22 Sep 2011

PLO official: Rick Perry is a "racist"

A top Palestine Liberation Organization official responded to Texas Gov. Rick Perry's scathing criticisms of the PLO on Tuesday by telling The Cable that Perry's comments were "discriminatory and racist."

Perry hosted a pro-Israel rally in New York on Tuesday morning, during which he repeatedly accused President Barack Obama of "appeasement" of the Palestinians and of bungling three years of Middle East diplomacy. He also called for the closing of the PLO mission in Washington, and the cutting off of U.S. aid to the Palestinian leadership as punishment for their drive to seek member-state status at the United Nations.

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But the part of Perry's remarks that really angered the PLO's Washington representative, Maen Rashid Areikat, was when Perry said, "The Obama policy of moral equivalency, which gives equal standing to the grievances of Israelis and Palestinians, including the orchestrators of terrorism, is a very dangerous insult. I was appalled by what he said about ‘moral equivalence,' that there shouldn't be moral equivalence between Israelis and Palestinians. This amounts to taking a discriminatory and racist position," Areikat said in a Tuesday interview with The Cable.

"I thought the fundamental principles of the United States were to support people who are seeking freedom and liberty and justice and the Palestinian people are doing exactly that," Areikat continued. "To try to give the impression that there's no moral equivalence between the struggle of the Palestinians and the Israelis is really something that requires condemnation. It is really surprising and unacceptable."

The Cable