On hasbara visit to U.S. MK Wilf praises Fayyad as ‘first Palestinian leader to stop focusing on what the Jews are doing’

Last year, Shimon Peres famously dubbed Salaam Fayyad “the Palestinian Ben-Gurion.” Yesterday, Knesset Member Einat Wilf of the Haatzmaut, or ‘Independence’ party gushed about Fayyad during a press briefing organized by the Israel Project in Washington D.C. to derail the Palestinian push for state recognition at the UN. Wilf said the UN effort is “a non-violent strategy with very violent purposes.” From the Israel Project:

Wilf praised Palestinian Authority President Salaam Fayyad for his practical work in creating the infrastructure for a future Palestinian state and for condemning what he has declared as unconstructive Palestinian efforts at the UN.

The former IMF economist “is truly the first Palestinian leader to stop focusing on what the Jews are doing and actually focus on how to build a Palestinian state,” Wilf said.’

Perhaps because he has been paid to look the other way.

Wilf is on a four-day speaking tour in D.C. and New York sponsored by The Israel Project, an organization which aims to help ‘protect Israel, reduce anti-Semitism and increase pride in Israel’ and whose annual budget has surpassed $7 million. The same woman championing Fayyad spoke at the Glenn Beck rally earlier this month. Fayyad’s friend is also the former foreign policy advisor to the then Vice Prime Minister Shimon Peres, and it seems she is going places; Le Figaro, looking into its crystal bollock 20 years into the future, has designated Einat Wilf as Prime Minister of Israel. 

Posted in Israel/Palestine

{ 110 comments... read them below or add one }

  1. “Perhaps because he has been paid to look the other way.”

    Bull. Why would you so carelessly impugn a man’s motives, his being so?

    It is the same as Phil and Adam being paid by their supporters. Are they “bought” now?

    Fayyad brings hope, hope that the war is desired to end, rather than endlessly continue until there is no Israel, that MANY sincerely love, even if they also severely criticize.

    • Walid says:

      “Perhaps because he has been paid to look the other way.” (E.K.)

      “Bull. Why would you so carelessly impugn a man’s motives, his being so?
      Fayyad brings hope, hope that the war is desired to end, rather than endlessly continue until there is no Israel, that MANY sincerely love, even if they also severely criticize.” (R.W)

      Ziyaad Lunat had a lot to say about the collaborator on EI in Feb 2010:

      “… Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was elected on a platform of “economic peace” with Palestinians in the West Bank. He contended that developing the Palestinian economy, by providing Palestinians with jobs and a better living stands, would render the “problems” between Israelis and Palestinians “more accessible for solutions.”

      Salam Fayyad, the appointed Palestinian Authority (PA) prime minister in Ramallah and a former International Monetary Fund official, was quick to follow with his own complementary plan last August. His policies recently earned praise from Israeli President Shimon Peres who called Fayyad a Palestinian “Ben Gurionist,” in reference to Israel’s founding prime minister. Economic peace won broad backing from the UN, European leaders as well as the administration of US President Barack Obama — representatives of which form the self-appointed “Quartet” that dictates terms for the “peace process.

      Tony Blair, the Quartet envoy for the Middle East peace process, characterized Fayyad as “absolutely first class — professional, courageous, intelligent.” Blair did not hold back praise for Netanyahu either, calling him a “peacemaker.”

      A consensus has developed among the political elite, and even among Arab states, that improving Palestinians’ quality of life, even if under military occupation, is the long sought solution for Palestinian misfortunes. Netanyahu assigned Deputy Prime Minister Silvan Shalom to lead the economic peace task force and coordinate with both Blair and the PA.

      The Netanyahu-Fayyad plan has been a magnet for foreign capital. The US Congress approved last July a deposit of $200 million into the PA treasury, under Fayyad’s direct control. In September donor countries pledged on the sidelines of the General Assembly $400 million to the PA by the end of 2009. Last month, the European Union transferred 21 million Euros to “help the Palestinian Authority pay the January salaries and pensions of 80,551 Palestinian public service providers and pensioners.”

      This “West Bank First” policy of economic development replaced Bush’s failed policy of democracy promotion. In 2006, Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip elected Hamas but Israel and its western allies boycotted the movement because it did not conform to the demands of the Quartet, much of them at odds with international law.

      The Quartet switched strategies towards finding “moderate” partners that can implement their vision of “peace.” One such person is PA President Mahmoud Abbas, whose term in office expired for the second time last month (after being questionably extended for an additional year in early 2009).

      Western donors also hand-picked Salam Fayyad for the post of prime minister despite his Third Way party obtaining less than three percent of the popular vote in the 2006 legislative elections. His exclusive control of the Palestinian coffers give him immense power to implement policies to his own credit as speculation — and in some PA circles fear — grows that he is being groomed by the West to replace Abbas.

      “Economic peace,” coupled with the “West Bank First” policy of economic development serves too as warning to Palestinians. They either conform to a political program approved by Israel and Western donors or risk sharing the dire fate of Gaza, under a crippling siege since June 2007. Hamas, under intense pressure, is gradually softening its positions, with cautious overtures to Israel and the West with the hope of inclusion in the process and perhaps a slice of the monetary rewards.

      The results of the first year of Netanyahu’s economic peace are visible. While there has been no progress on the political front, security and economic cooperation with the PA has never been better. The American-trained security forces have kept a tight grip over West Bank towns squashing dissent and keeping “order.” When the Israeli army invades during the night, Palestinian security forces swiftly retreat. Intelligence sharing has enabled joint campaigns of arrest against members of the resistance.

      The Guardian newspaper reported that Palestinians security forces have been working closely with the CIA to torture Palestinian dissenters. When Palestinians killed a settler last December, Abbas’ forces worked “overtime” to find the culprits arresting hundreds in the process. A PA spokesperson described the security situation up to the attack as “nearly perfect,” in reference to the diligent job of Palestinian security forces in preventing attacks against Israelis but ignoring the daily attacks Palestinians are subjected to at the hands of the Israeli military and settlers. Abbas’ clampdown didn’t prevent an Israeli death-squad from invading Nablus and killing in cold blood three Palestinians as an act of revenge.

      Israel deems the PA a trusted partner for its diligent efforts to provide security for Israelis including settlers actively engaged in colonizing the West Bank. This perception motivated Netanyahu to order the dismantlement of a few dozen roadblocks and the lifting of strategic checkpoints to ease movement between Palestinian cities…”

      “… The economic peace model comes with a dose of cultural imperialism. Palestinians do not have basic freedoms but they are being told that they can enjoy the mundane and superfluous in cinemas and shopping centers. This is more vividly seen in wall-encircled Ramallah, the seat of the PA government. High-end clubs are appearing to cater for the western-oriented elite. These spaces draw invisible barriers of class and social status that the majority of people cannot relate to or simply cannot afford. This sort of social stratification inevitably leads to the creation of an individualist and self-interested culture and to contentment for the status quo. The availability of disposable income has even encouraged the presence of Russian chains of prostitution in the city. Fahmi Shabaneh, former head of the PA’s Anti-Corruption Department, was forced to quit from his position last year after uncovering a sex scandal involving one of Abbas’ top aides in Ramallah. As expected, the PA denies the accusations. Shabaneh said that “Abbas has surrounded himself with many of the thieves and officials who were involved in theft of public funds and who became icons of financial corruption.”

      For full article on the bogus economic peace plan pushed by Netanyahu and Fayyad:

      link to electronicintifada.net

      • Hostage says:

        Ziyaad Lunat had a lot to say about the collaborator on EI in Feb 2010

        Many of Lunat points are flatly contradicted by the Herlizya address that he cited and by reports by other reliable sources about Fayyad’s policies.

        Some of the points Fayyad made in his address were:
        *The negotiations have failed for years because Israel has not recognized the rights of the Palestinians to security and to have their own State.
        *IDF incursions into areas under PA responsibility must cease.
        *The occupation must be rolled-back and security in additional areas turned over to the PA.
        *The occupation that began in 1967 must be brought to an end.
        See Selected quotes of Paslestinian PM Salam Fayyad’s speech link to youtube.com

        For full article on the bogus economic peace plan pushed by Netanyahu and Fayyad

        *There is no such thing as “The Netanyahu-Fayyad plan.” Reuters, AFP, and Haarez reported:

        But Palestinian prime minister Salam Fayyad has rejected Netanyahu’s proposals for an economic solution to the Middle East conflict. Fayyad, a former International Monetary Fund economist, said the conflict was a political one that required a political solution. “I am interested not in redefining the occupation but in ending the occupation,” he said in an interview published by the Israeli daily Haaretz on Tuesday.

