The Palestinian Authority’s chief negotiator and ranking member, Saeb Erekat, is once again stirring controversy and fabricating history. Taking cue from his boss, Mahmoud Abbas, who just days prior accused Israel of committing “genocide, “ Erekat absurdly charged Israel with killing 12,000 Gazans during Operation Defensive Edge and, just as ludicrous, alleged that 96% of all casualties sustained were civilians. Where he derives his facts he does not say, but who really cares about facts when Israel is the target of the invective? Just days later, Erekat compounded the vitriolic slander by comparing Prime Minister Netanyahu to ISIS and then went on to charge the Jewish State with burning mosques and churches. Of course, Erekat offers not a scintilla of evidence to back the spurious charge, but no matter: His professed Palestinian pedigree (he’s actually from Jordan by way of Arabia) gives him a free pass to fabricate.
Of course, this isn’t the first time that Erekat engaged in mendacious historical revisionism. In April 2002 Israeli forces embarked upon a counter-insurgency campaign in the city of Jenin – dubbed the suicide capital of the West Bank – to rout terror nests that had taken root there and, in an effort to minimize civilian casualties, utilized less lethal methods, incurring greater casualties as a result. When the battle was over, some 52 Palestinians were killed, the vast majority of them PLO and Hamas combatants. That did not stop the deceitful Erekat from claiming that a “massacre” had taken place in which upwards of 500 people – all civilians of course – were killed. Even after a UN commission of inquiry determined that there was in fact no massacre, Erekat refused to issue a retraction, stubbornly clinging to his defamatory fiction.
Not to be outdone, Erekat’s PLO colleague and terrorist apologist Hanan Ashrawi accused Prime Minister Netanyahu of invoking slander, hate language and obfuscation in his recent address in the UN General Assembly. Really, Hanan? Do you want to go down that road? In July, when confronted with pointed questions by a CNN reporter concerning Hamas’s use of UN schools to store rockets, a stumped Ashrawi laughed awkwardly and then deflected, whitewashing blatant Hamas violations of the laws of war.
In March 2013, Ashrawi’s Western funded NGO published a text, in Arabic of course, that repeated the medieval anti-Semitic blood libel that Jews use the blood of Christian children to bake Passover matzah. When challenged, Ashrawi initially attacked the blogger who exposed the canard. She eventually issued an apology for the piece but only after being confronted with the possible loss of Western funding. In other words, her actions were dictated by pecuniary considerations rather than genuine remorse for propagating the most ancient of blood libels.
Erekat’s and Ashrawi’s lies don’t fall far from the poisonous tree. Their boss, ostensibly a moderate, completed his dissertation on Holocaust denial. In the 1980s, Abbas showed us what “Palestinian scholarship” was capable of when he published a malevolent work which, among other gems, posited that less than 1,000,000 Jews were killed by the Nazis and that gas chambers were never employed to murder Jews. Neither the EU nor the Obama administration has taken Abbas to task for spewing such venomous hate, preferring to sweep such inconvenient indiscretions under the rug.
On September 26, in a speech before the General Assembly, Abbas, let loose with an anti-Semitic screed that would have made his Hitler-admiring icon, Haj Amin el-Husseini, proud. Chief among his lies was that Israel was waging a “war of genocide” against the “Palestinian people.” That slander proved too much to bear even for the normally hostile State Department, prompting a stern rebuke from its spokeswoman, Jen Psaki.
The notion that a Palestinian leader -- any Palestinian leader -- can make a statement these days without lying through his teeth is laughable. Hamas does not have a monopoly on making outrageous statements and accusations. Its partner in crime, the Palestinian Authority routinely spews forth the vilest of lies designed to vilify Israel and its obscenities often veer into blatant anti-Semitism.
In his address to the General Assembly, Prime Minister Netanyahu highlighted several important matters concerning regional and international threats, including Iran’s proliferation activities, Hezbollah, ISIS and Hamas. But of all the threats Israel faces, perhaps none is more insidious than that posed by Mahmoud Abbas’s Palestinian Authority. Whereas ISIS, Iran, Hezbollah and Hamas wear their colors on their sleeves and mince no words when discussing their desire to eradicate Israel (and the West), the PA is more circumspect, preferring to cloud its nefarious desires with platitudes and vague but clearly menacing statements.
In point of fact, the only discernable difference between Hamas and the PA is that members of the latter wear ties. What is crystal clear and beyond dispute is that as long as the PA continues its campaign of vilification, incitement and lies, peace will be as elusive as ever.
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