Ahmad Sa’adat (Ahmad Sa'adat Yusuf 'Abd al-Rasul, Abu Ghassan): Secretary General of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), the second largest faction in the PLO and the leading Palestinian party of the left. Sa’adat has been held without trial in Jericho jail under U.S./U.K. monitoring since May 2002, accused by Israel of ordering the assassination of former Israeli Minister of Tourism Rehavam Zeevi. He was nominated by the PFLP to run as a Parliamentary candidate in the PLC elections scheduled for January 2006, as a means of publicizing his continued detention and bringing pressure to bear for his release.
Sa’adat is a veteran of the first Palestinian intifada, and has spent a total of 10 years in Israeli jails for PFLP activism. He rose to prominence within the PFLP for his activities as an organizer and leader of Palestinian prisoners. Although not well-known internationally or in the media, Sa’adat - a PFLP “insider” who has always stayed in the West Bank and Gaza rather than going into exile - is highly regarded in the Occupied Territories as a charismatic leader who remains in touch with the grassroots.
A math teacher by training, Sa’adat is married (to Abla) and has four children. He lives in al-Bira, near Ramallah.
The PFLP is the largest party on the Palestinian left, with an ideology that combines Arab nationalism with Marxist-Leninism. It was founded in 1967 by George Habash, a Palestinian Christian (and Palestinian Orthodox Christians have historically been prominently represented in the movement). The PFLP does not recognise the existence of Israel as a Jewish state, and rejects the Oslo process. It reserves the right to use all means, including armed intifada, in pursuit of a single, secular democratic state of Arabs and Jews on all of Mandate Palestine. It sees the Palestinians’ struggle as an integral part of the wider struggle against U.S. imperialism and its client regimes in the Middle East. With the fall of the Soviet Union and the rise of political Islam, the PFLP has been eclipsed as Palestine’s second political party by Hamas. (It polled about 7% in the Palestinian local elections in the fall/winter of 2005). One of Ahmad’s Sa’adat’s declared aims as party leader is to re-establish the popular base of the PFLP and establish it as a third pole in Palestinian politics, alongside Fatah and Hamas.
Some historical background on the PFLP from Lawrence Joffe: Said to be the second largest faction within the PLO apparatus after Yasser Arafat's own Fatah, the Popular Front was officially created in the wake of the Six Day war, in December 1967. Since 1948, Palestinians had felt grievously let down by other Arab leaders. Fatah chose the path of galvanising the West Bank and Gaza masses to throw off the yoke of their new Israeli rulers. When this proved a failure, Fatah effectively took over the discredited PLO, and over time sought friends and money in the Arab world.
The PFLP, by contrast, interpreted the Palestine problem as merely the worst symptom of a general Middle Eastern malaise. They eschewed support from Gulf potentates, turning instead to the patronage of Russia and China. The PFLP saw the elimination of Israel as a means towards the ultimate goal, of ridding the Middle East of dictators who kow-towed to Western capitalism. Under the rule of Habash, they fused together a heady brew of Maoism and Arab nationalism. Soon the group gained international notoriety for hijackings and terrorist attacks. In Amman, Jordan, the belligerency of their cadres was blamed for the onset of the Black September crackdown of 1970, which crushed the PLO and forced its flight to safer climes in southern Lebanon.
But with the decline of the Soviet economy, the onset of detente and eventual collapse of the USSR, the PFLP lost ground to the distinctly unsecular radicals of Hamas. [Habash’s successor, Abu Ali] Mustafa was prominent in promulgating the 1987 intifada through radio broadcasts, but in time the group showed signs of schism, as "insiders" on the West Bank, like Riad al-Malki, forged links with Fatah and even Israeli left-wingers.
Attempting to regain the initiative after the supposed PLO-Israeli breakthrough of Oslo in 1993, the PFLP joined forces with a 10-member rejection front, based in Damascus. It forbade members to participate in the Palestinian elections in 1996, but three years later, Mustafa, accepting the Palestine Authority as a fait accompli, rushed to Cairo to negotiate better terms with Yasser Arafat.