        — See AFP’s “Israel’s Netanyahu pushes economic peace plan” link to google.com

        One such person is PA President Mahmoud Abbas, whose term in office expired for the second time last month (after being questionably extended for an additional year in early 2009).

        It’s odd when editors acknowledge that the PLO Executive Committee and its Chairman, Abbas, have the requisite authority to dismantle the PA altogether in order to implement their preferred single state solution, but deny that the PLO has both the authority to establish interim governments and remove them on the basis of the 1988 Algiers declaration. The 2003 interim constitution was ratified by the Chairman of the PLO Executive on the basis of the understanding that the PLO remained the sole representative of the Palestinian people.

        At the 1988 PNC meeting in Algiers the State of Palestine was declared. Article 2 & 5 of the PNC resolution delegated the powers and duties of the Provisional Government to the Executive Committee of the PLO. See Anis F. Kassim, The Palestine Liberation Organization: Claim to Status: A juridical Analysis Under International Law, 9 Denver Journal of International Law and Policy at 1-33, specifically p. 15 (Winter 1980) . The Oslo Accords did not change the status of the PLO. Specifically:

        The Central Council and the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization shall be empowered to appoint a time for the formation of the provisional Government, the Executive Committee shall be entrusted with its formation, and it shall be presented to the Central Council for a motion of confidence. The Central Council shall adopt the provisional system of government until such time as the Palestinian people exercises full sovereignty over the land of Palestine.

        –http://unispal.un.org/UNISPAL.NSF/0/B31EAF092CCE5CA90525651700543EBF

        In 2006, Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip elected Hamas

        Constitutionalism doesn’t provide any useful answers during civil wars. Hamas did not accept the validity of the 2003 Basic Law before the 2006 elections, and they haven’t complied with its provisions since they won the elections. For example, ratification of death penalties is an exclusive right of the president of the Palestinian Authority, but Hamas has routinely imposed the death penalty without obtaining Presidential approval. Israel and the AHLC donors refused to fund or release revenues to the PA without unambiguous public assurances from Hamas regarding terrorism. Hamas triggered a financial crisis in the public sector when it refused to do that. They made it impossible to form a coalition and then launched a preemptive attack on the PA security forces in Gaza.

        The Palestinians elected President Abbas, Fayyad, and many Fatah legislators too. Fayyad had been appointed as the Finance Minister by an earlier coalition government, not the Western donors – and he was appointed as Finance Minister again in 2007. link to eufunding.org

        • kalithea says:

          Yeah and he’s lived outside the Occupation, courts both sides of the “fence”; flip-flops on important issues and is steeped in ambiguity.

          What’s to trust?

        • Walid says:

          “Many of Lunat points are flatly contradicted by the Herlizya address that he cited and by reports by other reliable sources about Fayyad’s policies.”

          Hostage, seeing the mission of the annual Herzliya gathering comes across as a meeting of vultures to discuss better and improved ways to erase the Palestinians from the Jewish countryside and the list of who’s who that actually convene there, one has to be suspicious of anyone that is invited to address and what he says at this infamous gathering of piranhas and barracudas and despite Fayyad being an Arab, he’s no exception and his message and presence has to be tainted and serving only to show some degree of normalcy between Palestinians supposedly of good faith and the occupiers; a Jordanian royal was also once invited to speak there and he wasn’t any better. Fayyad’s political party got a miserable 3% of the vote yet the Americans had him appointed to the office of PM after Haniyeh had won the elections fair and square, and gave him the chequebook for the $200 millions they dropped into the PA treasury. My feelings for anyone that has or that has had anything to do with the IMF just about matches your feelings for Abunimah and his EI.

          The reference to a Netanyahu-Fayyad economic plan is a sarcastic one since there was no such thing; the bogus Netanyahu plan to achieve peace by making the Palestinians somewhat better off economically to render them less hostile to the Jewish fact and occupation was indirectly endorsed by Fayyad’s equally bogus economic performance reports for the West Bank which showed Ramallah as a beacon of economic success from having concentrated on building its commercial infrastructures rather than on having opposed the Israelis and it also served as a back-up to the bogus report that Netanyahu had prepared for the EU to throw dust in the eyes of the Europeans for some loan thing for Israel.

          As to Abbas staying in office and delaying elections 2 years after his term and subsequent one-year renewal expired, I dont know if the proper term should be overholding or squatting but either way, the man’s and the party’s running of the government is illegitimate in the eyes of all except the Americans’ and the Israelis’ and this is the man that is supposedly carrying the banner of statehood to the UN. He doesn’t have the authority to dismantle anything and he’s still hanging on not by the will of the Palestinians but because the US and Israel still need him to be there.

        • Hostage says:

          Yeah and he’s lived outside the Occupation, courts both sides of the “fence”; flip-flops on important issues and is steeped in ambiguity.

          So far as I can tell, Ali Abunimah has always lived outside the Occupation. I’ve found that, if you check the video tape Fayyad repeats the same message whether he’s talking to Al Jazeera, the Herzliya Conference, or in the published PA program for Ending the Occupation and Establishing the State.

          It’s pretty obvious that neither Ziyaad Lunat nor MK Wilf really care to listen or repeat what Fayyad actually had to say.

          What’s to trust?

          All I know is that Fayyad has been following his plan for establishing the State and pointing to the September 2011 UN deadline for two years now. Lieberman, AIPAC, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, et al are literally desperate for Fayyad to abandon the bid and “court their side of the fence”. I don’t see any evidence which suggests that he’s willing to play along.

        • annie says:

          i’ve started to change my view of fayyed as a result of your opinion, and this UN bid.

        • Walid says:

          “So far as I can tell, Ali Abunimah has always lived outside the Occupation.”

          My 2 brothers married Palestinians, one that lived most of her life in London and they other in Egypt and Jordan and that didn’t make either of them them any less Palestinian or aspiring for Palestinian independence than those living under the occupation. Abunimah would have probably been unable to cover so much territory had he been restricted to living under the occupation and as I think you or someone else once noted, with his father having been ambassador or minister in Jordan, he probably doesn’t need the Israel-Palestine hassle he’s going through now. Should Ghada Karmi shut up simply because she is living comfortably in London?

          I’ll gladly eat my words if I’m proven wrong on Sept 20th.

        • Hostage says:

          “So far as I can tell, Ali Abunimah has always lived outside the Occupation.”

          I was pointing out the obvious fallacy of arguing that Fayyad was less trustworthy because he had lived outside the Occupation.

        • Hostage says:

          Hostage, seeing the mission of the annual Herzliya gathering comes across as a meeting of vultures to discuss better and improved ways to erase the Palestinians from the Jewish countryside

          If that’s the case, then he is displaying a great deal of courage just by going there in the first place, much less demanding a State; an end to IDF incursions; and an end to the occupation and construction of settlements. That’s especially true since he had already sent the Justice Minister and Foreign Minister to the Hague to charge all of the other attendees with war crimes and crimes against humanity.

          My feelings for anyone that has or that has had anything to do with the IMF just about matches your feelings for Abunimah and his EI.

          There is plenty of valuable content on EI. I’m just not impressed by Arab factional in-fighting when I come across it. It’s the functional equivalent of cosmic microwave background radiation. It’s existence is a given, and you just have to tune it out when looking for anything else.

          Fayyad’s political party got a miserable 3% of the vote yet the Americans had him appointed to the office of PM after Haniyeh had won the elections fair and square, and gave him the chequebook for the $200 millions they dropped into the PA treasury.

          The IMF and the foreign donors had made it a condicio sine qua non that their checkbook be kept out of the hands of Arafat and the Palestinian groups on their terror lists. In fairness, Haniyeh kept the Iranian and Syrian checkbooks all to himself when Fayyad served as the PA Finance Minister. In addition, Fayyad wasn’t appointed by the Americans. Haniyeh and the Palestinian parliament were no longer functioning by the time Abbas and the PLO Executive Committee appointed the new caretaker government. Many of the legislators were sitting in Israeli prisons where they were being held as bargaining chips for the release of Gilad Shalit.

