Wikileaks Shocker

Did Abbas Know in Advance about the Devastating Blitz on His Countrymen in Gaza?

One of the most grotesque Wikileaks revelations so far is the disclosure that Palestinian top dog (Fatah section), Mahmoud Abbas, was told in advance about the murderous assault on his countrymen in Gaza two years ago.

Some claim that the Wikileaks reye-openers are a ‘dirty tricks’ operation by people with a large axe to grind. It is certainly odd that ‘evidence’ is selected to portray Arab states as eager to see Iran zapped for an unproven nuclear threat when, actually, the Middle East is far more anxious about the very real and present nuclear threat from Israel.

That same mentality would no doubt wish to drive an ever bigger wedge between Fatah and political rival Hamas

So what are we to make of the documents claiming that in a June 2009 meeting between Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak and a U.S. congressional delegation, Barak said that the Israeli government “had consulted with Egypt and Fatah prior to Operation Cast Lead, asking if they were willing to assume control of Gaza once Israel defeated Hamas”?

Fatah deny that it happened. Top aid to Palestinian president Abbas, Saeb Erekat, said: “We knew about the war because the Israelis were saying there was going to be a war.”

Several months before it started, at a meeting that he, Erekat, attended, Abbas asked Israel’s then-prime minister, Ehud Olmert, not to go to war, saying “he would not go to Gaza on an Israeli tank.”

So they admit they were talking about it…

I put the question to the Palestinian ambassador in London, Professor Manual Hassassian. “I am surprised to read the Wikileaks revelation that Mr Abbas, along with Mr Mubarak, was informed of Operation Cast lead in advance. I don’t recall his issuing a public warning to the unfortunate people of Gaza or appealing to the UN and western powers to intervene. Why would a Palestinian president keep quiet about an evil and horrendous war-crime he knew was about to be committed against his own people? Can you please throw any light on the matter?”

The ambassador replied: “I am surprised as you are, and cannot confirm the Wikileaks revelation whether they are authentic or not.”

No flat-out denial then, nor did he say he would refer the question upwards for clarification. You’d think the embassy would wish to show a clean pair of hands.

Abbas, as we all know, is living his elevated lifestyle on borrowed time. Since January 2009, when his term as president officially expired, western-backed Abbas has clung like superglue to power and overstayed his welcome. A year ago, having already taken a one-year extension regarded by many, including Hamas, as unlawful, he announced he had no wish to seek re-election at a presidential poll he promised for last January. But January came and went, and there was still no presidential election. Abbas is now nearing the end of his second year of illegitimate tenure.

I have two vivid images of Palestinians. The first, in Gaza, was the sight of Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh and the crusty old Catholic priest, Fr Manuel Mussallam, who had guarded his flock through utmost deprivation and the darkest of days (with many more to come), standing shoulder to shoulder in front of the microphones and cameras, both proclaiming that they were Palestinians first and Muslim/Christian second.

That’s unity of a welcome sort.

The other is of Fatah playing Israel’s armed poodle, reminiscent of the Vichy French government’s militia set up to fight the French Resistance and do much of the Nazis’ dirty work. Is Fatah prepared to stand shoulder to shoulder with the Gaza Palestinians against the common enemy – the occupier – and proclaim themselves “Palestinians first” and Fatah/Hamas second?

Judging by their track record, no. Arrest and torture of their own people is more their game, we hear.

That’s disunity of the worst kind.

And you have to wonder why, if the story’s true, the Israelis felt comfortable discussing with the Fatah-controlled Palestinian Authority what would happen after their tanks and aircraft had pulverized the Gaza part of Palestine and shredded and vaporized its women and children.

A genuine leader knowing about plans for such a mega-crime would surely have sounded the alert and raised merry hell at the UN for preventive action.

Stuart Littlewood’s book Radio Free Palestine, with Foreword by Jeff Halper, can be read on the internet by visiting radiofreepalestine.org.uk. Read other articles by Stuart, or visit Stuart's website.

11 comments on this article so far ...

Comments RSS feed

  1. MichaelKenny said on December 4th, 2010 at 8:39am #

    The extent to which the “Israel always wins” brigade is out in force is a measure of the damage the Israelis believe Wikileaks has done to them! Here’s yet another article which claims that the Wikileaks documents are to Israel’s advantage! That Israel’s supporters are so frantic is already very good news for the Palestinians and a nice Christmas present for Father Mussallam. Even better news is this feeble attempt to hijack Wikileaks to postulate a “split” between Fatah and Hamas. Mr Littlewood claims that in a Wikileaks document, somebody claims that Ehud Barak claimed, to a group of US Congressmen, that an unnamed member of the Israeli Government discussed an aspect of Israel’s plan to attack Gaza with “Egypt and Fatah”. Fatah denies it. A true supporter of the Palestinian cause would believe the Palestinians. Mr Littlewood (surprise, surprise!) believes the Israelis!
    He then claims to have written a letter to the Palestinian Ambassador in London, from whose reply he cherrypicks a single sentence. He implies that the absence of a “flat-out denial” is an admission. And claims that the embassy “would wish to show a clean pair of hands”. To whom? Stuart Littlewood is as big a nonentity as you and me! Why would any ambassador feel the need to justify his government’s actions (or us!)? The ambassador got a letter from some “crank” he’d never heard of and sent back a polite but non-commital reply!
    The last paragraph is exactly what I would think. Since Mamoud Abbas didn’t do any of that, genuine supporters of the Palestine cause will conclude that Fatah’s denial is genuine.

  2. SL said on December 4th, 2010 at 9:55am #

    I’m grateful for your views, Michael, but you get much too carried away in your efforts to rubbish what others say.