The PFLP’s election of Ahmad Sa’adat in October 2001 to replace its assassinated Secretary-General, was generally regarded as a sign that the movement was shifting moving away from the more pragmatic positions of Abu Ali Mustafa, and reverting to the more hardline rejectionism of its original founder.
AHMAD SA’ADAT BIOGRAPHICAL TIMELINE:
1953 – Born in al-Bira, to 1948 refugees from the destroyed village of Dayr Tarif (nr al-Ramleh).
1967 – Became a student activist following the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip, in the PFLP-led Palestine Student Union.
1969 – Formally joined the PFLP, attracted by its combination of Marxism-Leninism (which he felt most suitable for the son of a refugee peasant family) with traditional pan-Arab nationalism.
Feb 1969 – First arrested by Israel for PFLP activities; 3 months detention. Arrested again in 1970 (28 months), 1973 (10 months), 1975 (45 days). Credits his early years in prison with giving him the opportunity to advance his understanding of Marxist theory and consolidating his commitment to the PFLP.
1975 – Graduated from the UNRWA Teachers Training College in Ramallah, specializing in Mathematics.
1976 – Rearrested by the Israelis (detained for four years).
Apr 1981 - Elected to the Central Committee of the PFLP.
1989 – Arrested and held in administrative detention for 9 months.
1992 - Arrested and held in administrative detention for 13 months.
Mar 1993 - Elected to the Politburo of the PFLP while still in administrative detention, reportedly in recogition of his education and organizing activities with other detainees.
1993 – Released from administrative detention, but declared a “wanted person” liable to re-arrest, shortly after release.
1994 – Elected leader of the PFLP in the West Bank.
1995 – Arrested by the PA and briefly detained in a sweep of PFLP members, under Israeli pressure.
Mar 1996 – Briefly detained without charge again by the PA in a sweep of known activists.
Dec 1996 – Arrested by the PA in a roundup of PFLP members on the West Bank, following a PFLP attack on Israeli settlers in Beit-El/Surda on 11 December. Released without charge on 27 February 1997 after conducting a hunger strike, the PA fearing the consequences if he should die in jail. (Collapsed hours after release, and spent several days comatose and on a respirator in Ramallah Hospital).
2000 – George Habash steps down as General Secretary of the PFLP, at the party’s Sixth National Conference. Replaced by Mustafa Zibri (Abu Ali Mustafa), a member of the 'old guard' of exiled leaders based in Damascus, and regarded as a pragmatist in relations with Arafat and with Israel.
27 Aug 2001 - Abu Ali Mustafa assassinated when an Israeli helicopter fired rockets at his office in the West Bank town of Ramallah.
3 Oct 2001 – Ahmad Sa’adat elected Secretary-General of the PFLP, regarded as a shift away from the pragmatism of Abu Ali Mustafa and in line with the more hardline principles of George Habash. Sa’adat declares at his inaugural press conference that the goals of the Palestinian people are "our right of return, and our independence, with Jerusalem as the capital” He also vows to avenge the assassination of Abu Ali Mustafa.
17 Oct 2001 – Four members of the PFLP assassinate the far-right Israeli Tourism Minister Rehavam Zeevi. (Zeevi is known as a supporter of the forced expulsion of the Palestinians from the Occupied Territories, and as a proponent of “targetted assassinations”. His assassination is a popular move among militants, and reinvigorates support for the PFLP in the Occupied Territories). Israel accuses Sa’adat of having ordered the assassination.
22 Oct 2001 – The PA condemns the killing of Zeevi as contrary to wider Palestinian interests as it gives Israel an excuse to take military action in the Occupied Territories. Jibril Rajoub, head of the West Bank Preventative Security Service, outlaws the military wing of the PFLP - the Martyr Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades - and issues an ultimatum to Ahmad Sa’adat to turn himself in or face arrest.
24 Oct 2001 – IDF attacks the West Bank village of Beit Rima, apparently in an unsuccessful attempt to capture Sa’adat, shooting dead nine Palestinians including 5 local policemen sleeping in an olive grove.