          As to Abbas staying in office and delaying elections 2 years after his term and subsequent one-year renewal expired

          The executive powers of the caretaker government are delegated from the PLO Executive Committee and Abbas is the Chairman. So far as I know, Abbas is the first Chairman of the PLO Executive Committee who ever bothered to conduct elections rather than simply appointing the members. Gun-toting revolutionary councils don’t usually operate according to Robert’s Rules Of Order. P.S. the Third-Way party list was cut in half when Hanan Ashrawi decided to run for a Fatah seat on the PLO Executive in the first ever 2009 elections. Right at the moment, it is Haniyeh that is opposing new elections that might replace Abbas, Fayyad, and himself in a new PA coalition. Here is some background info from 2009:

          The elections, which were also a first for the Executive Committee, came after a tumultuous Fateh Conference that saw a lot of bruised egos of longtime Fateh members who were voted out of the movement’s decision making bodies and hoped to win a chair in the PLO.

          The PNC, which held a special session on August 26 and 27 under the leadership of President Mahmoud Abbas also decided that should reconciliation talks fail with Hamas, the Palestinians would still go to elections on the scheduled date. Conciliation talks have not moved forward unfortunately. On August 22, the dialogue in Cairo was officially postponed until after the PNC session was over. So far, a new date has not been set.

          On August 25, Prime Minister Salam Fayyad unveiled his program for establishing a Palestinian state by 2011 and ending the Israeli occupation. According to the plan, the Palestinians will declare their state in two years regardless of the outcome of negotiations with Israel. “It is possible and necessary to establish a state in two years,” Fayyad said during his press conference in Ramallah.

          link to miftah.org

    • Dan Crowther says:

      Witty says:

      It is the same as Phil and Adam being paid by their supporters. Are they “bought” now?

      Witty,

      If Abe Foxman said tomorrow, ” Phil Weiss is my kind of guy,” I think most people on this site would question whether or not Phil sold out.

      Its a similar dynamic to Republicans and minorities in the US. They love to prop up unabashed sell outs – Clarence Thomas!! Marco Rubio!! Condi Rice!!

  2. “a non-violent strategy with very violent purposes.”

    Only the Israeli fabricators could come up with such a ridiculous claim, and distortion of language. A mark of desperation that they have to murder language like this – remind you of a serial commenter here?

  3. seafoid says:

    Presumably WILF means something similar to MILF.

    • annie says:

      i had to get out my handy urban dictionary to decipher your meaning seafoid.

      ;)

      • GuiltyFeat says:

        Seafoid that’s an aggressively sexist comment to make about a female politician. Ugh.

        Annie, you’re usually so quick to condemn this kind of boy talk, but I guess it’s OK to dehumanize women as objects “I’d like to fug” when they’re Israeli, huh?

        • annie says:

          huh? i am? sorry GF sometimes stuff flies over my head. is wilf a woman? how am i supposed to know this? besides..people do lust after politicians. why don’t you give me an example of me condemning “this kind of boy talk” so i can put this into perspective. use the search engine.

        • GuiltyFeat says:

          annie August 20, 2011 at 1:26 am with 2 replies
          i would so love it if you’d quit using the word slut.

          It got a more fractious after that, but you can use the search engine yourself to find out.

          As for Einat Wilf, you can be sure that Seafoid wouldn’t be making an inappropriate “Mother I’d like to fug” gag about a bloke. Or, if you genuinely weren’t sure, you could always google “Einat Wilf” to see a picture of the woman seafoid is objectifying in a revolting sexual manner which he excuses, presumably, because she is Israeli.

        • Walid says:

          Guilty, that remark most probably overflowed from Einat Wilf’s good looks and surely nothing to do with her being a Jew; I get the same “overflow” looking at Sarah Palin and she’s not even Jewish. Please drop the victimhood stuff.

          link to google.com

          Makes you wonder what the yardstick she’s holding is for.

        • Walid says:

          If Seafoid would have had the same overflow reaction to Livni, I’d be suspicious about his motive. But thank god it’s Thursday and he didn’t.

        • GuiltyFeat says:

          “is wilf a woman?”

          Nice try, Annie.

          Wilf is on a four-day speaking tour in D.C. and New York … The same woman championing Fayyad spoke at the Glenn Beck rally earlier this month. Fayyad’s friend is also the former foreign policy advisor to the then Vice Prime Minister Shimon Peres, and it seems she is going places

          (emphases mine)

          Save your faux surprise for people who think you don’t read the posts you comment on.

        • annie says:

          i skimmed the post, no i didn’t realize ‘einat’ was a woman’s name and i didn’t read the last paragraph. calling someone a slut is not the same as saying you’d like to have sex w/someone. seriously, get a grip gf. i don’t think that acronym is aggressively sexist, unlike using the word slut.

          anyway, take the last word, i have no interest in making a mountain out of your molehill. you must be feeling desperate lately.

  4. seafoid says:

    “stop focusing on what the Jews are doing and actually focus on how to build a Palestinian state”

    Never mind that man who is strangling you. Think positive !

  5. Hostage says:

    Wilf praised Palestinian Authority President Salaam Fayyad for … condemning what he has declared as unconstructive Palestinian efforts at the UN. . . . .Perhaps because he has been paid to look the other way.

    MK Wilf isn’t a reliable source of hasbara information on Salaam Fayyad’s plan for ending the occupation and establishing the state of Palestine. He told Al Jazeera that seeking recognition and membership in the UN is perfectly legitimate.
    link to english.aljazeera.net

    Haaretz reported that the Palestinian Authority appeal to the International Criminal Court was authorized by Fayyad and Abbas.
    link to haaretz.com

    During a recent appearance at the weekly Bilin demonstration, Maan and Al-Ahram reported that Fayyad said “either we achieve freedom from the Israeli occupation or we will demand instant Israeli citizenship, including the right to vote.” There is a reprint of the Al Ahram article here and the Maan article is here.

    • Walid says:

      “During a recent appearance at the weekly Bilin demonstration, Maan and Al-Ahram reported that Fayyad said “either we achieve freedom from the Israeli occupation or we will demand instant Israeli citizenship, including the right to vote.” There is a reprint of the Al Ahram article here and the Maan article is here.”

      They have been demanding for decades and still no result, why would it be different this time? The al-Ahram article above says the PA is going for a UNGA vote rather than for a UNSC one. Someone is not getting it right here. Some are saying that a UNGA cannot happen to give Palestine a full member seat since only the UNSC can do that and here the PA people are telling al-Ahram that they are going to the UNGA for that purpose. Which is it?

      The wording in the al-Ahram article:
      “According to insiders within the immediate coteries around Abbas, the PA leadership has decided to go the UN General Assembly as the choice of last resort.”

      “If we go to the UN Security Council, the US will veto any pro-Palestinian resolution; and if we go to the International Court of Justice, we will receive an advisory opinion, nothing more. So we are left with the UN General Assembly whose possible recognition of a Palestinian state on the basis of the 1967 lines would immensely advance our national cause and isolate Israel,” said former PLO negotiator Saeb Ereikat.”

      I guess in 3 weeks we’ll see the true colours of Abbas by the way he presents his application, to which UN body he does it or if he’ll back away totally at the last minute as I suspect he’ll be doing. Either way, he can no longer hide after Septemer 20.

      • Talkback says:

        Hi Walid,

        Going for the UNGAR means to get UN offically and collectively (2/3 majority) recognized as a state, so you have access to international institutions (like the International Criminal Court, ICC) and organisations in which applicants have to be a state. Israel for example in this case could not argue any longer, that the occupied territories are “disputed”. And Palestine could ask the International Criminal Court, ICC to pursue war crimes which happen in it’s territory. For example after the Cast Lead massacre the ICC could not take further steps on request by Palestine, because of the “uncertainty in the international community as to the existence or not of Palestinian Statehood”. With the same reasons and wording Palestine’s try to ratifiy the Geneva Conventions was rejected right after it proclaimed statehood in 1988. Then, not half of the UN members recognized Palestine.)

        Going to the UNSC means to apply for UN membership (even if it has not yet been recognized as a state but will be automatically recognized by becoming a member). In this case you have also full access to UN institutions like the International Court of Justice, ICJ, which is the primary judicial organ of the UN not to be confused with the ICC.

        That’s how I understand it, but I could be wrong.

        • Walid says:

          Talkback,I understood that the 2/3 acceptance is not automatic memberhip but that the SC is morally bound to go along with it, which means that the US could still veto the final acceptance. The more we look into this the more confused we’re getting. I’m anxious to see what the Palestinian leaders will be doing on Sept 20th and to see what happens.

