Hamas and the Line in the Sand
Following the same logic presented in today's Triangulating Hamas, Abbas and al-Qaeda regarding the al-Qaeda-Hamas relationship, in The Strip Club: al Qaeda and Hamas in Gaza at National Review Online, James Robbins takes a closer look at the historical ideological differences between the two. Today's PrincipleAnalysis did not present this contrast. Robbins still arrives at the same essential and important conclusion.
Some analysts observe that it is in Fatah’s interest, as well as Israel’s, to associate Hamas with al Qaeda, in order to discredit them; they thus seek to discount the potential links, or even al Qaeda presence, as propaganda. But the evidence is slowly mounting that al Qaeda is active in the Palestinian Authority, doing what they have been promising to do for years. It is odd indeed to be arguing which of three terrorist organizations is the most extreme, and how that reflects on the others. Would we somehow think less of Hamas if they were consorting with al Qaeda? The two groups have virtually identical worldviews, programs, and propensities to kill the innocent. We should not think much of Hamas in any case. However, the possibility that the Islamic Resistance Movement is aligning with our principle enemy in the global war on terrorism should give pause to those who, in this country and elsewhere, seek to secure millions of dollars in aid money for the PA. The U.S. and its Coalition partners have spent years developing the tools necessary to disrupt terrorist financing; we should not indirectly become the terrorists’ new state sponsors.
Any distance Hamas attempts to put between their terror organization and al-Qaeda's terror organization should be essentially meaningless. The difference between them is merely the geographic scope of their operations and scale of attack.
When Mahmoud Zahar, the Hamas leader in the Palestinian Territories, said after the Palestinian elections, "The Western nations can take their aid and get lost," the West should grant him and Hamas precisely that and force them to openly align with those who support their terrorism, such as Iran. We should not support them in any way.
The line in the sand can be no clearer.