Sunday, November 8, 2009

Who Killed Abu Mazen

Who Killed Abu Mazen? Who Caused His Death?

Hillary Clinton killed Abu Mazen. Barack Obama set him up last June in his Cairo speech and Hillary killed him dead. Her repeated declarations last week regarding “unprecedented concessions” by Netanyahu on the settlement issue completed the job.
Are we exaggerating? Is Abu Mazen still alive? One would hope that as just another pensioner, Abu Mazen, will enjoy a healthy and vigorous private retirement. But politically he has become, despite illustrious chapters in his younger years, a political corpse. He simply bet everything on the U.S. And when it turned out that all the services he rendered to the U.S. were used and exploited by Obama to increase pressure against his own people, he was forced to understand that the game was over.

Abu Mazen was not born to deceive his people. But he (and many others) deceived themselves regarding Clinton, her boss and her associates. Is it clinically possible that Abu Mazen died of shame?

Of course, Clinton is a highly regarded figure. But the Clinton aura is just another trap. For her own convenience, she can turn the most faithful ally into a political non-entity. Abu Mazen began the descent to his own elimination last month when he issued orders to connive with Clinton to prevent the UN Human Rights Council from discussing the Goldstone Report. And now, Ms. Clinton, speaking words of adoration for Bibi, in her recent trip to the ME, finished him off.

There are three major lessons here, if you will. The first is the danger and the illusions of the theory which holds that since we live in a unipolar world, nothing can be done without an alliance with the US, which supposedly holds all the cards. Let the case of Abu Mazen be a lesson to all that hitching your wagon to the US train is the best way to go nowhere.
The second lesson is that Clinton’s knife in Abu Mazen’s back may well be a faithful reflection of US policy and practice all over the place. Obama’s rhetoric notwithstanding, his administration, so far, is a continuation of Bush’s. Obama is indeed under tremendous pressures and he may well decide on an orderly retreat. But so far, things gets worse and worse and the waters of the Potomac get muddier by the day. Hope, yes – illusions, no.
The third lesson is that Abu Mazen sealed his fate at least two years ago when he introduced a permanent U.S. military delegation into the West Bank. Headed by General Dayton, the US units were involved in an operation to establish “law and order.” Interestingly enough, this involved military and intelligence coordination between Jordan, the Palestinian forces and the Israeli Defense Forces, under General Clayton’s aegis. A lot of Abu Mazen’s friends would have served him well if they had told him loud and clear back then that this meant, in fact, an end to his political independence.