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Debate: Hamas vs. Fatah

Posted on Apr 3, 2010

Many in the Western media present Palestinian politics as a primitive, suicide-bombing expression of anti-Israeli anger. But nothing could be further from the truth. Watch a long-form debate between the two largest political factions, Fatah and Hamas, as they discuss reconciliation and the future of resistance.

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By Shingo, April 10, 2010 at 7:28 pm Link to this comment

Yes Calabashe,

It appears that Israel is finally imposing the final solution for the Arabs.  They know there is no point pretending that they want peace anymore, so the gloves have come off.

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By Calabashe, April 10, 2010 at 6:29 pm Link to this comment

According to the link below, Ha’aretz reports West Bank Palestinians will now be subject to deportation - a misnomer since one cannot be deported, only exiled, from one’s homeland.

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By Calabashe, April 8, 2010 at 5:31 pm Link to this comment

Thanx, Shingo.

The point I was making is that Israeli incumbency is NOT a function of the electorate. Only once have Israeli actually voted for a candidate for an office. That was Sharon, his first Premiership, circa 2000. The law was changed back, after that one cycle, to party platforms and lists beholding to the Party Leader who maintains his position through favors and loyalty or scandal for removal.

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By Shingo, April 8, 2010 at 5:16 pm Link to this comment


Geat post.

Your point about the incumbency in Israeli politics reminds me of a point raised by Michael Moore once, when he revealed that the incumbency in Congress is something like 90%, which in ironies of all ironies, is higher than it ever was in the Kremlin.

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By Shingo, April 8, 2010 at 5:09 pm Link to this comment


You’re drawing a distinction without a difference based on the assumption that religious discrimination is somehow less destructive than biological discriminationj.  Extreme Zionists have gone out of their way to reject any suggestions of genetic links between Israelis and Palestinians, so they clearly would like there to be a biological difference between Jews and Arabs, whether or not one exists. Furthermore, as I’ve said earlier, there is now a strong push to discourage intermarrying with gentiles, which wouldn’t be the case if the discrimination was based purely on religious grounds.

The other problem with your definition of Nazism is that it’s greatest proponents, beginning with Hitler himself, did not satisfy the genetic aspirations of Nazism, so ironically, Nazism was forced to accommodated the lesser mortals.  The reality is that the foundations of Nazism (as you describe them) were never realized or even implemented. It wasn’t there then either….

The reality is that Israel is headed towards the rejection of the democratic political system, because by excluding non Jews from the political system, it ceases to be a democracy.  Barak said recently that unless there is a 2 state settlement, Israel will either become a democratic secular state or an apartheid Jewish state. Henry Siegman, formerly national director of the American Jewish Congress, writes: ‘‘As a result Israel has crossed the threshold from ‘the only democracy in the Middle East’ to the only
apartheid regime in the Western world.’’

“anti-intellectualism is about being sceptical of theorising and thoughtfulness - a dislike of scholars/universities and the ideas of reflection.”

Precisely. The Israeli prime minister bases Israel’s claim to the land on beliefs based on the unverified Bible, in spite of the fact that no history, archaeology or written record, reports any King David attached to a capital city called Jerusalem.

Netanyahu’s recent speech to AIPAC was filled with allusions to racial purity, irredentism and virulent nationalism, transgressing 3000 years. So tell me, Tom, didn’t the western nations fight   Nazi Germany that professed similar claims?

And in case you want to dismiss Bibbi’s ideals as some aberration unique to the current right wing government, I would direct your attention to the previous Israeli Prime Minister, who in a speech to the House Of Congress, affirmed Israel’s eternal right to all the land from the Jordan River to the Sea.

Now explain to me where this belief comes from if not from providence?  The government is already down on human rights groups.  The suppression of the press in Israel is becoming increasingly regular, so the backlash against the academic elite is innevitable.

With alldue respects Tom, I’d say that your problem is that you have an ideological blind spot that has convinced you that comparisons to Nazi German are sacrosanct and never to never to cited, no matter how obvious they may be.

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By Calabashe, April 8, 2010 at 3:47 pm Link to this comment

I’ll give you that pure National Socialism incorporated racial/biological ideology. Isn’t ultra-nationalism, religious fundamentalism or whatever a kin to racial ideology? The idea that we are better than you because of some grand scheme … be it physical or esoteric? Neo-Zionist may not represent the entire population of Israel but they have a firm hand, an unbreakable grip so far, in ruling the state.

