Familiarity breeds contempt

Somehow, even the most craven players of the Middle East “peace process” always seem to end up disgusted by Yasser Arafat. Bill Clinton, for one. The latest example is the U.N.’s Middle East envoy, Terje Roed-Larsen. As the Jerusalem Post notes, Roed-Larsen “has perhaps had more face-time with Arafat than any diplomat, and had been shut out by Israeli officialdom since his central role in fanning the trumped-up charges of a supposed IDF massacre in Jenin in April, 2002. At that time, Ma’ariv editor Amnon Dankner described him as ‘personal friend and an enthusiastic supporter of Yasser Arafat,’ a title that neither he nor anyone else saw reason to deny.”
Yet, recently a frustrated Roed-Larsen delivered a harsh (by U.N. standards, only) assessment of Arafat and the PA. While taking the obligatory shots at Israel, Roed-Larsen also criticized the PA for making “no progress on its core obligation to take immediate action on the ground to end violence and combat terror and to reform and reorganize [itself].” He added that “the president of the PA has lent only nominal and partial support to the commendable Egyptian effort aimed at reforming the ailing Palestinian security services.”
As a result, one of Arafat’s aides has declared that Roed-Larsen “is an unwelcome person in Palestinian territories.” And, he has been advised by masked men to “pack his bags and leave immediately.” It’s not difficult to understand this reaction. The U.N. has been in the tank for the P.A. for so long that anything less than the habitual kowtowing is unacceptable.


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