Washington Post Foreign Service
Saturday, February 18, 2006; 4:00 PM
RAMALLAH, West Bank, Feb. 18 -- The radical Islamic group Hamas took control of the Palestinian parliament Saturday during a somber swearing-in ceremony, and legislators from the new majority quickly made clear that they would not abide by signed agreements that recognize Israel's right to exist. [...]
But Abbas called Saturday for a revival of the PLO, which has lost influence since the Palestinian Authority's creation, to pursue peace talks that he said have been undermined by Israel's settlement construction, the security barrier rising between Israel and the Palestinian population of the West Bank and Israel's failure to leave Palestinian cities. He said, "I'd like to emphasize our full rejection of unilateralism."
"We are confident that there is no military solution to the conflict," Abbas said. "Negotiations between us as equal partners should put a long-due end to the cycle of violence."
Mouin Rabbani, senior Middle East analyst for the International Crisis Group who attended the event here, said Abbas may be signaling a new strategy to minimize Hamas's influence.
"Is this part of an organized effort to marginalize the Palestinian parliament?" Rabbani said. "Abbas seems to be saying that it is not the formation of the government that's important. It's what the government does afterward that matters.
I see more posturing and meaningless rhetoric.
Quite frankly, there is no way that a "Palestinian" State can support itself without the donations of the Western world and Israel. (That last is a bit of surprise). The article states, "Israel will likely stop the monthly transfer of about $55 million in sales tax and customs fees it collects on behalf of the Palestinian Authority, depriving the government of about 30 percent of its operating funds."
To the rest of the Islamic world and Western leftists, "Palestine", exists only as a bone of contention and focus of anti-Western propaganda. Does anyone seriously believe that "Palestine" could actually be anything other that another festering disease ridden cess pool.