memri

January 14, 2018
Clip No.
6371

Mahmoud Abbas: The PLO Should Reexamine Its Agreements with Israel; We Will No Longer Accept the U.S. as Mediator

In an address to the PLO Central Council on January 14, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said that the Central Council "is required to reexamine the agreements between the PLO and the Israeli government." He responded to U.S. President Trump's recent tweets threatening to cut Palestinian aid by saying: "To hell with you! When have we ever rejected negotiations?" "We will not accept America as a mediator with Israel," Abbas said. In his lengthy address, broadcast by the Palestinian Authority TV channel, Abbas gave a historical review, in which he claimed that conspiracies to settle the Jews in the Middle East had begun in the 17th century with Oliver Cromwell, and continued throughout the centuries, and that the Zionist movement "constitutes a colonialist enterprise that has nothing to do with Judaism."

 

Mahmoud Abbas: "This is a watershed moment.  This is a dangerous moment. Our entire future is on the line. If Jerusalem is gone, what will you do next? Establish a state with Abu Dis as its capital? This is what they are offering us now. Abu Dis and whatever... It's over. We are here, and we shall stay here. We shall not repeat the mistakes of the past. We shall not repeat the mistakes of 1948 and 1967. We shall stay here regardless of the occupation and the settlements. We shall not leave this country. This is our country. This has been our land since the days of the Canaanites. By the way, our Canaanite forefathers... The Torah says... and I do not want to go into history or geography... From the days of the Canaanites and to this day, [our forefathers] have not left this land. They were here before our patriarch Abraham. We were. Since before our patriarch Abraham..."

 

[...]

 

"We have tried to raise the issue of the 100-year-old Balfour Declaration. Some people have rebuked us for this: After 100 years you bring this up again? Yes. We brought it up after 100 years, and we still do. We will continue to talk about it until Great Britain apologizes, pays reparations, and recognizes the State of Palestine. But the issue goes back long before that, my brothers. The late Egyptian intellectual Abdel-Wahab El-Messiri was among the most important people who talked about the Zionist movement and Judaism. His encyclopedias and volumes are well known throughout the Arab world. He describes that entity as follows: 'The functional nature of Israel means that it was evoked by colonialism in order to fulfill a specific function, and thus it constitutes a colonialist enterprise that has nothing to do with Judaism.'"

 

[...]

 

"This did not begin 100 years ago. It did not begin with the Balfour Declaration. According to my humble knowledge – and I may be wrong and it actually began way before that... It began in 1653, when Cromwell ruled Britain. Cromwell staged a coup against the king and became the head of a republic in 1653. This was 300 years prior to the Balfour Declaration. He came up with the idea of transferring the Jews from Europe to the Middle East, to this region, because they wanted this region to become an advanced post to protect the interests and the convoys coming from Europe to the East. This is a well-known story, and there's no need to repeat it – the East India Company and all that... He asked Holland, which owned the largest fleet in the world, to transfer the Jews, but the project was unsuccessful. This was in 1653."

 

"Cromwell was followed by Napoleon Bonaparte, who, in 1799, failed before the walls of Acre. Pay attention. He failed before the walls of Acre. He could not overcome the walls of Acre. We've been 'heavyweights' for ages, not just now. He said that a Jewish state must be established in Palestine, but his enterprise failed too. Then Napoleon III, in 1860, called for... Between the two Napoleons, Churchill's grandfather, may he rest in peace... In 1840, Churchill's grandfather voiced the same call, but was unsuccessful. Then there was a very strange and peculiar call. In 1850, the American consul in Jerusalem... The American consulate and its archives are located in Jerusalem. Warder Cresson. His name was Warder Cresson.

 

"There was a group of Jews in front of the Western Wall in the Old City, and he said to them: 'What if I give you settlements outside [the city walls]?' They said to him: 'Man, we're here to worship. This has nothing to do with us.' 'We'll arrange houses and settlements for you' he said, but they rejected the offer. Consequently, the U.S. government decided to send Christians to Palestine. The U.S. government did not send Jews. Many of us think that America had nothing to do even with World War I. America has been playing its games since back then.

 

[...]

 

"The [American Christians] were brought here, but refused to live in this place. 'What is this country? It's a backward country under Ottoman rule,' they said. They kept insisting, until the U.S. government sent a ship to the port of Jaffa, and it took all of them back to America."

 

[...]

 

"And then came Theodor Herzl. For your information, Theodor Herzl called for assimilation. He was into theater and songs and had nothing to do with this. Because of the Jewish Question, which was widespread in Europe, and not in our parts... The Jews were persecuted because of their social function, and not because of their religion.  So Herzl was calling for conversion to Catholicism, until there was a story with a French officer called Dreyfus, in 1893.

 

[...]

 

"When Herzl arrived in Palestine, he saw people, human beings, citizens. So he said: 'We should erase the Palestinians from Palestine, so that it will become a land without a people for a people without a land. 'This is the origin of the slogan "a land without a people for a people without a land." This is the origin of the slogan coined by Herzl. This was immediately followed by a very important story with British PM Campbell-Bannerman, in 1805-1807..."

