Reading through Ephraim Sneh's commentary titled Israel is helping the rise of Hamas is prematurely calling for panic and alarm among the faint hearted. It is however, surprising to read such a piece from an Ex defense minister - but one cant forget he belongs to Labor.. tomato juice.. and in this and age this juice is not tasty. The Gaza Strip is becoming the Hamas state, no doubt about it. Some politicians and naive experts in Jerusalem and Washington are consoling themselves with the thought that by participating in the elections Hamas will turn into a political body, just as Hizbullah is also a political party in Lebanon. But such things don't exist in a democratic regime. Do political parties in Israel, the US or France possess private armies? Of course not. Hizbullah and Hamas have tremendous arsenals of weapons with which they can enforce a reign of terror. Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas's 20,000 armed policemen are not even trying to oppose Hamas and the Islamic Jihad. Did Bush's special envoy, General Ward, demand that Abu Mazen give him a map of the tunnels used to smuggle arms from the Sinai Desert to the Gaza Strip? No. Ward reported very carefully to Washington that there was progress in reforming the Palestinian security services. James Wolfensohn, Bush's representative designated to handle the economic rehabilitation of the Gaza Strip who will arrive in June, is deluding himself in the same way as Shimon Peres regarding the Palestinians. So everyone is participating in the big game of make-believe. Bush talked about the chances of success of the peace negotiations with Abu Mazen in Washington, because he wants to give the road map a real chance in a final attempt to stop Hamas. Egyptian President Mubarak talks about peace but makes no efforts to halt arms smuggling because he is the patron of Hamas, just as Iran is the boss of Hizbullah. Using Hamas, Mubarak wishes to exploit Israel's distress and pressure it into modifying the peace agreement, canceling the demilitarization of the Sinai Desert and thus permitting the deployment of thousands of Egyptian soldiers along the border with Israel. The Bush administration cooked intelligence to provide a rational for invading and occupying Iraq so personal oil interests would be sustained, retail pump prices could be more easily manipulated, and the petrodollar would remain as the planet?s primary medium of exchange for that vicious viscous addictive source of energywas Sadist Hussein more of a threat to America and its allies than the emerging nuclear nemesis?s Iran and North Korea, incurring curiously less attention and aggressive rhetoric than might be expected? Are matters of safety and security truly on upper crust controlled Washington?s short list of priorities? We Israelis must contemplate whether their nation?s best interests are inscribed on that aforementioned list of priorities. Does Bush?s Road Map offer the security we so yearn for, or is it truly designed to solicit kudos from Jew-despising Islamic petro-potentates? Clear thinking is a necessity in this essential matters.
Women suicide bombers kill 15 in mosque in Nigeria (AP)
from the article: Israel is helping the rise of Hamas