Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is a big believer in outreach to Israeli civil society. Disheartened by years of failed talks with its elected leaders, the 81-year-old president regularly hosts Israeli university students, left-leaning political activists, and journalists for intimate meetings followed by question-and-answer sessions at his compound. His specially appointed Committee for Interaction with Israeli Society has even launched a Facebook page in Hebrew; its colorful banner reading “Peace be upon you from Palestine.”
But somehow, this group of visitors was different.
On March 28, a busload of Israelis slowly rolled into Ramallah as evening fell. The passengers—mostly seniors—jovially filmed the new high-rises and the Palestinian police escort on their cellphones and camcorders, exchanging nervous jokes in Arabic and Hebrew. They were almost all natives of Arab lands, from Morocco to Iraq. A mega conference about the menace of BDS was taking place at their pickup spot in Jerusalem, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had just ordered his defense minister to stop returning bodies of Palestinian stabbers to their families. But the bus could have been on its way to a wedding...Behold, a busload of useful idiots whose provenance is whatever the Sephardic equivalent of Chelm is.
Update: It must be said--"Peace be upon you from Palestine" is an Islamist's sneaky way of calling for Israel's demise (because "peace" as he understands it, "peace" in the Islamic sense of the word, leaves no room for Jewish sovereignty over a piece of land claimed in perpetuity for Allah and considered to be an intrinsic and inextricable part of the Islamic landscape).
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