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Thursday, April 28, 2011

Surprise: Hamas says 'interim government' cannot work on peace with Israel

I'm sure you'll all be shocked - just shocked - to hear that Hamas 'foreign minister' Mahmoud al-Zahar has announced that the 'Palestinian' 'interim government' cannot work on peace with Israel.
Zahar said Wednesday's deal covered five points, including combining security forces and forming a government made up of "nationalist figures".

"Our program does not include negotiations with Israel or recognizing it," Zahhar said in Cairo. "It will not be possible for the interim national government to participate or bet on or work on the peace process with Israel."
They also thumbed their noses at Prime Minister Netanyahu's ultimatum that the 'Palestinian Authority' has to choose between Hamas and peace with Israel.
Both Hamas and Fatah, however, dismissed Netanyahu's ultimatum. "Abu Mazen (Abbas) has said we want Hamas, Hamas is part of the Palestinian national fabric," Fatah's Ahmad said.

Hamas spokesman Taher al-Noono also said Israel was "not concerned with Palestinian reconciliation and has been an impediment to it in the past".
Haaretz columnist Aluf Benn is beside himself over what he regards as Prime Minister Netanyahu's good fortune.
The Palestinian reconciliation deal, if realized, heralds the takeover of the Palestinian national movement by Hamas, providing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with an escape from the rut he has fallen into because of the deadlock in the peace process. This is just what Netanyahu needed to unite the Israeli public behind him and thwart international pressure to withdraw from the West Bank.

A "unity government" or "technocracy" - as the Palestinians called it yesterday - is a nice but empty headline. In real life, there is no a-political rule and there are no egalitarian governments. There is always a ruling side with partners being dragged behind it. The stronger, more organized, better armed side, i.e. Hamas, will rule the Palestinian Authority and the PLO, not "technocrats." This is how the communists took over East Europe after WWII.

As for Netanyahu, the Palestinian reconciliation deal justifies his warnings that any territory vacated by Israel will fall into Hamas hands and become an Iranian terror base. It strikes any proposals for interim agreements and unilateral withdrawals, intended to appease the world, off the agenda.

Only two options remain - that Israeli surrender to the expected UN resolution on Palestinian independence and agreement to withdraw to the Green Line or entrench itself in its current position.

Netanyahu is expected to choose the second alternative. Israel is being attacked with missiles on Ashdod and on school buses and explosions in the gas pipe from Egypt, he will say.

There is nothing like a sense of emergency and siege to unite the Israeli public behind his government. When the third intifada erupts, Netanyahu will be able to portray Israel's war against it as a war against Iran and its satellites and neutralize criticism from the left about missed opportunities for peace in the past two years.
Benn isn't the only one weeping over the 'Palestinian' move. Here are the more moderate Avi Issacharoff and Amos Harel.
Despite the harsh response, the reconciliation may well work to Israel's advantage. Israel has been struggling internationally, as more than 100 nations prepare to recognize a unilaterally declared Palestinian state in the UN in September. Renewed relations between Hamas and Fatah, however limited, could shed a different light on Abbas' intentions, and Netanyahu, who is due to speak before both houses of Congress next month, will be able to present the agreement as proof that Abbas doesn't really want peace.

If the reconciliation does indeed go through, Israel's immediate concern would be the future of security coordination with the PA. A Hamas foothold, however limited, would mean that Israel could not share intelligence with the PA.

Between the Hamas election victory in January 2006 and the Hamas coup in Gaza in mid-2007, Israel had been engaged in complex maneuvers to produce at least the appearance of completely excluding Hamas from any security arrangements.

If the reconciliation is accompanied by a mass release of Hamas prisoners from West Bank prisons, this would further increase the risk of terror attacks.
What none of these columnists can admit is that the key here is not that the move 'allows Netanyahu' to portray Abu Bluff as not wanting peace. Rather it proves that Netanyahu was correct all along. Hopefully, the IDF will take off the gloves and use an iron fist to ensure that terror attacks from and in Judea and Samaria don't happen. The 'peace process' is over. Oslo is over.

What could go wrong?

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At 2:43 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

The Palestinian announcement gives a huge boost to Danny Danon's initiative to annex Yesha.

Before the development yesterday, I've have rated the prospect of its being adopted between slim and none.

Now thanks to the PA's decision to choose peace with Hamas over peace with Israel, it has an excellent of passing in the Knesset summer session.

The Palestinians got their reconciliation but in the process, they have snatched defeat from the jaws of from the jaws of victory.

It couldn't happen to a more deserving bunch of folks.


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