Sunday, January 29, 2006

LA Times Column Blames Israel for Just About Everything--Including the Palestine Election Results

In an LA Times article entitled "Hamas In Charge" Beshara Doumani follows the new left-wing liberal mantra that says that it is all Israel's fault.

Beshara, who is an associate professor of history at UC-Berkeley, manages the twin feat of twisting reality into an indictment of Israel while, at the same time, ignoring and hiding the fact that Hamas' stated policy (and Fatah's official, behind the scenes policy) is the total destruction and annihilation of the nation of Israel.

One of two key paragraphs begins with what might appear to be a reasonable opening:
In terms of the relationship with Israel, nothing fundamental will change, but the mask will be off.
Yes, you will say, while Fatah was duplicitous, corrupt and disingenuous in its policy toward Israel, at least with Hamas the "mask will be off." But you would be wrong.

Beshara's point is that now the world will see Israel for what it really is, a hateful, racist and intransigent block to any and all efforts by the Palestinians to negotiate a peace agreement.

You see, according to Beshara,
It wasn't really Hamas that eviscerated Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Fatah in the elections. It was the Israeli governments that engineered the failure of the "peace preces" to produce fruit, and the the Fatah leadership's gluttony that blinded them to the consequences of their own failures. Still, the Hamas victory will make it much easier for Israel to sell the "no partner for peace" line.
Not once does Beshara even hint at the fact that Fatah (and the PLO it emerged from) and Hamas are still fighting the 1948 war of Israel's independence. They do not want peace with Israel, they want Israel to vanish and disappear forever. Such groups do not exist to be "advocates" or "friends" of the Palestinian people. They exist to destroy Israel. Period.

Fatah proved this by investing billions of dollars in international aid for the Palestinian people in their own Swiss savings accounts and allowing attacks on Israel that destroyed what had previously been a mutually beneficial economic exchange between Israel and the Palestinian people. Fatah has, wherever it has gone (ie. Jordan, Lebanon, West Bank & Gaza) created a legacy of poverty, social ruin, corruption and despair. The economy and standard of living in the West Bank and Gaza was far better off (relative to the times) 40 years ago (pre PLO/Arafat) than it is now.

Can Hamas do any better? Only time will tell whether they will have any interest in improving the living conditions for the Palestinian people now under their watch. Politically, it is to their advantage to follow the reasoning of Professor Beshara and continue to leave their people in squalor while blaming Israel for everything even as they send Kassam rockets and suicide bombers across the borders (which they now control) into Israel.

Even if they develop an inclination to govern and improve living standards and security in their territory they will probably achieve those ends by suppression of freedom and the imposition of social change by threats and by force. Some form of sharia is inevitable and the next wave of fighting will not only be between Fatah and Hamas but between the more "extreme" and the more "moderate" leaders within Hamas itself.

Beshara concludes his article with these words,
But there is a larger truth: After Oslo, the daily life of Palestinians in the occupied territories deteriorated to almost subhuman levels, largely because of Israeli policies. The best that people hope for is to keep their heads above water and pray that their society will not suffer a complete collapse. At times like these, people turn to God and to each other. Hamas has helped them to do both , and it has something to show for it.
Here Beshara not only reasserts his claim that Israel is the cause of "subhuman living conditions" in the "occupied territories" but that Hamas has extended the promise of hope by calling people to "turn to God and to each other."

As a Christian, I believe that we "turn to God" with repentance and remorse for our sin. In obedience to Christ we would then "turn to each other" in sacrificial love, putting the needs of our neighbor above those of our own. We would "bear one another's burdens and so fulfill the law of Christ" and we would "exercise forbearance and love towards one another."

When Hamas says it, however, they are speaking of God's command to destroy the infidels and, by force if necessary, restore the land upon which Israel sits to Muslim rule and to then spread that rule to every nation on force if necessary.

To kill your infidel neighbor and yourself as well on behalf of Jihad is pleasing to God and even encouraged by a blessing of immediate salvation to Paradise.

It appears to me that Beshara eloquently writes and speaks as though he were a spokesman for Hamas. The article is a one-sided, anti-Israel propaganda piece that the LA Times should have been ashamed to have printed in their paper. That is, of course, unless the LA Times agrees with him.