Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Hamas declares war on America

Today, Hamas' military wing called on Muslims around the world to attack American targets.

"America is offering political, financial and logistic cover for the Zionist occupation crimes, and it is responsible for the Beit Hanoun massacre [an apparent misfiring of an IDF artillery shell in the Gaza Strip.] Therefore, the people and the nation all over the globe are required to teach the American enemy tough lessons," Hamas said in a press release sent to The Associated Press.

Gosh, am I the only guy who didn't realize Hamas had been neutral up 'til now?

No nation in the world has worked harder than America toward establishing a separate Palestinian state -- not even the Palestinians themselves. Hamas has done more to damage the prospects of peace in Gaza than any other. If Palestinians truly want a homeland -- and not merely the annihilation of Israel -- they'd reach out to those nations that support the idea, not bomb them. Go figure.

And it's hard to imagine how Hamas' call for attacks on America could breathe even more fire into anti-U.S. Islamic radicals than already burns in them. But maybe it will and a few more young Palestinians will blow themselves up for Allah. This should turn out well, don't you think?

Luckily, the Democrats now control the U.S. House and maybe the Senate, and they will be able to solve this radical Muslim mess within the week. Maybe sooner. They promised they would.


Democracy Lover said...

While I am certainly not applauding this statement by Hamas, I think it's important to put it in some perspective.

First, I think it's premature to assume that the Beit Hanoun massacre was an accident. King Abdullah of Jordan, generally seen as a moderate issued a press release in which he "...strongly condemned the heinous massacre perpetrated by Israeli troops in Beit Hanoun in northern Gaza.
In a phone call with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Wednesday, King Abdullah said Jordan would save no effort in its drive to stop Israeli military operations in Gaza Strip and put an end to the Palestinian people’s suffering."

Second, the Palestinian state that the US has advocated (before the Bush administration) was not a viable sovreign state - it was a collection of Bantustans surrounded by territory that would continue to be occupied by the Israelis and without any real control over the territory they were being alotted. One of the reasons Hamas defeated the Fatah party in the recent elections was their willingness to negotiate away territory and sovreignty.

Foreign policy, as you well know, is the purview of the Executive Branch, with the advice and consent of the Senate. Even if the Democrats squeak into a thin majority in that chamber, they will be unable to wrest foreign policy away from the White House, in spite of the obvious bungling of the Administration.

Certainly, we need to realize that US support for Israeli expansionism and aggression is (or was until the stupidity of the Iraq invasion) the major reason why Islamic radicals target America. We also need to realize that fighting these radicals militarily will be as ineffective for us as it has been for Israel. After 60 years of fighting, they are still at it.

This is a problem that needs to be solved if we are to live in peace without the constant threat of terrorist attack. Unfortunately those in a position to work on this problem are committed to a continuation of that threat since it is their chief wedge issue to retain political control. The so-called opposition party is so scared of the powerful pro-Israeli lobby that they are unwilling to even whisper any useful advice into the closed ears of the White House and unlikely to withhold consent for Administration policy.

Anonymous said...

We may never understand Hamas

Seattle Post-Intelligencer Guest Columnist

We should start talking to Hamas, but will we ever understand them?

More distressing scenes from Gaza, with last week's Israeli tank incursion seemingly planned with the intention of bulldozing a mosque. Such a provocative act is hardly a springy step on the road to peace and reconciliation, so the sight of massed women taking non-violent defensive action to stop the tanks in their tracks and being killed for it is appalling.

Yet the crowds of women, mostly burqa'd to the hilt, are themselves a graphic illustration of just how much more polarized the Israeli-Palestinian situation has become. It used to be, in the secular non-state of Palestine, that you could spot an isolated village under the sway of Hamas because the women were wearing headscarves. Now women are taking up the full militant rig of political Islam in a display of ardent support for Hamas that has been similarly displayed at the ballot box.

Palestine, for the first time since the creation of Israel -- and long before -- now has a government with a substantial Islamic component. Hamas, despite all indications to the contrary, is under the impression that its democratic credentials ensure that eventually the Israeli government, and the rest of the West, will have to engage with it.

Should we talk to Hamas? In London, the opportunity arose last week with a small delegation of senior representatives visiting the capital in a modest attempt to break the diplomatic deadlock. Having listened to what they have to say, I have to report that hanging out with terrorist organizations fulfils all of its promise in terms of frustration.

The two men, Ahmad Yousef, senior adviser to the Palestinian prime minister Ismail Haniyeh, and Said Adu Musameh, a former Hamas leader who is now a member of the national assembly, no doubt have influence in Palestine. Their proposal is for a 10-year period of peaceful co-existence, during which, they suggest, the Palestinian people can be persuaded to re-examine the powerful mythology of victimhood that characterizes the national identity, in return for an end to the occupation.

The vexed question of recognition of Israel's right to exist, they imply, can be tackled during this period, and positively. For now, though, Hamas will concede only that it recognizes the "reality of Israel's existence," which is nothing more than a statement of the obvious.

Their certainty that they can deliver an extended period of peaceful co-existence is probably sincere. The idea of Hudna, or truce, is deeply imbedded in Islamic history. Islamicists take the concept very seriously, and point out that no Hudna has been broken for 800 years.

Hamas itself has for some time desisted from using suicide bombers, and insists that such groups as Islamic Jihad can be controlled by Hudna as well. Though when asked why Hamas didn't undertake to stop rockets into Israel as well, Yousef replied rather disingenuously that there was no point in stopping them, because they were merely symbolic. Since the rockets remain a useful stick to beat Palestine with, on the contrary, mere symbolism logically dictates that rocket attacks should stop forthwith.

But the real trouble is that this proposed cease-fire can be guaranteed only under what Ahmad Yousef calls "Islamic principles and with an Islamic strategy." What this delegation seems quite unable to understand is that an intellectual concession such as this is likely to remain forever unpalatable to Israel, as it is to all Westerners who fear and distrust political Islam. Hamas should be engaged with by the West, if we really believe in our democratic ideals. But it is bleakly difficult to see just where the lingua franca might emerge.

Deborah Orr writes for The Independent in Britain.

lilfeathers2000 said...

I guess I didn't realize they were neutral.
Gosh I slept through that. We knew this one was coming.

Jill said...

All I can say is that I hope George doesn't do or say any of his provocative "Cowboy" stuff.

The next question is who is capable of talking in a diplomatic, statesman like manner to these whack jobs? Will these guys even listen?