Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Mahmoud Abbas: Double Agent

By Jeffrey Blankfort, Counterpunch, Aug 31, 2010

This coming week we will witness the latest challenge for the man who is arguably the most extraordinary double agent in the Middle East. What is unusual about Mahmoud Abbas, or Abu Mazen, as he was known when his fellow Palestinians had yet to take his measure, is that most of what he does for his Israeli and US masters he does in plain sight.

To which of the two he is most beholden will be determined during his upcoming visit to Washington for the latest chapter in what has euphemistically been referred to as the “peace process” since it was launched in the aftermath of the Oslo Agreement. The odds are it will be Israel. In Oslo, it should be recalled, Abbas, as the chief Palestinian negotiator, played Neville Chamberlain for Tel Aviv, agreeing to surrender occupied Palestinian land with a view toward putting a permanent end to Palestinian resistance and, immediately, to the first Intifada.

If any reader still harbors the illusion that Oslo was anything but a sell-out by the Palestinian leadership, Abba’s negotiating counterpart, former Israeli military intelligence chief, Shlomo Gazit, put that notion to rest on the evening of November 17,1993. When challenged during a speaking engagement at Congregation Beth Shalom in San Francisco by an angry questioner who compared the agreement to that signed with Nazi Germany in Munich in 1938, Gazit calmly replied that while he was reluctant to make such comparisons, “if it’s another Munich, we’re the Germans and the Palestinians are the Czechs.”.

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