Heritage Florida Jewish News - Central Florida's Independent Jewish Voice

J Street president embraces Abbas


February 21, 2020

(JNS)—J Street president Jeremy Ben-Ami embraced Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas after the latter made statements at a hotel on Tuesday following his remarks earlier at a U.N. Security Council session, denouncing the Trump administration’s Mideast peace plan.

“Absolutely disgusting that @jstreetdotorg’s @JeremyBenAmi would embrace Mahmoud Abbas. Abbas funds terrorists to kill American and Israeli Jews. He is a virulent anti-Semite. Ben Ami isn’t a head of state, he doesn’t have to pretend Abbas is legitimate,” tweeted the Republican Jewish Coalition in a thread.

“The man @JeremyBenAmi kisses on both cheeks says Jews are to blame for the Holocaust... Good job @jstreetdotorg...,” tweeted RJC, with a link to a Times of Israel article about Abbas’s false claim.

Finally, RJC’s thread concluded with the organization tweeting, “Abbas’s “government” paid $330,000,000 to terrorists and the families of ‘martyrs’ who target Jews. They can even earn more based on if Jews die, and how many die. That’s who @jstreetdotorg and @JeremyBenAmi embrace so warmly.”

J Street spokesperson Logan Bayroff did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

“Happy to attend Olmert/Abu Mazen presser today. Reminded me both of better days when leaders committed to peace came close to a deal and of the better future that can come when there will again be leaders genuinely seeking to end the conflict,” tweeted Ben-Ami ahead of Abbas and Olmert’s statements.

The RJC’s counterpart, the Jewish Democratic Council of America, declined to comment, with executive director Halie Soifer citing that her group is “not interested in commenting on the RJC’s attacks on other organizations or individuals.”

Abbas was joined at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Midtown Manhattan by former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, who called Abbas a “man of peace” and the “only partner” Israel has in peace negotiations.

In return, Abbas called Olmert a “dear friend” and “a man of peace, a man who believes in achieving peace, a man who continues to try to achieve peace.”

In his address to the U.N. Security Council, Abbas compared the Trump peace plan’s vision of a future Palestinian state to “Swiss cheese.”

“This plan should not be considered an international reference for negotiations,” he said. “It is an Israeli-American preemptive plan to put an end to the question of Palestine.”

The Trump peace plan, released on Jan. 28, recognizes a demilitarized Palestinian state with its capital in eastern Jerusalem “located in all areas east and north of the existing security barrier, including Kafr Aqab, the eastern part of Shuafat and Abu Dis, and could be named Al-Quds or another name as determined by the State of Palestine,” with a future U.S. embassy there.

“This plan violates international legitimacy... It annuls the legitimacy of Palestinian rights, our right to self-determination, freedom and independence of our own state,” said Abbas in his Tuesday address, which consisted of him holding up maps that falsely claim that Israel stole land.

The plan permits Israel to annex 30 percent of the West Bank—a condition Abbas said “legitimized what is illegal, settlements and confiscation of land and annexation of Palestinian land.”

He also stated that the proposal is “the entrenchment of occupation and confiscation of occupying force by military regime... strengthening the apartheid regime.”

The peace plan recognizes Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, which Abbas rejected, as he did with the entire proposal.


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