Sunday, December 03, 2017

03-Dec-17: Peace: What do Palestinian Arab insiders mean when they see it slipping away?

Al-Habbash [Image Source]
Our partners-in-peace, the Palestinian Authority and its president-for-life Mahmoud Abbas, are taking pains once again to lay out how peace is going to come about, and how not.

As reported earlier today ["Abbas aide: Jerusalem recognition will destroy peace", Israel National News, December 3, 2017], a senior adviser to Abbas, Mahmoud Al-Habbash, evidently reacted yesterday to news reports that US President Donald Trump is likely to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital as soon as Wednesday.

A brief extract of his views:
“Any American declaration of recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel – if there is one – would mean total destruction of the peace process," said Al-Habbash, who was quoted in Israeli media. “The whole world will pay a price for any change or harm to the political reality of Jerusalem,” he warned. The Yediot Aharonot newspaper noted that Al-Habbash made the comments with Abbas standing at his side, meaning that Abbas fully backed the remarks. “The Arab states stand by us, especially Saudi Arabia and Egypt, and the entire Arab-Islamic nation is united in one position,” Al-Habbash further claimed.
This Al-Habbash is no stranger to our blog even if his name is not so well recognized. He's the central player in "15-Jan-14: How jihadist messages heard in the Palestinian Arab villages go unreported in the wider world", and "2-Jun-14: Palestinian government ministers and the political necessity of speaking out of both sides of the mouth depending on who's listening". Starting in 2014, he has been serving as a Supreme Shari’ah Court Judge, as Chairman of the PA's Supreme Council for Shari'ah Justice and as Mahmoud Abbas’ Advisor on Religious and Islamic Affairs. Until 1994, he was an up-and-comer in Hamas.

In the earlier of the two pieces, we described him as a man "with a powerful megaphone" who
is today a certified PA/Abbas insider, a cabinet minister who is more influential in the villages of the PA regime's fiefdom than most of its other politicians. This is because of what he does for a living: after earlier stints as minister of agriculture and minister of social affairs, he has served as minister of "waqf and religious affairs" since 2009... In a society where religion plays such a deadly important role, the influence of Al-Habbash is tremendous, even if most analysts and reporters are oblivious to it.
And in the June 2014 post, we said
Al-Habbash is hectoring his assembled audience of Palestinian Arab VIPs, including the "moderate" Mahmoud Abbas who heads the PA, on how the young men who are pointlessly and violently laying down their murderous lives in the name of jihad in Syria ought to think again and go do it in Jerusalem.
It's a shame this Koran-thumping, rabble-rousing man of extreme violence and major influence who explicitly wants to see more and more young Palestinian Arabs die in the service of the Abbas presidency isn't better known. Perhaps he will be now.

His Saturday statement on how a shift of the United States embassy to Israel's capital city will "destroy peace" has a lot packed into it. It doesn't convey anything especially new; you can see what he said of an almost identical nature nearly a year ago ["Abbas aide: Moving American embassy a 'declaration of war'", Israel National News, January 9, 2017]. But for sheer hypocritical double-talk, it ought to get more attention.

[Image Source]
It's a shame that mainstream analysts don't try to take it apart. When Al-Habbash says violence (and from past experience, he means extreme, lethal violence) will flow from a diplomatic move on the part of the Trump administration, here's what it would be different from:
  • Training Palestinian Arab children to kill and be killed -- that would not destroy peace
  • Distorting elementary and secondary school text books in such a way that a child learning a lesson in basic arithmetic would be unwittingly taught to hate Israelis -- that would not destroy peace
  • Paying imprisoned Palestinian Arab terrorists once they are behind Israeli bars and when they are eventually released -- that would not destroy peace
  • Declaring publicly via the mass media that the blood of dead Palestinian Arab children "fertilizes" the soil of their land and prepares it for a brighter Jew-free future -- that would not destroy peace
  • Weaponizing Palestinian Arab children by encouraging them to pine for towns, cities and regions that have been parts of the State of Israel for seven decades, and not just to pine but to plan to struggle and kill and be killed for them as children or as adolescents or eventually as adults -- that would not destroy peace
  • Operating a national budget that is designed from the get-go to be drastically dependent on foreign aid and particularly on funding from UNRWA (and especially for education in all its aspects) and that enables far fewer quality schools, innovative colleges and excellent universities and trade-schools -- that would not destroy peace
  • When the head of the PA "pledges" that "there will be no Israelis in Palestine... not a single Israeli - civilian or soldier - on our lands" once a "resolution" has been achieved -- that would not destroy peace
The fact that Jerusalem has never been the capital city of any Arabic entity is pushed off the page both by demagogues like Al-Habbash and by the reporters who quote them.

If you're a regular reader, you probably know enough to extend this list further and further down the page. 


Arthur Toporovsky said...

The one small fact that gets ignored ous how the embassy would move to the western portion of Jerusalem, a location that is within the reportedly internationally recognized borders of Israel. Moving the embassy there does nothing to change the final disposition of the eastern portion of Jerusalem. However, what it does show is that even after the Oslo Accords, and despite all the clamoring for the "1967 Lines" as a border, the Palestinian Arab leadership does not recognize Israeli sovereignty over any area, and that it certainly has not renounced violence as their primary methodology.

This Ongoing War said...

True. And there's the historical context: how the Palestinian Arabs specifically, and the larger Arab world along with them, remain more willing to slug it out over causes that are a century old (overturning the 1917 Balfour Declaration) or seven decades old (reversing the partition of Mandatory Palestine into Israel and an Arab entity) than they are to tackle real and current issues like disastrous state of Gaza and the PA.

Anonymous said...

One must remember the special Islamspeak definition of 'peace'. For them, ''peace process' = process of destruction of Israel in order to erase this uppity infidel sovereign state that was re-established on territory seized from non-Muslims by Musilm invaders and occupiers. Indeed, orthodox Islam teaches that Total World Domination- the entire world subject to Muslim despots, and forced to live under sharia - is the prerequisite for "peace". There is no 'peace', as Islam sees it, so long as there remains anywhere in the *world* an unsubdued infidel, whether an individual or a sovereign state. Those pesky unsubdued individuals, those pesky as-yet-unconquered sovereign non-Islamic states, are a standing offence to Islamic sensibility; they offend 'allah; they *must* be destroyed, because only *then* can there be 'peace'. Every unsubdued non-Muslim part of the world = dar al harb, 'zone of war'. Joseph Schacht, in his tome "An Introduction to Islamic Law,' summed the problem up, thus: "The basis of the Islamic attitude towards unbelievers is the law of war: they must be either converted, or subjugated, or killed". *This* is why all 'peace-processing' between an infidel party and an islamic entity, whether in India (India and Pakistan, with Kashmir the current excuse for Jihad), in Thailand between the Thai govt and the Muslims of the south, in the Philippines (Filipino non-Islamic state, vs the 'Moros' in Mindanao), or between Israel and the so-called 'Palestinian' Arab Muslims, is utterly futile; a deadly and expensive waste of time. All that will ever be achieved are 'hudnas' - temporary 'truce-treaties', which the Muslim party will break as soon as it feels strong enough to make another attempt at destroying the infidel party. (The model is the Treaty of Hudaybiyya, which Mohammed insincerely made and then very soon treacherously broke, doing so very sneakily and, of course, claiming loudly that the *other* side had 'broken the agreement' (exactly as mohammedans tend to do *today*).