Newt Gingrich seems to be channeling Golda Meir.
Golda once said, "There is no such thing as a Palestinian people…It is not as though we came and threw them out and took their country. They didn't exist."
That was 52 years ago. Now, long after Israel recognized the PLO as the legitimate representative of the Palestinian people and successive Israeli governments of right and left have met with their leaders and conducted negotiations aimed at creating a Palestinian state, the former history professor from Georgia dismisses the Palestinians as an "invented" people.
"Remember, there was no Palestine as a state. It was part of the Ottoman Empire. And I think that we've have invented the Palestinian people, who are in fact Arabs and are historically part of the Arab community, and they had the chance to go many places,” Gingrich told the cable TV Jewish Channel, which posted portions of the interview online on Friday.
Support for Palestinian statehood has been the policy of the three past American administrations. Even Newt's good friend Bibi Netanyahu has endorsed the two-state approach to resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, as do a clear majority of Israelis.
Elliott Abrams, who was President George W. Bush's top Mideast advisor, dismissed Gingrich's statement as out of touch with reality. “There was no Jordan or Syria or Iraq, either, so perhaps he would say they are all invented people as well and also have no right to statehood. Whatever was true then, Palestinian nationalism has grown since 1948, and whether we like it or not, it exists,” he told the Washington Post.