Is Abbas destroying Fateh?
Mahmoud Abbas, the de-facto President of the nominally autonomous Palestinian Authority, is steadily and certainly corroding the Fateh movement.
For many years, Fateh was a conspicuous component of the progressive and anti-imperialistic Arab front.
Now, thanks to the Kafkaesque metamorphosis effected by Abbas and his Western-backed junta, Fateh has been transformed into a willing tool utilized by the U.S., Israel and tyrannical Arab regimes to undermine Palestinian national interests in ways unprecedented since the creation of the PLO more than 70 years ago.
Abbas’s influence within the Palestinian arena has been decidedly disastrous. A few years ago, following Hamas’s victory in the Palestinian general elections in 2006, he submissively, even enthusiastically connived with the mostly Jewish neocons in Washington (people like Elliot Abrams) to topple and weaken Hamas in order to lower the ceiling of Palestinian aspirations, especially with regard to such paramount issues as the Right of Return and al-Quds [Jerusalem].
Abbas’s lieutenant, Muhammed Dahlan, who was at the Bush administration’s beck and call, sought to decapitate Hamas and undo the outcome of Palestinian elections by igniting the flames of civil war in Palestine.
Moreover, it was clear from its very inception that Abbas and his Western-backed Authority played a central but indirect role in prolonging and perpetuating the Nazi-like siege which Israel imposed on Gaza soon after the election.
History will record that Abbas and his cohorts bore a huge responsibility for the immense suffering meted out to the people of Gaza at the hands of the Israeli occupation army and the Islamophobic Bush administration. In fact, the scandalous stance of the PA toward the Israeli blitz on Gaza in December and January amounted to a real national apostasy, treason by any other name.
Now, Abbas is trying to dry up any semblance of patriotism within the Fateh movement at whose helm he now sits unchallenged, thanks to the hundreds of millions of dollars he receives annually from the U.S. and its puppet regimes in the Arab world.
Needless to say, Abbas uses the money to buy loyalty and swell an army of morbid souls and hangers-on around him, while weakening and isolating patriotic elements within the movement.
Abbas has of late stepped up his onslaught against Fateh by ignoring the “Preparatory Committee,” entrusted with the task of holding Fateh’s long overdue Sixth Convention.
Flying in the face of democratic rules and procedures, Abbas sought repeatedly to impose on the Committee hundreds of his men in order to predetermine the outcome of the conference by making sure that his camp (the anti-resistance camp) would win.
Then when the Committee refused to budge to his heavy-handed interference and corrosive tactics, Abbas abruptly decided to dissolve the Committee.
The decision drew angry and widespread reactions from many quarters, with numerous Fateh leaders accusing the PA chairman of pushing the movement toward disintegration, fragmentation and obliteration.
Far from paying attention to the boiling anger within Fateh, Abbas decided, without consulting with the leaders of the group, to hold the Sixth Convention either in Bethlehem or in Jericho.
There is no doubt that holding the conference in the shadow of Israeli tanks would militate against the patriotic elements within Fateh, who constitute the majority within the movement, since Israel, not Fateh, would have the final say on who will be allowed to access the conference hall.
Moreover, it is equally certain that many dignified Fateh leaders, people like Farouk al-Qaddoumi, will refuse to come to the West Bank, to be frisked and humiliated by Israeli female soldiers, to attend a conference held in the shadow of Israeli rifles.
After all, a Fateh conference okayed and protected by Israel is unlikely to serve the interests of the Palestinian people and their enduring cause.
This is probably what Abbas is betting on as the bulk of his supporters (most of them are actually careerist-minded hangers-on who would go to any extent in succumbing to Israeli demands and dictates for the sake of their own parochial personal interests) are based in the West Bank.
Finally, Abbas single-handedly appointed a new government in May, a deformed version of the previous government, without any consultation with the leaders of the Fateh parliamentary bloc, prompting the movement to boycott the government.
To be sure, the government did include a number of Fateh figures “in their personal capacity.” However, this is by no means an auspicious feat since the inclusion could end up deepening the internal divisions within the movement.
Still, the most appalling expressions of Abbas’s political behaviour is his willingness to live with the incessant Israeli campaign to steal more Palestinian land, build more settlements on the stolen land, demolish en masse Arab homes in al-Quds and further narrow Palestinian horizons in the holy city.
In fact, Abbas is dealing so lightly and nonchalantly with these serious issues, apart from regurgitating the same old platitudes he has been repeating ever since he succeeded Yasser Arafat more than four years ago. Sourced from The Palestine Times 02 June 2009
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