Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas joined the front rank of world leaders in Paris at a massive anti-terror rally on Sunday, separated by a few world leaders from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who also led the march through the city streets. The gesture was intended to create a message of unity and peace, but it also had the effect of sanitizing Abbas’s ongoing support for terrorism against Israeli civilians.
As recently as November, Abbas sent a letter of condolence to the family of the terrorist who attempted to murder Jewish religious activist Yehudah Glick, after the terrorist was killed by Israeli security forces. Calling the Israeli army “terrorists,” Abbas assured the family of the actual terrorist that he “will go to heaven as a martyr defending the rights of our people and its holy places.”
Throughout his administration, Abbas has honored terrorists in similar fashion, naming public buildings and squares in their honor. The Palestinian Authority also provides financial compensation to terrorists in Israeli prisons and their families. The official media outlets of the Palestinian Authority, which are under Abbas’s direct control, have also broadcast a steady stream of antisemitic propaganda and glamorized terror against Israelis, including civilians. For much of 2014, Abbas also participated in a unity government with the Hamas terror organization.
Abbas has enjoyed a “moderate” label, despite his long association with the Palestine Liberation Organization in its terrorist days, and despite his past as a Holocaust denialist, because he is not a terrorist himself. Yet his active rhetorical and ideological support for terror certainly encourages such attacks.
The best that can be said of his appearance in Paris is that it might be taken as a new beginning for the Palestinian leader. More likely, it is a typical example of the two-faced approach of the Palestinian leadership, which excels at presenting a moderate face to the outside world while it strives to prove its radical credentials to the “Arab street.”
Viewed in that light, Abbas’s appearance is also the latest example of Western–and particularly French and European–appeasement of Palestinian terrorism.
Senior Editor-at-Large Joel B. Pollak edits Breitbart California and is the author of the new ebook, Wacko Birds: The Fall (and Rise) of the Tea Party, available for Amazon Kindle.
Follow Joel on Twitter: @joelpollak