, does make the final decision.

Hey, once again I say that all of this was totally predictable once we signed on to an agreement that put the PA in charge. The EU, which "monitors," cannot control anything either.

The best background information I've been able to receive on this today is that Mofaz is making a show of being tough on security issues (remember his candidacy for prime minister) but has no intention of closing the border crossing between Gaza and Israel. What upsets Mofaz, according to my source, is not the lag time in getting information so much as the chaos ensuing at the Rafah crossing as mobs of people push their way through. (Another top Hamas person went through a couple of days ago.) There is not even the pretense on the part of the PA of doing any security check.

Once again, I ask, why should we have thought there would be a PA security check -- even if the PA did verbally agree to doing one -- since PA officials have made it clear that once this crossing opened they were going to let any Palestinian with ID papers go through. I knew there would be no security check, and who am I? There's a lot of pretense here, a lot of game playing. Informational dissonance.

[] You heard it about it unofficially, and now it's official: Shimon Peres has left the Labor Party and is joining Sharon's Kadima Party.

I hear that Likud has a new slogan: "Vote Sharon. Get Peres."

Shimon Peres, you see, who tends to be venerated in international circles (with Clinton, the EU, etc.) because of his conciliatory left-wing positions and a certain class in how he handles himself, is a man very much not liked here in Israel. He has long been a member of the Knesset, and has received appointments to various high level ministry positions -- Defense, Foreign Affairs. He was prime minister twice -- by default, as when Rabin was assassinated and he was successor to the post -- but has never been elected to the position. In fact, when he ran for the position he brought defeat to Labor.

[] I write often about the way in which the PA associates with and supports terrorist groups such as Hamas. But I realize that this does not adequately convey the terrorist inclinations of the PA itself, at its core.

At its core, the PA is Fatah -- Fatah being the movement that controls the PLO and absolutely dominates the PA. (And, not incidentally, the movement that current PA president Mahmoud Abbas co-founded in the 50s.)

I don't have to describe the movement in my words, it's enough to share part of its constitution, which can be found on the Internet.

Among its principles:

Article (6) UN projects, accords and resolutions, or those of any individual country which undermine the Palestinian people's right in their homeland are illegal and rejected.
Article (7) The Zionist Movement is racial, colonial and aggressive in ideology, goals, organisation and method.
Article (8) The Israeli existence in Palestine is a Zionist invasion with a colonial expansive base, and it is a natural ally to colonialism and international imperialism.
Article (9) Liberating Palestine and protecting its holy places is an Arab, religious and human obligation.
Among its goals:
Article (12) Complete liberation of Palestine, and eradication of Zionist economic, political, military and cultural existence.
Article (13) Establishing a...state with complete sovereignty on all Palestinian lands, and Jerusalem [as] its capital city...
Among its methods:
Article (17) Armed public revolution is the inevitable method to liberating Palestine.
Article (19) ...the Palestinian Arab People's armed revolution is a decisive factor in the liberation fight and in uprooting the Zionist existence, and this struggle will not cease unless the Zionist state is demolished and Palestine is completely liberated.
You don't have to take my word for it. You can check this for yourself:'s%20Essential
If truth be told, I've never quite been able to "get it."
How is it that the western world (and specifically parties such as Rice and Bush and members of the EU) imagine that a two-state solution, with the PA as participating partner, is possible when the vast majority of the members of the PA -- the president, ministers, members of the legislative body -- belong to this movement?
How is it that they take it seriously when Fatah members such as Abbas make statements regarding negotiations and achievement of a two-state solution?
Are western leaders are clueless regarding the nature of Fatah and its membership? Could that be? And if it isn't, how do they account for their positions?
I write about this now because yesterday the Middle East Newsline put out a report indicating that the IDF has "assessed that the ruling Fatah movement acquired and produced mortars for insurgency operations in the West Bank."

Yesterday, as well, there was a report of three members of Fatah under arrest for allegedly stabbing a yeshiva student in the Old City of Jerusalem and firebombing an apartment in the Pisgat Ze'ev neighborhood. According to police, the three decided to stab the student on the first anniversary of the death of Yasser Arafat. First they lit a memorial candle for Arafat at the Damascus Gate to the Old City, and then they decided to attack a Jew.

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