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There are plenty of existing problems with books used in Palestinian schools (including those run by the U.N.), and Max Boot writes in Commentary magazine that, while the new Hamas textbooks are no exception, what should surprise us is that the West and the U.S. are surprised by these books and continue to engage with Palestinian leaders as if they are serious about peace:
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It is a mystery which perhaps only Kerry can answer: What in the current configuration of power makes him optimistic that a breakthrough could be achieved now? Why on earth does he imagine he will succeed where all of his predecessors have failed?
Tuesday, November 5th, 2013 at 8:50 AM | Stand For Israel
Jonathan Tobin, writing at Commentary, notes that – although the international community still frequently refers to the impending humanitarian disaster in Gaza – the recently discovered tunnel under the border with Israel indicates that Hamas still thinks that building supplies are more important to use in fighting Israel than in helping the people of Gaza:
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But those who assumed that the concrete was being used to help the people of Gaza got a wakeup call today when the Israelis revealed the discovery of a tunnel they had discovered that Hamas [was] digging under the border with the Jewish state. The structure was 18 meters deep and 1,700 meters long (including 300 that were underneath Israeli territory. Built with 500 tons of cement that had been allowed into Gaza for civilian uses, the purpose of the tunnel was clear: provide easy access into Israeli territory for terrorists to kill and/or kidnap Israelis. So will everyone who opposed Israel’s blockade of Gaza now realize they were wrong? Don’t bet on it.
Tuesday, October 15th, 2013 at 8:07 AM | Stand For Israel
Avi Issacharoff, one of the best Israeli reporters when it comes to Gaza due to his mastery of the language and connections inside the Strip, breaks down the meaning of the state-of-the-art tunnel discovered over the weekend by Israeli forces leading from Gaza into Israel. His conclusion: although Hamas doesn’t want a clash now, there is one coming, and Hamas plans to be prepared:
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The ability of Hamas to dig tunnels is impressive, and it is no secret that under Gaza City, the organization built a network of trenches and tunnels that its leaders used to hide from the Israeli bombs during Operation Pillar of Defense in 2012 and even during Cast Lead in 2009. Hamas, it seems, has not stopped preparations for the next conflict with Israel for so much as a second, and the question about that next round is not one of “if” but of “when.”
Monday, October 14th, 2013 at 9:19 AM | Stand For Israel
At the Council on Foreign Relations, Robert Danin writes an article suggesting that Gaza must be reconnected politically to the West Bank and the West must stop isolating it in order for there to be peace. Isolation, he argues, strengthens Hamas.
It’s a common theme among Middle East experts, safe at their think tanks in countries far from the region where people have to live with the decisions made by their leaders. The problem with this concept is that the people who run Gaza and the people who run the West Bank don’t want to be reconnected with one another. And, even if you set aside that minor inconvenience, the only thing Hamas and Fatah can agree on is how much they hate Israel and Jews – how does reuniting them get us closer to peace?
In the fantasies of the Western academics, of course, it’s Israeli intransigence and Palestinian political division that are at fault for a lack of peaceful resolution to the conflict. In the reality on the ground, Palestinian political division and Israel’s reticence to make any irrevocable concessions are products of the violent, corrupt, Jew-hating rot that has infected so much of Palestinian society. And here’s a newsflash for the folks at the Council on Foreign Relations: the West can’t fix that.
We’ve said it before: there will be peace between Israelis and Palestinians when Palestinians want it and not until. No amount of wishful thinking will change that fact, nor the fact that Israel is the only party in this conflict that remains open to sincere negotiation and meaningful dialogue.Comments (18) »
Thursday, October 10th, 2013 at 7:53 AM | Stand For Israel
Writing at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, Jacques Neriah (a retired colonel in the Israeli army) notes that signs point to a number of problems for Hamas rule in Gaza – and all because of internal politics and disaffection on the streets and not because of anything Israel is doing. In time, could we see an Egypt-style uprising in Gaza?
