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No, Hamas isn’t ISIS, ISIS isn’t Hamas

But equating the two is Netanyahu’s latest way of hypnotizing people into supporting the Gaza war. He gets away with it because people are afraid that if they challenge this idiotic slogan, they’ll be accused of ‘defending Hamas.’

Anybody who isn’t a shill for Israel can see through Netanyahu’s new slogan, “Hamas is ISIS, ISIS is Hamas.” It’s such a crude attempt to brainwash people, to put the most horrifying image in their minds and associate it with Gaza, thereby cleansing Israel of those images of Gaza’s agony. Like he’s been doing his whole career, Netanyahu is insulting people’s intelligence, treating them like children, selling them the war with a short little singsong slogan they can all remember.

And he gets away with it, because people won’t challenge this idiocy for fear they’ll be accused of “defending Hamas.” Well, if anybody accuses me of defending Hamas in what I’m about to write, I accuse them in turn of supporting the war in Gaza because they enjoy seeing Palestinian children killed. One claim is as fair as the other.

A fighter from the Islamic State stands in front of a tank. (photo: Islamic State)

A fighter from the Islamic State stands in front of a tank. (photo: Islamic State)

Just to be clear, I know very well that Hamas is a brutal, dictatorial organization; the term “Islamofascist” is indeed descriptive of its character. So in that limited sense, it’s the same as ISIS.

But the difference between Hamas and ISIS in the degree of their brutality, and in their strength, is so great as to be a qualitative difference.

Hamas is not slaughtering and beheading and crucifying people by the thousands, it’s not committing gang rape, it’s not massacring people because they practice a different religion, or a different variant of their own religion, or because they belong to a different ethnic group.

“Hamas, like ISIS, is persecuting minorities,” Netanyahu said over the weekend. But there are churches in Gaza, Christians attend them freely, there is a seat in the Gazan legislature reserved for a Christian – that’s night and day from the way ISIS treats Christians, isn’t it?

About Hamas’ executions in recent days of some 25 suspected collaborators, it’s a sickening reminder of this organization’s ruthlessness – but the fact is that the prestate Zionist underground organization Lehi, whose military leader was Yitzhak Shamir,  executed many suspected Jewish collaborators. Both Lehi and Irgun, led by Menachem Begin, also deliberately bombed crowds of civilians, hid behind their own civilian population, and had maximalist territorial goals. The Irgun and Lehi, the progenitors of Likud, practiced what could be called “Judeofascism,” and, minus the religious fundamentalism, could be compared to Hamas. But like Hamas, they could not be compared to ISIS.

A fighter from the Islamic State. (photo: Islamic State(

A fighter from the Islamic State. (photo: Islamic State(

If Netanyahu really believed Hamas is ISIS, would he have sent a delegation to negotiate with Hamas and offer it concessions in Cairo? Would he have reached a ceasefire agreement with Hamas after Operation Pillar of Defense in 2012? If Hamas is ISIS, would a “senior Israel Defense Forces officer” have told this to Britain’s Financial Times in March:

Today we can describe Hamas as a much more restrained, much more responsible organisation than it used to be a decade or two decades ago – this all in light of their statehood experience. This has made them much more responsible, much more cautious.

And if Netanyahu thought Hamas is ISIS, would his goal in the current war, at least until now, have been leaving Hamas severely weakened – but still strong enough to go on running Gaza and keeping it out of the hands of ISIS’s global jihadist allies?

Hundreds of Palestinians demonstrate in solidarity with the Gaza Strip, Nablus, West Bank, August 15, 2014. (Ahmad Al-Bazz/Activestills.org)

Hundreds of Palestinians demonstrate in solidarity with the Gaza Strip, Nablus, West Bank, August 15, 2014. (Ahmad Al-Bazz/Activestills.org)

But for all those differences, the decisive one between Hamas and ISIS, of course, is that Hamas represents a nation under foreign rule, which means Hamas is fighting a war of self-defense against Israel. ISIS is trying to take over a nation, or nations, that are beset by civil war, so ISIS, being the most murderous, totalitarian and feared of any of the factions, is fighting a war of aggression.

Compare: ISIS is a threat to take over all of Iraq (and maybe later Syria); Hamas isn’t a threat to take over a blade of grass in Israel.

