Ghassan Andoni wrote in Imemc that Ariel Sharon had a closed session meeting with AIPAC in New York. On the table were his point of view of Mahmoud Abbas, the disengagement and also said some pretty wild things, considering the source:
Sharon dixit: “We see a great opportunities in the election of Abbas. We hope he will be able to lead his people and create a democratic, law-abiding society,” as if Sharon actually has first hand knowledge of such a thing.
Then he pronounced the usual litany that the new Palestinian leader would have to fight terror and dismantle terrorist organisations. We can ask, and I am sure some are: exactly what are the definitions Sharon gives to terror? It really is a valid question, because it does not mean, as he might define it “Palestinians attacking Israelis”, because he does not recognise resistance, and considers that IDF soldiers in the OPT as untouchable by Palestinians, which “forces” Palestinians into attacking Israeli civilians, because the reprisals when they attack soldiers seem to be more extreme than in other instances. When THEY drop a bomb on a croweded Gazan street from a plane, killing innocent civilians, that is not terror. It’s not terror to him because they are wearing the Israeli Army uniform. And, probably, in his heart because he believes that all Palestinians are simply not innocent to begin with, therefore, what the rest of the world considers terrorism and war crimes are merely “operations to ensure Israeli security”. How many horrible things fall under the umbrella of security. As Robyn Hitchcock sang, “When I hear the word security I reach for my shotgun”.
Who are the terrorist organisations? Does Sharon mean Hamas? Of course he does, and in this, Abbas might not have any real complaints to make for purely electoral reasons. Abbas doesn’t seem to have too much affection for Hamas and the postponement of the Palestinian Parliamentary elections are probably intended to find a way to take the wind out of Hamas following its widespread support as revealed in the administrative municipality elections recently held. To Abbas, a good swift kick in the Hamas’ shins would suit him just fine.
Then, Sharon went on to make this statement: “Without hurting the Arab world, it must be established that their agreements, declarations, and speeches are not worth the paper they were printed on.”
Pot Black, meet Kettle!
“It’s safer to sign agreements with President Bush than with the Arab world.”
Why, of course, they give you what you want before you even ask for it.
On Monday, Sharon told Israel Bonds leaders in New York large Jewish settlement blocs in the West Bank, including Maaleh Adumim, Gush Etzion, and Ariel, will remain part of Israel forever. So, how is the Roadmap supposed to be applied then?
Also, Sharon vowed to keep Jerusalem united. “My government will not negotiate Jerusalem; the Israeli capital is united and indivisible for eternity.” Sharon said.
Talk about flexibility, willingness to make tough choices, attempt to arrive at a peace agreement. Eternity is kind of a long time, but history has a way of taking its own course.
Earlier in the week, Sharon also dismissed Palestinian refugees’ right to return. Andoni concludes: “If Jerusalem, settlements, and refugees rights are not open for discussion, then what would be the point of reviving the road map peace plan?”