  6. piotr says:

    One should observe that “brand Israel” comes in several varieties: decaf, diet, and original. Or “hasbara piano” and “hasbara forte”.

    Rep. Weis visited Israel and he pretty much swallowed hasbara forte. For hasbara forte, Fayyad and Abu Mazen are dangerous snakes who may be tolerated, but who should be watched with suspicion and thwarted whenever possible. And Fayyad is thwarted a lot. A little example I recall is that PA repaired a road to a Palestinian village in area C, and IDF promptly destroyed that road, because the repairs were not authorized. Bussiness activity and activity of various “totally innocent” most profit is sabotaged in multiple ways too. Some of them were grotesque, and were abandoned, like refusal of Israeli banks to handle transactions with Palestinian banks, or not transfering to PA custom duties that are collected on PA behalf. Some are pretty grotesque are continue, like refusal to allow employment of foreigners by Palestinians. Then there is a lot of red tape and mini-blockades.

    Hasbara forte originates from the liders of the government. How otherwise otherwise amiable and not knowledgable Rep. West could get idea to despise Fayyad, if not through briefings that he got (from Netanyahu and official handlers)?

    The bottom line is that the current policies are basically to finish Palestinians off as any kind of functional society outside tiny Gaza-like ghettos, and Hamas is the appetizers, while Fayyad is for the main course. As the Palestinian moderates try to improve their negotiating position through UN effort, the cutlery is already prepared.

    Perez and Wilf represent “hasbara piano”. But the real policies are pretty much following hasbara forte. You cannot indulge those subhumans even when they are well dressed and speak politely.

    • Walid says:

      Piotr, a praise of Fayyad by MK Wilf, Netanyahu or Peres should be enough to tell you something about the man and where he stands. A small reminder from this January’s Telegraph:

      “The US State Department tried to put a brave face on the disclosure of more than 1,000 papers by Al-Jazeera, the television statement, but a spokesman said he could not “deny that this release will, at least for a time, make the situation more difficult than it already was.”

      The documents showed that at one stage Palestinian negotiators had offered to allow Israel to keep control of all but one of its settlements in East Jerusalem and to hand over the Jewish and Armenian quarters of the Old City.

      They would also be prepared to limit the “right of return” of refugees to 10,000, rather than the 4-5 million Palestinians worldwide. ”

      link to telegraph.co.uk

      • Hostage says:

        Piotr, a praise of Fayyad by MK Wilf, Netanyahu or Peres should be enough to tell you something about the man and where he stands. A small reminder from this January’s Telegraph

        The Telegraph article didn’t even mention Fayyad. Can you please link to one of these Palestine Papers which illustrates a day-to-day connection between the Prime Minister of the Palestinian Authority and the parent organization’s PLO Negotiations Support Unit? Erekat is an elected member of the PLO Executive Committee. Fayyad is just a technocrat who has never held any position in the PLO.

        The documents showed that at one stage Palestinian negotiators had offered to allow Israel to keep control of all but one of its settlements in East Jerusalem and to hand over the Jewish and Armenian quarters of the Old City.

        The Palestine Papers revealed that at one point Obama said

        “the establishment of the Palestinian state is a must for me personally. In an expeditious manner, we will get to the two-state solution”

        link to ajtransparency.com

        Confucius advised: ‘They must often change, who would be constant in happiness or wisdom.’

  7. Shingo says:

    Is it safe tonassume that WILF is also supportive of Abbas’ bid for recognition at the UN – seeing as it doesn’t focus on what Israel is doing?

  8. seafoid says:

    The Palestinian Ben Gurion? What an insult. David Gruen was a second rate, racist, 19th century peasant with no concept of long term thinking.
    He is as responsible as anyone for the approaching car crash.

  9. seafoid says:

    Ben Gruen was 2 on the 200 greatest Israelis of all time.

    link to en.wikipedia.org

    Poor Ron Arad was 12th.
    Where are you, Ron ?

    Ofra Haza was 32. She was only 43 when she died.

    Here she is singing a song about the settler movement and Zionism

    • DBG says:

      wow, nothing like mocking a soldier who is MIA. do you mock US soldiers that MIA too or do you reserve this disgusting action for Israelis?

      The ability to dehumanize Israelis is a trait you guys have mastered. It sure isn’t going to help matters in your ‘binational’ state will it?

      • seafoid says:

        It won’t be my binational state, habibi. It’s going to be the new name for Israel.

        Ron Arad and that other clown in Gaza are hero worshipped in Israel via the cult of Jewish violence that is centred around the IDF, “the fallen”, “the ultimate sacrifice” and other military nonsense.

      • Walid says:

        DBG, how does one dehumanize a terrorist lost over Lebanon while on a bombing run over civilian villages. Tons of stuff has been written how Israel screwed up on many opportunities to get him back and that it just wasn’t interested in exchanging him for the 3 Iranian diplomats that had been kidnapped in Beirut and given to Israel by the Christian militia. Keeping the Iranians was more important to Israel than getting Arad back. So keep defending Israel’s screw-up on Arad and look how many opportunities that Israel has already passed up to get that other terrorist Shalit back and in a few years, you’ll know that Israel also screwed up in not getting him released and why it did not want to have him back. Israelis are the ones doing a great job at dehumanizing themselves.

  10. Graber says:

    (Mental note: is it worth replying to Witty?)

    Witty, those receiving money are accountable to those who give them that money. If they don’t do the job, then they don’t get the money. Phil and Adam have been doing spectacular reporting, and their readers appreciate it and donate.

    But Fayyad isn’t being paid by Palestinians. And so that raises a great deal of skepticism as far as who Salaam Fayyad is accountable to. A little further research into the matter reveals that this skepticism is well-founded, and the PA Prime Minister is by no means accountable to the Palestinian people.

    • Hostage says:

      But Fayyad isn’t being paid by Palestinians. And so that raises a great deal of skepticism as far as who Salaam Fayyad is accountable to. A little further research into the matter reveals that this skepticism is well-founded, and the PA Prime Minister is by no means accountable to the Palestinian people.

      Why are you passing this nonsense off as research? Article 55 of the 2003 Basic Law provides that “A Member of the Legislative Council shall receive a monthly salary determined by law.” Salaam Fayyad was one of the 66 members of the Palestinian Legislative Council elected to a seat from the Party Lists. Article 80 on the Council of Ministers provides:

      1. The Prime Minister and each Minister shall submit a financial statement for themselves, their spouse and their minor children that details what they own in real estate, movable property, stocks, bonds, cash money and debts, whether inside Palestine or abroad, to the President of the National Authority, who shall make the necessary arrangements to maintain their secrecy. Such information shall remain confidential and may not be accessed unless permitted by the High Court when necessary.

      2. Neither the Prime Minister nor any Minister may purchase or lease any property belonging to the State or to any public entity, or have a financial interest in any contract concluded with any governmental or administrative body, nor may they, during their terms of office, be board members in any company, or practice commerce or any other profession, or receive a salary or any other financial reward or remuneration from any person in any capacity whatsoever, other than the single salary determined for Ministers and the relevant allowances.

      The Makkah Agreement between Hamas and Fatah, which was concluded on February 8, 2007 resulted in the formation of a Palestinian government of national unity led by Ismail Haniyeh of Hamas. Salaam Fayyad held the position of Finance Minister in that government when it won a vote of confidence in the Palestinian Legislative Council on March 17 2007.
      link to en.wikipedia.org

      The Executive Committee of the PLO convened in a special session on June 14, 2007 and proclamed a state of emergency and the dismissal of the government of Ismail Haniyeh. The PLO Secretary General and PA President, Abbas, implemented those measures in three ordinances. In addition, Abbas tasked Salaam Fayyad with setting up an emergency government. On June 17, 2007 Fayyad’s new government was sworn into office in front of President Abbas in Ramallah.

      So Fayyad is employed by the Palestinian people and is paid a salary by them.

  11. kalithea says:

    Is Fayyad the Palestinian Colonel Nicholson building the perfect bridge for the Israelis (“economic peace”)? Why are American and Israeli Zionists so in love with this guy if he isn’t making the Occupation permanent and their lives easier?

    Oh yeah, sure, he’s been seen at protests, he’s made a few statements to win the trust of Palestinians, but are these merely patronizing gestures meant to appease their insecurity? Fayyad needs to be examined under the magnifying glass. Palestinians should be wary of throwing their support behind someone who spent a significant part of his life on the “outside” of the Occupation.

