JERUSALEM, Israel – On the 25th anniversary of the failed Oslo Accords, a senior Palestinian journalist published a 'behind-the-scenes' report on the event purported to resolve the Israeli-Arab conflict.
Abd Al-Bari Atwan, editor of Rai Al-Yawm, an online Arabic-language website, said then PLO leader Yasser Arafat hoped the agreement would send Israeli Jews fleeing "like rats abandoning a sinking ship," MEMRI reported.
Senior Palestinian Journalist: #Arafat Told Me He Went Along With #OsloAccords Because It Would Make 'The #Jews... Leave #Palestine Like Rats Abandoning A Sinking Ship'https://t.co/zymEpHwlZw pic.twitter.com/jJ6HTY2Fzb
— MEMRI (@MEMRIReports) September 18, 2018
MEMRI, the Middle East Media Research Institute, translates and publishes reports from Arabic-language media.
According to Atwan, Arafat didn't believe in the accord he signed on the White House lawn in 1993, instead hoping it would pave the way "to bring the PLO and the resistance back to Palestine."
In his article, Atwan says Arafat supported other Islamic terror groups, including Hamas in the Gaza Strip and Hezbollah in Lebanon. Arafat, he writes, helped fund and arm Hamas and worked with Hezbollah to transport weapons by ship to the Gaza coast.
He further states that Arafat "caused the outbreak of the armed Second Intifada (armed Palestinian uprising from 2000 through 2004) and brought weapons from everywhere possible."
The PLO blamed then-Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's visit to the Temple Mount for sparking the uprising, initially dubbing it the al-Aksa intifada, later revealed as another of Arafat's fabrications.
Over the next four years, Arab terrorists martyred themselves by detonating their explosive vests in cities and towns throughout Israel, killing more than a thousand Israelis in restaurants, busses, bus stops, and a variety of other public venues. Jerusalem was one of the suicide bombers' frequent targets.
The carnage convinced Israel to build security barriers and beef up checkpoints in Judea and Samaria (the West Bank), eventually ending the rash of suicide bombings.
Atwan concluded his article by saying he too opposed the "historic mistake" that in his view harmed the Palestinian cause.
"I am not revealing this information, some of which may already be known in order to protect the late Arafat but in order for it to be historic testimony," Atwan wrote. "I am fully convinced that the Oslo Accords were an historic mistake and a poisoned dagger to the heart of the Palestinian cause and that they led to the current catastrophes – beginning with the increased [PA-Israeli] security coordination, through the greenlighting of Arab normalization with Israel, and concluding with [US President Trump's] 'Deal of the Century' whose implementation in stages has begun."
He continued. "The first stage is the recognition of occupied Jerusalem as the eternal capital of the Jewish world; the second is the elimination of the right of return; and the third is the confederation with Jordan, the tahdiya [calm] in Gaza, and perhaps the annexation of most of the settlements and the 800,000 settlers in them by Israel..."
Current PA President Mahmoud Abbas, who served as Arafat's deputy for four decades, and his colleagues in the PLO, continue to reject any agreement with the Zionist "occupiers." As the PA's official stationary suggests and its supporters chant, "from the [Jordan] river to the [Mediterranean] sea, Palestine will be free."
Twenty-five years after Oslo, rival Palestinian factions Hamas and Fatah agree on one thing: they will continue the intifada until Israel ceases to exist.