The latest from Palestine Today:
The Islamic Resistance Movement Hamas confirmed today on its adherence to the right of resistance in all forms, especially armed resistance. Defeating the occupation has proven this path of resistance, and jihad and martyrdom are the only way to extract our rights and liberate our land and our Jerusalem and our holy places.
Khaled Abu Toameh sums up Hamas' position nicely:
Hamas is joining the PLO not because it has changed, but out of a desire to make the Fatah-dominated organization stick to its true mission: the liberation of Palestine from Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea -- in other words, all the land that is currently Israel -- and to achieve the "right of return" for Palestinian refugees to their original villages and homes inside Israel.
Once Hamas takes control over the PLO, it will seek to cancel all agreements and understandings reached between the organization and Israel, above all the 1993 Oslo Accords. Hamas also wants the PLO to withdraw its recognition of Israel.
Hamas leaders and spokesmen are openly saying that joining the PLO does not mean that they would recognize Israel's right to exist or abandon the "armed struggle" against the Jewish state.
"Anyone who thinks that Hamas has, or will, change is living under an illusion," declared Hamas representative Osama Hamdan.
Hamdan is one of several Hamas officials who have been trying in the past few days to explain to the world that his movement has not abandoned its radical ideology and will in fact continue to fight for the "liberation of all Palestine."
But all these clarifications from the Hamas leaders regarding their true intentions seem to be falling on deaf ears in the West.
Some Western analysts have begun talking about the "new Hamas," one which is about to accept the two state solution and abandon the "armed struggle" in favor of a peaceful and popular uprising against Israel.
Some European government officials are also ignoring the Hamas clarifications, insisting that the movement's decision to join the PLO is an indication that it has abandoned its dream of replacing Israel with an Islamist state.
Those who think that Abbas's invitation to Hamas to join the PLO is a positive step for the peace process are deluding themselves. Hamas, according to its leaders, is joining the PLO because it wants to "liberate Palestine from the river to the sea," and not because it is interested in becoming part of the peace process.
But in the West, most analysts do not want to hear what Hamas says in Arabic.