    Here’s a dangerous statement he made recently on the U.N. bid:

    “”[Statehood] is not something that is going to happen to the Israelis, nor something that is going to happen to the Palestinians…. is something that will grow on both sides as a reality… creating a belief that this was inevitable through the process, a convergence of two paths, the political and the process, from the bottom up and the top down”

    In other words, he’s offering Palestinians ambiguity, a pie in the sky and the “bridge” to nowhere. As far as Zionists are concerned; he’s Zionism’s dream come true.

    Fayyad has switched sides and positions several times. In other words he’s a flip-flopper. He was against it; then for it and actually we never really know for sure where he stands.

    Can Palestinians risk trusting a guy like this? NO.

  12. kalithea says:

    Shimon Peres famously dubbed Salaam Fayyad “the Palestinian Ben-Gurion.”

    Translation: He’s the Palestinian Zionist.

    • Hostage says:

      Here’s a dangerous statement he made recently on the U.N. bid: . . . In other words, he’s offering Palestinians ambiguity

      Here is the link to jpost.com

      That article is more than a year old and was Israeli hasbara supporting the status quo in the first place. Fayyad doesn’t talk to the Palestinians people through the Jerusalem Post. FYI, that paper is officially opposed to either a Palestinian state or a binational state. So they wrote an article that quotes PA officials out of context and bundled everything together with some propaganda from their talking heads in the Zionist think tanks. If you read WAFA, Maan, PNN, AFP, Reuters, and etc, then you ought to know the Israeli press was misrepresenting the actual views of the PA at the time about a so-called unilateral declaration of a Palestinian State.

      Even they said “Fayyad has been championing a plan to build national Palestinian institutions so as to create a de facto state over a period of two years, which comes to a close in August 2011. The initiative is known as the ‘Fayyad Plan’.”

      That isn’t something ambiguous or new that Fayyad had sprung on the Israelis or Palestinians. He’d been saying for two years that he doesn’t want another unilateral declaration of statehood, just multilateral recognition from 193 other states. He has also said he doesn’t want a “paper” state. He wants a real state achieved by rolling back and ending the Israeli occupation.

      It’s unambiguous to the Israelis. Haaretz, JPost, and Arutz Sheva have all reported that Israeli Foreign Minister Lieberman told reporters that he would ask the “forum of eight” – a subgroup of ministers within the Cabinet – to end Israel’s relations with the PA. The foreign minister explained the reason for the move stemmed from the PA’s attempt to prosecute IDF officers at the International Criminal Court at The Hague. link to israelnationalnews.com

      It is a fact that Fayyad and Abbas consider international law and the ICC as a form of non-violent resistance to end the occupation.

      You can read about that in “New Palestinian strategy document will make it difficult for U.S. to oppose UN vote”, link to haaretz.com

      Fayyad has switched sides and positions several times

      Please cite real world examples and provide links once in a while.

      • Donald says:

        I have to admit Hostage that you’ve forced me to rethink my opinion of Fayyad in the past months. One reason so many of us distrust him is that he’s gotten such good press from the likes of people such as Tom Friedman. Palestinian leaders who are not collaborators rarely if ever receive good press from Western pundits and if he is the champion you say he is then sooner or later I expect the West will turn against him. Or else they will be so embarrassed by their championing of the man they will simply ignore him. Of course that cuts both ways–if he really is what you claim then all of us who have criticized him will also be embarrassed. But I don’t understand why he’s gotten such good press if he is the man you claim he is. And who in the PA is responsible for the suppression of political protest that has been reported by Human Rights Watch on occasion?

      • LeaNder says:

        Hostage, you may be interested in this … rumor?:

        Despite intensive Israeli diplomatic efforts to head off U.N. recognition of a Palestinian state, a senior official involved in shaping the Israeli response said the government is resigned to the General Assembly endorsing the move later this month.

        “We’re aware that we have very little ability to prevent it, because it’s the U.N., so we have to learn to live with it,” said the official, who spoke to reporters on the condition of anonymity to discuss the subject freely.

        He described the United Nations as a body with an automatic anti-Israeli majority.

        • Hostage says:

          Hostage, you may be interested in this … rumor?:

          I’m familiar with that. It is much more likely that the US ambassador will follow the 1989 ritual of endorsing the legislative branch’s threat to defund the UN. If that happens, there won’t be any support in the General Assembly for putting the item on the agenda.

        • annie says:

          If that happens, there won’t be any support in the General Assembly for putting the item on the agenda.

          do you think the US will do that between now and the vote? if the US threatens to close down the UN because of israel it will make it appear as if it exists to prop up israel. if they were going to do that why haven’t they done it yet?

        • piotr says:

          I am not sure. American posturing will no impress that much, in part because we are on fast track to be “until recently, the only remaining superpower”, in part, because the heart of the Administration really lies elsewhere.

          Consider Honduras that recently declared its position. The government there resulted from a semi-coup that was tacitly supported by US. South from the border, I think Israel may count on Colombia and Guatemala, but I would not make bets. I think that in Latin America the fact that USA opposes the motion is very much an attractive feature. Israel has high hopes for St. Lucia and Grenada. Hm.

  13. The question of whether Fayyad is a good and committed man, acting positively in difficult situation, or is a cowardly traitor, is political correct definition, negatively defined.

    It is a great tragedy, a horror frankly for Palestinians, that the politically correct dogma is applied, rather than respect necessary for respectful discussion and disagreement.

    The politically correct agitation has shifted in the Palestinian community, but always had the common language of resistance. Fatah is/was a resistance organization. Hamas, Islamic Jihad, PRC, advocates of BDS, are all resistance oriented.

    Fayyad shifted that, and said, ‘we have to think and act primarily creatively, constructively. Resistance of oppression is not enough. We are able and we are responsible. We are not dependent children.’

    But, dissent concluded that the long-sought two-state solution was vain, undesirable, not only difficult to achieve.

    So, that is the criticism of Fayyad, that he seeks constructive effort, choices. But, stupidly disrespectful language is used, and mostly to protect those that have not articulated proposal, choices.

    He created the great momentum that put Palestinians in control of the historical trends for two years. Netanyahu sought to dismiss it, and really can’t if it continues.

    But, much much more sadly, dissent sought to and seeks to dismiss it, only considering his efforts as of any merit as an act of resistance, with no intention of formation of anything constructive, independent, responsible.

    And, as some Israelis and westerners like him for the responsible calm that he structures (but without the granting of actual responsibility), and that it is liberal Israelis like him out of genuine respect (assuming that he will lead Palestinians to actual responsibility, to self-determination), gives the cynical the cue that ‘if any Israeli, likes him, he must be a traitor.’.

    It puts Palestinians in the dependent children role again.

    • James North says:

      Richard Witty said, ‘Ignore everything I say above. All that new visitors to Mondoweiss need to know is that I support the illegal Israeli settlement/colonies in Palestine, that I believe the 550,000 colonists have the right to stay on the land they seized in violation of international law, and that I somehow think Palestinians should stand by, “humanizing the other” and accepting this monumental injustice.’

    • Donald says:

      Richard, do you support the Palestinian drive to achieve recognition in the UN despite what the US and Israel want? Fayyad supports this.

      Also, Richard, perhaps you could answer the question I asked Hostage. Who in the PA is responsible for the suppression of dissent described in Human Rights Watch? Is that part of that responsible calm you and other Westerners applaud so much? Quite a few Israelis seem to like it when Arab public opinion is suppressed. You agree with them, don’t you?

      • LeaNder says:

        learning to understand Wittycisms:

        distrust in Fayyad = is political correct definition, negatively defined.

        tragic results from the application of = politically correct dogma

        resistance, BDS (notice it is a Hamas idea here) … = [Palestinian] politically correct agitation

        shortcut to understanding: the enemy is the left/right posse (as it was termed earlier …) Dissent, is used synonymously, it stands for these combined forces. That’s why “dissent” can act, or conclude:

        dissent concluded; dissent seeks to dismiss, it turns Palestinians into children again.

        Dissent is out to destroy Israel, just as Hamas. See above: the left/right posse.

        The last passage means:
        The whole world except for “the dissent” likes Fayyad, since he builds institutions (“structures” – weren’t they allowed to develop before, given the money flowed to Israel and Israel made the military laws in the OT?) without giving granting the people responsibility, only leading them there.

        “dissent” is antisemitic, it always hates what “Israelis and westerners(sic)” like. Dissent is totalitarian just like them Arabs.

