Israel vs Hamas
TENS of thousands of supporters of Islamic militant group Hamas held a peaceful rally in Gaza today to denounce the state of Israel and declare that they would never recognise its right to exist.
"We vow to God that we will never recognise Israel even if we would be all killed," Mr Masri told the cheering audience of men, women and children, many of whom were wearing green Hamas baseball caps and held aloft Hamas banners.
Update 10-01-2006 Looks like the doci-doe between Hamas and Fata has changed from phone tag to rioting. One wonders whether it will be resolved any better that way. For my part it appears to be good news. At least there are some Palestinians who are rejecting this insane line of never recognizing Israel.
In a shrewd and dramatic speech, the Hamas prime minister, Ismail Haniyah, said he would likely resign in the next -two or three weeks- to make way for a national unity government more acceptable to international donors than Hamas, the organization responsible for the deadliest attacks against Israel.
"When they put the siege on one hand, and having me the prime minister on the other, I said
- beit hanoun
More than 160,000 Palestinian Authority employees have received no pay since March, following the suspension of direct Western aid and the refusal of banks to transfer Arab donations to government accounts.
Apparently some people in Palestine also think Hamas is bad news ...
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip Hamas militiamen's efforts to break up anti-government protests Sunday sparked running street battles across the Gaza Strip that killed seven people in the worst internal Palestinian violence since Hamas took power.
Militants from the opposition Fatah group retaliated by torching the Palestinian Cabinet building in the West Bank. The spasm of violence dampened already fading hopes for the creation of a national unity government between the two groups that could end crippling economic sanctions.
The cartoon is really funny when animated - doesn't quite come through in the still. (;-))
Hey we're on again ...
But Mr. Abbas traveled to Gaza, the Hamas stronghold, and met for 90 minutes on Monday night with Sheik Hamad. Immediately afterward, he met Mr. Haniya nearby.
Nope, off again ...
Here we get what appears to be an infromative reading of how Qatar's Palestinian mediation failed, thanks Aljazeera.
Nice sentiments, Condi, now how do we get there from here?
My answer is Victory.
We're on again ...
Hamas and Abbas close to deal on new government
Haniya will not be unity PM
But the Bush administration continues to insist on words not deeds ...
The United States said Monday that any new Palestinian unity government must embrace basic principles for international recognition, including accepting Israel's right to exist.
Palestinian resistance factions continued the firing of homemade shells into Israeli areas adjacent to the Gaza Strip in response to the continuous military offensive in the Gaza Strip and the large number of deaths and injuries among the civilians, including children.
I think the whole history of the intefada is a history of the chicken & egg problem of who started the atrocities. Might be nice to try it again with some loud announcement & see who blinks first.
Do we see the glimmer of the start of half of the solution ...
Whatever transpires, Gaza has become Hamas's problem. It's a safe bet that the real attitude of Abbas and Fatah is: Let Hamas try to rule Gaza, and good luck.
This turn of events would free Abbas to focus on the much more manageable West Bank, where he can depend on the Israel Defense Forces to suppress challenges from Hamas, and on Jordan and the United States to help rebuild his security forces. As chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organization and president of the Palestinian Authority, Abbas is empowered to negotiate with Israel over the disposition of the West Bank. Once he controls the territory, he could make a peace deal with Israel that establishes a Palestinian state with provisional borders in the West Bank and the Arab suburbs of East Jerusalem.
Meanwhile, Palestinians in Gaza could compare their fate under Hamas's rule with the fate of their West Bank cousins under Abbas -- which might then force Hamas to come to terms with Israel, making it eventually possible to reunite Gaza and the West Bank as one political entity living in peace with the Jewish state. It's hard to believe that such a benign outcome could emerge from the growing Palestinian civil war. But given current events, this course is likely to become Abbas's best option.
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