15 Jan 2002 – Sa’adat is arrested by Palestinian special forces after being lured to a meeting in a Ramallah hotel with PA Intelligence chief Tawfiq Tirawi. The PFLP condemns the PA for caving to U.S. and Israeli pressure, and putting its own survival ahead of the national consensus by arresting the head of a PLO faction. Its military wing warns that it will kill Arafat aides if Sa’adat is not released. PFLP supporters protest the arrest in the streets of Ramallah, Gaza City and Bethlehem.
2 Feb 2002 – The PFLP's politburo announces that the movement will suspend its participation in the PLO Executive Committee until Sa’adat is released.
21 Feb 2002 – The PA’s General Intelligence Services capture in Nablus the cell of the Martyr Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades believed responsible for the assassination of Zeevi. They are held with Sa’adat at Arafat’s Ramallah compound.
Mar-Apr 2002 – Sa’adat besieged with Arafat in the Muqata by the IDF, beginning 29 Mar.
29 Apr 2002 - Under heavy U.S. pressure, Arafat accepts a deal to end the siege of his compound. The terms of the deal are not made public but it is apparent that Israel has agreed to lift the siege on Arafat in return for the PA agreeing to imprison under international supervision Ahmad Sa’adat, the four PFLP members accused of killing Zeevi (Basel al-Asmar, 'Ahed Abu Ghalma, Majdi al-Rimawi and Hamdi Qar'an), and Fuad Shubaki - the PA official accused of organising the Karine A weapons shipment. The four PFLP members are cursorily tried by a military tribunal inside the Muqata, and sentenced to terms up to 18 years’ imprisonment for killing Zeevi. Arafat rules that Sa’adat is a political leader, not a military leader, and so his case must be decided by the Palestinian judiciary.
1 May 2002 – All six are transferred to Jericho Prison on the evening of 1 May, where they are nominally under the control of the P.A. but actually guarded by U.S. and British monitors. Arafat is widely criticised in the Occupied Territories for winning his own freedom at the expense of Sa’adat’s.
2 May 2002 – IDF withdraws from the Muqata.
3 Jun 2002 – The Palestinian High Court of Justice in Gaza rules that there is no evidence linking Sa’adat to the assassination of Zeevi, and no legal grounds for his continuing detention. It orders his immediate release from jail. Ra'anan Gissin, an Israeli government spokesperson, implies that if the PA releases Sa’adat, he will be assassinated (“if he is not brought to justice, we will bring justice to him”…)
4 Jun 2002 - The Palestinian Cabinet declines to implement the High Court ruling, ostensibly because it fears that Sa’adat will be assassinated if released. (More realistically, it is probably because releasing Sa’adat will contravene the terms of the 29 Apr agreement that removed the Israelis from the Muqata).
13 Jun 2002 – Amnesty International calls for the PA to respect the finding of the High Court and release Sa’adat immediately, and for Israel to guarantee it will not take extrajudicial measures against him. Palestinian NGO’s call upon Arafat to uphold the rule of law. Sa’adat remains in jail.
Muhammed Sa'adat (22) was assassinated in his house in Al-Bireh by an Israeli special unit yesterday. (al-Quds al-Arabi, 21 August 2002).
26 Aug 2002 – Sa’adat begins a 72-hour hunger strike to protest his continued detention.
14 Jan 2003 – In a letter from prison, Sa’adat expresses his opposition to the Road Map, on the grounds that it is designed solely to provide security for Israel’s occupation and criminalize opposition to it as terrorism.
23 Jan 2003 – Sa’adat’s wife, Abla, is arrested by Israeli troops at the Allenby Bridge border crossing, and prevented from addressing the World Social Forum in Porto Alegre, Brazil, where she was a scheduled speaker.
15 Mar 2005 – PA President Mahmoud Abbas suggests that Sa’adat will be released when the PA resumes security control of Jericho later that month. Other PA officials deny they have any such intention, and Sa’adat himself doubts whether the PA even has the power to release him.
23 Nov 2005 – The PFLP announces that Sa’adat will run in the PLC elections of Jan 2006, in the hope that this will raise awareness of his imprisonment and bring pressure to bear for his release.
