March 2, 2024
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Clothes Do Not Make the Man

Ehud Barak told a reporter she understood when she thanked him for putting an end to Oslo at Taba. Oslo happened because Yasir Arafat said he recognized Israel as a Jewish state, and then, when push came to shove at Taba, he walked away and started the Second Intifada—choosing to remain a terrorist instead of becoming a statesman. On his last day in office, Bill Clinton let Arafat have it in terms that would make a sailor blush. Mahmoud Abbas looked more civilized than Arafat, and one hoped he would be a statesman. But if the stunt he pulled this week was not contrived political theater, he has indeed proven himself to be what pundits used to call him, Arafat in a suit—a failed statesman with a legacy wrapped in blood and greed.

 

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