Perhaps the most damaging blow to Middle East peace in recent history is the Hamas/Fatah “unity deal” announced by both terrorist parties. Fatah, run by PA President Mahmoud Abbas tries to project a respectable image to the non-Muslim world this leads them to tone down the terrorist activity a bit and even try to negotiate with Israel every once in a while. Peace has never been an objective of Fatah–just the appearance of wanting peace so the terrorist group can remain the favorite-child of liberal governments, including ours.
Hamas throws up no smokescreens about its objectives–a worldwide caliphate and the destruction of Israel as the Jewish state. By all accounts Hamas will be the more powerful force in this arrangement. Almost immediately after the deal was announced, Hamas representatives..
…emphasized that the new unity agreement, reached on Wednesday, did not require them to accept the two-state solution or to engage in peace talks with Israel.
They also stressed that the interim unity government that was expected to be established soon would not conduct peace negotiations with Israel.
Even the “moderate” PA President Abbas admitted that peace was no longer a goal. On May 3rd he said to the the Al-Aharam newspaper:
“There is no need to demand that Hamas recognize Israel. The PA will not request that it do so.”
Why should Abbas demand Hamas recognize Israel as the Jewish homeland when his own Fatah party doesn’t? By any measure, this deal is a danger to peace, the U.S. interests in the area, and our ally Israel.
Here in the United States, some of the Palestinians’ most useful propaganda tools are already taking advantage of the progressive media already heralding the agreement as the best thing for peace. Take, for example, Robert Malley. For those who are unfamiliar with Mr. Malley, he is a former adviser to Barack Obama, and a second-generation Israel hater. I do not believe the sins of the father is visited on the son, but this son has chosen to follow in his dad’s footsteps.
Malley grew up in France, where his Egyptian-born father, Simon Malley, and New York raised mother, Barbara (Silverstein) Malley, were radical publishers of a controversial magazine about Africa and the so-called Third World. Malley’s parents were rabidly anti-Israel and counted Yasir Arafat as a personal friend. Indeed, Arafat was among those “leaders” (for want of a better word) who had intervened with the French government to readmit the Malley family to France after they had been expelled for their radical activities.
Malley’s personal pedigree not only includes a host of anti-Israel articles, but the former aide to Bill Clinton is the only American privy to the Clinton peace efforts to blame Israel for their lack of success. Everyone else, including the former President, said that Yassir Arafat walked away from a “sweetheart” deal. He was also believed to be the chief source for an article by Deborah Sontag that whitewashed Arafat’s role in the collapse of the peace process, an article that has been widely criticized as riddled with errors and bias.
Formerly a member of Obama’s campaign team, Malley was supposedly fired by the campaign for having secret meetings with Hamas, but he was a willing sacrificial lamb to make Obama look good. Now Malley serves progressive puppet-master George Soros as he is currently Program Director for Middle East and North Africa at the International Crisis Group, an international think tank funded by the “dude of spooky” himself.
Most of the people who read Malley’s recent piece in the Washington Post pushing Hamas as an important peace partner are probably unfamiliar with his background as an apologist for Palestinian terror. But a close reading of the op-ed reveals his propagandist methodology.
Twice before the world has sought to prevent the Islamists from governing — after Hamas won the 2006 legislative elections and, a year later, when it formed a coalition with Fatah. Twice, the world made a mess of things. The balance sheet is unequivocal: Hamas remains entrenched in Gaza; Fatah is no stronger; and, without elections or genuine pluralistic political life, democratic institutions in the Palestinian territories have rusted.
The only reason Fatah is ready to unite with Hamas despite its more blatant violence, is that in September they intend to get the United Nations General Assembly’s help in unilaterally declaring an Arab Palestinian state, with Jerusalem as its capital. They need the cooperation of Hamas to get this through.
The most persuasive case against unity has been that it would dash prospects for Israeli-Palestinian negotiations. Even then, this was never a particularly convincing argument. For it was hard to imagine a fractured national movement reaching a peace agreement, let alone implementing and sustaining it. Palestinian reconciliation was more likely a prerequisite than an obstacle to peace.
