Expert: PA Statehood Bid a ‘Political Suicide’
The Palestinian Authority’s unilateral bid to the United Nations is a political suicide, Middle East expert Dr. Guy Bechor told Arutz Sheva on Monday.
Dr. Bechor said he believed the move by PA Chairman Abbas is motivated by his feeling that Hamas has become the true leader of the PA Arabs and that he has lost his power. This is reflected in the strengthening of ties between Hamas and the Egyptian government as well as last week’s visit to Gaza by the Emir of Qatar.
He noted that the United States has warned Abbas that going ahead with the unilateral initiative would result in the closing of the PLO office in the U.S., the end of American funding to the PA and that he will be considered persona non grata in the U.S. Abbas has also been warned of harsh Israeli measures as a result of the UN bid, such as curbing the flow of funds to the PA, a move which would mean the end of the PA financially.
Furthermore, said Dr. Bechor, the U.S. informed the United Nations that there is a law that prohibits the U.S. from funding international organizations which recognize a Palestinian state, and that if the UN recognizes ‘Palestine’ it will no longer receive funds from the U.S., similar to what happened when UNESCO recognized ‘Palestine’. “It is well known that the Palestinians commit suicide every few years, but this time they can take the United Nations with them,” he said.
Bechor said that Abbas’ leading motive is his desire to cast blame on Israel for his troubles, as his Fatah movement loses control and only wins elections when Hamas refuses to participate.
He predicted that Israel will not face significant difficulties as a result of Abbas’ UN bid, noting fears among PA leaders that residents of the areas it controls in Judea and Samaria will immigrate abroad en masse.
Bechor said that he believes Abbas may face internal pressures to cancel the unilateral bid and prevent his citizens from the heavy cost involved.
In order to ensure that such a move at the United Nations will remain futile and toothless, Dr. Bechor said that Israel should make it clear right away that the PA will pay the price the next day.
“If they want to crash, let them crash,” he said “There is a limit to how long we can safeguard Abbas. Without Israel there is no Palestinian Authority.”
Abbas formally announced in September that the PA would ask the General Assembly to grant it “super-observer” status that could give it access to UN institutions and agencies.
The announcement, made in his address to the General Assembly, came a year after Abbas asked the Security Council to grant the PA full member status. That bid has failed due to a lack of support in the 15-member Security Council.