A. B. Yehoshua is a great author and a long standing friend of mine. Despite an old, very interesting book of his about Zionism, Bouli, as everyone calls him, is truly a Zionist, who only sees in politics what his highly talented artistic dreams point out for him; fiction rather than reality is his specialty.
So when yesterday, he asked Israel to strike a deal with Hamas on La Stampa, he repeated the same mistakes he’s made a thousand times in the conviction that in order to make peace with the Arabs just ask them, say please and give them a good gift - that would suffice.
For some strange reason the whole ideology factor totally eludes him, which in the case of Hamas is certainly of paramount importance. It’s not that Bibi Netanyahu, as Yeoshua likes to say, gave Hamas the title of “terror organization” rather than “foe”, shunning in this way any possible agreements: no, Hamas is a terrorist group as per the International declaration.
The European Union put Hamas on its list, as did the US too, not just Israel. Hamas, unlike Jordan and Egypt, is neither a state nor a statutory enemy; its goal, as enshrined by its Charter to which it is faithful (please, take a look at it, it’s a fascinating read into the horror), is to destroy Israel and kill all Jews, A. B. Yehoshua included.
Jordan, like Syria and Egypt, doesn’t have this aim as a principle in its constitution. Their behavior in the course of the different wars has certainly been cruel and unforgivable: but none of the adjacent states has as its main purpose to destroy Israel and kill all Jews one by one, all over the world.
It is therefore possible -maybe - to make peace with them. Hamas on the contrary, does not exist but for the sole purposes of waging war on the West in order to institute Shariah law, ando teaching children to become shahid. The recognition sought by Hamas is a leadership medal in Shariah, its main aspiration being that Heads of States who visit proclaim to the whole world Hamss' right to be the best butcher of Israel, not its partner.
Bouli’s request will become a medal that Hamas will pin upon its chest so as to state: you see, how frightened the Israelis are of our desire to tear them to pieces? A.B. Yeoshua asked for an agreement.
In the Middle Eastern mind-set this is a serious blunder, if you are afraid you’re dead, if you ask for peace while the other is declaring eternal war you are less than a coward trying to escape. It would be good to bargain with the Palestinian Arabs about a “reasonable partition”, but what was possible for King Hussein or Sadat doesn’t work with Ismail Haniye or Khaled Mashaal.
Hamas has got nothing to gain in asking for a “reasonable partition”, it is not interested in two states for two peoples. There would be three anyway, considering that Hamas, as everyone will surely remember, hates the PLO. It does not wish to unite with Abbas, but to swallow him into one single ferocious Hamasland.
Hamas is not barricaded in a strip of land; the crossings are open for humanitarian aid and for power, water, medications, and the Internet flow from Israel.
It might be expected that all of this burden be taken on by Egypt, which should unlock its doors, as it’s the natural outlet, vast and promising for an Arab population. Egypt, for sure, is not Israel, the country where they are known for infiltrating, bringing, as they’ve always done, suicide terrorism and hostile smuggling.
Yehoshua can’t expect that an opening with Gaza can be fruitful for peace, he knows what fruits it would bear, as he also knows that Abbas wouldn’t be happy with it. He doesn’t want to see Hamas intrude to his home. Bouli knows that it was not the elections which conferred Hamas absolute power in Gaza, but the war between the two parties. Someone might still remember that Al Fatah henchmen were thrown off the roofs in Gaza by their fellow Arabs.
Historically, all Palestinian Arabs strongly dismiss the idea of considering Israel a neighbor; instead, they see it as a foreign body to the point that even PLO, led by Arafat in the past, currently by Abbas, aborted one by one all of the attempted agreements in the past years.
The Palestinian Authority doesn’t seek to strike a deal, which, as Bouli overtly puts it, can’t sign without Hamas: on the contrary, it praises terror and war and it’s forwarding the bid for a unilateral statehood to the UN on Thursday, without negotiations, without sitting down with the Jews, with Bouli himself.
PA folks are not seeking an agreement; it would cost them the dishonor of the entire Islamist religious world, not to mention Hamas. A new Middle East is surely rising on the horizon, you are correct Bouli, but in the aftermath of the Arab Revolutions the Muslim Brotherhood, which Hamas belongs to, is pursuing a worldwide caliphate: Israel will be its first, tastiest bite.