Monday, June 15, 2009

Emmanuel Navon: Give a Speech Mahmoud!

Why don't you also give a Speech, Mahmoud?

By Emmanuel Navon

PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas is apparently not joining the Middle East speech contest launched by President Obama earlier this month in Cairo. No wonder: he has been outmaneuvered and would have precious little to say.

In a way, the Palestinians have cornered themselves. For the past two decades, they have presented their struggle to the world as a liberation movement while emphatically making it clear to their children that the ultimate goal in the "liberation of Palestine." There are indeed many people around the world who sympathize with the "one state solution" implied by the so-called and ill-named "right of return," but Western leaders do not accept the idea that the one of the two peoples that fight over the Holy Land should be deprived of its national rights. Hence the broad Western support for the "two-state solution."

Now that even Israel's Likud Prime Minister has endorsed that principle, the Palestinians can hardly whine to the international community. They will say that Netanyahu's two conditions (i.e. demilitarization and acceptance of Israel's Jewishness) are "unacceptable," but fair-minded people will surely wonder what's unacceptable about not invading Israel with millions of Arab immigrants and about not installing Iranian missiles in the outskirts of Jerusalem.

Unfortunately, Mahmoud Abbas is unlikely to make his own speech, telling his people that the "right of return" to Israel is a hoax, that the Temple Mount is also holy to the Jews, and that the radioactive effects of an Iranian nuclear bomb dropped on Tel-Aviv will not be stopped by the Green Line. And, while he is at it, he might as well publicly rescind his Holocaust-denying Ph.D. dissertation. Alas, Abbas will continue to say that Israel is "killing the peace process." Same old delusion, same old prattle.

One wonders if President Obama and other world leaders will eventually realize that the Palestinians are tricking the international community, and hold them responsible for that. The Palestinians will make sure that this does not happen by using propaganda. After all, they got away with rejecting Ehud Barack's offer in 2000 and with turning down Ehud Olmert's proposals in 2008.

Israel must be prepared for the upcoming propaganda contest. The Palestinians are now going to present the demographic demise of Israel and the militarization of the West Bank as "rights." Last night, Netanyahu both said and faced the truth. The Palestinians' hyperventilating reaction is an indication of what they are up to. Israel must take the initiative and be on the offensive; otherwise, it will soon find the ball back in its court. As Mark Twain said, "a lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes." Let's tie our shoes fast before someone else ties our hands.