Watered down? I’d hardly call regular pre-dawn raids to silence intellectuals and political moderates as being watered down. Israel holds some 10,000 prisoners, most on visa violation type charges, many for political activities as benign as women’s advocacy issues. Unless you are a wealthy intellectual with uber-reputation like Dr. Ashrawi, likely you’ve been inside Israeli jails on other than holiday. Never mind the 1.4 million largely unarmed in Gaza Ghetto/Prison camp who are regularly murdered/martyred for political occupation propaganda. Granted there are no ovens in Gaza but watered down? Na-uh!

Israeli democracy? That’s an oxymoron. Although there is some plurality with domestic issues, there is no democratic mechanism for removing a politician. MK’s serve at the pleasure of the Party Leader. Granted none wear a nose-stash. It seems the most popular way of replacing a politician is by scandal. Governments are also brought down using scandal as was, Barak’s and Netanyahu’s previous – but those guys are Party Leaders and don’t really fall far. They just switch portfolios and return to work every Sunday morning like normal. IMHO, that’s a pretty corrupt system, as was National Socialism. Even the Soviets offered from a choice of representative, of course they all had to be of the CPSU but a choice none-the-less. In Israel the only choice is between party platforms – ideology on just how cruel to be to the Palestinians.

I remember during Sharon’s “in-between government,” acting Foreign Minister Bibi Netanyahu gave an interview to the Jerusalem Post in which he admitted, as SOP, using so-called Jewish-American Friendship groups as a means of assuring US policy was in line with [Neo-Zionist] policy. Sharon had to take Bibi to the woodshed because of that. Just one of thing I came to admire about Sharon.

The Neo-Zionists are somewhat pluralistic whereas the Nazis were not. IMHO that’s not enough of a distinction especially when the Neo-Zionists have adopted the Nazi playbook on Jews for the Palestinians – short of the death camps. I stand by that.

Actually Israel was founded as a socialist state. Not communist, although what is a kibbutz if not a collective farm? The system was based more on the Swedish model. It’s interesting to note their government “beast” (presidential) vehicles are armored Volvos. Sharon’s Finance Minister Netanyahu ridded the state of as much of its socialist vestiges as possible within the last 10 years.

Colonial settlers DO receive tax breaks and a host of incentives as well as subsidies for living across the Green Line.

Stifling intellectualism or scientific study? Neither the Nazis nor the Neo-Zionist have done that so long as the work concurs or is not opposed to government policy. They love Alan Dershowitz and all his poor, poor Israel books. I’ll give you more stifling with the Nazis but try disagreeing with Neo-Zionist policy. Suddenly you are branded anti-Semitic or self-loathing. That’s a key similarity and it IS the whole policy of the [Neo-Zionist] State.

A few years back Ha’aretz allowed a blog asking why so many were using the Nazi comparison. The bottom line: ‘Cause the Neo-Zionist are acting like Nazis more than most care to admit. It’s even more difficult now to over look that with a say it isn’t so because it is so.

Hope TD runs an article suggesting the White House is considering “imposing,” if the right word, a peace plan. Got a lot of background with that.

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By tom sawyer, April 7, 2010 at 10:18 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Interesting. you say Israel is specifically a racial community? Indeed, a racial community would be ONE attribute that would indicate a Nazi state. but this is important to remember - the odd watered down similarity here and there doesn’t allow you to apply the slogan. Even if we were to take this ‘racial community’ attribute - do the neo-Zionists (who don’t represent the entire Israeli nation), see a BIOLOGICAL difference between Jews and Arabs? Do they see a hierarchy, not on religious terms and what you believe in, but on biological terms? I don’t think so. call them ultra-nationalist, religious fundamentalists or whatever, but a difference on the biological level is integral to the foundations of Nazism. If it isn’t there then….

something else that has to be stressed is that Nazism was/is the rejection of the democratic political system with a want to replace it with one of anti-democracy. Those involved in Knesset don’t see democracy as corrupt and divisive, i’m afraid.

“Is Israel not a socialist state, with a government that provides huge subsidies to immigrants of a particular persuasion to settle there?”, simply…, no. not really the time for a debate over what Socialism is or isn’t - suffice to say it is a little more than that. Also, i said anti-marxist, not anti-socialist. key differences there.

“Is Zionism not the very personification of anti-intellectualism?” Is it? anti-intellectualism is about being sceptical of theorising and thoughtfulness - a dislike of scholars/universities and the ideas of reflection. Perhaps there some without with neo-Zionist circles that subscribe to this, but again it is not the wholly policy of the Jewish state.

the similarities are there if you want them, of course. but they have poor foundations.

