Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Speechless in Gaza 2

Could the death of Moussa Arafat have been aggravated by the incompetence or complicity of Palestinian Authority officials? Some details of the assassination have emerged from the Jerusalem Post.

  • Eyewitnesses reported that some of the gunmen who participated in the raid on Arafat's two-story villa in the Tal al-Hawa neighborhood used armored vehicles belonging to one of the security organizations.
  • the assailants stormed the house, shot Arafat in the legs and dragged him to the street, where they shot him at least 23 times in the head
  • A West Bank Palestinian Military Intelligence officer, Maher Fares, told a press conference that he wondered why the security forces didn't react quickly to the attack on Arafat's home, which is located only a few meters away from the headquarters of the Preventative Security Force.



Blogger Heraclitus said...

It would be interesting to take a poll of the Belmont Club to see who the majority thinks was in the right: the Senate or Caesar?

9/07/2005 09:40:00 PM  
Blogger dune runner said...

Interesting that the man didn't seem to be making friends on either side in the Gaza.

"Moussa Arafat was doing his utmost to undermine the Palestinian Authority," a top PA official told The Jerusalem Post. "He was playing a very negative role."

That from the PA

"Hamas denied any link to the slaying, saying it was opposed to 'political assassinations regardless of the motives and justifications.' "

That from Hamas.

Sounds like he was causing too much trouble in general down there and was taken care of.

9/07/2005 09:44:00 PM  
Blogger sam said...

Palestinian leaders condemn slaying:

The brazen nature of Arafat's killing turned it into an awkward test of Abbas ability to confront the armed Palestinian groups struggling for political control of Gaza. Although Arafat's notorious reputation made his death unlikely to cause conflict among the factions, Palestinian security services could face resistance in moving to capture his killers.

Abbas condemned the assassination through Information Minister Nabil Shaath, who called it a "heinous crime."!nationworld!article&s=1037645509161

9/07/2005 10:00:00 PM  
Blogger dune runner said...

Yes everyone has to condemn these sorts of things, but I think Arafat was a bigger problem to the PA than to any of the other groups vying for power.

Abbas forced him into retirement, but like many retirees, it sounds like he found he still needed something to do with his time. Like fishing, crosswords, using connections in the security force he built to undermine his old rivals, that sort of thing.

The article says on page one that one of Arafat's "arch-enemies" was Gen. Rashid Abu Shabak. Gen. Shabak just happens to command the Preventive Security Force, who's headquarters were just those few meters away.

If Abbas is going to have any chance against Hamas and Islamic Jihad, he is going to have to make sure he has his own house in order first. Sounds to me like he has the broom out

9/07/2005 10:23:00 PM  
Blogger sam said...


"He decided not to go to New York because of the [Israeli] handover of the [Gaza] settlements and the security situation," negotiator Saeb Erekat said yesterday.

In a brazen challenge to Abbas, a shadowy militant group claimed responsibility for killing Moussa Arafat, a powerful former security chief.

9/07/2005 11:54:00 PM  
Blogger Heraclitus said...

I think it's fair to say that western democracy is inevitably going to take on a regional flavor.

9/08/2005 04:28:00 AM  
Blogger Ray said...


PA forces did react quickly to the attack, scurrying away once they had finished it.

9/08/2005 09:54:00 AM  
Blogger ed said...


I think Hamas just let Fatah know that they're totally f**ked.

I expect more assassinations and counter-assassinations *or* mass defections from Fatah to Hamas.

Isn't it amusing that a pre-req for discussing the PA is the viewing of the Godfather part I?

9/08/2005 10:29:00 AM  
Blogger exhelodrvr1 said...

Of course it wasn't Hamas. Their executions never involve more than 19 shots to the head.

9/08/2005 11:29:00 AM  
Blogger ledger said...

Debka believes Moussa Arafat was killed by PA minister Mohammed Dahlan and Rashid Abu Shebak using the Salahedin Brigades as contract killers. Debka is unclear about the motive except to say it was an internal power struggle (dune runner also points to Rashid Abu Shabak).


The assassination of Moussa Arafat was obviously well-planned and carefully staged. According to DEBKAfile's counter-terror sources, the crime bears the hallmark of Palestinian minister for civilian affairs Mohammed Dahlan and his sidekick, Gaza preventive security chief Rashid Abu Shebak, two would-be Gaza strongmen... Suspicion is strong that they contracted the Popular Committees' Salahedin Brigades for the slaying. Scores of armed men dragged the former Palestinian... head of national security forces in the Gaza Strip from his home, shot him dead and abducted his son Manhal. The fact that a large band of armed men was allowed to pump 23 bullets into Arafat's body - whereas none of his bodyguards suffered a scratch - bespeaks betrayal and conspiracy.

[others point directly to Hamas]

In Nablus, the local Palestinian intelligence chief Maher Yousuf wondered aloud how nearly 100 gunmen could have fired rocket-propelled grenades, automatic weapons and grenades for 45 minutes in the heart of Gaza City, which is packed with Palestinian Authority security men, without interference. Another Palestinian official, military security chief, Col. Maher Fares, accused interior minister Nasser Yousef of abetting the murder. He refused to believe the Popular Committees, whose Salahedin Brigades claimed the assassination, acted alone without the connivance of someone in authority. A third Palestinian Authority cited Hamas...

See: Arafat's son released after murder

9/09/2005 01:01:00 PM  

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