Following are excerpts from a public address delivered by Syrian Defense Minister Mustafa Tlas, which aired on various Arab TV channels on August 1, 1999:
Mustafa Tlas: Along came Yasser Arafat and began with the concessions. More than once I described him as... I said to them: Yasser Arafat, in his concessions to Israel, resembles a striptease dancer – whenever she goes on stage, she takes off a piece of clothing. But the difference between Yasser Arafat and the striptease dancer is that as the dancer strips, her beauty is exposed, but as Yasser Arafat strips, his ugliness is exposed. I implore you to watch him on TV, so you can see that what I am saying is true. He has handed over all his cards to the Israeli enemy. All his cards.
He used to come Al-Latikiya and beg President Hafez Al-Assad: "Sir, you know we are poor people. We have no one. Please do not abandon us." President Hafez would say to him: "When have we ever abandoned Palestine?" Never in our lives have we abandoned Palestine. But Yasser Arafat is the one who abandoned Palestine. He is the one who acted like a feeble coward.
He should have said in the White House that Jerusalem is the united capital of the future Palestinian state. But in the White House... But in the White House, he behaved like a black dog, like a black cat. He did not dare to utter a single word about Palestine or Jerusalem. Why, you son of 60,000 dogs? You son of 60,000 whores. A hooker can give birth to nothing but a hooker. Why? Why didn't you say it over there? Why didn't you it when you were in the White House?
By now, you all know that he conspires against the Palestinian cause. He surrounds himself with the most abominable riffraff... Whoever sees Erikat, and all those dogs who surround Arafat, begins to miss the original grave-robber [Arafat], because all those riffraff are operated by the Israeli Mossad. They all have personal interests. They demand [the signing] of the Wye River Agreement. This agreement gives the Palestinians ten percent of the West Bank. The entire Palestinian dream has been reduced to ten percent of the West Bank. Nevertheless, the Israeli leader duped them because the Palestinians sold out Jerusalem and Palestine in Oslo.