Mahmoud Abbas May Have Chosen to End His Career in Violence

Sept. 16 2022

On Wednesday, terrorists in the West Bank opened fire at an IDF checkpoint, killing Bar Falah, a thirty-year-old major. Falah’s comrades quickly killed the shooters, one of whom was a Palestinian Authority (PA) security officer. Last week, thanks to good luck and the vigilance of police, a major terrorist attack in Tel Aviv was thwarted. Yoni Ben Menachem believes these and many other recent incidents are not so much the result of the aging PA president Mahmoud Abbas losing his grip on the reins of power, but of his decision to resume violence:

Abbas is trying to blackmail Israel and the U.S.; he sees the new wave of terrorism that broke out independently in the field as a lever of pressure on Israel in everything related to creating a “political horizon” and renewing negotiations about the establishment of an independent Palestinian state.

Abbas, who has reached the end of his political career, is not interested in calming the situation. So long as the armed terrorists do not threaten the Muqata in Ramallah, [the Palestinian equivalent of the White House], and he has American and European backing as well as that of moderate Arab countries, he feels that this is the right time to squeeze major concessions out of Israel. . . .

Next week the PA president will go to New York to deliver his annual speech at the UN General Assembly. The PA has been engaged in a political campaign for several weeks now with the aim of obtaining the agreement of the United Nations to recognize “Palestine” with full membership in the organization. Today it has the status of an observer state. Israel strongly opposes this move. President Biden also opposes it, and last week he sent Barbara Leaf, a U.S. assistant secretary of state, to Ramallah. Abbas refused to meet with her, but in a meeting with Hussein al-Sheikh, [his deputy and likely successor], she clarified her position that the U.S. might veto the Palestinian request in the Security Council.

Abbas is playing with fire and if he doesn’t come to his senses he may end his rule just like Yasir Arafat: Operation Protective Shield in 2002 resulted [effectively in the end of Yasir Arafat’s political power]. If Abas pushes Israel into a corner, another IDF operation in Judea and Samaria in the style of Protective Shield may bring him closer to the end of his rule.

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Read more at Arab Expert

More about: Mahmoud Abbas, Palestinian Authority, Palestinian terror

Terror Returns to Israel

Nov. 28 2022

On Wednesday, a double bombing in Jerusalem left two dead, and many others injured—an attack the likes of which has not been seen since 2016. In a Jenin hospital, meanwhile, armed Palestinians removed an Israeli who had been injured in a car accident, reportedly murdering him in the process, and held his body hostage for two days. All this comes as a year that has seen numerous stabbings, shootings, and other terrorist attacks is drawing to a close. Yaakov Lappin comments:

Unlike the individual or small groups of terrorists who, acting on radical ideology and incitement to violence, picked up a gun, a knife, or embarked on a car-ramming attack, this time a better organized terrorist cell detonated two bombs—apparently by remote control—at bus stops in the capital. Police and the Shin Bet have exhausted their immediate physical searches, and the hunt for the perpetrators will now move to the intelligence front.

It is too soon to know who, or which organization, conducted the attack, but it is possible to note that in recent years, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) has taken a lead in remote-control-bombing terrorism. Last week, a car bomb that likely contained explosives detonated by remote control was discovered by the Israel Defense Forces in Samaria, after it caught fire prematurely. In August 2019, a PFLP cell detonated a remote-control bomb in Dolev, seventeen miles northwest of Jerusalem, killing a seventeen-year-old Israeli girl and seriously wounding her father and brother. Members of that terror cell were later arrested.

With the Palestinian Authority (PA) losing its grip in parts of Samaria to armed terror gangs, and the image of the PA at an all-time low among Palestinians, in no small part due to corruption, nepotism, and its violation of human rights . . . the current situation does not look promising.

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Read more at JNS

More about: Israeli Security, Jerusalem, Palestinian terror