Last week's attack on the Nahal Oz fuel depot should not surprise critics in the West. Palestinians are fighting a total war waged on us by a nation that mobilizes against our people with every means at its disposal -- from its high-tech military to its economic stranglehold, from its falsified history to its judiciary that "legalizes" the infrastructure of apartheid. Resistance remains our only option. Sixty-five years ago, the courageous Jews of the Warsaw ghetto rose in defense of their people. We Gazans, living in the world's largest open-air prison, can do no less.He applauds the Arab murder of innocents and in the next breath compares Gazans who support the mass murder of Jews to Jews slated for genocide.
Our movement fights on because we cannot allow the foundational crime at the core of the Jewish state -- the violent expulsion from our lands and villages that made us refugees -- to slip out of world consciousness, forgotten or negotiated away. Judaism -- which gave so much to human culture in the contributions of its ancient lawgivers and modern proponents of tikkun olam -- has corrupted itself in the detour into Zionism, nationalism and apartheid.So Jewish nationalism is evil, but Islamic nationalism - the core of Hamas' existence, and orders of magnitude more violent by any yardstick - is just peachy. I love how he quotes "tikkun olam" as well, perhaps a nod to his ideological pals of the Jewish ultra-left.
A "peace process" with Palestinians cannot take even its first tiny step until Israel first withdraws to the borders of 1967; dismantles all settlements; removes all soldiers from Gaza and the West Bank; repudiates its illegal annexation of Jerusalem; releases all prisoners; and ends its blockade of our international borders, our coastline and our airspace permanently. This would provide the starting point for just negotiations and would lay the groundwork for the return of millions of refugees. Given what we have lost, it is the only basis by which we can start to be whole again.While it is obvious that he is saying that Israel must be utterly destroyed before Hamas would consider stopping murdering Jews, it would be impolitic to write those words. This way he can sound a bit more peaceful.
And he signs off with a final threat:
As for the Israeli state and its Spartan culture of permanent war, it is all too vulnerable to time, fatigue and demographics: In the end, it is always a question of our children and those who come after us.To have the leader of masked gangs dedicated to nothing but murder saying that the the State of Israel has a "culture of permanent war" is beyond parody. His demographic threat only points to the futility of Israel granting concession after concession.
To be fair, he WaPo also publishes a fairly good rebuttal to Zahar as well as a rebuke to Carter in their own editorial on the opposite page:
ON THE OPPOSITE page today we publish an article by the "foreign minister" of Hamas, Mahmoud al-Zahar, that drips with hatred for Israel, and with praise for former president Jimmy Carter. We believe Mr. Zahar's words are worth publishing because they provide some clarity about the group he helps to lead, a group that Mr. Carter contends is worthy of being included in the Middle East peace process....Nevertheless, they could have written the same editorial without printing Zahar's sickening words, where the realities of editorial space give Zahar's genocidal hate the same legitimacy that Carter's meetings do to Hamas. Jimmy also condemned rocket attacks, that hardly blunts the net effect of treating terrorists as respectful players, and the WaPo falls into the same trap.
Mr. Zahar lauds Mr. Carter for the "welcome tonic" of saying that no peace process can succeed "unless we are sitting at the negotiating table and without any preconditions." Yet Mr. Zahar has his own preconditions: Before any peace process can "take even its first tiny step," he says, Israel must withdraw to the 1967 borders and evacuate Jerusalem while preparing for the "return of millions of refugees." In fact, as Mr. Zahar makes clear, Hamas is not at all interested in a negotiated peace with the Jewish state, whose existence it refuses to accept: "Our fight to redress the material crimes of 1948 is scarcely begun," he concludes.
In that fight, no act of terrorism is out of bounds for the Hamas leader, who endorses the group's recent ambush of Israeli civilians working at a fuel depot that supplies Gaza. The "total war" of which he speaks was initiated and has been sustained by Hamas itself through its deliberate targeting of civilians, such as the residents of the Israeli town of Sderot, who suffer daily rocket attacks.These facts would hardly need restating were it not for actors such as Mr. Carter, who portray Hamas as rational and reasonable.
By doing what they did, the WaPo allows half-truths and lies from Hamas stand unchallenged in the pages of their paper. Editorials need to at least have some standards of truth, and Zahar's doesn't live up to them as he speaks of international law and history.
And just like Carter congratulates himself on being so bold, so does the Washington Post.