Leaders of Hamas welcomed the new initiative by President Abbas who heads the Palestinian Authority. Prime Minister Ismail Haniyya expressed the pleasure of Hamas at the “call of president Abbas to hold a national dialgue and the new positive spirit in his speech, and we state that our hand reaches out for national unity.” The Hamas leader emphasized that any talk would not take place within an environment of either side claiming to be the “victor” or the “vanquished.” President Abbas has dropped his demands that Hamas return to the situation as it was before they took over the Gaza Strip.
There is no question President Abbas has reached out to Hamas due to his growing disgust with failure on the part of Israel to present positive evidence of its desire for peace. Abbas is furious at the continual building of settlements on the West Bank and now in Jerusalem. Abbas made clear, “peace and reconciliation cannot be attained through swords of occupation or bulldozers of settlements. The Israel decision to annex Jerusalem and build settlements in the city and on the West Bank along with the separation-’apartheid’ wall are null and void.”
The American-Israel policy of refusing to have discussions with Hamas can also be declared as null and void since all they have done is lead to increased power for Hamas. Israel has forced President Abbas to reach out to Hamas and will undoubtedly soon blame him for taking this initiative. His hands were tied by Israel actions on the West Bank and in Jerusalem.
Posted in George Bush, Human Rights, Islam, Israel, Judaism, Multicultural, Muslims, Peace, Politics, US Foreign Policy, World News
Tagged Abbas, Hamas
Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas told the Arab language al-Arabiya television network that Israel had in fact agreed to a cease fire with Hamas. His statement apparently contradicts comments made earlier by Prime Minister Ehud Olmert who insisted there was no cease fire agreement with Hamas. According to Abbas, Hamas had obtained a promise from Israel it will end the policy of killing leaders of the militant organization. It appears firing of Kassam rockets and Israel military efforts have quieted down over the past few days. There are reports Secretary Rice during her recent visit began the process of some unofficial exchanges between Hamas and Israel. Olmert did say “if they don’t fire Qaddams at us, we won’t attack in Gaza.” A military source indicated both sides are cooling down their operations before things got out of hand.
Military sources indicate Hamas knows there are three alternatives:
1. If rocket fire stops completely, the IDF will take no further military action.
2. If rockets hit Siderot and other communities near Gaza, Israel will respond with air attacks.
3. If rockets hit Ashketon, there will be ground operations.
The real question is what to do during this lull. If Hamas uses it to resupply without any thought of ending rocket attacks, it will become a disaster for Gaza and for Israel. A loical solution at this point is to include Hamas representatives in peace negotiations with Israel and Abbas.
Posted in Human Rights, Islam, Israel, Judaism, Military, Muslims, Peace, Politics, War, World News
Tagged Abbas, Gaza, Hamas, IDF, Olmert