As the United States confronts any Israeli foolishness, whether long-term or short-term, it needs to overcome not only the business about Hamas recognizing Israel but also understandable queasiness about dealing with a group that has the blood of innocents on its hands. Two observations are pertinent to this. One is that we have been through this all before, not only in other conflicts such as Northern Ireland but also in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict itself, with the acceptance of the PLO as a legitimate interlocutor at the start of the Oslo process. The other observation is that if one is to follow the “once a terrorist, always a terrorist” posture that is so often taken toward Hamas, then the United States ought not to have any dealings with Likud, some of whose earlier leaders—notably Menachem Begin and Yitzhak Shamir—had also been heavily involved in the killing of innocents through terrorism.
Monday, December 26, 2011
Hamas On The Horizon
Even if Israel refuses to deal with Hamas, the U.S. should be open to the possibility, Paul Pillar writes at "The National Interest":