And there’s one more answer to Netanyahu’s attempt to justify the war by equating Hamas with ISIS – is the Palestinian Authority ISIS, too? Is Mahmoud Abbas also ISIS? If Netanyahu can’t deal with Hamas, why couldn’t he deal with the PA? If Hamas is the problem, why does Israel maintain a military dictatorship over the West Bank, where the PA has worked with the IDF and Shin Bet for the last decade to shut Hamas down?

For Netanyahu, ISIS is a red herring, and so is Hamas – Netanyahu is fighting in Gaza to defend the occupation, and he would fight to defend it against any Palestinian challenger. Yes, Hamas is an organization of brutal, ruthless fascists, but so were any number of national liberation movements – that didn’t make the foreign occupation of their countries and the wars fought to maintain those occupations any more just. The slogan “Hamas is ISIS, ISIS is Hamas” is just another cynical ploy by Netanyahu to blind some people to what Israel is doing in Gaza, and to intimidate those who see the horror into keeping quiet about it.

Related:
Netanyahu tweets Foley execution shot to score points against Hamas
Hamas executes 18 suspected collaborators

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  • COMMENTS

    1. Eric

      How I understand comparing Hamas and Isis is if Hamas had a seaport or other means of unrestricted access to more destructive weapons what would they do? So in saying you can’t compare Hamas and Isis is true but given greater resources what would be the result? For example every time there was a terror attack on the USA Hamas would celebrate what does that tell you?

      Reply to Comment
      • Pedro X

        Everyone, including Larry, should read the link provided in Bor’s post:

        http://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/4646/hamas-war-crimes

        “As for the two executed women, the sources said that their only fault was that they had been observed asking too many questions about Palestinians who were killed in airstrikes.”

        Reply to Comment
    2. un2here

      Supporting the Palestinian resistance doesn’t necessarily mean supporting Hamas. Hamas is not the only movement that is resisting and fighting against Israeli actions. Hamas are Palestinians, part of our community, part of our families. Our problem is not with Hamas as a resistance movement, our problem with Hamas is pure political, and by forming the technocratic government lately and signing the reconciliation agreement, our problem with them is gone.

      We support anyone who resists and fights back against the Israeli actions by any possible means to take our rights back either by negotiations, fighting, internet lobbying, not giving up or not losing hope. All are considered resistance.

      It is a human nature to resist injustice and oppression, and history is full of lessons and stories!

      Gaza Youth Breaks Out (GYBO)

      Reply to Comment
    3. Pedro X

      Is Hamas like ISIS?

      Benny Morris said this of Hamas:

      “[B]etween Israel and Hamas, I strongly doubt there will ever be any compromise. Perhaps there will be tactical posturing, but there can never be basic compromise. They do not accept us because, from their perspective, this is Islamic land. Allah commanded them to annihilate us, and that’s precisely what they wish to do.”

      Isis believes all the middle east is Islamic land and is killing all those it does not recognize as true Muslims in order to establish the same Islamic caliphate for which Hamas is fighting.

      Hamas has the same type of radical, fanatical view of re-establishing a Muslim Caliphate after destroying the Jewish state and killing the Jews. The difference between Isis and Hamas is not desire but the fact that the IDF is standing in the way while the Iraqi army of 250,000 was too weak and timid to stand up to ISIS. Hamas’ desire is the same as ISIS.

      Hamas’ Charter calls for the destruction of the Jewish state and a genocide of the Jews. Its leaders continually urge the annihilation of the state of Israel. Palestinian Interior Minister Fathi Hamad in November, 2013 said:

      “Zionists, you have no place on the land of Palestine … we shall expel you from our land and we will fight against you on it [on the land], we will kill you or expel you from it when you are submissive,”

      Hamas Deputy Speaker of the Palestinian Parliament, Amhad Bahr in 2012 said that it was the duty of every Muslim man and woman to become jihadi fighters:

      “Why, to annilihate those Jews.”

      “oh Allah count them one by one, and kill them all, leaving not a single one.”

      Another Hamas representative at a rally rebroadcast on Hamas TV said:

      “oh mujahideen – wage jihad, wreak destruction, blow up and harvest the heads of the Zionists.”

      “Praise be to you, our Lord. You have made our killing of the Jews an act of worship through which we come closer to you.”

      Hamas in reality is only different from ISIS in its current ability to carry out mass killings.

