Israel can demand that the world not talk to Hamas and the members of the Palestinian government representing Hamas, but it cannot demand that there be no communication with those who talk to Hamas, or even those who sign agreements with it. Even after the reconciliation agreement, if it is ever implemented, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is not Hamas.
Hamas is an organization that employs ruthless terror and believes in an armed struggle whose declared aim is the destruction of Israel. Israel does not and cannot have a dialogue or any exchanges with such a group. Yes, you make peace with your enemies, but with enemies desiring peace, and Hamas is not that. This Israeli position is both justified and rational, and if we act wisely, we can rally broad international support behind it.
But there’s a long way between such a position and the government’s sweeping and irrational response to the reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas. The prime minister’s dramatic announcement to the nation less than two hours after the first news of the signing of the rapprochement deal was out of place and reflected a lack of composure, an inability to withstand pressure, and a lack of judgment. The agreement with Hamas, despite its seriousness, cannot serve as Read more