Any doubt that the Oslo Accords and the Bush Road Map are dead and buried has been put to final rest by John V Whitbeck - an international lawyer who has served as an advisor to the Palestinian negotiating team in negotiations with Israel.
Writing in the Cyprus Mail on 13 January Whitbeck reveals that the Palestinian Authority "has been absorbed and replaced by the State of Palestine" in a decree issued by Mahmoud Abbas on 3 January and signed by him acting in his capacities as president of the State of Palestine and chairman of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).
Whitbeck's confirmation of the demise of the Palestinian Authority signals the definite end to any further negotiations under the Oslo Accords and the Road Map being conducted between Israel and the Palestinian Authority - the designated parties to both agreements.
To make sure the message was fully understood - Whitbeck states unequivocally:
The Trojan horse called the "Palestinian Authority" in accordance with the Oslo interim agreements and the "Palestinian National Authority" by Palestinians, having served its purpose by introducing the institutions of the State of Palestine on the soil of Palestine, has now ceased to exist.
The sordid truth and fraudulent intentions of the PLO in this long running duplicitous doublecross over the last 20 years have now been well and truly exposed by Whitbeck for all to see.
The Palestinian Authority never intended to negotiate in good faith to bring about the two-state solution prescribed by the Oslo Accords and the Bush Road map. It was a Trojan horse fronting for the PLO whose objective was to procure recognition of a Palestinian State without giving up or compromising any of the PLO's claims and demands.
This latest loss of the opportunity offered by the Oslo Accords and the Bush Road Map to realise the two-state solution matches the two opportunities thrown away by the PLO in 2000/1 and 2008
Three strikes - and the PLO has been definitely outed.
The reaction of the international community will be followed with interest.
In his correspondence, Yasser Arafat used to list all three of his titles under his signature - president of the State of Palestine, chairman of the executive committee of the Palestine Liberation Organisation and president of the Palestinian National Authority (in that order of precedence). It is both legally and politically noteworthy that, in signing this decree, Mahmoud Abbas has listed only the first two titles... There is no further need for a Palestinian leader to be three-headed or three-hatted.
David Singer is an Australian Lawyer, a Foundation Member of the International Analyst Network and Convenor of Jordan is Palestine International - an organisation calling for sovereignty of the West Bank and Gaza to be allocated between Israel and Jordan as the two successor States to the Mandate for Palestine. Previous articles written by him can be found at www.jordanispalestine.blogspot.com.