Jewish Right To Israel

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Friday, March 18, 2011

Netanyahu's Clever Ploy To Prevent Peace: Insisting Abbas Not Encourage Murder Of Jews

From an email from DG:
Earlier this week, I commented on this paragraph from an article claiming that Mahmoud Abbas has eschewed incitement:
The new focus on incitement against Israel, together with Israeli dissatisfaction over the Palestinian response to the brutal attack, seemed to pose a question about the Israeli government’s readiness to deal with Mr. Abbas as a serious peace partner — even though Mr. Abbas and Mr. Fayyad are widely considered moderates who have repeatedly said they would never resort to violence.
Aside from the problematic central theme of the article - that Abbas was not responsible for Palestinian incitement - this paragraph faulted Netanyahu for making an issue out of incitement. Even if Abbas and Fayyad are "widely considered moderates" the incitement producted by the PA's media, continues to be documented and undermines that characterization.


Israel should have made incitement more of an issue, but, in truth, when it has,it's been ignored. Back in 1998, Serge Schmemann reported, ISRAEL ANNOUNCES STRINGENT TERMS FOR WITHDRAWAL
The position adopted by the Cabinet today was that the note -- appended by the United States to the agreement signed a year ago on an Israeli withdrawal from most of the West Bank city of Hebron -- spoke of ''reciprocity.'' The Cabinet said any further Israeli withdrawals were therefore conditional on the Palestinians' fulfilling what Israel described as their ''commitments'' under the American note.

The list put out by the Israelis today included a long series of demands. They range from the adoption of a new Palestinian National Charter that would not include calls for Israel's destruction, to protection of the environment and extradition of 34 Palestinians wanted by Israel for terrorist acts. The Cabinet set up a team led by Danny Naveh, the Cabinet Secretary, to monitor Palestinian implementation of these demands.
The "stringent terms" were actually terms that had been agreed to a year earlier in the Hebron Accords. Schmemann even misattributed the "Note for the Record," a mistake that necessitated a correction by the paper. Just as now Israel's demand that the Palestinians abide by terms of agreements they signed was portrayed as an Israeli maneuver to avoid the peace process. In a column a few days later, "He negotiates by the Rules" Charles Krauthammer argued:
The Times' false front-page report (subject of a correction the following day) is typical of its tendentious treatment of Netanyahu. It echoes the PLO line that Netanyahu's demand for reciprocity is nothing but a ploy. But how can any fair-minded observer consider reciprocity anything but an unobjectionable, indeed essential, condition for a peace process?

Netanyahu was elected by a majority of Israelis not because he promised a jihad against the Arabs but because he promised peace with security. How? Through reciprocity: You give, we give; you renege, we stand firm. No more one-way street.

The Hebron agreement was to be the hallmark of reciprocity: Netanyahu got Likud, for the first time in its history, to agree to a withdrawal from part of the Land of Israel, a very significant part -- in return for several Palestinian commitments, every one of which has since been violated.

It is now up to President Clinton. The United States brokered the Hebron deal, enshrining these Palestinian obligations in the "Note for the Record." If Clinton treats his own Hebron agreement as a dead letter -- an Israeli withdrawal to be pocketed, Palestinian commitments to be ignored -- what possible confidence can Israel have that the next withdrawal will not be yet another sham, another betrayal?
Again the Times treats Israeli's insistence on Abbas abiding by terms of previous agreements as a ploy.

Such is the nature of the Times's reporting on the peace process. Palestinian obligations are optional and it is bad form for Israel to demand that they be observed.
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