But now? The peace process is lifeless. Israeli and Palestinian negotiators have not met in months. Palestinians, convinced that they will get nothing from Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and little from the United States, are focused on getting the U.N. General Assembly to endorse their call for statehood. In this context, Netanyahu’s insistence that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas choose between peace with Israel or peace with Hamas is the emptiest of threats.
Oh boy, Uncle Yassir would be so proud. Again Malley is not being truthful. Since Netanyahu became prime minister, he as called for a two-state solution and constantly called for negotiations. When Netanyahu enacted his ten-month building freeze, PA President Abbas waited nine months to agree to talk and used the scheduled end of the freeze to stop talking. More than once during the past few years, Abbas has refused to recognize Israel as a Jewish state and has insisted in order for there to be peace millions of Palestinians must be allowed to move into Israel as to negate its Jewish majority.
Giving credit where it is due, Malley does have one thing correct: with the “Arab Awakening” throughout the Middle East, existing regimes are more likely to be replaced with governments even more radical.
For Hamas, Mubarak’s fall likewise was decisive. An Egyptian government more in tune with public opinion coupled with a more powerful Muslim Brotherhood — Hamas’s parent organization — augurs a far warmer bilateral relationship. Growing unrest in Syria is another factor. The embattled Syrian regime, having offered safe harbor to Hamas’s leadership for a decade, wants to collect the rent — through overt signs of loyalty and support. Hamas has officially backed the regime but tepidly, out of reluctance to alienate its power base of Palestinian refugees and conservative Sunnis in Syria and beyond. Hamas calculates that even without immediate regime change, the Syrian regime inevitably will be transformed, its brutal crackdown having eroded much of its domestic credibility and regional influence. Tilting toward Cairo, a more important actor in the long run and more legitimate among Hamas’s constituency, was the safer bet. Accepting the Egyptian-brokered deal was a first step.
However, he uses that analysis as a stepping stone for more misinformation:
For political and legal reasons, the Obama administration cannot embrace a unity government (his subtle allusion to that nefarious Jewish Lobby)
….Beyond discomfort at Cairo’s improved relations with Hamas, is it not in America’s interest to see an influential Egypt critical of Israel yet committed to its peace accord; whose relationship with the United States is strong but not servile, and whose stances are more consistent with domestic and regional opinion?
Even under Mubarak, Egypt has always been critical of Israel. The difference we are learning (but Malley ignores) is that it is the “new” Egypt which is critical of Israel and wants to trash the peace. It is not in America’s interest to have one Islamist terrorist group to begin to influence an Egyptian government on the precipice of being run by the radical Muslim Brotherhood.
Might this not weaken Iran, which benefited from using Mubarak’s regime as a foil, and whose regional weight will deflate with the rise of a credible Arab counter-model? How would attempts to torpedo the agreement affect relations with this new Egypt — and, more broadly, with a newly assertive Arab public? Is Washington better off if Hamas feels compelled to drift from Tehran and Damascus toward Cairo? If the Muslim Brotherhood plays a more central role in Egypt, how might it influence Hamas? How might U.S. engagement with the Brotherhood influence that influence?
OK let me understand this for a second. The Muslim Brotherhood considers Iran its role model. Hamas and Iran have been allies for a very long time. If Hamas drifts away from Tehran toward Cairo, isn’t it drifting back toward Tehran? I know, Malley is just trying to confuse me–either that or trying to mislead the reader.
Then again, that is Malley’s modus operandi–confuse, distort and lie, I guess that’s what makes him the prefect Middle East guru for an organization “owned” by George Soros. Sadly, when a progressive newspaper such as the Washington Post publishes an op-ed from people like Mr. Malley, whose anti-Israel opinion matches their editorial philosophy, they feel no need to explain his background. This omission is a disservice to the newspaper’s readers.