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Trump Mideast Envoy: The Palestinians Deserve So Much More Than Saeb Erekat

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10.06.2018

I write regarding Dr. Saeb Erekat’s outburst set forth in his op-ed (“Trump provides the anti-Palestinian incitement, Israel the bullets,” May 17) in which he criticized the move of the U.S. Embassy to Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. While I understand that Dr. Erekat is angry about President Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, I thought it would be more helpful to discuss some of the issues demanding Palestinian leaders’ immediate attention, first and foremost of which is contributing to an atmosphere conducive to peace.

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Unfortunately, Dr. Erekat’s rhetoric and his claims were in many respects simply inaccurate. We must all join together to reject such unhelpful rhetoric and false claims if we hope to achieve peace. For far too long, the United States has turned a deaf ear to such words, but ignoring hateful and false words has not brought peace and it will never bring peace. This is the case when discussing the Gaza marches, as we can clearly see from the evidence: While some protesters were peaceful, many were quite violent. In fact, by Hamas’ own admission, more than 80 percent of those killed were Hamas operatives.

In the same spirit, it is important to be clear about peace and our peace plan: By moving the U.S. Embassy to Israel’s capital of Jerusalem, we have provided a realistic basis for direct negotiations. The move was not, as Dr. Erekat baselessly........

© Haaretz