      Reply to Comment
    4. CigarButNoNice

      “Hamas represents a nation under foreign rule, which means Hamas is fighting a war of self-defense against Israel. ISIS is trying to take over a nation…”

      In other words, since your first sentence is a lie, they’re the same. Both are Islamic imperialist military organizations with the purpose of taking over another nation.

      What ISIS has done to the Christians and Yazidis of Iraq, Hamas wishes to do to thd Jews of the Land of Israel. The only difference is that the former were defenseless while the latter are not.

      Marketing Islamic imperialist aggression as a “struggle for national liberation” has proven a successful tactic with the useful idiots in the West, but not all people are fooled. Jewish nationalism is just, Arab/Islamic imperialism is unjust. No justice, no peace!

      Reply to Comment
      • William

        This story is total bull shit. The major objective of islam is to conquer, convert, enslave or kill those that are not muslim. All islam organizations have the same objective and freedom of religion does not exist in muslim dominated countries.

        Reply to Comment
    5. Richard

      “Well, if anybody accuses me of defending Hamas in what I’m about to write, I accuse them in turn of supporting the war in Gaza because they enjoy seeing Palestinian children killed. One claim is as fair as the other.”

      This is a pretty stupid thing to write. More or less the equivalent of “Well, if you call me a poopyface, I’ll say that throw like a girl!” Maybe its time for this author to retire.

      Reply to Comment
      • Ray

        I’d say Larry’s claim is pretty fair, considering the bloodcurling things I’ve seen Israelis tweet and chant at demonstrations.

        Reply to Comment
    6. Tomer

      Hamas v Isis

      1. Sunni Moslem Fundamental Loons CHECK
      2. Hang Gays CHECK
      3. Oppress Women CHECK
      4. Hate Jews CHECK
      5. Hang Muslims who disagree w them, CHECK

      if it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck… it probably is one!!

      Reply to Comment
      • Ray

        So I suppose Hamas is also engaged in ethnic cleansing, and employs jizya tax on non-muslims, and doesn’t allow representation for non-muslims?

        Reply to Comment
      • andrew r

        ISIS and Israel have some things in common, too.

        Established through massacres and ethnic cleansing.

        Still at war with the ethnic groups it persecutes.

        Persecuted coreligionists; the early kibbutzim had their turn at that when they refused or expelled Jewish-Ottoman nationals.

        Kills with US-made weapons (Yeah, this one is half-joking).

        Smashed an international boundary. Bonus points: Sykes-Picot line.

        Reply to Comment
        • andrew r

          Almost forgot the most obvious one, recruits foreign jihad fighters.

          Reply to Comment
        • Pedro X

          You got things a bit wrong there Andrew.

          1. Israel was established despite numerous Arab massacres in Jerusalem (hundreds of civilians), on the road to Mount Scopus (79 doctors, nurses and patients shot and burnt to death, Kfar Etzion, the Yehiam Convey, to name a few, and the ethnic cleansing of Judea and Samaria, the old city and all of Gaza of Jews and Jewish communities.

          2. The Palestinian Arabs are still fighting the same war, they never stopped and as a result never built a state. The Israelis are only defending themselves.

          3. Kibbitzum did not slaughter their co-religionists like Hamas and Isis do.

          4 Israel defends itself with US weapons and money. So what?

          5. The Sykes-Picot agreement was abrogated at San Remo 28 years before the Jewish state was established.

          Reply to Comment
          • Hey yo

            Pedro, are you pretending that Zionist militants didn’t commit massacres and carry out the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians to establish Israel?

            Reply to Comment
          • Pedro X

            No one is saying that Jewish forces in the war did not kill some limited number of Palestinian Arabs which can not be justified. There were some expulsions of Arabs but there was no policy of ethnic cleansing. Most Arabs fled the fighting, fearing both Israeli and Arab forces. You should also note that a large number of Palestinians, such as in Haifa, fled because they were ordered by their own leaders to flee. Many Arabs fled when their own soldiers fled before them.

            Arabs even fled areas of Judea and Samaria which saw no fighting. Many of the Arab elites took their money and families and fled to Arab countries to wait out the war.

            Reply to Comment
          • “You should also note that a large number of Palestinians, such as in Haifa, fled because they were ordered by their own leaders to flee. Many Arabs fled when their own soldiers fled before them.

            Arabs even fled areas of Judea and Samaria which saw no fighting. Many of the Arab elites took their money and families and fled to Arab countries to wait out the war.”

