Saturday, December 28, 2002

Arafat Takes On bin Laden

By Joseph Farah

Well, if we're to believe what we heard last week, Yasser Arafat is angry at Osama bin Laden. Arafat says he doesn't want the al-Qaida terrorist hiding behind "the Palestinian cause."

He denounced the Sept. 11 terror attacks on the United States, and explained how his struggle against Israel is different than the one being waged by bin Laden against the West. It was all very persuasive ­ if you didn't know a thing about Arafat's history.

· For years, Arafat has attended meetings with terrorists from all over the world ­ including bin Laden.

· He has used his Palestinian Authority subsidized by taxpayer dollars from the United States, to whip up hatred among his people for not only Israelis, but for all Jews and for all Americans. (Just recall the celebrations in the streets of Ramallah and Gaza as the World Trade Center collapsed.)

· Arafat is a professional liar and con man (aside from being a bloody murderer).

· Arafat has forged unholy alliances with many Islamist terror groups and individuals throughout his career while proclaiming to be at war with those forces.

To understand what I am telling you, you have to have some knowledge of Marxist principles ­ particularly the Hegelian dialectic. An idea or event generates its opposite, leading to a reconciliation of opposites, or a synthesis. That is how progress is achieved ­ through conflict, whether it's real conflict or phony conflict, manufactured by two or more conspirators.

When you see a schism develop between Arafat and some other terrorist group ­ be ot Hamas or Hizbollah or al-Qaida ­ understand what is at work. There is no schism. It's not real. They are play-acting. They are reading off the same page. It's the dialectic at work. The fix is in.

Arafat received training in these principles not only in the old Soviet Union, but from his friends in Vietnam, his friends in China, his friends in the hideously repressive Stalinist regime of Romania under Nicolae Ceausescu and others. He may not be a Marxist, but he has learned the lessons that made the discredited ideology a force in the world.

Arafat is playing a shrewd game - shrewd enough to have fooled top diplomats in the United States and leaders in Israel for the last 10 years or more. Whenever he's on the ropes, whenever he is about to lose power, because he has gone too far on his bloody terrorist campaign, whenever he is about to relegated to the ash heap, he resurrects himself and reinvents himself as a peacemaker and moderate in the Arab world. That is what he is attempting to do, once again, by distancing himself from bin Laden. He sees the handwriting on the wall.

One of his best friends in the Arab world, Saddam Hussein ­ also one of bin Laden's steadiest supporters, is about to become pita toast. He doesn't want to join Hussein in exile,in hiding or in hell. He knows the U.S. is amassing a military force in the Middle East that is capable of overrunning the entire region - if that was a desire of U.S.policy. He knows the map of the region is about to be redrawn. Iraq could be as pacified and as liberated as Afghanistan within 90 days. Where will that leave Arafat?

If Arafat is as supportive of Hussein and Iraq as he was in the first Persian Gulf War, it would leave him irrelevant. He made that mistake once. He won't make it a second time.

Let's remember that it was Arafat who came before bin Laden. There would be no bin Laden without Arafat. Arafat is the godfather of Arab terrorism. He invented it. It was under his orders that the first commercial airliners were hijacked. It was under his orders that U.S. diplomats and other civilians were murdered. It was under his orders that Olympic athletes were killed. It was under his orders that hundreds of innocent Americans and thousands of innocent Israelis have perished.

There is no difference between bin Laden and Arafat. Let me repeat that for emphasis: There is no difference between bin Laden and Arafat.

Arafat led the way, set the example and benefited from his 40-year campaign of terrorism. Bin Laden just took it a step further. He executed it with more precision, more daring, and higher death tolls. But he still learned from Arafat ­ and they both serve the same master.