Palestine quiz
Palestine quizScreenshot

It is a ritual that has become part of the political scenery. As Palestinian Authority (PA) negotiators gear up for "peace talks" with their Israeli counterparts, and as the Israeli government prepares to make "good will gestures" which include releasing 104 convicted murderers, the PA's own TV stations continue to broadcast programs which appear uninhibited by such feelings of "good will."

A recent Ramadan TV competition (video below), exposed by Palestinian Media Watch, offers PA Arabs $100 if they guess the correct answers in a quiz about the geography of "Palestine" - which includes Israeli cities such as Jaffa, Ashdod and Meron, among others. 

At one point, the host claims that "Palestine's" longest border, at 586 kilometers, is with Jordan. Such a calculation stretches from Eilat in southern Israel to the Golan Heights in the north - thus erasing the State of Israel's existence entirely.

During the latest round of negotiations, Palestinian Authority spokespeople publicly state (in English) that their only aim is a "Two-State solution" in which Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria will be ethnically-cleansed of Jews, but in which the rest of Israel will live "side-by-side with a Palestinian State." They also claim to have rejected violence, and under previous agreements are banned from promoting violence or encouraging terrorism.

But regular statements by Palestinian Authority figures and official organs in Arabic reveal a very different story.

In only the most recent example, just over a week ago Fatah's official Facebook page glorified Adballah Barghouti for his role in murdering 61 Israeli civilians.

Other recent Ramadan TV programs broadcast by the PA include the re-run of a 2011 music video in which Israel is described as “the snake's head,” which needs to be crushed by Arab rifles.

Another "free pass"?

Israeli commentators have long pointed out that whilst the Israeli government is subject to widespread pressure to make concessions to encourage "good will," no such requirements are made of the Palestinian Authority.

Following the European Union's announcement that it would boycott Jewish communities in Judea, Samaria, the Golan Height and parts of Jerusalem, the Anti-Defamation League accused the EU of giving the PA leadership a "free pass" to continue inciting and encouraging violence against Israelis.

In a letter to the EU's foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, ADL National Director Abraham H. Foxman challenged that “President [Mahmoud] Abbas has blocked the [peace] process with his preconditions, so who does the EU pressure?  Israel.  Who gets a free pass? The Palestinians.”

Foxman called on the EU to end its “long-standing habit of not holding the Palestinian Authority responsible for its actions and inactions that are unequivocally obstacles to peace."

Those "actions" included the constant stream of antisemitic incitement by official and unofficial organs of the PA. Israeli politicians and commentators will no doubt be waiting to see what reaction - if any - western leaders will have to this latest incident.