        • seafoid says:

          Leander

          I used to read and post at the guardian site on Israel/palestine and they had a great term for engagement with the likes of Witty – clowndancing.

        • LeaNder says:

          seafroid, I can’t remember a single native speaker that tormented his own language to such an extend.

          Why do you think it happens?

        • North is lying. I don’t support the settlement expansion, I support civilians, and will NOT advocate for the forced removal of 550,000. I’ll seek other forms of restitution and citizenship, than dispossession.

          Obviously, you want to call that supporting the settlement enterprise. I find it wierd that you describe it that way.

          In the words of Bradley Burston, “Israelis are human beings too”.

          Donald,
          I don’t know what is claimed by Human Rights Watch. Palestine should be held to a high democratic standard, towards dissenters, towards Jews, towards their own community. Israelis are willing to arrest Israelis, imprison them, put pressure on them. At some point pressure becomes cruelty, that is something else entirely.

          I like it when violence is controlled, rather than allowed to be conducted. Peaceable free assembly, I have no trouble with ever. I definitely have trouble with many things that are stated in peaceable free speech, and those I’ll speak up about, not to suppress, to contest.

          LeaNdor
          The feature of political correctness that is upsetting is the suppression of dissent from it, the gross and unconditional condemnation of persons rather than criticism of policies and actions, and the urge for conformity in the name of liberation from conformity.

        • annie says:

          I don’t support the settlement expansion, I support civilians, and will NOT advocate for the forced removal of 550,000.

          not advocating for removal of settlers (forced or otherwise) supports the expansion. you must realize that. or do you mean as of right now you do not support expanding them? do you mean you advocate removing settler # 550,001? because as long as you advocate them not being removed that is..support for the expansion.

        • Shingo says:

          I don’t support the settlement expansion, I support civilians, and will NOT advocate for the forced removal of 550,000.

          But in your own words, you would have supported the ethnic cleansing of 800,000 Palestinians – even though it meant holding your nose.

          BTW Witty, Hitler and Stalin were also human brings.

        • James North says:

          Richard Witty said, ‘Watch this!

          Donald,
          I don’t know what is claimed by Human Rights Watch.

          ‘Of course, I could just go to http://www.hrw.org, if I were really interested in more of the truth about human rights in Fayyad’s Palestine. I have time for 10,400 comments here on Mondoweiss. . .
          ‘Nope. I don’t want to look at anything that might challenge my positive image of Fayyad.
          ‘What’s more, I continue to weasel about the 550,000 illegal Israeli colonists in Palestine. I support their right to stay, on lands they stole in violation of international law.’

        • Donald says:

          “I don’t know what is claimed by Human Rights Watch. ”

          How odd, Richard, because I know I brought this up with you before. Don’t you pay any attention to the people you so regularly refute? I know I provided links before. Don’t you look at them? Here are some more. The first is to a summary of an HRW report from last spring about suppression of press freedom in both the WB and Gaza.

          HRW report on press freedoms in Gaza and the WB

          Here is another from October 2010 about torture in the West Bank. A HRW worker is quoted as saying that both Abbas and Fayyad are well aware of the situation.

          link

          Incidentally, Richard, HRW is also a rich source for reports on Israeli violations of human rights, but they are no slouches when it comes to covering violations by Hamas and the PA. If you have any interest in the subject maybe you should read a few of the summaries.

        • “s long as you advocate them not being removed that is..support for the expansion.”

          I hope you recognize how much of a moral dilemma that conclusion is. There are MANY reasons that partisans state “they” must go.

          And, as the “they” referred to, each of those reasons is morally wrong.

        • My quote was “might” Shingo. Somewhat of a difference, no?

        • Donald,
          So which specific allegations do you think are important, why, and what significance do you attach to them?

        • Chaos4700 says:

          Oh you MIGHT have supported the ethnic cleansing of Palestinian AND ONLY PALESTINIAN civilians? Gee that’s reassuring.

          Witty, you care about Jews and Jews alone. Your stances bear that out every time. You’re basically a polite version of eee in that respect.

        • annie says:

          oh yawn. there is no moral dilemma for me here. if there is for you then..thank god you are checking it out.

          each of those reasons is morally wrong.

          oh, so what’s the friggin ‘moral dilemma’ you speak of? supporting there continued presence is what you are doing, so please don’t pretend you do not support the expansion of settlements. hey, you forgot to answer my question..

          do you mean you advocate removing settler # 550,001?

          or are you going to NOT advocate for the forced removal of the next and the next..seriously witty, this is why we can’t take you seriously. where are your convictions? you allege you don’t support the settlement expansion, but you strongly argue (with capital letters) against removing even one of them. or are you going to answer my question in the affirmative? hahahahhah

        • James North says:

          Richard Witty said, ‘Another of my completely phony efforts at dialog (sic). Donald cited Human Rights Watch reports on Fayyad’s PA to me more than once, even providing the links, but I’ll never get around to looking at them. Instead, I’ll try and throw Donald off balance with this fake “question.” He’ll eventually give up, and I’ll be sitting pretty tomorrow at 11 a.m., my main threadjacking time, on top of new posts. It’s my form of Ponzi Scheme.’

        • Annie,
          There are different actors.

          The state is what orchestrates the settlement project. The individual civilians are literally just individual civilians.

          If you are an advocate for the rights of civilians, and in opposition to ethnic cleansing, then you would oppose mass forced removal, or at least have some qualms about it.

          The absence of qualms conveys to me the ideological nature of your assertions, RATHER than the humane.

          There are other approaches that accomplish justice.

          Donald,
          Please don’t be distracted by North’s deflection. I am truly interested in what you think.

        • James North says:

          Richard Witty said, ‘Here’s a comment earlier today by Rania, a Palestinian, in response to a comment by 3e trying to use phony legalisms to justify ongoing Israeli land theft

          That’s rich coming from someone who believes an invisible man in the sky gave him the title to the land on which my family has lived for 3000 years.

          ‘If I saw Rania’s comment, I skipped over it as fast as I could. I care about the 550,000 Israelis who continue to steal the land that belongs to Rania and her family. About her family, I don’t care so much.’

        • Chaos4700 says:

          The individual civilians are literally just individual civilians.

          Unless Witty’s talking about Gazans, of course. Or Turks. Or BDS supporters. Or Palestinians sitting on Israeli lebensraum.

        • LeaNder says:

          Does it bother you that above you use “dissent” for a group of intellectual enemies (us the right/left posse) and here you demand freedom of dissent from pc attitudes. Don’t you think that’s a double standard somehow? Some dissent is good but “our” dissent is evil?

          Basically, I have no problem with with a critique of “political correctness”, but it’s obviously a right-wing standard. Do you think political correctness should be abolished concerning racism, antisemitism too. Activities of the “Fear Inc” should go mainstream?

          The problem I have with with you are the strange ways you sneak disinformation into your message, carefully grafted with a certain extend of plausible deniability:

          Hamas, Islamic Jihad, PRC, advocates of BDS, are all resistance oriented.

          So BDS is an idea of Hamas and Islamic Jihad? And what please is PRC?

          Someone here asked himself, not long ago, (in a note to self) should one bother to respond to RW? I was close answer, NO! On the other hand that would leave the disinformation and yes, as James North writes, sometimes outright lies stand unchallenged. So unfortunately we have to waste our time on you.

          Richard, how many times do I need to tell you, that there is no d’or/gold or “dor” in my net handle.

        • LeaNder says:

          Look, Donald, that’s exactly were all these human right activists are essentially “the dissent”, the political correct “posse”, he challenged above. I thought double standards was a relict of the 19th century carried over into the 20th and done with after 45, but I better reflect it again.

        • Donald says:

          “these human right activists are essentially “the dissent”, the political correct “posse”, he challenged above.”

          Yeah. If HRW condemns Hamas (and of course they do) he’ll accept that without question. If they condemn Israel it’s an opinion, one he will generously grant should not be suppressed, but in practice it never rises to the level of fact, as condemnations of Hamas do. “Dissent” is unable to see the subtle distinctions that Witty sees.

          Richard, in answer to your question, read the links. Torture is bad and so is suppression of free speech. And yes, I think you’re doing what James said you’re doing. You are stalling, trying to avoid dealing with facts that go against your view of things.

        • James North says:

          Richard Witty said, ‘Haven’t you given up yet, Donald? In a couple of hours, more new posts will be up, and I’ll jump in right at the top of them. Noone (sic) will remember that I evaded you once more.’

        • Donald,
          My question is a personal one, a respectful question.

