|Khaled Mashal of Hamas (L) and Mahmoud Abbas (R) in 2011: A split |
that has become 'permanent' [Image Source]
Jonathan D. Halevi, an analyst at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, has just come out with a paper whose title gives the conclusion away: "Hamas: Abbas Does Not Represent the Palestinians in Negotiations". He reminds us that Hamas does not recognize Abbas as a legitimate president. Abbas, in fact, does not have Hamas' permission to even visit their turf, Gaza.
- The Hamas movement, which in the last elections (2006) won an overwhelming majority in the Palestinian Parliament, uncompromisingly opposes any negotiations with Israel, does not accept the PA as the legitimate representative of the Palestinian people, and has reiterated its firm stance that any agreement reached with Israel will be worthless and will not represent the position of the Palestinian people.
- American policy regarding the peace process is based on the premise that it is possible to reach an agreement between Israel and the Palestinians represented by the PLO-Palestinian Authority (PA) under the leadership of Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen).
- However, the PA does not represent all of the components of the Palestinian people, nor does it have a mandate to make decisions on the core political issues in the name of the Palestinian people.
- [Hamas] "adheres to the path of struggle regardless of the resulting victims; follows the path of the martyrs until the fulfillment of our national goals and the liberation of Palestinian land; will not give up or recognize this brutal enemy; and that the struggle, God-willing, is in its highest-ever state of readiness.”
- The American initiative ignores the fundamental situation in the Palestinian arena, and the basic fact that the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah headed by Mahmoud Abbas does not enjoy the status that would allow it to make historic decisions in the name of the Palestinian people, and certainly not decisions that are not in line with the Palestinian consensus, which supports “the return of Jerusalem to Arab and Islamic rule” and the “right of return.”
- In fact, the camp headed by Mahmoud Abbas represents a minority in the PLO (and even within the Fatah movement), in the Palestinian territories (the West Bank and Gaza), and in the Palestinian diaspora.
- The PA is not capable of making historic decisions based on concessions regarding basic Palestinian positions.
Disturbing and odd, no?