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Hamas Will Not Change By: Dr. Rachel Ehrenfeld and Alyssa A. Lappen
FrontPageMagazine.com | Wednesday, February 08, 2006


The way the U.S. is promoting Democracy in the Middle East, it is likely to backfire on the West. President George W. Bush in his State of the Union Address stated: ”Elections are vital, but they are only the beginning. Raising up a democracy requires the rule of law, and protection of minorities, and strong, accountable institutions that last longer than a single vote.” 

Yet, the law that rules HAMAS and led to its victory is the same evil Islamofascism that President Bush decries. It is futile to hope that the group whose reason for existence, according to its Charter, is to impose and enforce the Shari’a law in Israel and globally, would be willing to change its raison d’etre.

HAMAS, like other Islamist organizations has mastered the strategy of defeating the West through its own political system. HAMAS does so by leveraging the very freedoms that it wants to obliterate. The First Terrorist People, has declared by the very vote that they reject Western standards. Yet, the West continues to delude themselves and pander to the first democratically elected terrorist entity by projecting Western values on them. For example, President Bush stated his naïve conjecture that “now the leaders of Hamas must recognize Israel, disarm, reject terrorism, and work for lasting peace.”

 

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is equally naïve. In response to the election of the designated Foreign Terrorist Organization, HAMAS, she said: “there are obligations and responsibilities that come with governing.” She and the President, like many others seem to think that HAMAS will suddenly change, now that it’s in power. However, this is the wrong response. HAMAS was, is, and as its leaders vow, will continue to be an Islamist organization with genocidal intents.

 

Even Shimon Peres who negotiated the Oslo Accords with Yasser Arafat understands that some things will never change. He said: "Hamas see themselves as messengers of heaven. In politics you compromise, but religious parties do not compromise."

 

Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld seems to get it. Although HAMAS prevailed in the free PA election, Rumsfeld was very clear. He stated in a February 1 press conference, “They [HAMAS] are a terrorist organization and have not renounced terror. Nor have they changed their position with respect to the right of Israel -- Israel's right to exist.” Rumsfeld then called upon other countries to react to HAMAS as to “a terrorist organization that has not renounced terror.” At the same time, Rumsfeld, too, seems afflicted by the same false hope, that these religious fanatics might change their behavior, for he quickly added, “[O]ver time, that will sort out.”

 

Based on this misplaced hope, the U.S. government has already demanded that Israel continue to transfer to the Palestinian Authority, tax funds collected on its behalf. The American Ambassador to Israel Richard Jones has urged Jerusalem officials to continue tax transfer payments during the few months Hamas could take to form its new government. In the interim, the U.S. apparently hopes to “bolster” Mahmoud Abbas, who not only facilitated HAMAS participation in the election, but also just two months ago, signed a new law requiring that the PA pays all families of suicide bombers and all other Palestinian terrorists.

 

For the moment at least, Israel has drawn a line in the sand: Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Danny Ayalon told senior U.S. officials that the Jewish state refuses to transfer the funds.  And Shimon Peres also urged the European Union and US to halt all payments to the PA when Hamas takes power.

 

The terrorist organization Hamas, would not have won the election if, in the first place, the world community had refused to allow it to run. Now that all its terrorist leaders have come out of hiding, we should take this golden opportunity to neutralize them thus rid the world of this dangerous Islamofascist organization.

 

Since HAMAS will not change, it is time we do. As Gerard Baker wrote in the Times of London: “we must in our own societies, resist the pressure to tolerate the intolerance of Islamist extremism.”

 

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Dr. Rachel Ehrenfeld is author of Funding Evil; How Terrorism is Financed and How to Stop It. She is director of the American Center for Democracy and member of the Committee on the Present Danger. Alyssa A. Lappen, Senior Fellow at the ACD, is a former editor for Forbes, Corporate Finance, Working Woman and Institutional Investor.


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