Yom Kippur has come early for the mad dog in Ramallah. The bark has turned into a soft meow accompanied by a clapping of the heart. Slach li, m’chal li, kaper li. Forgive me. Grant me atonement for my errors and for my many sins.
Dancing on one foot to a waltz or tango or foxtrot, President Mahmoud Abbas, under intense world-wide criticism for his bitterly anti-Semitic remarks, has now retracted them and seeks a pardon.
On Yom Kippur, Jews who sincerely devote their prayers in an honest plea for forgiveness from God are forgiven. Those who ask forgiveness for grave sins, only to repeat them, are not granted atonement.
Mahmoud Abbas is in the latter category.
For more than a generation he has written, published and orated his lies about the Holocaust and the Jewish claims to a homeland in Israel. He has called them “usurpers of our land”, “colonialists” and “thieves” who have stolen the land from the Palestinian people and who caused wide-spread refugee crises in the Middle East.
No one can dance on one foot. The fine music has ceased and has been replaced with thunder. The world (the non-Muslim world) has overwhelmingly condemned Abbas for his hateful anti-Semitic comments.
Faced with condemnation from all corners of the globe, he has retreated and made a 180 degree turn from his original address to the recent meeting of the Palestinian National Council.
He now calls the Holocaust, which for more than fifty years he has denied as a Jewish fraud, “the most heinous crime of the century” and completely denies anti-Semitism stating that he has “respect for the Jewish religion and the faith of all monotheistic people.”
How is he to be believed? On one day he condemns the Jews for bringing the Holocaust upon themselves, denying the murders of six million Jews, and two days later he retracts his remarks and apologizes, asking to be forgiven. Forgiveness will forever be denied to him.
Leopards cannot change their spots. All of the soap in the world cannot wash the spots away. And so it is with the mad dog in Ramallah. His great roar has now turned into a gentle purring. But underneath, in his heart and mind, he holds on to his original hateful remarks, those which were the content of his doctoral thesis claiming Zionist cooperation with the Nazis. He cannot erase the words which he had written. They will forever remain. Perhaps the Russian education ministry will, in good faith, retract his doctoral degree. But that would be asking too much.
Abbas is dancing on one foot. The other foot is stuck in his throat and is not removable. His hatred of Jews, Zionists and Israel will never disappear. He will remain a crippled leader of a surpressed people until he is overthrown with no future leader to replace him yet in sight.
The stinging results of his treacherous remarks will mark him forever as a distrustful man, a liar, and a 100 percent anti-Semite. All of his “apologies” under intense world-wide pressure are in vain.
The Palestinian people deserve a leader who can be respected by the decent people and nations of the world. The barking dog in Ramallah is not one of them.
Left foot or right foot, tango or waltz, he will ultimately lose his balance and will fall.
For us and for any hope of a peace agreement the sooner he falls the better.
No one can continue to dance on one foot.