It’s the Democracy, Stupid

Skipping the Hamas Party ignores the Eight Year Palestinian War

Many pro-Israel people (myself included) have complained over the past several months that mainstream media’s coverage of Hamas neglected to refer to the group as “terrorists”, as the group is so labeled by: the United States; Canada; European Union; Japan; Israel; and Egypt. I believe that we have missed a more basic flaw in describing Hamas, namely that it is the majority democratically-elected party of the Palestinians.

In January, 2006, the Palestinian Authority held its last democratic elections. The Palestinians in both the West Bank and Gaza voted overwhelming for Hamas. The group secured 76 of 132 seats in the government, or 58% of the Palestinian Authority. By way of comparison:

  • In the United States (2012), the Democratic Party won 54% of the seats in the Senate;
  • In the United Kingdom (2010), the winning Conservative Party won 36% of the seats in the parliament; and
  • In Australia (2013), a coalition of four parties including the Liberal and Liberal National Party secured 53% of the seats

Hamas is the popular, mainstream political party that the Palestinians chose by an enormous margin (58% in a multi-party parliamentary system is a landslide; second place Fatah won 33% of the seats). When the Palestinians placed their votes, they all understood that Hamas was rabidly anti-Semitic, sought the murder of Jews and complete destruction of Israel, as it described clearly in its 1988 Charter and in repeated statements by its leadership. Further, Palestinians voted for this party knowing not just of Hamas’s positions, but of the world’s policy of isolating Hamas.

The media has not only ignored this, but has deliberately concealed this fact. Look at the adjectives used for Hamas: it is described as “Islamist” not “Palestinian”; it is described as a “faction”, not a “political party”; the group is described as having “seized” Gaza and does not convey that the people freely voted for the terrorist group.

  • New York Times: “Hamas, the Islamist faction that dominates the Gaza Strip.”
  • CNN: “Hamas, the militant Islamic group that runs Gaza,”
  • The Guardian: “Islamist organisation,”
  • Newsweek: “Hamas Islamist-dominated Gaza Strip”
  • Reuters: “Hamas, Gaza’s dominant Islamist group,”

Through the media’s – and world bodies’ – obfuscation of the Palestinian people’s complicity in the current situation, it dangerously absolves the Palestinians of responsibility. Palestinians have been artistically separated from their democratically-elected leaders who are carrying out the exact campaign promises that the Palestinian voters enthusiastically endorsed.

A reader of the photoshop-ed news is therefore led to conclude that Hamas is similar to ISIS in Iraq or Boko Haram in Nigeria or other declared terrorist groups. However, those groups are indeed “factions” and “Islamist organizations” that are apart from their respective governments. They were not elected by the people. In the West Bank and Gaza Hamas is the government and represents the Palestinians’ desires, irrespective of world leaders and the media pretending that acting-President Mahmoud Abbas (whose term expired way back in 2009) is an elected leader.

To further underscore the point, a poll conducted by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research in August 2014 found that 61% of Palestinians would vote for Hamas. The breakdown was 53% for the terrorist party in Gaza and 66% in the West Bank.


The Palestinian people chose a path of war and continue to support an armed conflict today. They actively elected a group dedicated to jihad and the rejection of any and all negotiations with Israel in 2006, and back that same political terrorist party today.

By ignoring the role of the democratic process and the stated desires of the Palestinian people, the past eight years have been mischaracterized as a having three Israeli-Gaza wars, instead of an eight year Palestinian-Israeli war, in which Israel has responded with three defensive operations.

