And the Palestinian Band Plays On

In the spring of 2003, the international press corps fell in love with the new Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen). Abbas was the alternative to Arafat the US has been seeking, a cultured nogotiator, and a temperate civil servant. His ascension would allow the US to "re—engage in the "peace process" without having to negotiate with Arafat and his noxious half century history of terrorist murders, deceit and destruction of prior peace efforts.   Abbas, whatever his attributes, did not last very long. He resigned, expressing frustration with his inability to deal with the Israelis or the Americans without Arafat's interference. But the international press reported a different story. Abbas failed, it was argued, because Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon had failed to come up with the necessary concessions and gestures that would have legitimized Abbas in the eyes of his people. Only by Israeli upfront concessions would he be enabled to negotiate...(Read Full Article)