In a move that surely would bring charges of severe violations of international law, Israel’s deputy Führer, er foreign minister, Danny Ayalon, suggested (Hebrew) that if Mahmoud Abbas continues his unity talks with Hamas, that the Palestinian Authority would become the “Terror Authority.” He also argued that since Hamas, in conducting these talks, was seeking to strengthen the “infrastructure of terror,” Israel may have to severe its own ties to Gaza’s infrastructure, including its water and power. On top of the siege Israel has imposed since 2006, this would create a humanitarian crisis of immense proportions. Human beings simply cannot live without water, nor is life much above primitive standards without power. One would also anticipate it might further reinforce charges that Israel has engaged in war crimes against Gaza during the 2006 war and continues violating international law by imposing immense suffering on the enclave’s 1.5 million inhabitants.
Among Ayalon’s other ‘acute’ observations is that Mahmoud Abbas’ refusal to schedule peace negotiations with Israel at the Quartet’s request marks the PA as the party rejecting peace (he called them “peace refusers”). He spoke also about relations with Egypt and made the bold–and foolish–claim that peace with Israel would be a national priority no matter which party ruled Egypt. Apparently, he didn’t hear about the cries during a Muslim Brotherhood rally in an Egyptian mosque last Friday, which weren’t terribly polite (putting it mildly) to Israelis or Jews in general. But Ayalon did inform us about the unnerving claim, certainly based on compelling evidence which he for some reason couldn’t provide, that Iran’s Ayatollahs are spreading radical Islam inside Egypt and seeking to establish an Islamist regime there. Given the fierce Sunni-Shiite divide between Egypt and Iran, it’s hard, nay impossible to believe that the Muslim Brotherhood is welcoming Iranian interference in Egypt’s internal affairs. I tell you, that Ayalon is one smart cookie and so learned in the ways of Islam. His brilliance never ceases to amaze me.
On a slightly different subject, I just read that in a meeting with Abbas, the Norwegian foreign minister said that Israel’s refusal to transfer $100-million in Palestinian tax payments held by Israel amounted to “waterboarding” Palestine. A vivid turn of phrase.