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Monday, March 08, 2010

IDF to PA: Stop the violence or we will

The 'Palestinian Authority' is complaining that the IDF gave them an ultimatum: You stop the violence or we will.
Israeli officials said that if the PA does not cut down on the incitement and keep the protests and boycott campaign in check, Israel will reduce cooperation with the PA and increase its arrests in Palestinian-controlled areas, the Palestinian sources said.

Over the past few months, arrests by Israel in PA areas have declined, and the Israel Defense Forces has been limiting the entry of troops into those areas.


The PA has sponsored several rallies in the villages of Bil'in and Na'alin, west of Ramallah, some of which have been attended by PA officials. In recent weeks, the PA has also backed protests in the village of Nebi Salah, north of Ramallah, and in Umm Salamuna in the Bethlehem region. Palestine Liberation Organization officials are prominently involved in clashes in the Jerusalem area and have come out against what the PA describes as the Judaization of Jerusalem.

In addition, PA President Mahmoud Abbas has spoken out sharply against the inclusion of Hebron's Tomb of the Patriarchs and Rachel's Tomb, near Bethlehem, in a list of Jewish heritage sites.

The PA has so far done nothing to curtail the protests and as of Sunday, had conveyed no message to its grassroots activists to maintain a lower profile at upcoming rallies.

Sources in the Israeli security establishment say they sense that the PA is taking an active part in organizing popular protests in the West Bank. Security sources say that at this point a third intifada does not appear imminent. However, the sources say, the PA could lose control if it gives the protesters too much leeway.
I would bet on the IDF having to reassert control. Abu Mazen cannot stand up to his own people. That's just as well, provided that Israel reasserts control before it costs Israeli lives. We're better off not relying on the PA for our security anyway.


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