            No serious historian still believes this. But purely for argument’s sake, assume it to be true. In what way does it compromise their right to return from whence they ‘fled’? Answer: in no way.

            Instead Zionists took their place and shamelessly barred them from re-entry. That’s colonisation no matter how you cut it. That colonisation and today’s are simply manifestations of the same thing.

            You’re a total hypocrite because you undoubtedly support the ongoing colonisation of the land.

            Reply to Comment
          • Whiplash

            “No serious historian still believes this”

            You should read Efraim Karsh from the right or Benny Morris from the left. They and others set out what happened in the 1947-49 war.

            The Arabs had and have no right of return in 1948. The Arab states at the Palestinian Arabs’ bidding expelled or forced to leave 850,000 Jews from Arab countries, the majority of whom found refuge in Israel. This created a population transfer which is not going to be undone.

            Reply to Comment
          • Eliza

            Pedro – Even if we fully accept your argument that Palestinians fled to avoid carnage rather than being forcibly expelled by Jewish militias, I fail to understand why these refugees could not return to their homes, their land.

            Why were these people not allowed to return? 1948 still matters.

            Reply to Comment
        • Rita

          That is the dumbest thing I have ever read. How is Israel persecuting all minorities? Last I checked Israeli Arabs (living in Israel proper) have more rights than Arabs in the countries surrounding it. There are Arab Israeli parlimentarians, an Arab won Miss Israel and an Arab represented Israel in Eurovision. That doesn’t look like apatheid or persecution to me..
          The only country in the Middle East where gays can live safely and thrive is Israel.

          Yes, the occupation of the West Bank isn’t a good thing- but looking at what happened to Gaza, surely you can understand that for security reasons Israel may not want to give up the settlements?

          It is sheer stupidity to equate a liberal, functioning democracy to the backward, barbaric gang that is ISIS.

          Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            Rita, Israel is too reliant on outside cash flow to massacre or expel the Palestinians down to the last individual; back in the early 50′s it desperately needed the reparations from West Germany. Nakba apologists who like to bring up the Germans from Czechoslovakia need to keep in mind that state’s territorial integrity wasn’t in dispute at that point; the Zionists were capturing land outside the UN-allocated Jewish state, which carried the chance of the US withdrawing its recognition.

            Second, Israel delayed for a long time giving all Palestinians remaining in the Green Line Israeli citizenship. The 1950 Nationality Law abrogated the Palestine Citizenship Orders of the British Mandate and left anyone not eligible for citizenship under the “Law of Return” stateless. The Nationality Law was only amended in 1980 to apply to those born before the establishment of Israel who had Palestine citizenship.

            With that background in mind, Israeli citizens are not equal before the law. Are you Israeli and not Jewish? You can’t lease land administered by the ILA or JNF without a court battle, and even if you’re successful the JNF will be compensated with an equal parcel of land. Hundreds of small towns are empowered to reject applicants on the basis of “social suitability”, giving them a backdoor to rejecting Arabs.

            Most pertinent here is the Negev Bedouin villages, especially al-Arakib. The villagers paid taxes on their land to the Ottomans and British, and in 1951 were forced out by the IDF, when their land was requisitioned by the state. The JNF wants to a plant a forest on top of that village.

            web.archive.org/web/20100801012119/http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/middleeast/la-fg-israel-bedouins-20100728,0,6624860.story

            Reply to Comment
    7. It’s an old Zionist tactic to compare Israel’s opponents to the worst elements out there. Begin routinely compared Arafat to Hitler. Nazi comparisons are applied daily to Palestinians in general. Bibi claims Hamas are ISIS/Boko Haram.

      Al Qaeda/ISIS/Boko Haram etc have nothing to do with Hamas whatsoever; to equivocate them is a very cheap shot at playing for sympathy, especially aimed at an American public. Bin Laden openly expressed disdain for the Palestinian cause, which he saw as ‘regionalist’, not getting the bigger struggle. He was right: Hamas’ (e.g.) affairs are entirely localised.

      The simple truth is that the worst manifestations of Islamism, for instance 9/11, have been extremely detrimental to the Palestinian cause, precisely because wildly erroneous equivocations between Palestinian resistance to Occupation and political Islam are now so seductive as a propaganda strategy for opportunistic schemers like Bibi.

