Originally published by the Jerusalem Post.
One of the more remarkable aspects of the blood libel sounded by Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas in his address before the European Parliament in Brussels last week is the claim that he ad-libbed the part about rabbis poisoning Palestinian wells.
After refusing to meet President Reuven Rivlin who was also in Brussels last week, Abbas ascended the podium in Brussels and began his custom of demonizing Jewish and Israel. Clearing his throat, the man whose incitement is most responsible for the fact that the Palestinians are the most anti-Semitic people in the world, began his speech by saying, “We are against incitement.”
Then, as is his wont, Abbas proceeded to incite mass murder of Jews by accusing rabbis of ordering the poisoning of Palestinian wells.
In his words, “Just a week ago, a week, a group of rabbis in Israel announced, in a clear announcement, demanding their government, to poison, to poison, the water of the Palestinians.”
“Is this not incitement? Is this not clear incitement, to the mass murder of the Palestinian people?” It’s not quite clear what it was that he was ad-libbing but a reasonable bet is that he was embellishing what was already in his planned speech. In the days preceding his speech, the Abbas-controlled PLO media put out stories claiming that a non-existent rabbi, who heads a non-existent rabbinical council issued an opinion that Jews in Judea and Samaria should poison Palestinian wells.
As the IsraellyCool website pointed out, by Abbas’s telling, it wasn’t just one non-existent rabbi, who heads a non-existent rabbinical council that told Jews in general to poison wells. In Abbas’s ad-libbed version, the entire non-existent council, led by the non-existent rabbi ordered the government to poison Palestinian water.
At any rate, whether Abbas winged the blood libel or just embellished a less powerful one, far from being a mitigating factor for judging the significance of his statement, the claim that he was speaking on the fly makes it all the worse.
Abbas simply couldn’t help himself.
There he was, facing the EU Parliament which has shoveled out billions of euros to fund his incitement for the past two decades, and either one of two things happened. Either his EU-funded Jew hatred took control of him and just couldn’t restrain himself, or he decided to show the Europeans that their investment in him has been well placed.
For their part, his European funders couldn’t be more pleased with the product of their investment.
And so we had the remarkable spectacle of Abbas receiving a prolonged standing ovation at the end of his remarks. Israelis expected the European parliamentarians to walk out, or boo, or interject a few cat calls.
But Abbas knew his audience better than the Israelis do. He gave them the red meat they paid for, and they rewarded him for it with a huge, enthusiastic ovation.
The least remarkable aspect of Abbas’s revolting claim is that two days later he walked it back after The New York Times called him on it.
Abbas libels Israel either directly or through his media every day. Every once in a while, a Western media outlet is moved to report on a specific lie he tells. When that happens, he walks it back. And then he says it again, or something equally racist the next day and everyone shrugs or ignores it completely.
Abbas felt comfortable accusing rabbis of ordering the Israeli government to poison wells in front of a room of European lawmakers because for the past 20 years, the EU has been underwriting what may be the largest anti-Semitic hate campaign since the Nazis rose to power. Abbas knows they do this because he has been depositing their checks.
Every year, the EU shovels more than a billion euros over to the Palestinians. As was the case in 2012, even in times of economic austerity in Europe, funds to the PA keep increasing. And with those funds, Abbas has indoctrinated the Palestinians to hate Jews and seek their mass murder and the destruction of the State of Israel as their highest aspiration.
And that of course is just the direct aid to the PA.
There is also the EU financing of anti-Israel NGOs, staffed by Israelis as well as Palestinians. Their job is to propagate blood libels like the one Abbas shared last Thursday. Every year, the EU and its member states give these groups millions of euros to spread tales of Israelis and Jewish avarice.
Two such groups – Breaking the Silence and B’tselem – have been enthusiastic parties in the water libels that come out in early summer every year. Both groups receive the lion’s share of their funding from foreign governments, mainly in Europe.
Last week, NRG website published candid camera footage of Yehuda Shaul, one of the founders of Breaking the Silence, spreading a well-poisoning libel nearly identical to Abbas’s to a group of tourists by the village of Susiya, in southern Judea.
Shaul told the tourists, “One of the [Arab] villages, this village actually, it’s new that they [the Palestinians] came back because a few years ago the settlers basically poisoned all the water systems of the village.”
The footage was taken by the Ad Kan organization two years ago. For the past several years, Ad Kan’s operatives infiltrated far-left, EU-funded NGOs and surreptitiously filmed their activities.
They took their findings public in January. Another film by Ad Kan, which was broadcast in January, showed Breaking the Silence members gathering tactical intelligence about IDF weapons systems and tactics deployed during the war with Hamas two years ago.
In the latest iteration of the water libel, of which Abbas’s well-poisoning story was just one product, B’tselem’s public relations director Roy Yellin tweeted, “While Palestinians suffer from severe water shortage, settlement swimming pools are full.”
As the Elder of Zion website noted, Yellin linked to a Haaretz report which made no such claim.
Moreover, as it noted, Palestinian water parks in Judea and Samaria are currently open for business and wet.
Lost in all the current coverage of the annual water shortage is that fact that Israeli communities in Samaria also had no water last week. Kedumim, Shilo and several other Jewish communities were without running water until earlier this week. Israelis were provided with drinking water from water tanks, just like the Palestinians were.
Also lost in the coverage is the clear fact that the Palestinians are solely responsible for the water shortage.
As Roi Sharon reported on Channel 10 news Sunday, there are two causes for current water shortages plaguing Palestinians and Israelis alike. First, there is the problem of massive water theft by Palestinians.
According to Sharon, over the past year, Palestinians stole five million cubic meters of water.
Second, for the past 20 years, Abbas and his associates have refused to agree to allow Israel to upgrade water infrastructure in Judea and Samaria to provide adequate water for the overall population.
Unlike Abbas and his PLO, Israel still upholds the agreements it signed with the PLO. In 1995, the sides agreed that they would only act together to improve the water infrastructure. And the Palestinians – as Abbas again proved – would rather have their people suffer from water shortages, victims in the EU-funded PA’s endless propaganda war against the Jews – than improve their lives and remove their talking point.
The same goes for Abbas’s Israeli partners in blood libel dissemination and of course, for the Europeans, who pay for the whole operation.
Abbas’s most recent anti-Jewish diatribe, and the warm reception it received from the Europeans who paid for it bear an important lesson for the many Israelis who search endlessly for ways to build friendlier relations with Europe.
The hard truth is that we cannot do anything to influence them. They operate in a closed intellectual circle.
They pay for blood libels. They receive them with standing ovations. They disseminate them at the UN and their media. And then they organize “peace” conferences, where Israel is expected to accept as fact or spend its entire time dispelling the lies they create through their Israeli and Palestinian employees and disseminate through their media.
The only option Israel has in the face of this circle of hatred is to attack the Europeans mercilessly for their Jew hatred and anti-Jewish discrimination.
Our only prospect for impacting this diseased, racist environment is to appeal to the conscience of those Europeans who still have one. Beyond that, the time has come to write them off.