His critics are already seeking to portray the "Palestine Papers" as evidence that the president of the Palestinian Authority is little more than an Israeli shill.
Since Bill Clinton failed to push through a peace deal at Camp David in 2000, a consensus of the general way in which a compromise can be struck has been developed and broadly accepted by moderate voices on both sides.
These "Clinton Parameters", now considered to be the basis of any peace deal, address all the most problematic issues dividing the Israeli and Palestinian leaderships.
On East Jerusalem, the parameters propose that Jewish settlements built on land in the city captured by Israel in 1967 become part of an Israeli state. Arab suburbs would become part of a new state of Palestine.
The leaked documents show that, as one would expect, Palestinian negotiators sought to find ways of making this work.
For critics of Mr Abbas this might seem like betrayal, but most Palestinians are aware that discussions of such a nature have been under way for many years.
Indeed, it would have been much more of a surprise if it had emerged that the Palestinian leadership had offered no ideas on how to divide East Jerusalem.
Some Palestinians may be mortified by the friendly tone struck towards Israeli officials by a number of their leaders. But the papers show that while Palestinian leaders were prepared to compromise on some issues, they were more unyielding on others.
In 2008, when Mr Abbas and Ehud Olmert, the former Israeli prime minister, came close to reaching a peace deal, Palestinian negotiators offered to allow Israel to annex all but one of the Jewish settlements in East Jerusalem, the papers show.
The negotiators held out on Har Homa, a settlement that has stirred particular emotions because it was built five years after the Oslo peace accords of 1993, a treaty that many Palestinians believed marked the end of settlement construction.
At the same time, the negotiators also refused to cede some of the major Jewish settlements in the West Bank that Israel had proposed annexing in exchange for land elsewhere.
Israel rejected the Palestinian offer, presumably because it fell short of what was contained within the Clinton Parameters.
While the "Palestine Papers" are extensive – they run to nearly 1,700 files – they are far from exhaustive, and it is unclear whether there were further discussions and amendments to the offer on East Jerusalem.
So far, the documents amount to an interesting record of recent history. Critics will use them to attack Mr Abbas, but the Palestinian leader can also use the papers to answer his detractors on the Israeli right who claim he was never a serious "partner for peace".
For the moment – as much as his critics will try to claim otherwise – there should be little of sufficient substance to destroy Mr Abbas.
But over the next few days, al-Jazeera, the Qatar-based television station behind the leaks, is expected to publish more of the secret documents it has received.
Touching on what Mr Abbas knew in advance about Israel's war in Gaza in 2008 and the close co-operation between Palestinian and Israeli security forces in the West Bank, these could potentially be much more damaging.
Many Palestinians in the West Bank are already disgruntled with the Abbas administration, not least because it has failed to deliver a peace deal with Israel.
Further revelations could potentially bring them onto the streets, presenting Mr Abbas – who will have been keeping a nervous eye on recent developments in Tunisia – with a major challenge.
As for the peace process itself, many Palestinians had already lost interest after the collapse of the latest round of negotiations late last year. The leaked documents will only serve as a reaffirmation of their view that negotiating with Israel is an exercise in futility.