The Palestinian Authority's Policy of Duplicity
The Palestinian Authority's duplicity -- which has become an integral part of the Palestinian Authority's strategy in dealing with both its people and Israel -- reached new heights last week when its leaders called for a "day of solidarity" with Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli jails.
As Palestinians in the West Bank took to the streets to express their support for the prisoners, Palestinian Authority, security forces waged a campaign of detentions of dozens of Palestinians suspected of being affiliated with Hamas and other groups.
While it is good of course, that the Palestinian Authority is arresting Palestinians affiliated with Hamas, the problem is that the Authority is also using this as an excuse to crack down on other political opponents, as well as journalists. Lawyers, human rights activists and families of those detained by the Palestinian Authority say they do not know why the Palestinian leadership ordered the clampdown.? The timing of the arrests also seems problematic, especially as it came on the eve of of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas's new bid for statehood at the UN General Assembly.
Abbas is trying to show the US and the EU that he is serious about fighting Hamas in the West Bank, and therefore deserves a state and more funding. What the Americans do not know is that many of the detainees are quietly released within hours or days. The Palestinian Authority's conduct should raise alarm bells in Western capitals. If anything these latest occurrences show once again that the Palestinian Authority's credibility remains questionable. (continue reading...)