Other Biographical Information Online
- Profile of Ahmad Sa’adat from BBC NEWS
- Biographical notes from Glen Rangwala’s Middle East Reference
- And from the Palestinian Academic Society for the Study of International Affairs (PASSIA)
Sa’adat is regarded as a "hardliner" within the PFLP, strongly opposing compromise with Israel and less inclined to recognise the authority of the PA than Abu Ali Mustafa. He regards the right of return for Palestinian refugees as the central issue in the Palestinian/Israeli conflict, which can be ultimately resolved only through a non-sectarian single state solution.
Sa’adat regards international law and U.N. resolutions as the basis for realising Palestinian aspirations, and rejects the idea that U.S. mediation can ever take the place of international law or lead to a just solution, as it is U.S. imperialism in the Middle East (and Israel’s role in it as a U.S. proxy) that lies at the heart of the conflict. He does not believe that the PA can do anything to bring the occupation to as end, as it depends for its survival on providing security for the Israeli occupier. Inasmuch as the PA opposes the armed struggle and seeks to end it in favour of a negotiated solution, Sa’adat regards it as a vehicle of the capitalist ruling classes and an obstacle to Palestinian freedom rather than a means of achieving it.
Sa’adat advocates intifada by all means available, including education and mobilisation of the masses alongside continuation of the armed struggle, and regards the Palestinian intifada as an integral part of the wider international struggle of the left against U.S. imperialism in its militaristic (e.g. the invasion of Iraq) and economic (e.g. “globalization”) forms.
Comments by Sa’adat
On the right of return:
The Right of Return is neither a knee-jerk emotional reaction, nor an abstract legal right, nor right-wing chauvinism. On the contrary, it is realistic, and constitutes the only basis for a permanent and everlasting peace… Any solution that ignores the Right of Return as a basis for a permanent peace between the Palestinians and the Jewish settlers who forcibly expelled the indigenous people of Palestine and colonized the land may produce short periods of quiet and calm, but will not eliminate the objective conditions that produce the conflict between our people and the Zionist movement.
Therefore, the implementation of international resolutions and international law pertaining to the Right of Return, as a first step, may prepare the foundation for a permanent peace and end the struggle in Palestine and around Palestine. This right, as the essence of the Palestine question, represents the bridge for a democratic and comprehensive solution of the conflict between the Jewish settlers and the Palestinian people. (Source)
On the two state solution:
1. Some have argued that the current reality is pushing towards a two-state solution - an Israeli state next to a Palestinian state based on the pre-1967 borders. Of course, this solution involves ignoring the Right of Return, or replacing it with reparations. We in the PFLP argue that forcing such a solution on the Palestinian people will not end the struggle, because the facts and reality contradict such a solution. The two-state solution that is based on the racist notion of 'a national, homogeneous Jewish state' totally disregards the fact that over 1.3 million Palestinians - 20% of the entire population - live inside 'Israel.' This will continue to permit the causes of conflict to remain inside Israel. Therefore, the solution based on two states is a myth. (Source)
2. The two state solution is a starting point which will create the necessary climate for a peaceful solution. Of course, the fight for a single democratic state, without any kind of ethnic or religious discrimination, should never end, because it is the only possible solution that can solve the problem of the Palestinians of 1948 and of the right to return. In this fight we need international solidarity and unity from those who struggle along with us. As Palestinians and also as PFLP, we are proud of all these actions of solidarity with the Palestinian people. (Source)
3. In the PFLP, we don’t think that “two states for two peoples” is a viable solution. Even if we reach this goal, the problem will be far from resolved, primarily because the state of Israel will continue to exist exactly as it is. Above all, two major questions would remain: What about the refugees? For us, the question of the right of return for refugees, who represent more than half of all Palestinians, is a fundamental question inasmuch as the right of return is an inalienable right. Now, the two state solution leaves out the refugees. It is out of the question that they can live in the West Bank or in Gaza… you see, the main problem remains. And what happens to the Palestinians of 1948? This problem is equally important. There are more than a million of them, and they are first and foremost Palestinians, and they too live under the oppression of the state of Israel. I won’t spell it out but you can see, the two state solution can only be at best a temporary solution.
