April 27, 2005
Friend of FLAME:
While the Americans and the Europeans continue to pressure Israel
to make concessions to the Palestinians under the guise of the Bush
"road map," it seems unlikely that Palestinian leader Mahmoud
Abbas will be able to meet his side of the bargain anytime soon. Indeed,
the first requirement of the road map is for the Palestinians to stop
terrorism and dismantle terrorist groups. First, Abbas makes no secret
of his unwillingness to disarm murderous terror groups like Hamas
and Islamic Jihad. Second, as the article below confirms, those very
groups not only refuse to disarm, but they also refuse to discuss
the idea of peace with Israel. Remember: When Hamas says that they
will fight until the occupation ends, they are talking about Jewish
presence in the land between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean
Sea---all of Israel.
Abbas continues to make liberal-sounding noises about the power of
democracy---he believes that when Hamas becomes politically enfranchised
they will magically of their own volition lay down their arms. But
Hamas will have none of it, and neither should we. We see the same
phenomenon in Lebanon, where the terrorist group Hizbollah actually
has elected political power, but they still maintain the largest independent
armed militia in the country. What's that about? Well, just ask them:
It's about jihad---Islamist domination of the entire Middle East and
This article, from Israel's HaAretz news service helps us understand,
in relatively few words, what Israel and the West are up against in
trying to bring peace to the Middle East . . . and to the world.
By Amos Harel, Haaretz Service and News Agencies,
April 26, 2005
you know, many Arabs, including Al Qaeda, Hamas and Islamic Jihad,
and some Western leftists dispute Israel's right to have a state
in the Middle East at all. For clarification on the question of
who "owns" or has legal rights to historical Palestine, I recommend
one of FLAME's hasbarah (public relations) messages, "The Big
Lie (I): Are the "occupied territories" really occupied territories?"
This piece, which appeared in publications nationwide, gives a
brief and lucid history of the region and explains Israel's claim
to the land and to its own state. To read and/or redistribute
this piece, please go to http://www.factsandlogic.org/ad_72.html.
Of course, as always, if you would like to support the distribution
of perspectives like this, we welcome your tax-deductible donation.
Simply go to http://www.factsandlogic.org/make_a_donation.html
to make your contribution online.
Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas on Monday
said he expects Hamas to hand in its weapons after joining the Palestinian
parliament this summer, but gave no indication he would forcefully
disarm the militant group. In response, however, Hamas said later
Monday it has no intention of disarming in July.
"When a militia turns into a political party I believe the issue
of a need for arms becomes irrelevant," Abbas said.
"Our fingers will remain on the rifle triggers until the removal
of the occupation," Hamas spokesman Mushir al-Masri said.
Masri said Hamas' participation in elections "does not mean it
is on the way to becoming a political party."
Abbas, who has been under heavy pressure by the United States and
Israel to rein in armed groups, was set Monday to meet with the Palestinian
groups shortly, Israel Radio reported. While repeatedly calling on
militants to halt their attacks on Israel, he has so far refused to
take action against them, preferring instead to co-opt them.
Hamas, the largest Palestinian opposition group, has said it
will participate in legislative elections set to take place in July.
It would be the first time the group has sought a place in the Palestinian
Abbas welcomed the group's desire to join the political process, but
said the group, which has carried out dozens of suicide bombings against
Israelis, would be expected to give up its militant tactics after
"When a movement or militia is transformed into a political party,
I would say that there will then be no need for them to possess weapons,"
Abbas told reporters. "There will be only one authority, one
law, and one legal gun. The issue is very clear, and this has been
common practice throughout history."
But the Hamas leader in the Gaza Strip, Mahmoud a-Zahar, said Monday
he would not agree to give up arms, the radio said.
A-Zahar called on Hamas leaders of Hamas who live abroad to return
to Palestinian territory after Israel withdraws from Gaza, Israel
Hamas leaders living abroad, mostly in Syria, include Khaled Meshal,
head of Hamas' political department and one of the group's most influential
Under its plan for the disengagement from the Gaza Strip, however,
Israel intends to retain control over the land, air and sea entrances
and exits to the Gaza Strip.
Islamic Jihad questions value of calm
The Islamic Jihad network in northern Samaria has emerged as one of
the most tangible threats to the implementation of the disengagement
plan, as the Jihad leadership questions the value of sticking to the
policy of calm (tahadiyah).
The Jihad network, encompassing Jenin and Tul Karm and the villages
in between, is responsible for the last major attack within Israelthe
suicide bombing at the Stage club in Tel Aviv, in which five Israelis
After the attack, the leadership in Damascus engaged in evasive tactics,
designed to escape the flames of the Israeli response, as well as
the unexpected fury the attack aroused among Palestinians, who mostly
want the calm to continue. But in the past fortnight, various signs
have been accumulating that indicate Jihad is back in action.
Last Thursday, in an unusual move for this period, the organization
claimed responsibility for detonating an explosive device on the Gaza
Strip border, moderately wounding an Israel Defense Forces tracker.
Israeli intelligence sources also see evidence of the military wing
in the northern West Bank having resumed planning major attacks.