The 21st Century Phenomenon



The common thought about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is that the dispute is about territories, Israeli occupation of the West Bank and the status of Jerusalem.

The real conflict was always about the identity of Israel as a Jewish State. Hundred thousands Palestinians who fled Israel in the ’48 war were, deliberately, kept in refugee camps and were denied any other citizenship or right to work in order to keep the “Refugee problem” and their “right of return” alive. More then 100 million refugees all over the world managed, since 1948, to rebuild their life and to create a future for themselves, while the Palestinians, now about 3 millions, were forced to poverty and  dependency on international and UN aid for their survival.

Although there is a substantial deference between Fatah and Hamas about the basic strategy toward Israel there is no difference about the interpretation of the “right of return”. Both parties declared several times, in public, that the “right of return” means that all the refugees from 1948, or their descendants, should return to their homes in their villages and be compensated for the suffering they endured in the last 60 years. The actual meaning is that Israel, as a Jewish democratic state will cease to exist.

Fatah believes that a sort of political recognition of Israel and a diplomatic approach are the best way to the same goal and want to establish a secular regime. Hamas sticks to the armed struggle as the only way to liberate Palestine from the Jews and ton its vision of an Islamic state.     

In 1982 Mahmoud Abbas got his Doctorate in Moscow University on the thesis The Secret Connection between the Nazis and the Leaders of the Zionist Movement”, suggesting that the Holocaust was a Jewish invention in order to justify the immigration to Israel and the suffering of the Palestinians.

In 07/2000, in Camp David convention, he was the firmest adviser of Yasser Arafat to reject ISRAELI proposals, because Israel demanded to link the proposals with the official “end of the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians” issue.

On 03/17/2005 Mahmoud Abbas signed in Cairo, Egypt, the “Hudna” (In Arabic – temporary cease fire) agreement with Hamas and other Palestinians factions. In the agreement Mahmoud Abbas accepted with his signature the Hamas formula of the Palestinian “Right of Return”. He reconfirmed in Mecca declaration , from 02/08/2007, all the principls of the Cairo “Hudna” agreement.

In 11/2007 the USA is planning a ‘Peace Conference’ in Washington with Israel, Palestinians and some Arabs countries, aimed to issue a declaration of the “Principle of the final agreement between Israel and the Palestinians”

As it was predicted by many, the moment of truth for Mahmoud Abbas is the preliminary negotiation with Israel about the “right of return”. Israel can accept a formula that Palestinian refugees have a right to return to independent, sovereign Palestine and, with international economical help, to rebuild their future. It turned out that President Mahmoud Abbas, on this subject, is no different from Hamas.

No wonder that, on 09/16/2007, President Mahmoud Abbas insinuated, a week before the scheduled visit of U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in the region as part of the Washington summit’s preparations, that he will not attend the Washington summit. 


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