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Commentary magazine calls PMW’s website “essential” for learning about Antisemitism in official Palestinian media

Jonathan Tobin  |

Commentary magazine calls PMW’s website “essential”
for learning about Antisemitism in PA media

Headline: No Peace with Blood Libels

Jonathan Tobin, June 28, 2016

A day after Palestinian Authority leader repeated an obvious blood libel while speaking to the European Union Parliament, Mahmoud Abbas’s office walked it back. After giving the matter some thought, the PA government decided it was “evident” that the allegation Israelis rabbis have called for poisoning the water used by Arabs was “baseless.” After coming to that sober judgment, the PA also made it clear that those who drew any conclusions from Abbas’s statement were the real offenders. As the New York Times reported:

Mr. Abbas’s retraction was sent to reporters early Saturday morning, issued by the P.L.O., of which Mr. Abbas is the chairman. It said that Mr. Abbas “rejected all claims that accuse him and the Palestinian people of offending the Jewish religion.” It added that he “also condemned all accusations of anti-Semitism.” “After it has become evident that the alleged statements by a rabbi on poisoning Palestinian wells, which were reported by various media outlets, are baseless, President Mahmoud Abbas has affirmed that he didn’t intend to do harm to Judaism or to offend Jewish people around the world,” the statement continued.

No doubt the White House, which has praised Abbas as a “champion of peace,” and the PA leader’s legion of left-wing Jewish apologists, who cling to the notion that he and his government are credible peace partners, are reassured. Abbas might have used a major international forum to spread a form of Jew-hatred reminiscent of medieval blood libels to […] get a standing ovation from EU parliamentarians. But as long as he was prepared to quietly walk it back, there’s no reason to worry about him or the PA, right?

Of course, the “various media outlets” that spread the canard about Jews planning to poison Palestinian wells are run by the same Palestinian Authority over which Abbas rules as a not-so-benevolent despot. More notable, though, is that the only unusual aspect of the story was the venue. Far from descending uncharacteristically into hate, Abbas and the PA have a long record of engaging in anti-Semitic incitement.

As anyone who reads essential websites like Palestine Media Watch ( or can attest, such vile fare as this latest yarn about Jews poisoning the wells is routine material in official Palestinian media. Abbas not only repeatedly praises terrorists with Jewish blood on their hands as martyrs and heroes but also has spread lies about Israel planning to harm the mosques on the Temple Mount, denied Jewish historical ties to Jerusalem, and railed about “filthy Jewish feet” profaning the city’s holy places. And lest anyone think this is something new for Abbas, he is the same person who wrote a doctoral thesis rooted in Holocaust denial in his youth.