A real solution to the conflict would have to meet three fundamental needs: the end of the occupation, the return of the refugees, and the creation of a truly democratic government on all of historic Palestine. When you look at history, this is the only legitimate solution. (Source)
On the Oslo agreement:
These agreements were a project – almost entirely economic in nature – drawn up between the Palestinian bourgeoisie and the Israeli occupier. Through these accords, Israel succeeded in making the PLO give up its platform and strategy, to the detriment of the Palestinian population’s living conditions. Remember that at that time, after the Gulf War, the PLO had enormous financial difficulties. The Oslo Accords offered the possiblity of financial recovery thanks to important commercial agreements. Oslo is not a political agreement that might have led to a solution for the Palestinian people. Instead it was a plan that involved only security and commercial issues, with Israeli security as one of its goals.
There was with Oslo a passing of the baton between the Israelis and the Authority in a number of regions, including in those areas that the Authority did not completely control. The years passed, with the results that you already know, and there was one fundamental rule contained in the Oslo Accords: namely, it was forbidden to seek any “solution” except through negotiation with the Israelis.
Then there was the Camp David episode, and the scandalous proposals of Barak and Clinton. The PFLP was (and still is) in favour of stopping all negotiations with the occupier, which would have meant that the Palestinian Authority would have had to become a real resistance movement, in touch with the people. But it didn’t choose that route. And so today we have reached this situation in which the only opposition that remains between occupier and occupied is the opposition of the Palestinian people against the state of Israel. Meanwhile the Authority looks in from the outside, a spectator that wants only one thing, which is to recover its power at any price. (Source)
1. The Road Map seems like a reward for the Palestinian people or, if you will, the carrot that has to be given to the Arabs of Palestine in place of the stick that’s been used against the Iraqis. In reality, it must be said that the Road Map is above all an attempt to contain the Palestinians and to stop the intifada: so completing what the Israelis have done with the “stick” with America’s international backing. The Road Map tries to skirt round UN resolutions, which recognise the right of our people to have their own independent state. This plan has the aim of reshaping Palestinian aspirations, so that their state will be designed according to the needs and limits laid down by Israel. I too wonder how the PNA can be so attached to it, and I can’t give any logical explanation. Because the Road Map doesn’t offer anything new, but leads to a return to negotiations under the terms of the Oslo Accords, which led ultimately to the dead end called Camp David. (Source)
2. The illusions of the Palestinian Authority were offset by the reality contained in the Road Map. The PA thought, or perhaps wished, that the Road Map would provide the pathway and mechanisms towards an independent state on the Palestinian lands occupied in 1967, based on the address by George Bush in which he called for the formation of a Palestinian leadership that would seriously fight terrorism (in other words, the Palestinian Resistance).
It was clear that the primary aim of this new-old security project was to contain the Palestinian issue, to provide security for the Zionist occupier and its settlers, and to transfer the entire crisis onto Palestinian society. … Too much has been said about the Road Map. Suffice to say that the Road Map is a political initiative that is based on the criminalization of the Palestinian people and condemnation of the Palestinian resistance as terrorism. It is also a blatant intervention in the Palestinian internal affairs. The Road Map can only serve as an American political umbrella to manage and contain the crisis in Palestine, providing more space for “Israel” to impose its logic on both our people and on the Palestinian Authority.