 

Off camera voice: "The 1900s..."

 

Mahmoud Abbas: "Right, sorry. Bravo, you're following... At that time, there were secret meetings of the foreign and defense ministers of all European countries except Germany, with Campbell-Bannerman. The bottom line, in a nutshell, was that European civilization was on the verge of collapse. It was getting old. The region poised to inherit European civilization The region poised to inherit European civilization Who? The south and east of the Mediterranean Sea. That's us.

 

[…]

 

"[Campbell-Bannerman said:] To prevent this, we must keep these countries divided, backward, and engulfed in infighting. Take a look at us today: divided, backward, and engulfed in infighting. It is as if they were talking about us today. As a quick remedy to prevent this region from succeeding European civilization, the Campbell-Bannerman report suggested planting, east of the Suez Canal, a people that is foreign to the locals but friendly with us, and let it be the Jews.

 

[…]

 

"When the Partition Resolution was declared, the State of Israel was established, but our state was not. Don't ask me why. I don't know."

 

[…]

 

"When they occupied 78% of Palestine, they were only 650,000 Jews. What were they to do? They said: We need Jews. But the Jews refused to come. Ben-Gurion did not want to bring the Jews of the East.

 

[…]

 

"He would say: 'I hate them. They look like Arabs. They look like Arabs, and I don't want them. It will take three or four generations for anything to come of them. I don't want them.' But when he saw how vast the [newly occupied] land was, he was forced to bring in Jews. The Arab Jews did not want to come either – not from Iraq and not from Yemen. From Yemen, in 1949, TWA airplanes... TWA was owned by... By Somalia? By whom? TWA took 50,000 Jews from Yemen to Israel. It was called Operation Magic Carpet. That was its code name. But these 50,000 were not enough, and they turned to Iraq. In Iraq, there was a huge reservoir of Jews, a wealth of Jews. So they reached an agreement with Nuri Al-Said, Allah's mercy upon him, and with Tawfiq Al-Suwaidi, Allah's mercy upon him too... They reached an agreement that they would strip the Jews of their nationality, and force them to leave. Thus, 150,000 Iraqi Jews were driven out and sent to Israel. They did not make do with this. They gathered the Jews from all the Arab countries – Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Syria, Lebanon – and did not leave anyone behind. They transferred them all to Israel."

 

[…]

 

"The Oslo Accords, of course... Now, I say that Oslo... Israel... There is no Oslo anymore. Israel has brought the Oslo Accords to an end. So among the resolutions that we need to take is the issue of the Oslo Accords. Where are we going from here?

 

[…]

 

"I don't want to see [Trump] on Twitter again, saying: We won't give the Palestinians any money because they reject negotiations. To hell with you! When have we ever rejected negotiations?

[…]

 

"We will not accept America as a mediator with Israel. After what they did to us... A believer does not get bitten by the same snake twice, and we have been bitten a hundred times already.

 

[…]

 

"I am not ashamed to repeat it a hundred – no, a thousand – times: I support only peaceful popular resistance, of the kind with which we confronted the occupation in the past month or so, since the Trump initiative was launched. Believe me, peaceful popular resistance is stronger and more effective than any other kind.

 

[…]

 

"We have signed 83 protocols with 83 countries to fight terrorism, and we are all for fighting terrorism. But along comes the 'great' Congress and says that the PLO is terrorist, and that it wants to shut down the PLO offices. They issued 27 resolutions that we are terrorists. To hell with you! We are fighting terrorism together.

 

[…]

 

"We are proud that whenever people talk about ISIS, they say that there are 5,000 members from this nationality, 2,000 from that nationality, and 3,000 from a third one, but they cannot find even five Palestinian ISIS members. Brother, we're done with this. We're done, but you continue to fight us. We don't want anybody to fight us. We have learned our lesson, and that is why the culture of peace has spread everywhere.

 

[…]

 

"The Arab Spring is neither Arab nor a spring. If you like it, fine, and if you don't like it, that's fine too. It came from America. Put your trust in Allah."

 

[…]

 

"We always and forever adhere to negotiations as the path to reach a political settlement with Israel. We don't want war. We will not call for a military war with Israel. Whoever has [weapons] – go ahead and do it. I say this out in the open. If you have weapons, go ahead. I'm with you, and I will help you. Anyone who has weapons can go ahead. I don't have weapons. I want the peaceful political path to reach a settlement. I see that there are only a few supporters of peace here. All the others are into war. The Americans are always telling us that we must stop paying salaries to the families of the martyrs and the prisoners. We categorically reject this demand. Under no circumstances will we allow the families of the martyrs, the wounded, and the prisoners to be harmed. These are our children, our families. We are proud of them, and we will pay them before we pay the living.

 

[…]

 

"Therefore, the Central Council is required... I am asking as a citizen... It is required to reexamine the agreements between the PLO and the Israeli government."

 

[…]