Palestinian unity is excellent news even for Israel - Comment - Israel News | Haaretz Daily Newspaper
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    • 08.02.12 | 01:15 (IST)

    The news is great for the Palestinians, and will remove an obstacle for some UN members who see the separate regimes in Gaza and West Bank as a problem for supporting an independent Palestinian state. But the news is also good for Israel: It has a partner for peace. One deal applies to all of Palestine. Hamas already said in the past that they will accept a peace deal with Israel if the Palestinians vote for it, and that is good. Israelis should also have a referendum so that peace, and its expected consequences, is viewed as legitimate by all. Netanyahu of course seizes this unity as an excuse for not negotiating with Abbas, but he wouldn't negotiate seriously with or without Hamas, so it makes no difference. In the recent past, when Hamas won the PA 2006 elections and formed a national unity government, foreign countries dealt with Abbas and with cabinet ministers not associated with Hamas. The Olmert government (of Likud vintage) refused to deal even with Abbas himself: If a piece of the PA government is non-kosher, it is all treif (non-kosher). Netanyahoo is going to behave similarly, but again, his game remains the same anyhow, only the excuses change.

    from the article: By avoiding peace, Netanyahu is punishing Israel
    First published 00:59 08.02.12 | Last updated 00:59 08.02.12
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