As part of a two-hour rant Sunday, Palestinian President Abbas declared that the Oslo Accords signed with Israel almost 25 years before were now dead. That was a false statement because those accords were dead before the ink on Yasser Arafat’s signature was dry.
That famous handshake on September 13, 1993. When I close my eyes, I can still see supposedly reformed terrorist Arafat, grasping the palm of Prime Minister Rabin. I remember saying the Shehechayanu prayer, thanking G-d for keeping me alive and letting me see this glorious day. The whole world was full of optimism. Even Clinton’s Secretary of State, the usually dour Warren Christopher stepped up to the microphone to gloat, saying that the impossible was now possible.
On that day, Israel supporters let themselves believe that 45 years of attacks against Israel peace were over; peace was finally within arm’s reach. Once the agreement