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      Armed Wing of PA Ruling Party Wants to Wipe Israel Off the Map

      The armed wing of Fatah, the ruling party of the Palestinian Authority and of PA chief Mahmoud Abbas, has called for wiping the State of Israel off the map.
      By Scott Shiloh
      First Publish: 11/7/2005, 1:51 PM / Last Update: 11/6/2005, 7:25 PM

      Fatah’s military wing, the Al Aksa Brigades, said in a pamphlet distributed in the Gaza district that "anybody who recognizes Israel will burn in the fire of the Islamic nation's fury. Any [Islamic leader] who recognizes the Zionist regime means he is acknowledging the surrender and defeat of the Islamic world."

      Harking back to its pre-Oslo days when Fatah, an international terrorist organization, led the Arab struggle against the Jewish state, the group’s armed wing has become the first Palestinian organization to publicly identify with Iran’s president’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's recent call to “wipe Israel off the map.”

      Israel responded to Ahmadinejad’s statement by demanding that the United Nations revoke Iran’s membership in the world body.

      The statement published in the Fatah group’s leaflet strongly supported Ahmadinejad’s bellicose remark. "We affirm our support and backing for the positions of the Iranian president toward the Zionist state which, by God's will, will cease to exist," read the pamphlet. "Recognizing Israel's right to exist means underestimating the Palestinian people, who are making daily sacrifices to liberate Palestine and Jerusalem."

      Israel has not responded to the Fatah group’s statements. Officially, Israel has backed the creation of a Palestinian state under the U.S. roadmap plan. Both the United States and Israel had been hoping that such a state would be led by the Fatah, the ruling party of the Palestinian Authority and of PA chief Mahmoud Abbas.

      Israel opposes Hamas participation in the upcoming PA elections because that terror group vehemently opposes the existence of the state of Israel. In regard to the Hamas, Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom said ironically at Monday’s cabinet meeting, "Do we really believe that an organization that has engraved on its banner the goal of destroying Israel would give up its party platform after being elected?"

      Under a plan supported by the United States and Israel, hundreds of terrorists from the Fatah’s Al Aksa Brigades have been recruited into the PA’s security forces. The PA cabinet decided last month to set up five training camps to prepare the recruits for their new tasks. The camps will be built in territories controlled by the PA in Judea and Samaria.

      The Fatah group’s brazen invective against Israel, however, runs in direct contravention of the Oslo accords. According to those agreements signed by the late Prime Minister Yitzchak Rabin in 1993, the Palestine Liberation Organization, led by Fatah leader Yasser Arafat, formerly recognized Israel’s right to exist.

      The ideas behind the Fatah group’s latest statements have received support from PA academia. A professor at Al Najah University in Shechem, Abdel Sattar Kessem, berated western countries such as the United States, Britain, and France for condemning the Iranian leader’s anti-Israel remarks.

      “These aggressive countries, which specialize in political fraud and the exploitation of other people, did not express reservations when Palestine was wiped off the map in 1948," he said.

      "Millions of Palestinian refugees have been living for the past 60 years under harsh conditions so that Israel could continue to exist. And these countries, which have been emphasizing their keenness about human rights, insist on preventing these refugees from returning to their homes and property. Israel remains an alien organ in the Arab and Muslim region," the professor said.