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By Shingo, April 6, 2010 at 5:51 pm Link to this comment

tom sawyer,
It’s hard to read your post without being blinded by the irony.
Is Israel not becoming ultra-nationalist and specifically a racial community?  How else do you explain a state that demands to be recognized as a Jewish state?  How else do you explain a government that endorses the policy of discouraging intermarrying?
Does Israel not promote an organic perspective of the nation?  What do you call it when the historical and biblical connection to the land becomes it’s raison d’etre?
Israel may not yet be a leadership cult, but the right has become hijacked by the religious extremists and is moving further in that direction.
Israel is certainty anti-pluralistic and only democratic if you happen to belong to an ethnic group.
Is Israel not an extremely strong state, given it’s de facto backing (financial, military and diplomatic) from the US?
Is Israel not a socialist state, with a government that provides huge subsidies to immigrants of a particular persuasion to settle there? 
Is Israel not a militaristic state that is cracking down on human rights groups and the media?
Is Zionism not the very personification of anti-intellectualism?
I’d say that the similarities are striking and unavoidable.

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By Calabashe, April 6, 2010 at 5:27 pm Link to this comment

Thanx Tom, I too appreciate academic exchanges, esoteric conversations concerning existential matters. My friend and I also enjoyed engaging so.

“Nazi Germany was a fascist state - as in, authoritarian; ultra-nationalist (specifically a racial community); with a organic perspective of the nation; a belief in racial hierarchy …”

Yes to all of the above, my side, except that the Nazis did have a bigger shit list. The Neo-Zionist shit list is much shorter, Arabs – especially Palestinians who, as a matter of gov. policy, were declared non-existent by Golda. For too long a time anyone disagreeing with gov policy was labeled either anti-Semitic or self-loathing be you Ashkenazi, Shephardi or Goy.

“… a leadership cult; strictly anti-democratic and anti-pluralistic; … anti-capitalist and anti-Marxist; corporatist; and anti-intellectualism.”

You get a couple of half-points here. There is Left and Right domestic pluralism working within a non-representative democracy. MKs and party hacks have to blow the party leader (figuratively) in order for the chance to play and the best BJs seem to be from those subscribing to the cult of Zionism or Neo-Zionism specifically. Consider that Ehud Barak’s gov. was brought down by the Neo-Zionists because of the so-called 95% deal and that Barak was considered rehabilitated only after adopting a harder-line stance. A major difference is that Neo-Zionism rule is more collective yet still highly access controlled.

I’ll take “an extremely strong state (in streamlined institutions/law and order sense.)” too. Consider the burning of land records that the Turks graciously replaced. Try being a Palestinian in East Jerusalem wanting a building permit or to cast a vote. The duel justice system is more apartheid than Nazi as are Israeli only roads in the territory, one can argue, but none-the-less similar in application. Consider Colonial instigators are rarely brought to justice while their Palestinian neighbors are routinely rounded up in Gestapo type pre-dawn raids on trumped up charges. SOP in the territory. Too many elections are based upon who last beat up the Palestinians best.

The yellow star isn’t necessary, green license plates are already instituted.

There may be some rather subtle political definition differences that I’ll acknowledge between the Neo-Zionists and the Nazis but the everyday tactics, practices and results are too overwhelmingly similar and compareable to ignore. Consider Lebensraum as in the Sudetenland (West Bank) and the Gaza Ghetto as shamefully obvious. I stand by my original words.

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By Shingo, April 6, 2010 at 3:01 pm Link to this comment

“Thank you for your advice, Tom. I agree that such comparisons are inflammatory but they are, unfortunately, accurate.”

Exactly.  While I agree that the Nazi term is used gratuitously, the comparison with the Warsaw Ghetto is not sacrosanct.

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By tom sawyer, April 6, 2010 at 2:47 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I appreciate your reply, but i still have reservations. Nazi Germany was a fascist state - as in, authoritarian; ultra-nationalist (specifically a racial community); with a organic perspective of the nation; a belief in racial hierarchy; a leadership cult; strictly anti-democratic and anti-pluralistic; an extremely strong state (in streamlined institutions/law and order sense); anti-capitalist and anti-Marxist; corporatist; and anti-intellectualism. as you can see, it is/was a pretty incoherent and difficult concept - and while a shopping list of ingredients probably simplifies this, it is still important to understand how you cannot really compare that degree of national socialism and fascism in Nazi Germany to the behaviour of Israel (and call a comparison ‘accurate’) - those that do perhaps don’t have a deep enough theoretical understanding? not meaning to disregard or belittle your view - please feel free to display evidence of Israeli government policy and action that tallies with the checklist above!

