Palestinians elect even worse jackals
By Carol Devine-Molin
The long-standing monopoly of power held by Fatah among Palestinians has come to an end. In what repeatedly has been described as a geopolitical "earthquake" or "bombshell", Hamas has won 74 of the 132 seats in the Palestinian assembly and the support of four independent MPs, which has catapulted the Islamist terror organization to the helm of the Palestinian Authority. The equation has been re-jiggered in the Middle East : War is now a fait accompli. It's only a matter of time. At some point, the Israelis will have no other choice, but to smash the Hamas-led Palestinian terror state in its midst.
That said, a change in government is not all that surprising, given Palestinian disgust with the rampant corruption and cronyism of the Fatah Party, a vestige of the Yasser Arafat era. But there's so much more behind the victory that was enthusiastically handed to Hamas. One of the key questions we should be asking is this: How did Hamas curry favor with the Palestinian populace? Hamas is very much an enigma to the western world, representing a combined social, political, religious and terrorist movement in the Middle East . There's no denying that Hamas has been treating the Palestinians charitably through an extensive network of social services, while simultaneously perpetrating terror strikes upon Israel , most notably suicide bombings that target Israeli civilians.
Unfortunately, there's been broad approval for suicide bombings among the Palestinian populace, as demonstrated by ongoing surveys. In a recent piece by Ariel Natan Pasko for "Israel Insider", it's summed up quite nicely: "A ccording to Khalil Shikaki, the director of the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research, opinion polls show that Palestinians have overwhelmingly supported bombings in Israel over the last several years, from about 50-80%, recently down to the high-30s due to weariness from Israel's anti-terror campaign." In a similar fashion, the Palestinians have spoken volumes by installing a Hamas-led government, reinforcing how radicalized they've become.
In effect, the Palestinians have created a terror state right in Israel 's backyard, a perfect launching pad to do Israel dirty. And, of course, the Palestinian electorate has generated an international tsunami by its political actions. Have the Palestinians cast caution to the wind? It would be fair to say that the Palestinians have placed themselves in a precarious situation since they've been reliant on beaucoup bucks (hundreds of millions of dollars) in foreign aid from the US , EU, Japan and other states in Asia and the Islamic world. Furthermore, under present circumstances, it's doubtful that Israel will continue to forward tax revenues owed to the Palestinian Authority.
President Bush and State Department officials have made it clear that Hamas must immediately disarm, renounce terrorism, and recognize the state of Israel , or experience profound repercussions. It would be ludicrous to think that the US has any intention of providing monies to a terror organization and a terror state. In a recently televised interview with CBS, President Bush underscored that "we won't be providing help to a government" that's bent on destroying Israel . Similarly, German Chancellor Angela Merkel indicated that the EU would not be in a position to fund a Hamas-led government if it remains committed to violence. Hamas appears to be in a quandary. Or is it? Perhaps Hamas has other ideas of a fiscal nature in mind. It's probably considering raising funds from nations across the Islamic world on "humanitarian grounds". Surely, lawless regimes such as Syria and Iran , with whom Hamas is closely linked, would provide some assistance.
Barring a minor miracle, it appears that the Palestinians' virulent hatred of Israel is not going to improve any time soon. No one should plan on a Hamas-led Palestinian Authority morphing and moderating. By its own repeated declarations, Hamas is very much a terrorist organization dedicated to the obliteration of Israel . The obvious problem, vis-à-vis the so-called peace process, is this: How can Hamas possibly partner with Israel for the purpose of bringing about an end to the Israeli-Palestinian strife? As it stands now, no "fair broker" – no viable interlocutor for peace – is expected to emerge from Hamas. The violent activities of the Hamas militant wing aren't consonant with the two-state solution proffered by the US-backed "road map" for peace. An unrepentant and unreformed Hamas at the vanguard of the Palestinian Authority will only lead us down the road to perdition.
Moreover, Hamas leaders certainly don't intend to disband the militant wing – the terror arm – of their organization. On the contrary, a Hamas spokesman indicated that they're poised to expand their armed factions for the purpose of developing a Palestinian army to defend against "aggression". That's positively insane, and constitutes reason enough for preemptive strikes on the part of Israel . Undoubtedly, a Palestinian army at the disposal of Hamas would be utilized to attack Israel . What Kool-Aid has this Hamas-Palestinian crowd been drinking? It's escalating the fight against the West in tandem with Osama bin Laden and the president of Iran . The radical Islamists are on a roll.
And whether they realize it or not, this crazed bunch has just re-elected their nemesis, Likud's Benjamin Netanyahu, as Prime Minister of Israel. Netanyahu fully grasps the significant peril posed by the new "Hamastan", as he puts it. Watch out for Bibi!
Carol Devine-Molin is a regular contributor to several online magazines.
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