    For example, I have met the ambassador and he knows exactly who this “nonentity/crank he’d never heard of” is. We’ve had many exchanges.

    And no, I didn’t “cherrypick”. The single sentence given is the sum total of his reply.

    Back in your box now, Michael, there’s a good boy.

  3. commoner3 said on December 4th, 2010 at 6:33pm #

    This is a crude attempt for the old perenial trick : “Divide and rule”.
    Wikileak is bullshit. It does not contain any juicy stuff, if not several fabricated “leaks”. Most of the “leaks” are similar to conversations in a cocktail parties.
    Most of the leaks about Iran …Iran and more Iran and how “dangerous” Irans are given prominence and repeated and repeated by the “pundits” accompanied by their “informed” comments. A lot of “leaks” about the Arabs who want Iran to be attacked and not a single “leak” from Israel who is the most vocal voice calling for attacking Iran. What a farce this wikileak bullshit.

  4. Max Shields said on December 4th, 2010 at 7:54pm #

    Mr. Little quit beating a dead horse. When you buy the Empire’s MSM you get this kind of empty analysis.

  5. woody said on December 5th, 2010 at 1:16am #

    You can’t just dismiss Wikileaks as bullsh*t or cocktail party gossip. This is what they call “diplomacy” at work feeding back “intelligence” used to formulate foreign policy, so serious stuff even if it’s incorrect. The rate at which the US is having to apologise to its friends and clients suggests the information is not concocted.

    What’s disappointing is the way Wikileaks itself, or the MSM, select only those messages that are in Israel’s interests and conceal what everyone’s saying about the racists in Tel Aviv. Maybe we’ll have to wait a bit longer for that.

  6. Max Shields said on December 5th, 2010 at 11:02am #

    I would say we should put this whole matter into perspective. Yes, some Israel revelation would be interesting. It would not, however change anything in any substantial way. We already know so much.

    But everything I’ve read so far barely touches on what we know the US mischief in the world is…and I mean plots to assassinate, to invade, etc.

    What in these leaks comes near approaching Tom Engelhardt The American Way of War: How Bush’s Wars Became Obama’s? Or the Chalmers Johnson trilogy? These are fully documented narratives that convey a perspective based on facts. Wikileaks does not (cannot) provide that kind of narrative. Tidbits here and there may help to substantiate what we know.

    In a way Wikileaks can provide the basis of a number of narratives, depending on the authors. And so we have a range of spins on this dump.
    But neither Israel nor the US in Wikileaks publications come near the clarity of the Johnson and Engelhardt works regarding US policy.

    We have comparable work on the Middle East and Israel. I just think Wikileaks has not (aside from the Iraq Apache attack) provided much of anything to the discussion that DV is looking for. (Some can argue that there have been impacts here and there, but real change will not – yet in any case – come from Wikileaks.

    Stay tuned. Assange, et al may provide something in its next dump…but don’t be surprised if it doesn’t live up to the hoopla. There may be consequences regarding access, and so forth over time. What these are I don’t think anyone knows yet. It may turn out to be a soap opera, or we may begin to see something forming….time will tell.

  7. bozh said on December 5th, 2010 at 12:40pm #

    look, folks, we already know enough to condemn nato-u.s-israeli actions. the problem is there is no antiwar or anticrime political party in u.s.
    which means we stay on level of lamentation and at the same time eagerly awaiting more news that show u.s-nato in bad light.
    wars r by for greater crimes than anything wikileaks reveal. but with no effective action being taken, wars wld continue and new ones waged– leaks or no leaks.
    and even on ‘dissident’ sites such as d.v not a single contributor, poster is even suggesting a new political party be set up; fielding antiwar candidates on election day.
    in fact, i cannot post on many sites. they r put on hold or if have appeared, quickly deleted.
    so, show-don’t do to go on. tnx

  8. bozh said on December 5th, 2010 at 12:44pm #

    i wrote my post before reading max’s and commoners’s posts. all three of us seem to be saying the same thing. tnx

  9. hayate said on December 5th, 2010 at 2:34pm #

    “The other is of Fatah playing Israel’s armed poodle, reminiscent of the Vichy French government’s militia set up to fight the French Resistance and do much of the Nazis’ dirty work. Is Fatah prepared to stand shoulder to shoulder with the Gaza Palestinians against the common enemy – the occupier – and proclaim themselves “Palestinians first” and Fatah/Hamas second?”

    It’s long been known that abbas is a ziofascist quisling and that fatah is an israeli run occupation org. Comparing fatah to the vichy guv is a very apt comparison, especially since fatah’s owners, the israelis, are probably the closest example to the vichy’s owners, the nazis, existing on the planet now. The role of fatah is to keep Palestinians divided and provide israel with a local occupation force in the West Bank.

  10. Deadbeat said on December 5th, 2010 at 2:36pm #

    Max Shields writes …

    Stay tuned. Assange, et al may provide something in its next dump…but don’t be surprised if it doesn’t live up to the hoopla. There may be consequences regarding access, and so forth over time. What these are I don’t think anyone knows yet. It may turn out to be a soap opera, or we may begin to see something forming….time will tell.

    I agree with Max’s analysis of WikiLeaks and the lack of any real revelations or analysis/usefullness on the level of Chalmers Johnson. However there is still the problem of WikiLeaks having their information “vetted” my the same MSM outlets that led the nation to war on Iraq. It taints their releases. Unless they release videos as Max points out like the helicopter attack, communiques can be altered and sanitizes especially by outlets who have shown their allegiances to the very same government that Assange claims to be exposing.

  11. Max Shields said on December 5th, 2010 at 3:34pm #

    Deadbeat,

    Point taken.