arabs begin to see the light - agreeing with me

  1. 5,748 Posts.
    Aug. 31, 2003
    Palestinian leadership must go, says Saudi editor

    The editor of the London-based daily Al-Sharq al-Awsat, Abd Al-Rahman al-Rashed, on Friday launched a scathing attack on the Palestinian Authority and accused its leaders of working for personal interests.

    The pan-Arab Al-Sharq Al-Awsat is an influential Saudi newspaper affiliated with the Saudi royal family. Its tone often reflects the official policy of the Saudi government. Editor Rashed is a respected Saudi journalist with close links to the royal family and several Arab presidents and monarchs.

    In his article, Rashed strongly criticized PA leaders who remain locked in a power struggle and internal feuding instead of looking after the interests of their people. He was specifically referring to the growing tensions between PA Chairman Yasser Arafat and Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas.

    Entitled "The Palestinian Leadership Must Go," Rashed wrote: "If the occupied Palestinian territories pour out blood and pain, we pour out shame. We do not know where to look when we see the bickering among members of the Ramallah leadership; the arm-wrestling between Abu Amar [Arafat] and Abu Mazen [Abbas]; the hair-pulling between [Arafat's recently appointed national security adviser Jibril] Rajoub and [Security Minister Muhammad] Dahlan; and the clash between [PLO political department head Farouk] Kaddoumi and [Minister of External Affairs Nabil] Shaath."

    Rashed went on to ask: "Isn't it disgraceful and annoying when a Palestinian woman sacrifices her children for these leaders, who refuse to give up their seats? Isn't it shameful that these are the figures dragging the entire Arab world into a struggle that they describe as 'central,' while, in its present form, conducted before the eyes and ears of all, it is no more than a personal farce?
    Why should anyone sacrifice anything for a matter controlled by personal interests?"

    He said the current Palestinian leadership will neither fight nor make peace. "As the Palestinian women mourn their sons, their brothers, and their fathers, the screams of the leaders [fighting] for chairs and salaries arise," he added.

    "This leadership wants neither a solution nor land; nothing interests it except its own personal battles. The truth is that there is no ideological dispute between Abu Mazen, Abu Amar, Nabil Shaath, Farouk Kaddoumi, Muhammad Dahlan, and Jibril Rajoub, as well as others who occupy senior positions in the PA. It is only a dispute over seats. The Arab governments watch the quarreling of the PA members and do not know what to do. They [the Arab governments] are faced by a president who claims to be elected, and a prime minister whom he appointed but wouldn't give any powers."

    Rashed scolded Kaddoumi who, despite his opposition to the Oslo Accords, wants to continue serving as the de facto foreign minister of the PLO. "He is a man who has never fully acknowledged the existing Palestinian platform; how then can he continue serving as a minister when he is, in effect, opposed to the platform? Moreover, Kaddoumi has even refused to recognize the Palestinian state as it is, questioned its legitimacy, and has not returned to Palestine for 40 years."

    Regarding the ongoing conflict over the control of the security forces, the Saudi editor pointed out that Arafat's decision to appoint Rajoub as his adviser on national security affairs was nothing but an attempt to undermine the PA premier and mollify Rajoub. "Not only did he give him [Rajoub] a position equal [to that of Dahlan], but he also gave him a higher military rank. This is how the government is being run, how the homeland is being liberated, and how the pain of the tormented is being treated," he observed.

    "It's time for the Palestinian leadership to realize that it must go, be it the leadership of Abu Amar or of Abu Mazen. The most recent rounds [of internal strife] have confirmed suspicions and proved accusations that there is no real leadership that bears responsibility and is ready to sacrifice its own interests and posts in order to accomplish the task for which it was elected.

    "Isn't the suffering of a people, half of which has been living in refugee camps for 40 years now, and the other half of which has been living under occupation, bad enough? Is it with such a lame leadership that the Palestinians will free their land? Should we enter into conflict with the rest of the world for the sake of these individuals?"
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