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    Never missing an opportunity to miss an opportunity, Palestinian leadership has decided to thwart U.S. President Donald Trump's peace plan by inciting mass protests, media reports suggest. "Palestinian officials warned over the weekend that US President Donald Trump’s plan for Mideast peace, which is expected to be announced on Tuesday, would spark a new wave of mass protests in the West Bank and Gaza Strip," the Jerusalem Post reported.

    Many in the media and policy circles are fretting about the effect Benjamin Netanyahu's reelection will have on the peace process. But few are examining the true impediment to peace: the Palestine Authority. A recent Washington Post article took the approach that a Netanyahu victory "clouds prospects" for the success of the Trump administration's yet-to-revealed peace plan. Though the article refers to the Palestinians, it doesn't mention the Palestinian Authority, PA President Mahmoud Abbas, or Hamas.

    Germany condemned remarks on the Holocaust made by President of Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas. In a televised speech on Monday, Abbas claimed that the Holocaust was not caused by antisemitism, but by Jews' "social role related to usury and banks." The Palestinian Authority chief said he was referring to the writings of Karl Marx and other authors.

    Almost a week after India's vote against the US recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, a senior Palestinian diplomat got into hot water for publicly fraternizing with one of India's most wanted terrorist. Palestinian 'Ambassador' to Pakistan, Waleed Abu Ali, jointly addressed a rally with Hafiz Saeed, the mastermind of the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks that killed 164 people and injured 308. The rally hosted by an alliance of Islamic groups was held to condemn the US decision to formally recognize Jerusalem as the capital of the Jewish State. The event took place in the northern Pakistan city of Rawalpindi.

    If history proves one thing, it's that giving in to Palestinian threats only leads to intransigence and more threats. Unfortunately, for the second time the Trump administration has walked back an announced policy in just such a circumstance. The first walk back had to do with moving the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, which is Israel's capital. That was a core Trump campaign promise, reiterated during the transition. As Prof. Miriam Elman explained in a prior post, locating the Embassy in Jerusalem would have a profoundly positive impact on the prospects for peace, since it would signal that Arab and Muslim threats of violence against the Jewish presence in Jerusalem would be futile, Move U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem, for peace sake:

    President Donald Trump finished his trip to Israel by meeting with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and a visit to the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial Museum in Jerusalem and the Israel Museum. During his first day, Trump "pledged to work toward Israeli-Palestinain peace," but admitted it's the "toughest deal of all." However, he assured Netanyahu "that the U.S. wants Israel to have peace."

    President Donald Trump appeared to rebuke Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas at least three times in their joint statement on Wednesday. First, at the beginning of his remarks, Trump recalled the Oslo Accords:
    Almost 24 years ago, it was on these grounds that President Abbas stood with a courageous peacemaker, then-Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. Here at the White House, President Abbas signed a Declaration of Principles -- very important -- which laid the foundation for peace between the Israelis and Palestinians.

    We have covered the escalating threats from leaders of and functionaries in the Palestinian Authority that there will be violence if the Donald Trump fulfills his promise to move the U.S. Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Israel's capital, Jerusalem. This is a two-faced move, Palestinian leadership’s two-faced Jerusalem Embassy game:
    We reported the other day on the escalating campaign by Palestinian leaders threatening and predicting violence if the U.S. moves our embassy to Jerusalem, Palestinian leadership: There will be violence if U.S. moves Embassy to Jerusalem.

    We reported the other day on the escalating campaign by Palestinian leaders threatening and predicting violence if the U.S. moves our embassy to Jerusalem, Palestinian leadership: There will be violence if U.S. moves Embassy to Jerusalem. While Hamas is behind some of the incitement, an important feature of incitement regarding the Embassy is manufactured by the Palestinian Authority, headed by Mahmoud Abbas, through Mosques run by Imams loyal to the PA. Leaders, such as Mahmoud Abbas, then use the violence they are instigating behind-the-scenes to warn that an Embassy move might inspire violence. The Times of Israel reports Top PA imam: Moving US embassy to Jerusalem a ‘declaration of war’ on Islam:

    Benjamin Netanyahu spoke at the U.N. today. As usual, it was an excellent speech. The headline is that Netanyahu offered to have Palestinian President speak at the Israeli Knesset (parliament) and for Netanhahu to speak at the parliament in Ramallah. https://twitter.com/IsraeliPM/status/779005562390515712 Put aside intentions, there will be some hurdles to overcome if Netanyahu is to speak to the Palestinian parliament. It hasn't met since 2007.

    The other day we reported on Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu's video in which he pointed out that advocating the ethnic cleansing of Jews from Judea and Samaria (the "West Bank") is hardly a path to peace, Ethnic Cleansing of Jews For Peace is Absurd: Netanyahu was factually correct on the goals of the Palestinian leadership, and not only from Hamas:

    Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas was a KGB spy in the 1980s, recently surfaced Soviet documents reveal. Abbas, who was a long-time aide to Yasser Arafat -- the notoriuos Godfather of Arab terrorism -- was appropriately code-named the “mole” (krotov) by his Russian handlers. Abbas was most likely recruited by the Soviet spy agency back in the early 80s when he was a Ph.D. student at a Moscow university where he was polishing his credentials as an antisemitic conspiracy theorist, needed to rise through the ranks of Arafat’s Palestinian terrorist group PLO. Abbas, leader of PLO's main faction 'Fatah', took office in 2005 and appointed himself as the 'President for Life' of the Palestinian Authority -- refusing to call for any further elections -- very much in keeping with the democratic best-practices of fellow Arab despots.
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