Following Monday’s Palestinian bombing in a Tel Aviv restaurant which resulted in the deaths of nine people, the media was rampant with the news of a “clear condemnation of the bombing from Palestinian Authority Chairman Machmoud Abbas.”
This condemnation was delivered by Abbas’s advisor, Saeb Erakat, who is no longer in power.
Abbas’s official representative and spokesman, Mr. Edward Abington, former U.S. Consul in Jerusalem, who runs the lobbying firm of Bannerman Associates in Washington, DC. was asked if Abbas would have a statement to make on the record following the attack in Tel Aviv.
He responded with a clear “no.” Would Abington be available to make a statement?
Again, a clear “no.”
On Monday night, Abbas was on the Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation saying “the operation in Tel Aviv [connoting a military operation, in Abbas’s words] did not serve Palestinian interests.”
Most say it was hardly a condemnation. Yet the PBC TV station, operated under the direct control of Abbas, featured an hour long video clip of Palestinian school children singing praises of martyrdom operations, in which young teenage Palestinian school children expressed their hope that each of them could die a martyr’s death to “liberate all of Palestine”.
Hamas circulated a video clip for all the media to see the young Palestinian who had blown himself up in the Tel Aviv restaurant call on thousands of other Palestinian young people to do the same, “in order to liberate all of Palestine from the Zionists.” Hamas, which now runs the Palestinian Authority, issued a clear statement of praise for the bombing in Tel Aviv.
This piece appeared in The Evening Bulletin of Philadelphia on April 19th, 2006