RAMALLAH, November 20 (JMCC) - Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas is biding his time, hoping for a change in the political climate that currently threatens both his leadership and the Palestinian cause, writes The National
All his options are difficult because all would involve some degree of
conflict with Israel and the US at the same time, said George Giacaman, a
professor in Birzeit University's democracy and human-rights programme.
Mr Abbas tried to forge an independent agenda following the collapse of last
year's peace negotiations with Israel, hoping to extricate the Palestinians from
two decades of failed US-sponsored peacemaking efforts.
Putting him in direct confrontation with Israel and Washington, in
retrospect, seems to be a decision that was doomed to fail.
Hani Masri, an independent Palestinian political analyst, said Mr Abbas was
now waiting for any development that can rescue him from this situation.
Despite a burst of support among Palestinians for seeking full membership of
the UN in September, lobbying by Washington has stalled Mr Abbas's
Financially, too, his hands have been tied by Israel's refusal to distribute
about US$100 million (Dh367.3m) of PA tax revenues as punishment for the
Palestinians joining Unesco last month.
Serious doubts also surround Mr Abbas's ability to follow through on his May
reconciliation accord with Hamas without incurring a crippling suspension of the
substantial financial aid Washington provides.