Thursday, January 26, 2006

Hamas Wins--Will "Govern" Palestine

It's time for "Good News Bad News." First, the bad news.

Hamas won the Palestinian elections.

And the good news? Uh.....I'm thinking, I'm thinking.......

Hamas has, of course, a public policy calling for the violent destruction of the State of Israel and the establishment of an Islamist Palestinian State (that would include the land presently "occupied" by Israel).

Hamas has backed up this policy by successfully sending at least 60 suicide bombers into Israel during the past few years.

Some Israelis are trying to put a positive twist into the election results by saying things like, "Hamas was not elected to carry out attacks against Israel. It was elected to bring about change."

Others are not so sure, such as the travel guide who said, "It is hard not to be even more pessimistic now about peacemaking prospects here. We could see this whole place engulfed in even further chaos. Israel has to tread very carefully."

With Iran building nuclear weapons while saying that it's official policy is to have Israel "wiped off the map;" with the Iranian-backed Hizbollah continuing to defiantly maintain its well-armed presence and control of southern Lebanon along Israel's northern border, and; with Hamas controling the West Bank and Gaza and all the border check-points between Jordan, Egypt and Israel the threat of a devastating, armed conflict in the region is perhaps greater today than at any time since the 1973 Yom Kippur Arab-Israeli War.

And the good news? One positive note in all of this is that Fatah, with all of its lies, corruption and posturing for "peace," is out of power and, perhaps, gone forever as a credible representative of the Palestinian people.

Hamas, on the other hand, seems to know how to use its power and authority to gain and maintain control over a population. It has taken a preeminent lead in providing health services, support and education (especially of the "get a good Muslim education so you can blow yourselves up so as to take as many Israelis with you as possible" sort of curriculum). Whatever Christian Palestinians remain in Gaza or the West Bank will surely be the biggest losers since Hamas, as an Islamist group with ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, will now count non-Muslim Palestinians as second-rate citizens even though they have lived there for hundreds of years longer than the Muslims themselves.

On Tuesday, I posted on another piece of "good news" of a more macabre kind that could result from a Hamas victory. Israel now has an enemy that it can deal with up front and personal. No more games need to be played. There are clear positions on each side: Israel wishes to continue to exist alongside a peaceful Palestinian State and Hamas wishes to kill every Jew in Israel and end its existance as a nation.

Neither Israel nor Hamas recognize each other and have vowed that they will not speak or negotiate with each other.

Only time will tell. At least it is a place to start from!

My feeling is similar to when a fresh breeze clears the smog only to reveal the true ugliness of the surrounding landscape.

Please join me in praying for peace. Surely, no mere mortal is capable of unravelling this knotted web of anger, bitterness and sin.

As the Psalmist (traditionally identified as David) once wrote, "Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God."

To that I say, "Amen."