Thursday, February 24, 2011

With All The Turmoil In The Middle East, Could Abbas Be Next?

"After Egypt and Tunisia, God knows who might be next...Don't laugh. It might be me"
Abbas in a speech in Ramallah last week

Abbas misrule in the West Bank could make him a target for revolt:

Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas' mandate expired more than two years ago, but he remains in power.

Parliamentary elections were cancelled in 2010 and are now over a year late.

The parliament in Ramallah has not passed a law for more than three years.

The entire Palestinian government on the West Bank resigned last week and, up to now, no new one has been formed.

Meanwhile, Palestinians remain politically and geographically split - with the Islamist movement Hamas in power in Gaza and their secular rivals Fatah running the West Bank.

But Abbas needn't worry--the incompetence of Abbas and the Palestinian Authority is a reflection of the disunity of the Arabs themselves who find themselves under their rule.

Not that there haven't been attempts at protests--and the biggest one saw a turnout of several thousand people, as opposed to Gaza, where Hamas has not allowed the protests to take place. Bottom line, compared with the rest of the Middle East, what protests that have materialized are simply small potatoes compared with everywhere else.

Besides, the leadership knows the number one Arab rule for how to deal with discontent: channel it against Israel:
Fatah politicians have called for a "Palestinian day of rage" to take place this Friday on the West Bank against the Israeli occupation and the US decision to veto a UN Security Council resolution criticising Israeli settlement expansion on the West Bank.
At this point, it seems that Abbas is secure.
So much the worse for the Arabs.

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