Clinton unmasks US efforts to whitewash Palestinian leader

Wednesday, March 24, 2010 |  Israel Today Staff

Israel has been on the receiving end of a lot of criticism and condemnation from Washington lately. But many Israelis have pointed out that the Palestinians have been directly violating agreements for years, especially since Barack Obama came to power, with little or no response from the White House.

It is little secret while Israel is a vibrant democracy that can take its lumps and keep moving forward, the Palestinian Authority is a corruption-ridden near-dictatorship that relies on fear-mongering and saving face to maintain control.

The US knows this and has long implemented a policy of not upsetting the Palestinian apple cart, even if the PA is the true obstacle to peace, though Washington would never admit as much.

But US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton let the cat out of the bag during the annual AIPAC conference in Washington on Monday when she attributed a deplorable applause to terrorism perpetrated by Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas to his rivals in the Islamic terrorist group Hamas.

Speaking before thousands who likely knew the incident well and could see through Clinton's deception, the secretary condemned the recent naming of a public Palestinian square after Dalal Mugrahbi, a female terrorist who in 1978 hijacked a bus and killed 37 Israelis, the most ever in a single terrorist attack. Only Clinton claimed that the square had been rededicated by Hamas.

Of course, as most who following the Middle East conflict know, the square is located in Ramallah, the de facto capital of Abbas' Palestinian Authority. It was Abbas and his ruling Fatah faction that decided to name the square after Mugrahbi, and it was Abbas who defended that decision when speaking to Arab media weeks earlier.

"I do not deny it. Of course we want to name a square after her," Abbas told Al-Hayat Al-Jadida in January.

On the anniversary of the 1978 massacre, Abbas' state-controlled television channel aired a special documentary honoring Mugrahbi and the other terrorists who took part in the attack.

Israeli commentators noted that Clinton is no fool, and has a team of high-paid advisors and researchers at her service. That she made a mistake, or was simply unaware of who actually named the square after Mugrahbi is not a reasonable explanation.

More likely is that the Obama Administration hoped most Americans were unaware that Abbas was actually behind the offense, and intended to appease Israeli while refraining from putting any real pressure on the Palestinian leader.

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