Fatah’s Status Quo Congress

HERZLIYA – The Sixth Fatah Congress, held recently in Bethlehem, was an important event for the future of the Arab-Israeli conflict and for the Palestinian movement. But a careful look at the results of the Congress’s elections to Fatah’s Central Committee yields a picture that is quite different from what many will conclude about the meeting.

The Congress seemed to demonstrate three main points: Fatah has moved toward peace with Israel; it has adopted democratic procedures; and a new generation, or even a specific group called the Young Guard, has assumed leadership. But this interpretation is in large part wrong.