Saturday, 3 October 2009

Mahmoud Abbas re-affirms his lack of backbone

Mahmoud Abbas re-affirms his lack of backbone by Dominic Kavakeb

When the Goldstone report was first published a few weeks back Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu urged world leaders to reject its findings. The report, whilst laying some blame on Hamas, concluded that Israel had seriously violated international human rights during its onslaught on Gaza that amounted to war crimes and potential crimes against humanity.

However, I'm sure even he didn't expect one of those world leaders who rejected the report to be none other Mahmoud Abbas, President of the Palestinian Authority. Whilst many of us saw the report to still be fairly useless it certainly did mark a shift away from the bog standard unconditional support for Israel amongst the international community. Certainly better than nothing we all thought. However, too good to be true was the sentiment that proved to be most ominous.

This week the UN Human Rights Council were due to vote on a resolution to be sent to the General Assembly in support of the report, which had it gone through, would have meant the possibility of prosecuting Israeli officials for war crimes becoming far more likely.

But sadly, such justice would simply be too sweet. If we've learned anything from the past 61 years it is to expect no world leader to even dare criticise Israel - not even Palestinian leaders. Weeks of incessant American lobbying seem to have done the trick in taming the poodle that is Mahmoud Abbas. The result of Abbas dropping his support means the corrupt Arab leaders, who were probably feeling a little sweaty at the prospect of supporting the resolution, can all breathe a collective sigh of relief too.

Officially the report has been delayed until March although this essentially means it will lie dormant for 6 months whilst the international community decides what (if anything) to do with it. Giving Israel and the US enough time to further lobby or do whatever else they usually do in stopping justice from occurring. Basically it gives Israel enough time to conduct their own internal investigation which will probably say something along the lines of ‘yeah maybe we were a bit forceful but you have to be with these fucking Muslim terrorists”.

Hamas have made their feelings fairly clear, "This ... represents a betrayal of the Palestinian cause and confirms the extent of the collaboration between Abbas and his aides with the Zionist enemy, against the Palestinian people," said Hamas lawmaker Mushir al-Masri.

So although over 1400 Palestinians were killed in just one month Mahmoud Abbas still can’t bring himself to defend his people. If only we were actually surprised. Even Amnesty International have said this displays “a lack of political will” to deal with violations of International Law.

This had the potential to be a great opportunity to finally put some accountability on the murderous actions of Israel. The chance would be a fine thing. Only one thing remains undecided yet wretchedly inevitable. How long until the next Gaza?

Picture: Mahmoud Abbas shakes hands with The Butcher Ariel Sharon as Bush looks on.

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