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Musical Chairs In Palestine Is About To Begin - Abbas Is Helpless

Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas, also known as Abu Mazen, is apparently as delusional as the late Yasser Arafat. In January, Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon lifted a ban on contacts with the Palestinians after the newly elected Abbas, on January 20th, ordered Gaza security forces to halt militant attacks on Israelis. Unfortunately, the Palestinian effort was not really an attempt to stop the attacks on Israel, but was, in fact, mere rhetoric, both figuratively and literally. In an article written by Craig Nelson of the Cox News Service, January 24, 2005, and published online at reflector.com:

Ismail al-Dahdouh, a senior Palestinian officer, said after briefing security personnel on Friday that his orders were to "control these areas and to stop attacks."

But when asked what would happen if his men came across militants preparing to carry out an attack, Dahdouh was disarming. "We will avoid clashing with them and we will talk to them in a positive way," he told the Reuters news agency.

Only two days after February 8, 2005, when a bilateral cease-fire had been announced between Israel and Palestine, militants (terrorists) within Palestine fired approximately 36 mortars and 20 rockets into Israeli territory. Subsequently, president Abbas fired a substantial number of his security force including the the overall commander of Palestinian security forces, Major-General Abdel Razek al-Majaida Abdel Razek Majaida; Gaza police chief Saeb al-Ajez; and Omar Ashour, the national security commander in southern Gaza. There were reports that, in addition to the weak-kneed policy toward the militants, some members of the security forces moonlight as militants. Since their day jobs will no longer interfere with their real mission in life which is to destroy the state of Israel, those fired can now concentrate on bomb building and mortar attacks in earnest.

After the firings, Abbas announced a meeting with the militant groups. That would be like the mayor of Los Angeles firing the police chief and a bunch of policemen before meeting with the Bloods, the Crips, and the Latin Kings. It seems to me that Abbas should have met with his security forces and fired (disarmed, attacked, and/or killed) the terrorists.

This merely shows that it is Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and other militant groups who are in charge in the Palestinian territory and not Abbas. Any real attempt by Abbas to reign in the militants will only result in his demise and the game of musical chairs in the Palestianian leadership will begin in earnest.

Note: The ranks/titles and the spelling of names of the various players in the region varies from news report to news report. For instance, Major-General Abdel Razek al-Majaida's name was spelled Abdel-Razek al-Majaydeh, Abdel Razek Majaida, Abdel Razek Majaidie, and Abdelrazzak al-Majaida in various reports. He was also reported to be a Brigadier General and not a Major General. The police chief's name was also spelled Saeb al-Ajed and Saeb al-Ajez. National security chief in the southern Gaza Strip, General Omar Ashour also had his name spelled Omar Ashur. Mohammed Abdel-Raouf Arafat As Qudwa al-Hussaeini, the full name of Yasser Arafat, is also known as Yasir Arafat in various formats. For future reference and in an effort to bring some sameness to the chaos, I have decided to use the NY Times spellings and titles. I guess something gets lost in translation. My apologies to anyone whose name or rank/title have been reported incorrectly.

Posted by Rick | February 12, 2005 02:04 PM

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