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For the first time in more than two decades, Hamas has no regional political allies in positions of power – a huge problem for a movement that is heavily dependent on alliances that provide financial, military, and political support.
Thursday, October 3rd, 2013 at 8:52 AM | Stand For Israel
Gaza’s at it again.
Hamas has a history of “educating” its youth in the ways of war. First it was new school curriculum, then a chilling graduation ceremony for kindergartners, and finally a jihadist military academy for children as young as age 12 (the academy includes a Bachelor degree program!). Now it’s summer in the Strip, and camp is in session.
According to YNet, this year’s Islamic jihad summer camp for kids ages 6 to 16 includes shooting practice (with AK-47s), fire jumping, and even a “kidnap the Israeli” simulation. The images taken of the camp are astounding. Young and frightened-looking children run through an obstacle course of explosions to the sound of rapid fired charges, and the guns they hold are nearly as tall as the boys themselves.
We really wonder how Israel will be able to make peace with the Palestinians, as future generations are being bred on violence, and current leaders are the ones teaching them to hate.
You can see photos of the camp here.Comments (14) »
Thursday, June 13th, 2013 at 2:03 PM | Stand For Israel
You could be forgiven for not noticing that Hamas held its leadership elections late last week. The results weren’t particularly surprising – Khaled Mashaal was reelected as the head of Hamas (even though he splits his time between Damascus, Qatar, and Egypt) and Ismail Haniyeh, the de facto head of Gaza, was elected as the #2. Mashaal had previously indicated that he was going to stand down but, apparently, thought better of it. Haniyeh’s new #2 ranking is new but an unsurprising nod to the centrality of Gaza to the Hamas mission.
Then, yesterday, in response to a rocket fired from Gaza, the Israeli Air Force rocketed targets in Gaza for the first time since Operation Pillar of Defense at the end of 2012.
In case there was any doubt (there shouldn’t have been), Hamas’ election does not represent a change in the group’s ideology or methodology. Hamas was an unrepentant, anti-Semitic terror organization. They continue to be. The rocket fire from Gaza that disrupts Israeli lives and puts the government of the Jewish state between the rock of having its civilians under fire and the hard place of risking international condemnation continues to be Hamas’ strategy of choice in its pointless, fruitless war against the Jews.
And the West and international bodies continue to take no notice until Israel, with her back to the wall, acts with strength and resolve in her own self-defense.
So the Hamas election headline could read “Hamas Elections: New Way Same As the Old Way.”
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Wednesday, April 3rd, 2013 at 9:08 AM | Stand For Israel
Seth Mandel, writing at Commentary, notes that the fundamental problem in the so-called peace process continues to be on the Palestinian side – though Mandel doesn’t lay the whole blame at the usual suspect of Palestinians rejectionism. Instead, Mandel argues that Arafat, who could have enforced peace, chose war instead. Abbas, who might not have been able to enforce it, didn’t have the courage to take the chance. And Abbas’ only successor is Hamas which will never make peace.
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Abbas’s health is failing, Birnbaum reports, though it’s unclear how quickly. And Fatah is a mess. And Hamas is willing to let the Jews live on the condition they go back to Germany. And yet it is unclear why this is such a compelling case to sign a deal with Abbas. He appears to represent virtually no one, which means there is no one to uphold any deal after Abbas. What could such an agreement be worth, even if miraculously signed?
Tuesday, March 12th, 2013 at 8:29 AM | Stand For Israel
When Israel demolishes Palestinian homes that have been illegally built or that have been co-opted for terrorist use, there is international outcry. Elliott Abrams, writing at the Council on Foreign Relations, notes that, when the Hamas terrorists who run the Gaza Strip do it – and do it without any judicial oversight – there is … silence.
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The government of Israel sometimes demolishes homes, saying that they were illegally built on public land. And of course, it is a member state of the United Nations, not a terrorist group. But when it does, one can expect various governments to condemn the action and can expect action in the UN Human Rights Council, perhaps even a debate in the UN General Assembly or Security Council in New York.
Thursday, February 14th, 2013 at 10:08 AM | Stand For Israel