Intelligence analysis is an iffy proposition in the best of times. It’s inevitably tinged with political agendas, wishful thinking, conformity to groupthink, reluctance to upset the boss, keenness to upset the boss, jockeying for position, fear of being proven wrong – and much more from the self-serving to the genuinely clueless.
It’s with this in mind that we ought to approach the periodic perplexity of whether this time Ramallah figurehead Mahmoud Abbas is finally honest about his oft-sounded declarations of intent to resign.
To be sure, he’s not quite legally in office as president of the Palestinian Authority. He was questionably elected to a four-year term in 2005 and is now completing his eleventh year in that position. With noteworthy frequency, sometimes every few months or so, Abbas has been putting the whole watching world on notice that he has had it, is about to throw in the towel and walk away from the leadership. Continue reading