          What do you think is important, why?

          The question of “why” itself includes the question of what do you think is moving forward?

          I am not in a position of responsibility of a government, so I am ALWAYS aware that my perspective of responsibility is a different one than those that are in that responsibility.

          I agree that the torture is not an appropriate way to police. I don’t know what I would do as responsible for policing.

          I do believe that violent forms of resistance should be contained, and that the consequences of violent resistance are so severe that the prohibitions against it should also be strong.

          Your original question was about Fayyad’s responsibility for torture, with an implied accusation, but without a case. You seemed to regard the presence of torture anywhere as indication of his corruption.

          I sincerely believe that the man deserves respect, and FOR his determination to realize Palestinian self-determination, that he has not given in to Israel, but is attempting to responsibly and determinedly realize the existence of Palestine, and in a manner that it is more than possible that Palestine will remain as Palestine for an extended period, and with a path to a subsequent confederation with Israel.

        • James North says:

          Richard Witty said, ‘Donald, you see I still haven’t looked at the Human Rights Watch reports. Never mind, I’ll be doing some threadjacking soon.’

        • eljay says:

          This kind of pathetic evasiveness and game-playing is one reason I decided to stop directly addressing the Zio-supremacist clown known as RW. He claims to want direct and sincere discourse, but if a direct and sincere question is unpalatable to him because it might require him to re-evaluate his position or to validate the actions of someone other than Israel/Zionists/Jews, he evades, misdirects, spews pseudo-intellectual-sounding blather, or avoids discourse entirely.

          Dishonesty is just another one of his “humanist” traits.

        • Donald says:

          “I sincerely believe that the man deserves respect”

          “Sincerely believe” is your ace in the hole in all situations where you don’t have an argument. I don’t know how much respect or blame Fayyad deserves, but I’ve been aware of the human rights problems under both the PA and Hamas for a long time and you don’t find me giving my “sincere respect” to either government so long as they continue to repress their own populations. I like some of what Fayyad is supposed to have done, but it is morally wrong and dishonest for Western supporters of the PA to give their “sincere respect” for the PA and paint them as the good Palestinians because they cooperate with Israel on security issues while never mentioning the human rights violations. I want the PA to prevent terrorist attacks on Israel, but that can be done with police work that doesn’t involve torture or suppressing peaceful protests. (You can find reports at HRW on that too). You don’t bother to find out the dark side of what the PA does because it interferes with your preferred storyline.

        • Shmuel says:

          I do believe that violent forms of resistance should be contained, and that the consequences of violent resistance are so severe that the prohibitions against it should also be strong.

          What, no relationship-building? No mutual recognition of pain? No patient, long-term processes? No door-to-door persuasion? No understanding the other? No declaring “I shall not hate”? No condemnation of “punitive” measures? Just “containment”, “severe consequences”, “strong prohibitions” and a lukewarm “I don’t know what I would do” remark about torture not being “appropriate”. Your consistency and humanity are truly underwhelming.

        • James North says:

          Richard Witty said, ‘Ouch, Shmuel. Unfortunately for me, I can see that you’ve been paying attention to my comments. What my views boil down to, stripped of the dishonest hippie language, is that Israeli Jews count for more than Palestinians and others. If 9 Israeli Jews had been shot in the back by Palestinians (or the Turkish navy), you can bet I would be singing a different tune, instead of this cold “realism” you so rightly condemn me for.’

        • James North says:

          Richard Witty mused, (‘That Shmuel is one of my most formidable opponents. He knows more Torah than I ever will; he similarly can run rings around me on Jewish history; he’s Israeli, so he naturally speaks and reads the fluent Hebrew that I don’t; he spent years in Israel, contrasted with my few weeks, most recently back in 1986. . . I wish he would just get back to his translating and forget about me for awhile.’)

        • In response to Donald, I also do not offer a blanket “good guy” to anyone.

          The effort is what is criticized in the article. That questions remain is a distraction from the effort.

          My contention is that dismissing the effort is bad for all concerned, because the establishment of responsible institutions of self-governance, and the change in attitude from passive to responsible, that underlies that, is what will make the Palestinian aspiration for self-determination a reality.

          Resistance won’t. Fayyad’s efforts are bigger than mere resistance, more adept resistance, more comprehensive, and if continued at more successful.

          Please don’t distract disproportionately from that.

          He is not a tool, not a traitor. The opposite. He is a Palestinian patriot, a father of his country.

        • LeaNder says:

          The feature of political correctness that is upsetting is the suppression of dissent from it, … and the urge for conformity in the name of liberation from conformity.

          One last note before I shut up again. Positive suppression and enforced conformity in a no-dialog-with-non-Jews-policy is of course to be desired, correct, politically correct?

          Do you remember that I was startled when you tried to emotionally blackmail Phil with Abraham – Isaac imagery, in challenging him to consider his prejudices against “the Jews”, and not write about his own racism? [‘My Negro Problem, and Ours? Norman Podhoretz? Well yes, he may, talk about it, but Phil?]

          A while ago I found this p. 71 (bottom) f:

          The Hebrew word akedah (binding) comes from the phrase vayaakod eth Yitzak beno (and he bound Isaac his son) in Gen. 22:9. Although Abraham never actually killed Isaac, the word akedah was used by Jewish scholars and writers throughout Jewish history to describe the massacres of the Jews. It is a striking psychohistorical fantasy. Stein (1984a:10) believed that the biblical akedah “is not only the key to the psychology of Jewish monotheism but also a key to the Jewish meaning of the Holocaust.

          That’s what it felt like. You think Phil has to shut up, since it could harm Jews? Correct.

          ****************************************

          I do believe that violent forms of resistance should be contained, and that the consequences of violent resistance are so severe that the prohibitions against it should also be strong.

          Again, you are talking about violence, Donald didn’t, necessarily. That’s what is so boring about you you always have to hammer in the core Hasbara. Well talking about enforced conformity, aren’t we?

        • Haytham says:

          Witty:

          If we had a Mondoweiss-style “Bon Voyage to Witty” fundraiser, how much money would we have to raise and donate to you or the charity of your choice for you to stop posting here?

          I mean seriously, man, don’t you get sick of posting the same thing over and over? Some variation of…

          “It’s the fault of Hamas that there is no Palestinian state.”

          “It’s the fault of Hamas that Likud is in power.”

          “Damn you, Hamas! You SUCK!”

          “EVERYONE SUCKS!”

          “In 1948…I would have held my nose…”

          “When only Jews have full rights in a nation-state, this is self-determination at its best and most just.”

          “Humanize the Other but do not give him a state because the Other will not go down on his knees and declare Israel to be a Jewish state and Jewish homeland, past, present and future, forever and ever, amen.”

          “Anti-Zionism is anti-Semitism.”

          “I can’t and won’t say Arabs are primitive because that would be racist and orientalist of me. I would never want to be either of those things. Hey–everyone–look over there! [You know that Arabs are basically primitive, right? Hey, I'm just asking a question here.]” – Richard DershoWitty

        • Haytham says:

          Witty:

          With regard to what you tried to do here:

          He is not a tool, not a traitor. The opposite. He is a Palestinian patriot, a father of his country.

          Witty, I say this with all sincerity and while trying very hard not to lose my temper: YOU DON’T GET TO WRITE THINGS LIKE THAT.

          Please, do not ever again refer to anyone as a “Palestinian patriot, a father of his country.” You stick to what you know how to do; namely, you excel only at characterizing all Jews (yes, Jews, not Israelis) as moral, peace-loving and heroic and demonizing all Palestinians generally as immoral, violence-loving, cowardly and unworthy of sharing “your” homeland.

          I think what it would take for you, Witty, to “internalize” that Palestinians are “humans” who “suffer” under Israeli “occupation” is an IDF soldier spitting on you, slapping you and kicking you until you fell to your knees and then urinating on you in front of your entire family at a West Bank checkpoint. Or how about we have the IDF handcuff and blindfold your wife and then take turns rubbing their groins on her and furiously pumping their hips forward and back, simulating raping her, and then, of course, posting a video of it on YouTube. Or, if that isn’t very appealing, maybe we can have the nice folks at Caterpillar send out an armored D9 to knock down your house in the middle of the night or while you’re eating dinner.

          Sound good?

          I’m an atheist but it’s people like you that make me wish there was a God, who, when you inevitably met Her, sat you down and explained to you, as if you were a two year old, the practical meaning of your words and the practical effect of your views, and how they actually contributed to destroying innocent people’s entire families, their entire lives, and all but negated their very existence.

