The article, “The Dahlan Factor,” appeared for several hours on the Al Jazeera website on Monday only to be removed without explanation. Ali Abunimah has reposted the complete article at Electronic Intifada.
Joseph Massad writes: The recent resurrection of Mohammad Dahlan by several Arab governments, Israel and the US is a most important development for the future of the Palestinian cause, Palestinian Authority (PA)-Israel negotiations, and Hamas-ruled Gaza. Dahlan is viewed, by many Palestinians, as the most corrupt official in the history of the Palestinian national movement (and there are many contenders for that title).
Dahlan, it would be recalled, was the PA man in charge of Gaza after the Oslo Accords were signed, where he commanded 20,000 Palestinian security personnel who were answerable to the CIA and to Israeli intelligence. His forces would torture Hamas members in PA dungeons throughout the 1990s.
His corruption, at the time, was such that he allegedly diverted over 40 percent of taxes levied against the Palestinians to his personal account in what became known as the Karni Crossing Scandal in 1997.
Dahlan, who has been accused repeatedly by both Hamas and Fatah of being an agent of US, Israeli, Egyptian, and Jordanian intelligence, would attempt to stage a US-organised coup against the democratically elected Hamas government in 2007 in Gaza, an attempt that backfired on him and ended with his eviction from the Strip (I had forewarned about the coup several months before it occurred). [Continue reading…]