While neo-Zionism does have elements of something that could be described as a ‘racially charged vision’ or ‘psychologically stunted idea of hierarchy’ in that they believe Arabs and Jews are unable to live together, are these for purely biological reasons? the israeli government also isn’t an homogeneous block - you only have to see the difference in attitudes between Labour and Likud for this (which consequently shows Israel is missing a main principle to call it Nazi).

An interesting discussion though!

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By Calabashe, April 6, 2010 at 1:51 pm Link to this comment

Thank you for your advice, Tom. I agree that such comparisons are inflammatory but they are, unfortunately, accurate.

Sealed off Gaza is no better than the Warsaw Ghetto only times bigger. Prior to Disengagement in the West Bank, Old men were forced to strip naked and crawl on their bellies through internal checkpoints just after a 23/7 lock-down lasting for months, when water, electricity, food and sanitation were cut off. For a time the IOF used indelible ink-pens to give Palestinians numbers, on their arms or foreheads, for tracking.

During the West Bank incursion, the IOF took particular interest in bank safety-deposit boxes in general and land records offices as well as what could be carried off (TV sets, electronics, jewelry, etc) from noncombatant private homes. The Neo-Zionist IOF went so far as to stage terror attacks and similar in order to maintain public opinion. Joseph’s Tomb for example.

I’m not saying the Palestinian militias were the good guys either. Praise the God-thing the suicide bombing against civilians has been abated.

Now, in Gaza, Abrams, F-15s and tonnage is used against over-grown bottle rockets. I disagree with you statement:

“… it is not a biologically fueled, racially charged, vision, based on a psychologically stunted idea of hierarchy.”

I believe that is exactly what Neo-Zionism is and I believe that is exactly what National Socialism was.

Israel’s form of government does not allow for the removal of any particular politician, except by scandal. The Neo-Zionists, across party lines, are as firmly entrenched as were the National Socialist, although there is more pretense of democracy in Israel. The mirroring is very disturbing.

You’d be surprise to whom those exact words of comparison were first spoken, a well known American Jew. It seems I’m more public this time around, at least for now, and yes; there are responsibilities in what is written.

One should not call a Jew a Nazi - lightly.

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By tom sawyer, April 6, 2010 at 8:33 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

For the attention of Calabashe:

“Palestinians, mostly Gazans now, are being treated as bad or worse than European Jews under National Socialism - short of the death camps.”

please don’t make easy throw-away statements like this. Although those living in the Gaza strip are dealing with huge problems, many inflicted upon them by Israel, this demonic comparison with Nazi Germany is a very inflammatory piece of commentary that helps neither of the parties. Gaza is a humanitarian nightmare, yes, but it is not a biologically fueled, racially charged, vision, based on a psychologically stunted idea of hierarchy. Beware getting ‘carried away’ with yourself.

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By Calabashe, April 5, 2010 at 10:09 am Link to this comment

The Palestinian street has long wanted Fatah’s old Tunisians to step aside. Their hold is entrenched and corrupt and has lasted more than 40 years. Yasser Arafat was never able to make the transition from movement chair to statesman. His cronies have gotten rich from foreign aid.

Hamas is so far Left that they’re almost Right and just a tad more tolerable than the Bolsheviks were.

Neo-Zionist Israel has long used pre-dawn Gestapo type raids to remove, mostly detain albeit long-term, political moderates. With voices of reason effectively silenced and Fatah and Hamas locked in a king of the hill battle, The Neo-Zionists say there is no partner for peace and press ahead with colonial expansion in the West Bank as if there is no such thing as Palestinians.

Gaza is such a tragedy. It is the largest open-air prison/ghetto on the planet, now more infamous than the Warsaw Ghetto of last century.

With Gaza it’s difficult not see the abused child has grown to become an abusive adult who threatens world stability. Palestinians, mostly Gazans now, are being treated as bad or worse than European Jews under National Socialism - short of the death camps.

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By Shingo, April 5, 2010 at 5:22 am Link to this comment

The audience, Palestinians who do not live in Gaza or the West Bank, expressed the same confidence in the leadership as we see in the US when it comes to support for Congress. The vote was meaningless i many respects.  Fatah’s popularity could not be any ower.  It would have been far more meaningful for the vote to have been divided between confidence in Fatah vs Hamas.