      Addressing AIPAC a few years ago he also claimed that [in the Cold War years] Israel had been a ‘bulwark against Communism’. The objective was the same as above: to further convince Americans that Israel and the US are on the same side of the fight. But Israel’s contribution to defeating Communism was in reality negligible.

      The man will of course say anything to secure US public support, barefaced lies included.

      Reply to Comment
      • Ray

        Israeli “anticommunism” is all the more hypocritical and double-faced, seeing as the Soviet Union was the 2nd country to recognize Israel’s status as a sovereign nation (de jure, three days after the USA).

        Reply to Comment
      • andrew r

        Another thing that separates Hamas and ISIS – Hamas left Syria when the regime started killing, ISIS remained and helped the regime kill other opposition groups.

        Reply to Comment
        • Andrew R:

          The main thing that separates them completely is that they have no contacts, no cooperation, no common goals and no common space.

          That’s also true for ISIS and Boko Haram.

          Reply to Comment
    8. Danny

      Bibi in 2009: “It’s 1938 and Iran is Nazi Germany.”

      Bibi in 2014: “Hamas is ISIS. ISIS is Hamas.”

      Hey kids, can you spot the shameless demagogue? Hint: His name sounds like a Looney Tunes characters.

      Reply to Comment
    9. Khaled Khalid

      Are Hamas Fascists? One could easily apply “Fascist” to Israel. All I keep seeing in Hamas is a grim determination and courage not to be slaves with only light arms, despite facing Israeli heavy tanks, Navy guns, F-16 Bombers. It’s Palestinians who are watching their people brutalized and seeing their women and children killed daily.

      If Hamas are ruthless then Israel made them Ruthless, what with Israel’s ruthless policy and mendacity towards a fake Peace Process — Building Jewish Settler homes on the West Bank have accelerated during Operation “Concentrate and Exterminate” because we all know how much Israel loves “Quiet for Quiet.”

      Reply to Comment
    10. Terrenece

      Is there any doubt that given the military might and the lack of a formidable opponent (Israel), Hamas’ actions would not differ significantly from those of IS?

      also,

      ““Hamas, like ISIS, is persecuting minorities,” Netanyahu said over the weekend. But there are churches in Gaza, Christians attend them freely, there is a seat in the Gazan legislature reserved for a Christian – that’s night and day from the way ISIS treats Christians, isn’t it?”

      In 2007, there were ~3,000 Christians in Gaza. In 2011 – 1,400. Today probably even less. If similar statistics existed for the number of Arab citizens of Israel or Arabs in the West Bank, the 972 writers would have been all over it, denouncing the ethnic cleansing.

      Reply to Comment
    11. bor

      The only difference between Hamas and ISIS is OPPORTUNITY.

      If Israel was as weak as Syria or Iraq, the consequences to Jews in Israel would be precisely the same as those suffered by ISIS victims.

      And the author’s chutzpah listing the positive experience of Christians in Gaza is laughable. There are 1500-3000 Christians in a population of 1.8 million Muslims (no Jews, of course). And life is not simple for these people:

      http://www.boston.com/news/world/middleeast/articles/2012/07/16/gaza_christians_protest_forcible_conversions/

      Also, Derfner demonstrates a keen misunderstanding of history with his attempt to compare Hamas to the Lehi and Irgun. I mean, really?

      Reply to Comment
      • bor

        Here’s a terrific article for Derfner to read. It includes a PA official comparing Hamas to…ISIS.

        http://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/4646/hamas-war-crimes

        The article, of course, is written by a former Derfner colleague, so surely he’ll respect the writing.

        Reply to Comment
        • “Here’s a terrific article for Derfner to read. It includes a PA official comparing Hamas to…ISIS”

          The PA and Hamas were up to recently almost deadly rivals, so it comes as no surprise that some PA people will black mouth Hamas.

          The author of the article in contrast is a well known Palestinian shill for Zionism, a traitor to his own people’s cause in the strict sense of the word. Of course he’s feted in the West: anything to protect their queen of the ME, even if that means dealing with mendacious ‘Palestinian’ pro-Zionist journalists.

          As regards:

          “What Mashaal forgot to mention in the interview was that Hamas and the Islamic State do have at least one thing in common: they both carry out extrajudicial executions as a means of terrorizing and intimidating those who stand in their way or dare to challenge their terrorism.”

