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US, France Pressure PA Not To Seek International Inquiry Into Possible Arafat Murder – OpEd


China’s Xinhua news agency reports that Palestinian officials told it that the PA has come under serious pressure from the U.S. and France not to seek an international tribunal to investigate the possible murder of Yasser Arafat:

The Palestinians’ efforts to launch an international probe into the 2004 death of ex-leader Yasser Arafat face serious obstacles, a Palestinian official said Tuesday.  The obstacles stem from the opposition by some countries including the United States and France, the official said on condition of anonymity.

The United States has put pressure on the Palestinian leadership not to seek such an investigation because it can lead to some negative consequences on the Middle East peace process…

Of course it will.  If Israel is discovered to have killed Arafat, it will make it look like an utter ass and further alienate Palestinians (and the world) from Israel.  So what the U.S. is saying essentially is that Arafat’s murder is water under the bridge and it’s far more important to negotiate a peace deal than dwell on the past.  This. of course ignores the critical importance of justice and accountability in resolving this conflict.

The Americans seem to have this idea that the Palestinians must somehow sweep all past injustices under the rug, thus developing a severe case of historical amnesia.  Only through such forgetting can Palestinians get anything resembling a reasonable deal.  Sorry, but I don’t buy that.  Such deals shorn of justice are products of expediency.  Expediency doesn’t bring closure.  It brings a temporary amelioration of symptoms.  Then the illness returns in full force with all the bitterness that entails.

Further, such pressure, if this story is correct, proves that these two countries have been lobbied by Israel to stop any investigation that might expose the misdeeds of the Mossad in this case.  Once again, the U.S. and Obama administration carry water for their Israeli ally.  It’s more important to this president to get elected with as many Jewish votes as he can muster than it is to expose an act of state terror against the head of a foreign government.  Just as Obama supports full-throatedly the drone-murder of anti-American militants, he excuses the murder of Yasser Arafat, yet another expendable Muslim.

This article appeared at Tikun Olam

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Richard Silverstein

Richard Silverstein is an author, journalist and blogger, with articles appearing in Haaretz, the Jewish Forward, Los Angeles Times, the Guardian’s Comment Is Free, Al Jazeera English, and Alternet. His work has also been in the Seattle Times, American Conservative Magazine, Beliefnet and Tikkun Magazine, where he is on the advisory board. Check out Silverstein's blog at Tikun Olam, one of the earliest liberal Jewish blogs, which he has maintained since February, 2003.

2 thoughts on “US, France Pressure PA Not To Seek International Inquiry Into Possible Arafat Murder – OpEd

  • July 12, 2012 at 7:18 pm

    US and France never cared about another country. All that matter are their interests. PA should not bow to their pressure but continue pushing other countries to investigate the killing of Pres Yasser Arafat. The truth must come out and Israel must be seen in its true colours.

  • July 13, 2012 at 12:33 am

    There is only one way forward. Exhume the body and have it tested. Polonium decays 1% every 2 days, so it should be done very quickly. This is not a job for amateurs. Give the experts what they want and do it quickly. If you want to decide what to do with the results, then you can decide that later.

    There is plenty of reasons to exhume the body ASAP and no reason not too.


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