The moderator, was largely patronising and deliberately left out the most important parts of the story, the occupation or the fact that the occupation has continued because of US support for it.  He was deliberately framing this debate to suggest that the plight of the Palestinians was a matter of failed leadership alone,  which is pure Israeli propaganda.

He spoke about the suffering of the Palestinian people, but as the Hamas representative pointed out, couldn’t bring himself to mention the occupation and the 3 year old siege on Gaza.  The Hamas representative hit the nail on the head, when he pointed out that the West were deliberately trying to misrepresent the struggle as one between the Israelis and the Palestinians to one between Fatah and Hamas.

Hamas demonstrated that they are capable to sticking to a peaceful agreement by observing the 2008 ceasefire until Israel violated it.  Tzipi Livni said that a long ceasefire with Hamas was not in Israel’s strategic interests.  Thus peace is not in Israel’s strategic interests.  Violence is.

Neither group said they would continue the violence, only that they would not forgo their right to resist occupation militarily.  The same occupation which is imposed with violence.

The moderator made no mention of the fact that the 2007 conflict was an attempted coup by Fatah to overthrow Hamas after Hamas ‘election victory.  The coup was sponsored and backed by the US and Israel.

It was reported by Vanity Fair:

Interestingly, this took place just before Fatah and Hamas were due to hold unity talks.  Fatah were ordered by his puppet masters in Tel Aviv and Washington to withdraw from the unity talks and launch the attack on Hamas.  Fatah and Hamas a telling the truth when they blame the US and Israel for undermining the accord.  The last thing the US and Israel was is for a unity government emerge.  Unity government would be a much more difficult proposition to for Israel to negotiate with, as opposed to a weak and isolated Fatah group, which they could get their way with.
Fatah have lost legitimacy long ago. Abu Mazen (aka Mahmoud Abbas) ceased to be an elected leader over a year ago.

The demands by Fatah for pre conditions to be accepted by Hamas has Washington’s finger prints all over it.  Pre conditions and negotiations are a contradiction in terms because they are a means by which one side asserts it legitimacy over the other.

As one of the audience members pointed out, Fatah have not only failed to produce any results while negotiating on behalf of the Palestinians, but revealed themselves as Israeli puppets when Abbas refused to endorse the Goldstone Report from the UN.

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By Shenonymous, April 5, 2010 at 3:31 am Link to this comment

The audience, mostly students, the youth of the Palestinians, expressed
their no confidence soundly, 89% to 11% in the present leadership of
both Hamas and Fatah.  The two groups of leaders who represented
both Hamas and Fatah said they would continue the violence, but
clearly that is not what the people wanted to hear.  The problem of
outside interference by Israel, America on Fatah’s side, and Iran and
Syria on Hamas side was brought up but neither side would forgo their
continued respective interference.  The people want the present leaders
to step down, Hamas said no, Fatah said students need then to take the
responsibility.  So what has been achieved by this meeting?  Nothing.  It
was interesting though that the people of the world was able to see
first hand the minds of these two groups.  Shall we look forward to
next month’s meeting to see if any progress has been made? 

The occupation of Israel in the Palestinian territories is the one loud
block to a solution.  That is the problem that needs to be solved.  Is it
by continued violence as Hamas and Fatah expressed?  Or is it by
negotiations that they both mouth off about but are not sincere since
the disagreements between the two groups have not been clearly
exposed in order to address them?  It is important that the youth want
a change in what they perceive has been no progress in more than 60
years.  They are the future and maybe the only hope left.

The moderator was insightful in saying it is a blame game all around. 
The student questioners were united that a change is needed in the
leadership thinking.  But they didn’t say exactly what direction that
change ought to go that would lead to a real solution.

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By Jules, April 5, 2010 at 1:25 am Link to this comment
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Thanks for the informative commentary. Why do we never read stuff like this in the mainstream media?

I’m very naive about all this, but I’d like to know:

- do the other Arab nations help the Palestinian people in any way, or do they largely ignore their plight?  How about the EU?  Who in the world aids the Palestinians and how?

- if the building of new settlements is in violation of international law, how can the Israelis continue to build?  How and why do they get away with it?

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By Calabashe, April 3, 2010 at 11:20 pm Link to this comment

There’s truth in what you say, PT. US is committed to legitimate Israeli security. It was a very hostile neighborhood for a long time. ‘Course now-a-days it’s Israel being the most hostile.