          … is rather pot and kettle, considering just how many extra-judicial killings have been carried out by Israel.

          Reply to Comment
          • More from that ‘brilliant’ article:

            “Back then, Hamas killed dozens (some say hundreds) of Palestinians, including many from the rival Fatah faction headed by Mahmoud Abbas. Fatah members who were not killed during the fighting were later tossed from tall buildings or lynched in public squares.”

            Another gross simplification by this idiot ‘journalist’.

            Here’s Peter Beinart on the actual coup:

            http://fasttimesinpalestine.wordpress.com/2014/08/01/beinart-demolish-israeli-talking-points-gaza/ (originally published in Ha’aretz)

            “This doesn’t change the fact that Hamas’ election confronted Israel and the United States with a serious problem. After its victory, Hamas called for a national unity government with Fatah “for the purpose of ending the occupation and settlements and achieving a complete withdrawal from the lands occupied [by Israel] in 1967, including Jerusalem, so that the region enjoys calm and stability during this phase.” But those final words—“this phase”—made Israelis understandably skeptical that Hamas had changed its long-term goals. The organization still refused to recognize Israel, and given that Israel had refused to talk to the PLO until it formally accepted Israel’s right to exist in 1993, it’s not surprising that Israel demanded Hamas meet the same standard.”

            [...]

            “Instead, the Bush administration—suddenly less enamored of Middle Eastern democracy–pressured Abbas to dissolve the Palestinian parliament and rule by emergency decree. Israel, which also wanted Abbas to defy the election results, withheld the tax and customs revenue it had collected on the Palestinian Authority’s behalf. Knowing Hamas would resist Abbas’ efforts to annul the election, especially in Gaza, where it was strong on the ground, the Bushies also began urging Abbas’ former national security advisor, a Gazan named Mohammed Dahlan, to seize power in the Strip by force. As David Rose later detailed in an extraordinary article in Vanity Fair, Condoleezza Rice pushed Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to buy weapons for Dahlan, and for Israel to allow them to enter Gaza. As General Mark Dayton, US security coordinator for the Palestinians, told Dahlan in November 2006, “We also need you to build up your forces in order to take on Hamas.””

            “Unfortunately for the Bush administration, Dahlan’s forces were weaker than they looked. And when the battle for Gaza began, Hamas won it easily, and brutally. In response, Abbas declared emergency rule in the West Bank.”

            In short, Fatah spurred on by the Zionists initiated the coup, then came out of it worse for wear.

            Reply to Comment
          • Whiplash

            What you leave out is that under the Palestinian basic law Hamas had no authority to set up its own army and security services. It usurped these functions. Under Palestinian law the PA had the right to enforce Palestinian law, but Hamas instead by coup took over all functions in Gaza.

            Reply to Comment
          • What you leave out is that Hamas won the elections, fair and square.

            The West/Israel/Egypt likes democracy when it suits it.

            Reply to Comment
          • bor

            Gert, calling Khaled Abu Toameh, one of the most serious journalists in Israel, a Zionist shill says far more about you than about him.

            As for who better understands the situation, Toameh or Beinart, you have to be kidding. Beinart can’t even understand his own American Jewish community, much less anything about Israel and the Palestinians. Open Zion was a propaganda rag.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ray

            In this day and age, calling a journalist a Very Serious Person (similar to your description of Toameh as “serious”) is not positive.

            Ask any critical thinker in the States, who doesn’t have a pathological urge to follow the party line, what they think of David Brooks or Tom Friedman.

            Reply to Comment
          • bor

            Ray, I guess you had nothing of substance to add to the discussion but felt compelled to comment.

            It’s okay, Derfner knows Toameh. He knows precisely how careful of a reporter he is and that his analysis of circumstances and people tends to be quite accurate. He also possesses true courage because it is not simple to report as he does when you come from his community. He represents an example of the kind of life these two nations could share.

            Reply to Comment
          • bor

            Gert, “Hamas won fair and square.”

            Um, you do realize they didn’t win more than 50% of the vote, right? And you do realize that they took power by using violent means including throwing Fatah men off rooftops, right? And you are aware they haven’t held an election since, yes?

            Just the other day, they summarily executed 26 men, in the open, in front of children. They then refused to provide the names of the murdered. This is the same organization that has now acknowledged (after denials which you probably used in your defense of this group) kidnapping and murdering the three Israeli teenagers and the same organization which has now acknowledged manipulating and using violent tactics with the international media during this war.