We are asked to exchange the Intifada for the Road Map. Such exchange will not be beneficial for our people and will only re-create the wheels of Oslo but in a much worse version! It might have benefits, but only for specific layers in the ruling class within the Palestinian Authority, which took advantage of Oslo and the political negotiation to build its own private projects and to partnerships with Zionist investors. (Source)
On the role of the Palestinian Authority:
1. The Palestinian bourgeoisie has chosen the path of negotiations and conciliation with the Zionist entity keeping the struggle as a tactical option that it uses to improve its position every time its negotiations with Israel reach an impasse that aggravates its internal contradictions. Regardless of their intentions, the strategic path that they have chosen for settling the struggle of the Palestinian people with the Zionist enemy and for attempting to attain the components of the national establishment - this chosen path, in light of the real balance of forces on the ground locally, regionally, and internationally, leads objectively to frittering away the national rights of our people. If, as a supposition, this choice in the beginning was by way of an erroneous analysis, today after the emergence of the Authority and the concentration of ruling class coalition interests it represents, the chosen path has come to express a vital and strategic interest in remaining in power. Abandoning the path of conciliation would threaten to destroy the agreements that brought the bourgeoisie outside and inside the homeland to the pinnacle of the self-rule government. (Source)
2. As for the silence surrounding us, primary responsibility for that rests I think with the PA itself and with the NGO’s associated with it. They have chosen to put the emphasis on those held in Israel because for them our case is really embarrassing. As I said, they put us here because the Americans insisted, and the fact that Palestinian leaders agreed to arrest members of the Palestinian resistance looks very contradictory. This is why the PA and its NGO’s have chosen to keep quiet about our case. It is an enormous admission of weakness.
We are here because we did away with Zeevi, a racist minister of the extreme right, who advocated the “transfer” of all Palestinians to Jordan, who was a member of the Israeli cabinet and consistently supported every proposal to assassinate leaders of the Palestinian resistance. He was one of the people who asked for the assassination of Abu Ali Mustafa [former secretary of the PFLP, killed in August 2001]. We have the right to respond in kind, i.e. by killing one of their leaders. What the Authority should have done and should do now, rather than submitting to Israeli demands, is to do exactly what the Israelis do: demand that all the Israelis who order or carry out the murder of Palestinians be handed over to them. Instead of that, it says nothing and just avoids talking about us. All that it has succeeded in doing is to help the Israelis, who have been demanding for some time that the PFLP be included on the European Union’s list of terrorist organisations. (Source)
3. The Authority would like the resistance to end completely in order to negotiate with the Israelis, but this is not how the general population or the political parties feel. We want much more: after the failure of Oslo, we want a real strategy of struggle that will make it possible for Palestinian claims to be realised, and for us to build a truly democratic Palestinian society at the same time. Fatah agrees with this. I would go so far as to say that our political parties are collectively of one mind today that we need a temporary leadership to direct the Palestinian resistance. Obviously the PA doesn’t want to discuss a temporary leadership that would take away some of its own power.
It is clear that today the Authority is an obstacle to the resistance, inasmuch as it represents the interests of only the Palestinian bourgeoisie, interests which they share with the Israelis but not with the Palestinian population. They have no interest in what the intifada is trying to bring about. On the contrary, what they want is to stop the resistance; in other words, you could say that their interests go against the interests of the people. You see, even if we manage to create unity between the Palestinian political parties, an obstacle will remain, and it is called the Palestinian Authority. (Source)
4. [I]n response to the whispers of those who call for the end of the Intifada under the claim of protecting the national interest of our people, I would like to state clearly that the continuation of the Intifada might harm the interest of the Palestinian Authority. That is logical and possible. However, the existence of the Authority, any authority, is not a goal in itself, except for those who see it as a mean to self-interested gain. The Palestinian Authority in our situation was supposed to be, according to the defenders of Oslo, a mechanism for transition from the occupation to a real Palestinian sovereignty in order to end the occupation. Such a view could be understood. However, if the PA was no longer capable of such a task, and responded to international pressure to justify its existence, then the PA would be a tool of oppression against the Palestinian people, the Intifada and the resistance.& nbsp; Therefore, in this case, what would justify the PA existence and would it represent the highest national interest of the Palestinian people…? (Source)
On the intifada:
