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Palestine Analysis: What Did Mahmoud Abbas Win for Palestinians --- and for Himself --- at the United Nations?

Mahmoud Abbas' speech at the United Nations General Assembly, 29 November 2012

Will the UN vote become more than symbol, setting in motion a chain of events for substantive political and economic change, just as the Declaration of Independence led to the establishment of the Palestinian Authority? Or will this another Palestine Independence Day that looks embarrassing in its optimism in years to come?

The possibilities are still too close to call. But Mahmoud Abbas has won one victory, which defies all Israeli and Western criticism that he has engaged in unnecessary posturing --- he has insisted on his political relevance for another day.

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