Abbas Should be Dismissed

8 October 2009

PLO Executive Committee Secretary Yasir Abd Rabbuh, one of those closest to Mahmud Abbas, chairman of the Ramallah-based PNA, admits that the Palestinian leadership made a mistake in its decision to withdraw Judge Goldstone's report from the agenda of the Human Rights Council meeting in Geneva.

Now the most important question is what action should be taken by the PNA, by the Fatah Movement, which is the PNA's backbone, and the Palestinian people themselves who were most harmed – first by Israel's war crimes and now by the crimes of the PNA itself against them.

Natural justice states that anyone who makes a mistake must be brought to account for it and that the punishment should be commensurate with the magnitude of the crime. This is so for civilized and backward nations alike.

The late [Egyptian] President Jamal Abd-al-Nasir took responsibility for the 1967 defeat and decided to resign from all his tasks. Charles de Gaulle did the same thing after student demonstrations in protest against his policies. History offers many such examples.

It is true that President Mahmud Abbas is not of the caliber of former President Jamal Abd-al-Nasir, nor is he at the level of Charles de Gaulle. Comparison here is not possible, given, the time, place, and the different circumstances and personal and leadership qualities. Nevertheless, the issue is the ability to accept responsibility and bear the consequences.

President Abbas does not want to resign his weak post, itself lacking any sovereignty or real presidency. He insists on staying and carrying out his tasks, in spite of the severe criticisms that his people level at him. This stand confirms again that he despises this people and their nationalistic feelings and that he treats them as a herd of sheep.

The irony is that he insists on remaining in his post, even though his authority as president ended about 10 months ago. In addition, the fatwas [rulings] that some PNA jurists have issued in his favour and which give him a false legal cover until the end of the year, no longer provide a guarantee that he will remain in office more than two months.

The Libyan authorities and their delegate at the United Nations, Abd-al-Rahman Shalqam, did well when they called for an emergency session of the UN Security Council to discuss Goldstone's report on the Israeli war crimes in Gaza and to refer the report to the war crimes court in The Hague.

By doing so, the Libyan authorities turned this case, which is of a great importance, into an Arab issue and took it away from an authority that cannot be trusted on it. This authority [the PNA] surrendered its meagre dignity and showed no support for the blood of martyrs and victims of the Israeli massacres.

President Abbas decided to dispatch his foreign minister, Riyad al-Maliki, to New York to help the Libyan brothers in managing this issue at the UN Security Council, as if he, that is to say, President Abbas were guiltless and has not done anything wrong. Therefore, we suggest to the Libyan authorities that they do not deal with Al-Maliki for fear that his interventions might cause us to endure further catastrophes like the one President Abbas' ambassador to Geneva brought about.

It may be useful to remind people that the participation by Al-Maliki' himself in the United Nations' Durban-2 antiracism conference that was held in Geneva last summer produced extremely negative results. At that conference, the Palestinian delegation played a large role in amending the final draft resolution that condemned Israeli racism and renewed the resolutions that were passed by the Durban-1 conference a few years ago.

The PNA's Geneva crime must not pass without those responsible for it, led by President Abbas and all his other advisers, being held accountable. All should be removed from their posts as soon as possible. They betrayed the victims of the Israeli massacres and protected Israel from the most serious moral, legal, and political crisis in its history – at the expense of the Palestinian people and the Arab and Islamic nation.

We call on the Fatah Movement and its central committee to carry out this task of bringing them to account because President Abbas commits all these crimes and sins in the movement's name. We also call on the Fatah Movement to convene its court and issue a ruling of dismissal under the observed regulations.