I was encouraged by Obama’s snub to Bibi. It wouldn’t surprise me to learn the check is a lot less than blank and it’s about time.

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By P. T., April 3, 2010 at 11:06 pm Link to this comment

What Hamas is not willing to do is to make unilateral concessions or to renounce the right under international law to resist occupation.  (And Israel has never renounced violence or even terrorism.)

The biggest obstacle to peace is the U.S., which finances the occupation.

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By Calabashe, April 3, 2010 at 10:11 pm Link to this comment

Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, Hamas spiritual leader said, shortly before his assassination that a permanent peace, albeit a la Korea, could be had if Israel recognized a Palestinian State based on the pre’67 demarcation.

He went on to say the Hamas Charter - a racist document - (Look there is a Jew behind this rock. Come hither brother and kill him) would have to be reviewed by a future generation. Although there is some light between Yassin’s words and the Western position, Hamas is not willing to negotiate mutually acceptable wording. The West has also changed renouncing terrorism to renouncing violence.

It seems Hamas prefers the Likud methods of blame game, issue diverting and foot-dragging, which is why; IMHO, Hamas is the second biggest stumbling bloc to peace behind Likud and the smaller Neo-Zionist Parties.

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By P. T., April 3, 2010 at 9:47 pm Link to this comment

The moderator seemed to spend most of his time blaming the Palestinian leaders, as if they were operating without outside backers making demands. What needed to be explored was how reconciliation can be achieved if the United States is going to have a veto over that to which Fatah will be allowed to agree. The U.S. position is essentially that there can be no deal unless Hamas surrenders. Hamas will? not agree to that.

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By Calabashe, April 3, 2010 at 9:46 pm Link to this comment

Very informative and chocked full of subtleties easily missed if not properly informed.

Hamas and Fatah, the Democrats and Republicans of Palestine. (You think we’ve got it bad, huh?)

The hierarchy of political Palestine is a bit confusing. At the top is the PLO, an umbrella org established to help coordinate liberation activities between the member factions. In earlier days terrorist factions such as Black September were also a part of the PLO.

Circa 1988, in seeking international recognition and cooperation as the true voice of Palestine, PLO Chairman Arafat was required to renounce terrorism (especially against civilians) and to recognize Israel’s right to exist as the Jewish homeland.

Fatah is the largest faction within the PLO. Hamas has never been a part of the PLO. The so-called Old Guard or Tunisians (who were with Arafat at least since Tunis and earlier) have been entrenched for far too long and have become corrupt especially with Palestinian finances.

Fatah on the street have long called for new leadership in the party, which might be best served by the likes of Marwan Barghouti, who has succeeded in deals with Hamas and other non-PLO factions, particularly on unity issues. Unfortunately Barghouti is serving 5 life sentences in an Israeli jail for allegedly masterminding terrorism. It’s actually political. DUH!?! Zionist Israel has a history of jailing moderates of either faction, Fatah or Hamas, which helps to keep political Palestine radical and unstable. “We have no partner for peace.”

The street has long appreciated Hamas humanitarian work and the concept of armed resistance since agreement talks are painfully slow and succeed only when the GOI is dragged to the table kicking and screaming. Consider also Zionist continued colonial expansion clearly designed to challenge the viability of a Palestinian state. All in violation of international law.

During the last election, about 5 yrs ago, the street decided to protest Old Guard (Fatah) corruption and gave political Hamas the right to form the gov. This caused a dilemma, particularly in the West since Hamas was not under the PLO umbrella. The West offered Hamas the same conditions offered to Arafat plus accepting the agreements already concluded over the years. Hamas has been dancing around when in reality, they are not completely opposed to such terms. It was hoped Hamas would matriculate and see the wisdom of interacting with the West as well.

Instead Hamas got drunk on power and strengthened its ties with Iran who has an Israeli agenda with little regard for the Palestinian people. Iran and Israel are clear existential threats to each other.

Since suicide bombs against civilians has been pretty much checked, Hamas armed resistance has been limited to overgrown bottle rockets called Qassams, which are more nuisance than deadly. Hamas did have a shining military moment with the capture of Gilad Shalit in an operation that was brilliant and legitimate by international standards.

It is possible political Palestine has not matriculated enough to govern a state but such should not be a Zionist excuse for further colonial expansion. Jordan and Egypt may need to assume a protectorate role until political Palestine is ready to fully self-govern.

There are other nuances and issues limited by space here. So ask if you’d like.

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