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 Tuesday, January 31, 2006

HAMAS Win: Israel Should Take the Blame

  The consequences of HAMAS' win are huge, not just for Palestinians but for the Middle East and for global movements of change as a whole.

In terms of the relationship with Israel, NOTHING fundamental will change, but the mask will be off.

  1. ``Parliament'' and ``government'' are words that connote a sovereignty that is absent in reality.

  2. The mantra ``there is no partner for peace'' has been an ironclad law of Israeli policy toward the Palestinians since the days of the British Mandate.

  3. Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's version was only the latest incarnation of the phrases we've heard so often: ``There are no Palestinians'' is how Golda Meir (Israeli Prime Minister, 1969 - 1974) put it.

    News Compass Note:
    The actual statement made by Golda Meir was this:
    "There is no such thing as a Palestinian people... It is not as if we came and threw them out and took their country. They didn't exist."
    -- Golda Meir, statement to The Sunday Times, 15 June, 1969.

    "How can we return the occupied territories? There is nobody to return them to."-- Golda Meir, March 8, 1969.

    From David Ben-Gurion, Prime Minister 1949 - 1954, 1955 - 1963 :

    "We must use terror, assassination, intimidation, land confiscation, and the cutting of all social services to rid the Galilee of its Arab population." --- David Ben-Gurion, May 1948, to the General Staff. From Ben-Gurion, A Biography, by Michael Ben-Zohar, Delacorte, New York 1978.

    We must expel Arabs and take their places." -- David Ben Gurion, 1937, Ben Gurion and the Palestine Arabs, Oxford University Press, 1985.

    From Menachem Begin, Prime Minister,1977-1983 :

    "[The Palestinians] are beasts walking on two legs."
    -- Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin, speech to the Knesset, quoted in Amnon Kapeliouk, "Begin and the 'Beasts,"' New Statesman, June 25, 1982.

    Read here related comments from other Israeli Prime Ministers

  4. ``The PLO is a terrorist organization'' was the line of successive Israeli governments until Oslo in 1993.
  5. ``We will NOT negotiate with Arafat'' was the catchphrase of the post-Oslo era.

It wasn't really Hamas that eviscerated Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Fatah in the elections.

It was the Israeli governments that engineered the FAILURE of the ``peace process'' to produce fruit.

Still, the Hamas victory will make it much easier for Israel to sell the ``no partner for peace'' line.

After Oslo, the daily life of Palestinians in the occupied territories has deteriorated to almost subhuman levels, largely because of Israeli policies.

The best that people hope for is to keep their heads above water and pray that their society will not suffer a complete collapse.

At times like these, people turn to God and to each other.

Hamas has helped them to do both, and it has something to show for it

Read here full article in the San Jose Mercury News

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