            These are the people you’re defending.

            Reply to Comment
          • Whiplash

            Hamas won the legislative, not the presidential, elections. You may have heard about the division of powers in a presidential system. Hamas had no power to usurp the prerogative powers of the president who is commander in chief of the Palestinian security forces. Hamas had no right under Palestinian law to wield arms or replace the Palestinian security services with its own army and security police.

            Hamas ignored Palestinian law, set up their own state with their own army and security apparatus, foreign diplomats, civil service, and collection of revenues all in contradiction of Palestinian law.

            Hamas operated like Morsi. However the PA did not have the power which Sisi had to remove the corrupt regime in Gaza.

            Reply to Comment
          • Goldmarx

            “Instead, the Bush administration—suddenly less enamored of Middle Eastern democracy–pressured Abbas to dissolve the Palestinian parliament and rule by emergency decree.”

            Beinart clearly states that it was Abbas who started the illegal shenanigans by dissolving the Palestinian Parliament due to US pressure. Hamas knew it didn’t win the presidential election, but it was Abbas who initiated anti-democratic moves, not Hamas.

            Reply to Comment
    12. lifer101

      You may call yourself an ultra-liberal zionist, I call you a disgusting terrorist appeaser. Anybody who does not feel utter revulsion at hamas’ terrorist tactics in storing missiles in mosques, schools, hospitals etc and then firing them into Israel with the sole purpose of killing as many innocent jews as possible should take a long hard look in the mirror. It’s a war crime, no it’s a double war crime because they also stop innocent civilians from seeking shelter after being warned by israel of an impending attack – which other army in the history of the world has ever warned an oppenents civilian population to seek shelter, not the allies in WW2, not the allies again in afghanistan, iraq, bosnia and certainly not the russians in chechnya or anybody else – only the IDF. And you Derfner, you rat, you have the nerve to accuse israel of targeting civilians. If the terrorists didn’t fire missiles into israel, Israel would have no need to respond. FYI Israel withdrew from gaza in 2005, not a jew left. No occupation either. If hamas wasn’t hell bent on using imports to further thier genocidal aim to destroy israel and murder all the jews, there wouldn’t be any need for a blockade – simple logic. Read hamas’ charter – full of hate and loathing of jews, not just zionists but jews – all jews! It’s a pity on the innocent arabs killed when israel takes out missile launchers or terrorists, but the alternative is to just sit back and let hamas continue firing at will – no responsible govt can do that and survive. So wake up and smell the truth derfner, you idiot. You do not negotiate with people who are hell bent on your destruction, you defeat them, and defeat them thoroughly..

      Reply to Comment
    13. andrew r

      Anybody who does not feel utter revulsion at hamas’ terrorist tactics in storing missiles in mosques, schools, hospitals etc (…)

      Let’s pretend these accusations against Hamas are true (and I’m not interested in confirming or denying them, because that’s not my argument); if they were to build a military base out in the plains, it would be destroyed in about ten minutes. Now, what were the armed groups of the Yishuv (refers to the Zionist immigrant community in Palestine before they established Israel) doing when it wasn’t possible for them to establish a base? They stored their machine guns and explosives in synagogues, schools and big holes in the ground dug at farms.

      If you’re on the side of Israel, it’s not because Israelis have superior ethics in separating civilians and combatants. They were using civilian locations for military purposes when it was necessary for them.

      http://he.wikipedia.org/wiki/%D7%A1%D7%9C%D7%99%D7%A7 (use google)

      http://www.sliq.org.il/en/stories_en.asp

      http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/features/jews-just-like-arabs-hid-weapons-in-immoral-places-1.339432

      “”The point of departure for those in the Jewish Yishuv who hatched the idea of building weapons caches in places such as synagogues, women’s rooms, children’s houses,” explains Kitron, “was that British officers and troops were gentlemen who wouldn’t dare to search in such places.”"

      Reply to Comment
    14. I really enjoy responsible journalism when I see it. Great to see someone reporting who knows their subject!!

      Reply to Comment
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© 2010 - 2014 +972 Magazine
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Credits

+972 is an independent, blog-based web magazine. It was launched in August 2010, resulting from a merger of a number of popular English-language blogs dealing with life and politics in Israel and Palestine.

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Illustrations: Eran Mendel