Or, more accurately based on the latest Palestinian poll, eight years and counting…


Source:

Hamas election 2006: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/01/26/AR2006012600372.html

Hamas August 2014 poll: http://www.jpost.com/Breaking-News/Hamas-Haniyeh-would-trounce-Abbas-if-elections-held-today-Palestinian-poll-says-374296

US Senate 2012: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Senate_elections,_2012

UK election 2010: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Kingdom_general_election,_2010

Australia election 2013: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australian_federal_election,_2013

Hamas Charter: http://www.thejerusalemfund.org/www.thejerusalemfund.org/carryover/documents/charter.html?chocaid=397

New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/02/world/middleeast/israel-gaza-conflict.html?_r=0

CNN: http://edition.cnn.com/2014/08/11/world/meast/mideast-crisis/

The Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/aug/14/hamas-real-chance-gaza-agreement-israel-truce

Newsweek: http://www.newsweek.com/israel-warns-hamas-harsh-strikes-265100

Reuters: http://uk.reuters.com/article/2014/08/16/uk-mideast-gaza-hamas-talks-idUKKBN0GG0FJ20140816

Wall Street Journal: “The third major military clash between Israel and Hamas in less than six years” http://online.wsj.com/articles/israel-hamas-talks-over-gaza-deadlocked-1407920730

Advertisements

15 thoughts on “It’s the Democracy, Stupid

  1. Hamas were elected and then dismissed by the legally elected president which arguably he had a right to do. Hamas did not accept their dismissal so technically there are two claimants to government. The president is 9 years into his 4 year term but that is another issue.

    To talk about Hamas as majority democratically-elected party of the Palestinians is thus misleading.

    One of Hamas’s demands in this war is that the Palestinian Authority pay Hamas public servants, as it pays Fatah public servants who do nothing as Hamas is in control, which suggests Hamas accept at least in this instance PA authority. Hamas recently returned to unity with the PA which further muddies the water.

  2. Hitler was democratically elected in Germany. Obviously. this did not make Germany a democracy. How Hamas came to power is basically irrelevant. Without protection for basic Human Rights, this regime is no different from the rest of the barbaric regimes that inhabit the region.

    • Hamas is a political party like the nazis. The nazis captured 33% of the vote and Hamas 58% of the parliament. The nazis morphed their platform over the years since their election in 1933. The Hamas charter calling for the killing of Jews and destruction of Israel is clear today. Palestina n’s know quite well who and what they voted for. The point is that Hamas is not a rogue operation like isis. They represent the wishes of the palestinians.

    • Hamas is barbaric like isis. Unlike isis, they are part and parcel of the government and represent the palestinians who have voted for war. That is why there is no movement on the peace process. They have voted for war not peace

      • I know this war has been going on for thousands of years, but if they don’t illiminate this problem for once and for all, God forbid this could and will turn into another haloucast. The Jewish people, and all the people around the world shall never forget. The leaders of these countries are just as evil as Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany…..and just as Hitler got to the youth, and brainwash their young, developing minds is happening again right before our eyes. Professors in colleges are good at doing this….teaching them that it never happened, meaning the haloucast, that it was all propaganda, turning their minds against God, by debating them, and will ask their students to give them proof, there was a God, show me the proof. So its been said, history repeats itself. Please in the name of God, pray this never happens again……Pray for Peace…..

  3. Pingback: The Disappointing 4+6 Anniversary | FirstOneThrough

  4. Pingback: “Radical jihadists” in Europe and “dislocated and alienated” Palestinians in Israel | FirstOneThrough

  5. Pingback: In Israel, the Winner is… Democracy | FirstOneThrough

  6. Pingback: Cause and Effect: Making Gaza | FirstOneThrough

  7. Pingback: Educating the New York Times: Hamas is the Muslim Brotherhood | FirstOneThrough

  8. Pingback: Collective Guilt / Collective Punishment | FirstOneThrough

  9. Pingback: Palestinian Authority Perfects Hypocrisy | FirstOneThrough

  10. Pingback: If Palestinians are Scared, it Must be Real | FirstOneThrough

  11. Pingback: The US State Department Does Not Want Israel to Fight Terrorism | FirstOneThrough

  12. Pingback: Time for Obama to Address Palestinian Arabs Directly | FirstOneThrough

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s