Skip to main content

Hamas and Israel: Time for Reality Check?

"The unique predicament of the Palestinian Authority denies Israel and the Quartet the luxury of a benign neglect, wait-and-see approach to the Hamas government. Virtually all aspects of Palestinian economic life, trade, movement of persons and goods, and 40 per cent of government income (via the customs duties Israel collects) are at the whim of Israeli policy. Hamas' ideology, popularity and military aggression are unlikely to evaporate if they are forced from office by an Israeli-U.S.-led squeeze. The prospect of premeditated regime collapse may even be encouraging violence from Islamic Jihad and elements of Fatah. Certainly Fatah is unlikely to undertake its own much needed internal reform and regeneration process if it is expecting to be imminently re-anointed in an internationally blessed coup. British Foreign Secretary Straw and Italian Prime Minister-elect Prodi have both hinted that a policy rethink is needed."

Writing in Ha'aretz, Daniel Levy explores the way Israel needs to address the realities of Hamas and the Palestinian Authority. Levy also suggests that before the new PM goes off to Washington to be feted there, that a true policy of how the present impasse with the PA might be dealt should be the order of the day.

Read Levy's full and realistic assessment of the world which is Israel and its neighbour, the PA, here.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

So, which are the democratic countries in Europe?

It's probably taken by most that all the countries in Europe are equally democratic. Not so, concludes a survey. Some are more democratic than others.

"Denmark's democracy is in rude health while the political systems of Britain and France have some major shortcomings, according to a new Swiss-German study ranking the quality of democracy in 30 nations. Germany achieves a respectable score but falls short of a top 10 slot.

Germany is more democratic than France, Britain and even Switzerland, according to a study released last week by the University of Zurich and the Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB), a research institute funded by the German government.

The 'democracy barometer' measures how well 30 established democracies implement the principles of freedom and equality. Denmark gets top marks, while Britain and France are found wanting, ranking 26th and 27th respectively. Costa Rica came last, just behind South Africa and Poland.

The study spans the …

Whatever democracy the Palestinians had is dying

Almost a desperate cry from a well-known, respected and sober moderate Palestinian.

Mustafa Barghouthi is secretary-general of the Palestinian National Initiative and a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council. He was a candidate for the Palestinian presidency in 2005.

He writes in a piece "The Slow Death of Palestinian Democracy" on FP:

"Palestinian municipal elections were supposed to be held last week. Instead, they were canceled. A statement released by the Palestinian Authority claimed the cancellation was "in order to pave the way for a successful end to the siege on Gaza and for continued efforts at unity" between Hamas, which governs the Gaza Strip, and the government in the West Bank.

The cancellation of this election was an unjustified, unlawful, and unacceptable act. It damages democratic rights and makes a mockery of the interests of the Palestinian people.

But this is far more than an internal Palestinian issue. The only lasting peace between Isr…