To Recognize or Not To Recognize
...That is the Question.
First, from the UK's Telegraph:
Hamas U-turn on Israel's right to exist
bq. With Israel threatening to re-invade Gaza, Hamas, the militant Palestinian movement, made a historic policy reversal yesterday when it signed up to an agreement implicitly recognising the right of the Jewish state to exist.
Hamas hailed the policy U-turn as ending weeks of tense negotiations with the other main Palestinian political force, Fatah, which had spilt over into violent clashes on the streets.
'It is the beginning of a new era in common and united work on all political questions, the resistance and the internal situation,' Ghazi Hamad, a Hamas spokesman, said.
Various Hamas spokesmen stressed that there was no outright recognition of Israel, although they could not deny the historic importance of the agreement.
Next, from the UK's BBC:
Hamas resist Israel recognition
bq. Rival Palestinian political factions Fatah and Hamas have reached agreement on a common political strategy to try to end a damaging power struggle.
However, Hamas negotiators have denied earlier reports that the deal meant the militants would implicitly recognise Israel - a major policy shift.
So which is it? Likely both, as the 'agreement' will serve to further accentuate and accelerate the splintering of Hamas.
However, the text of the agreement has yet to be released to examine the exact language. For now, the operative word should be 'implicitly', which obviously falls short of explicit recognition.
Also, the agreement most certainly will not reveal any language renouncing violence or terrorist tactics, the other part of international (and Israeli) demands on Hamas.