U.S. ought to give anti-Semitic PLO the heave-ho

A Palestinian protester hurls stones using a sling shot during clashes with Israeli soldiers on the Israeli border with Gaza in Bureij, in the Gaza Strip, Friday, Nov. 6, 2015. (AP Photo/ Khalil Hamra)

BY JENNIFER RUBIN

Not only are U.S.-Israeli relations frayed after seven years of President Obama, but also U.S.-Palestinian relations and Israeli-Palestinian relations remain rotten.

It is no wonder things are so bleak after kicking our ally Israel publicly, adopting the Palestinian Authority’s demands (e.g. a settlement freeze, begin negotiating at the 1949 armistice line) as the U.S.’s position and refusing to hold the PA accountable for incitement, a unilateral end-around the bargaining table (by going to the United Nations) and years of continued corruption and undemocratic rule.

And yet Secretary of State John F. Kerry, in the midst of what has been described as a third intifada, wants to resume the “peace process.” Worse, he invokes the name of the late Yitzhak Rabin, whose assassination we commemorated last week.

Former deputy national security adviser Elliott Abrams (who served during the Bush 43 administration in which U.S.-Israeli relations were warm and close) is having none of it.

In response to the PLO’s observer to the United Nations, who is perpetrating the blood libel that Israelis “harvest” organs from Palestinians, Abrams makes a compelling proposal:

“This is a 2015 version of the medieval “blood libel,” a central feature of anti-Semitism for centuries. So this is what the PLO is making of its observer status in the UN: Instead of working for peace, it works to spread hatred of Jews.

I spent a few minutes on-line today looking for the repercussions of these despicable claims, and sure enough you can easily find them being repeated all around the globe.

“Legally the United States is required to permit a PLO mission to the UN, I believe, but there is no reason to have a PLO mission in Washington. It does nothing to advance peace — not when the ambassador of the PLO to the UN is spreading anti-Semitic hate and the head of the PLO, Mahmoud Abbas, is saying things like this: ‘Al-Aksa is ours and so is the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. They have no right to desecrate them with their filthy feet.’ And this: ‘Each drop of blood that was spilled in Jerusalem is pure blood as long as it’s for the sake of Allah. Every shahid [martyr] will be in heaven and every wounded person will be rewarded, by Allah’s will.’

Unlike the pro forma suggestions to cut off funds to the PA (which puts in jeopardy whatever security cooperation the PA gives to Israel) kicking the PLO out of the United States has no downside.

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Every Republican presidential candidate should endorse the idea and invite Hillary Clinton to join them.

Republican leadership in both the Senate and House should introduce legislation barring the PLO. The Democrats want to filibuster? Go right ahead.

Abrams is right: We have grown so accustomed to accepting what is totally unacceptable that we tend to forget we have, at the very least, the opportunity to take a principled stance. It seems like a no-brainer.

Jennifer Rubin is a columnist for The Washington Post.

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