Abbas hailed as hero in return to West Bank
He calls it a "Palestinian Spring." No one bothered to tell him that if that were the case, his sorry butt would be swimming the Jordan asking King Abdullah for asylum after being deposed. Overthrowing the old order is what the Arab Spring is supposed to be all about
Not matter. He thinks he's on a roll. Little does he realize that his unilateral effort to legislate a Palestinian state into existence will probably backfire.
Two days after seeking full membership for a state of Palestine in the United Nations, President Mahmoud Abbas returned to a hero's welcome on Sunday, telling supporters that they were part of a "Palestinian spring" and that he would resume peace talks only if Israel froze settlement building.
Here in Ramallah, thousands greeted Mr. Abbas at his office headquarters, waving flags, shouting oaths of loyalty and holding aloft his photograph. Mr. Abbas, a withdrawn and uncharismatic figure, is enjoying a wave of popularity because of standing up to Washington with the membership application and delivering a tough speech at the United Nations on Friday.
"We have told the world that there is the Arab spring but there is also the Palestinian spring," he told said Sunday. "It is a spring of popular and peaceful struggle that will reach its goal."
Some who came to greet Mr. Abbas were skeptical that a peaceful struggle could wrest a state from Israeli occupation.
"We are not against a peaceful solution, but we don't believe it," Abdullah Hawaja, 30, of the West Bank village of Nilin, said. Mr. Hawaja came with friends to welcome Mr. Abbas, as did Palestinians from across the West Bank. He added: "Israel won't give up. This land will not be free except through war. What was taken by force can only be retrieved by force."
With that kind of attitude, one can surmise that peace will be a long time coming.