Arafat's Ongoing Terrorism

By Hoar, William P. | The New American, November 3, 2003 | Go to article overview

Arafat's Ongoing Terrorism


Hoar, William P., The New American


ITEM: As National Public Radio emphasized how "supporters of Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat [were marching] through the streets of the West Bank," NPR on September 29 featured commentary by Fawaz Gerges, professor of Middle East studies at Sarah Lawrence College.

Maintaining that the Palestinian Authority leader should not be removed, Gerges insisted, "Arafat embodies Palestinian identity and aspirations. Neutralizing him would thus play into the hands of Hamas and Jihad, supplying them with more recruits to launch more attacks against Israelis."

It's misleading, claimed the professor, "to hold Arafat accountable for the suicide bombings committed by Hamas and Jihad...." And, he continued, "it's equally misleading to reduce the current stalemate in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict to the role played by Arafat."

BETWEEN THE LINES: Although Gerges does not feel Arafat should be held responsible, Arafat's culpability is longstanding--from the campaign of airline hijackings decades ago to the recent suicide bombings. Only the willfully blind don't see this, since the facade is so transparent. Indeed, in reference to his organization's connection to the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), Hamas leader Sheikh Mahmoud Zahar has admitted: "Like the wings of a bird, they must work together."

It was an arm of Arafat's Fatah called Black September that carried out the massacre of Israeli athletes during the 1972 Munich Olympics. The next year, Arafat personally ordered (his voice being picked up by American intelligence) the murders of U.S. Ambassador Cleo Noel and his deputy George Moore in Sudan. As prominent liberal attorney Alan Dershowitz wrote in Canada's National Post last year, "Arafat excitedly bragged about his involvement in [the murders of the diplomats] to Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausescu at a dinner attended by Lt. General Ion Mihai Pacepa, who subsequently defected to the United States and debriefed U.S. officials about the Arafat confession."

Pacepa summarized Arafat's dossier in "The KGB's Man" in the Wall Street Journal for September 22, 2003, describing how he was "trained, armed and bankrolled by the Soviet Union and its satellites for decades" Recounted Pacepa: "I was responsible for giving Arafat $200,000 in laundered cash every month throughout the 1970s. …

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