The uprising is a popular initiative. It is a state of rebellion which is a response to the failure of the political negotiations which reached a dead end in Camp David 2000, and a rejection of the attempts by Barak’s Zionist government to impose its conditions on our people and marginalize the Palestinian national rights. In other words, the uprising was a natural response to the Zionist political escalation against our people. And the methods and weapons used by the resistance were also a natural result to the Zionist military escalation against our people. The weaknesses which accompanied the uprising stemmed from the absence of a unified political decision and the absence of a unified leadership, as well as from the state of political division that our people have lived through since the birth of Madrid-Oslo path. In addition the lack of harmony and balance between the armed struggle and the popular mass initiatives also weakened the uprising. There are attempts to hold the uprising responsible for the pain and the suffering of our people rather than holding the occupier responsible. This is an unjust judgment which holds no objective understanding. It is only natural that the losses of the occupied are larger than those of the occupier, especially when the occupying power posses a superior military machine. (Source)
On the international context of the I/P conflict:
1. [W]e should never forget that our struggle must be seen in an international context, i.e. within the imperialist world order. Israel is a state whose fundamental role is to protect the interests of imperialism in our region. That has strong resonances with the situation of South Africa in the time of Apartheid. Our fight is basically anti-imperialist. The Palestinian question is today at the heart of world problems, which is why we must build a resistance that is linked to the anti-imperialist movements of the whole world. The solidarity that we need is an anti-imperialist solidarity. I’m thinking here particularly of the anti-globalisation movement which has developed over the last few years. If we want to succeed, we must certainly build a popular resistance, but we must also never separate the local from the global and take care to ensure that our struggle is integrated more fully into the struggles against imperialism and capitalist globalisation, both of which we must address. (Source)
2. This leads us to stake out a position that condemns the form of terrorism exported by Americans as globalism, the latest form of their imperialism ; to use this position to forge alliances between the Arab regimes and the Arab popular forces that are opposed to the latest war of aggression against the peoples ; and to strive to form the broadest possible world front to stand in the face of the new imperialism. Of overarching importance is that this three-fold tactic be applied in tandem with an escalation of the intifada and the resistance. Otherewise, if the intifada and the resistance decline while more moderate parallel activities are being pursued, the self-interest of our Palestinian people will be forfeited.
One may choose to avoid confronting a bull while it is stampeding around him, but avoiding confrontation at such a moment does not alleviate the eventual or present danger of falling under its hooves. Avoiding confrontation might appear "wise" and "logical" to one who draws up his policies in the coffee houses, offices, and parlors of diplomatic activity. But this approach appears impotent to one who builds his political position on the results of battles in the field. The contrast likens that between a slave who sees his master angry and breaks his strike out of fear of punishment and the free man who works as a slave, confronts his master, and starts a slave revolt that sweeps away his master’s authority, liberating all slaves and returning bread, humanity, and dignity to each one of them. The point of departure in this situation is in defining the goals of the mad bull. We all agree that these goals are evident in America’s efforts to achieve total world hegemony. This hegemony means that even if the bull does not trample us today, it will trample us under its hooves and finish us off tomorrow. So which is the more useful policy, then, to resist this bull, or to throw ourselves under its hooves? (Source)
INTERVIEWS AND WRITINGS ONLINE
- Interview with Ahmed Sa’adat, on his election as Secretary General of the PFLP – published by al Hadaf newspaper, reproduced here with easier formatting.
- An interview with Ahmed Saadat - by Julien Salingue for Agence Presse Association, 9 Sept 2002. Translations in English, and in Italian.
- A letter from Ahmad Sa'adat, rejecting the road map - 14 Jan 2003.
- An interview with imprisoned PFLP General Secretary Ahmad Saadat – published by Fight Back News, 20 May 2003.
- The Road Map, an attempt to reshape Palestinian aspirations - an interview with Arcipelago online magazine, 25 May 2003; and in English translation.
- The Popular Palestinian Intifada … Where is it heading? - Reflections on the third anniversary of the Intifada; al Hadaf newspaper, 28 September 2003.
- Arafat and Abu Ala have abandoned not only me, but all Palestinians - interview with Diario Español ABC, 4 February 2004, and in English translation.
- On The Strategic Level, We Want To Create A Pole Of The Democratic Left - interview by Mireille Court and Chris Den Hond, August 2004; and in English translation.
- The struggle for a single, democratic state, without any kind of ethnic or religious discrimination, should never end – Interview by Mireille Terrin & Chris den Hond for the France Palestine Solidarity Association, 5 Jan 2005; also in Italian and in English.
This page last updated: 20 August 2008
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احمد سعدات Ahmed Ahmad Sa’adat Saadat biography