          You stay classy, Richard Witty.

        • Rania says:

          Haytham, you are my hero.

        • Cliff says:

          I prefer the James North approach.

          Hopefully, the site gets an ‘ignore’ feature.

        • LeanDer,
          In that post that you referred, I asked Phil to convey his thinking.

          That is not “shut up”, that is “speak up”.

          Read back for the context of the previous discussion.

        • I’ll continue to write my own impressions, as I assume you will.

          You don’t like Fayyad I take it.

          I am not Palestinian, so I can’t write admirably about him?

          I can’t convey that I believe that the manner of Palestinian resistance has hurt them far more than its helped them?

          You stay classy, Haytham.

        • Woody Tanaka says:

          Awesome post, Haytham. Fantastic.

        • Haytham says:

          I have no opinion on Fayyad. I have opinions on your posts.

          Palestinian resistance? How did the Jews “resist” the British during the Mandate period? What’s your opinion on that? How did that turn out for them?

          Post whatever you, Witty. It has nothing to do with Fayyad or Palestinians. It’s very odd that you would lionize someone like him, whom (I assume) none of us really know after you’ve written such horrible things about the people he purports to represent.

        • Haytham says:

          Rania:

          Thank you, but I’m just a guy who gets really irritated by “liberal-Zionism.” I’m not a hero, as Cliff will point out.

          Your posts since you got involved her recently, on the other hand, have been outstanding.

        • Haytham says:

          Cliff:

          “Ignore feature” to ignore me?

        • annie says:

          cheers to you Haytham

        • tree says:

          “Ignore feature” to ignore me?

          I’m 100% sure that Cliff was refering to Witty with respect to the ‘ignore feature”.

        • Rania says:

          Thanks, Haytham. I’m not sure what I’ll be able to add to the various discussions here, but I suspect it will be merely sarcasm. Oh well. I think I’ll go with it until it gets old.

          So, are all of the Palestinians on this site lawyers? It’s weird how we’re drawn to the law even though we’ve all known from a very young age what total crap it is. I’m in immigration (read: imitation) court every day with DHS, so I am as jaded as they come.

          Thank you for replying to my post. I have already learned so much from you. Thanks for that. I think putting your irritation with liberal-Zionism into words is heroic, whether you see it or not.

        • Haytham says:

          Rania:

          I sincerely doubt that I have taught you anything but thank you for saying that. Like many Palestinians who are raised in homes where Palestinian culture is embraced, flattery works very well on me.

          As far as Palestinians being attorneys, I’m sure you know why that is, from a pop-psychology perspective; you know, trying to make some sort of order out of the chaos of the world, especially what happened in 1948. Or the old standby, changing majors in college because you realized you were never going to get into med school because you suck at science (ok, maybe that was just me). In my family (both immediate and extended) I’m greatly outnumbered by physicians and professors.

        • Cliff says:

          Yes I was referring to Dick Witty.

  14. hophmi says:

    Did you all scream your heads off when Mandela began talking to DeKlerk and start calling Mandela a “collaborator”?

    It only confirms my suspicion that most of you do not want to see an end to the conflict; you feed off of it.

    • Bumblebye says:

      I recall a speech broadcast live from SA parliament by DeKlerk a yearor two before Mandela’s release during which I had shivers running up & down my spine as everything he said had the opposite meaning to the one his colleagues were hearing and applauding, and so I knew what would soon be coming. It was an incredibly weird feeling.

    • eGuard says:

      No I did not. But Yigal Amir did so in similar circumstances.

    • Donald says:

      “Did you all scream your heads off when Mandela began talking to DeKlerk and start calling Mandela a “collaborator”

      I might have if the ANC had been praised for cooperating with apartheid South Africa’s security services, suppressing peaceful protests that were in support of the Egyptian uprising against Mubarak. So maybe you can answer my question. The PA did suppress peaceful demonstrators and used violence against them. Should we criticize that or should we keep our mouths shut except to sing hymns of praise to Fayyad or whoever it was in the PA who was responsible for these violations of human rights?

      Also, if Hostage is right about Fayyad and if he isn’t in fact responsible for those violations, should we now be praising Fayyad for going against the demands of the US and Israel as he tries to obtain recognition for Palestinian statehood at the UN?

      I tend to praise or condemn people based on what I hear they are doing–suppressing dissent earns condemnation while using firm nonviolent diplomatic means to oppose oppression wins my praise. I also change my mind if someone convinces me that what I had heard about a person (both from supporters and opponents) might not be true. What do you do, hophmi?

      • hophmi says:

        I’ve long been a Fayyad fan. I can disagree with his Statehood Initiative and still like him. He’s a technocrat, exactly what the Palestinians need to move past being a protest movement to building a state. Fayyad offers the Palestinians the best chance they have not only to have a state, but a state that functions and is sustainable. That’s my opinion of him.

        • DBG says:

          the majority of people on MW are against a Palestinian state if it doesn’t also mean the destruction of Israel.

        • Donald says:

          They probably do need good technocrats and I like his statehood initiative. I don’t know to what extent he is responsible for the human rights violations by the PA security services. And I don’t know if he actually has the support of ordinary Palestinians on the WB.

          Hostage paints a rather different picture of him than what I’ve seen from his enthusiasts in the West, so I’m a little confused about who the real Fayyad is.

        • Chaos4700 says:

          DBG, there is no Palestinian state without the destruction of Israel. You’ve all made it very clear that you intend to keep your military presence in Palestine (and your colonists) while you reserve the right to imprison or kill any Palestinian.

          There was no Poland or France again until Nazi Germany was done away with. There is still a Germany, of course, but it’s really not the same country. That’s what will happen to Israel.

        • annie says:

          There is still a Germany, of course, but it’s really not the same country. That’s what will happen to Israel.

          well then why do you perpetuate the ‘destruction of israel’ meme? i don’t want destruction i want transformation. the radical kind.

        • Chaos4700 says:

          Um, annie? Germany was destroyed. And then it was reborn. It was the only way to stop them from wholesale slaughter. There’s no reason to think that those rules don’t apply to Israel — or to the United States, if we don’t let go of Israel and turn our ship around before we follow them to hell and back for what we’re doing to innocent people in the Middle East.

      • Hostage says:

        I might have if the ANC had been praised for cooperating with apartheid South Africa’s security services

        Mandela was criticized for collaborating too much with the beneficiaries of white apartheid, but it didn’t detract from the glowing praise he received from the world press.

        He didn’t have full control over the white-dominated army, police, or judiciary. So, he arranged for criminals to receive a general amnesty. In many cases they didn’t even have to appear in court to confess their crimes. No South African was ever tried for the crime of apartheid. He was concerned with the possibility of capital flight, so the ANC decided in 1994 to pay full market prices for any white-owned land used to right the historical wrongs. Their plan only called for the redistribution of 30 percent of the white-owned land to the black South Africans that were forced from their ancestral homelands by 2014. So the right to return to homes or obtain compensation was non-existence.

        • Donald says:

          “Mandela was criticized for collaborating too much with the beneficiaries of white apartheid.”

          So do Abbas and Fayyad not have control over the PA security services? Who does? Would it be Israel, the US, or are there other elements in the PA in favor of torturing dissenters?

    • Shingo says:

      Did you all scream your heads off when Mandela began talking to DeKlerk and start calling Mandela a “collaborator”?

      That was AFTER DeKlerk declared the end of apartheid right?

      No one calked Arafat a collaborator for shaking hands with Rabin.

      Nice try Hop, but that’s a fail.

      • hophmi says:

        “No one calked Arafat a collaborator for shaking hands with Rabin.”

        Excuse me, but I think you’re a little mistaken on that one. I seem to recall a lot of people were against it then and are against it now. And I seem to recall an entire narrative based around the idea that Arafat was little more than an enforcer for the Israelis during Oslo.

        • Chaos4700 says:

          How can Arafat have enforced an Oslo arrangement that Israel never adhered to AT ALL in the first place?

        • Donald says:

          “And I seem to recall an entire narrative based around the idea that Arafat was little more than an enforcer for the Israelis during Oslo.”

          I think that’s true. Chomsky and Edward Said were critical of Oslo, in part because Israel just kept building settlements all through that period, under both Likud and Labor.

  15. Jenny says:

    We’re aware that Desmond Tutu and Jimmy Carter are ironically members of the Peres center for peace, yes?