Middle East Notes and Comment: President, But Commander in Chief?
January 15, 2005
Now that Mahmoud Abbas has won the Palestinian presidential election, there will be enormous pressure on him to crack down swiftly on militant groups. Doing so would be a mistake. Urging a clash when the leadership remains weak and lacks a credible security force would be inviting failure. Further, it would ensure that Palestinian politics remain mired in violence and lawlessness. It seems an attractive option, but in fact, it takes things in precisely the wrong direction.