After the recent attacks in Britain, the Palestinian Authority president was quick to issue statements and give speeches showing sympathy with the bereaved and endorsing “a permanent rejection of all forms of terrorism.” Similar pronouncements followed the recent massacre of Coptic Christians in Egypt and the attack on the Saint Petersburg Metro last April. Yet, writes Bassam Tawil, it was a speech Abbas gave in September 2015—calling for the spilling of blood to prevent Jews from “defiling” the al-Aqsa mosque “with their filthy feet”—that sparked the so-called “knife intifada,” which has not yet abated:
For the past two years, Palestinians have been waging a new type of “intifada” against Israel—one that consists of knife and car-ramming attacks, similar to the ones carried out in Britain, France, and Germany. This wave of attacks . . . has claimed the lives of 49 people and injured more than 700. Since then, Palestinians have carried out more than 177 stabbings, 144 shootings, and 58 vehicular attacks. This wave of terrorism is the direct result of incitement by various Palestinian groups and leaders, including Abbas himself. . . .
The deadly attacks continue until this day. Abbas’s remarks served as a catalyst for the new “intifada,” one that is precisely parallel to the attacks we are witnessing on the streets of Paris, London, and Berlin.
Yet Abbas, the world’s newest renouncer of terror, has chosen to refrain from rescinding his explicit call for Palestinians to butcher Jews in order to prevent them from “defiling” the al-Aqsa Mosque. . . . Not only has Abbas failed to withdraw his deadly appeal to Palestinians to engage in terrorism, he has also refused to condemn the attacks that have claimed the lives of scores of Israelis and wounded hundreds of others. . . .
Perhaps it is time for Westerners to realize that there is no difference between a terrorist who sets out to kill Jews and a terrorist who kills British, French, and German nationals. In fact, it has become clear that the terrorists in Europe have copied the tactics of the Palestinians in carrying out stabbings and vehicular and suicide-bombing attacks.