As Hamas continues to slowly grow in respectability in the West, it is instructive to see exactly who Hamas is demanding to be released from Israeli jails in exchange for Gilad Shalit.
Ma'an quotes Israel's Channel Two as saying that the list includes some of the most heinous terrorists responsible for scores of deaths of civilians. Hamas' heroes are in direct proportion to the number of Jews they killed.
At the top of the list is the person responsible for what may have been intended to be the first suicide attack on Jews in Israel. In 1989, a Gazan traveling on bus 405 from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem grabbed the wheel of the driver and forced the bus to tumble down a cliff, killing 14. The terrorist survived and remains in jail.
Others that Hamas wants released were responsible for the Passover massacre at the Park Hotel in Netanya, where 29 were killed including 20 over the age of 70.
Most of the others on the list likewise were responsible for murdering Israeli civilians, including stabbings and shootings.
These are Hamas' heroes. These are the people they idolize, whom they hold up as role models to their children.
And their priorities in prisoners aren't, say, mothers in Israeli jails, or those who attacked soldiers. No, they mostly want the release of cold-blooded murderers.