The Israeli government turned Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas from a partner into collaborator — and in the process they’re killing him, writes Yossi Sarid in Ha’aretz:
Mahmoud Abbas might as well be considered a dead man; Benjamin Netanyahu and Ehud Barak have killed him. Following a brief and angry meeting, they left a cyanide pill for him on the table and exited the room. He still managed to make two or three trans-Atlantic telephone calls and in a moment of despair swallowed the Goldstone report, which he is now trying to regurgitate in Geneva.
To force the chairman of the Palestinian Authority, of all people, to withdraw his demand for a discussion of the report – that is an Israeli-American dictate tantamount to pressuring him to commit hara-kiri. Extortion through the use of threats has paid off, and once again there is no party to speak with, nor will there be in the near future. This is what happens when one turns a partner into a collaborator.
Now efforts are being made to revive Abbas (Abu Mazen) – there’s even talk of removing two or three roadblocks to help restore his pulse.
Netanyahu does not merely want to win; he also wants to humiliate. He does not merely want to stab a knife in the back, but also turn it in the stomach. Bibi understands the nature of the beast’s soul – that of Israeli public opinion, which cheers on the toreador who places his foot on the bull when it is already dead.
History repeats itself, but does not teach any lessons.
Full column here.