State Dept. Acknowledges Arafat's Orchestration of 1973 Murders; Old Media Snoozes (see UPDATE)

WorldNetDaily reported yesterday on the discovery of a State Department document released earlier this year (Here it is, converted to an HTML doc by yours truly for easy reference). State acknowledges, apparently for the first time, something that Scott at Powerline (here and here) demonstrated definitively more than three years ago from other available evidence.

The admission is that State has known for decades that the late Yasser Arafat, chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organization and the head of Fatah, plotted and supervised the 1973 murders of three diplomats: two from the United States (Cleo Noel and George Curtis), and one from Belgium (Guy Eid) who was apparently in the wrong place at the wrong time, in Khartoum, The Sudan.

Specifically, from that document:

The Khartoum operation was planned and carried out with the full knowledge and personal approval of Yasir Arafat ..... Fatah representatives based in Khartoum partcipated in the attack, using a Fatah vehicle to transport the terrorists to the Saudi Arabian Embassy.

..... The terrorists extended their deadlines three times, but when they became convinced that their demands would not be met and after they reportedly had received orders from Fatah headquarters in Beirut, they killed the two United States officials and the Belgian Charge.

The document was declassified and apparently went unnoticed until very recently, when James J. Welsh, who was at the time the National Security Agency's Palestinian analyst, found it in what WND called "a routine Internet search."

Arafat won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1994.

How much different would the history of the Middle East be if the world had been forced to face the reality of Arafat's involvement in the murder of American diplomats over 30 years ago?

Formerly Mainstream Media interest in this story is currently non-existent, as a Google News search on "Arafat 1973" (without quotes, with a date range of Dec. 25 to 28) shows.

Cross-posted at


UPDATE, 10 AM: Here at their web site is the State Department's undated "Summary." The document itself was released on May 4 of this year. Daled Amos sent me an e-mail this morning letting me know that he blogged on this in mid-June, pegging off this very long Powerline post where the doc release was noted and excerpted. Though some could have taken place, I have found no formerly Mainstream Media coverage from that period either.

Foreign Policy Middle East Israel/Palestine