Archive for January 27th, 2006

Philo-Semitism has believers, skeptics

Friday, January 27th, 2006

I had not heard this term before today, but it makes sense that if the world has anti-Semitism that it could have “pro-Semitism”. I do apologize for the left leaning tone of the article. It seems they put the spin on something positive to make sure us Christians know we have no place in government. Only the immoral and non-religious have place in the decision making processes of our nation. I bet that sounds really funny to the founding fathers. I guess someone forgot to clue them in before they wrote the Constitution. They then go on to spin the article to advance the theory that being a Christian is really being “anti-Semitic” because of our belief in the second coming of Jesus (if you read Revelations, you will see that many Jews come to a belief in Jesus, thus making them Christians instead of messianic Jews). So without further ado let me introduce “philo-Semitism”.

DANVILLE, Va. — Everyone who worships at The Tabernacle quickly learns three facts about its deeply conservative pastor. He comes from a broken home. He rides a canary-yellow Harley. And he loves the Jews.There is some murmuring about the motorcycle. But the 2,500 members of this Bible- believing, tradition-respecting Southern Baptist church in southern Virginia have embraced everything else about the Rev. Lamarr Mooneyham.Out of his painful childhood experiences, Mooneyham, 57, preaches passionately about the importance of home. Out of his reading of the Bible, he preaches with equal passion about God’s continuing devotion to the Jewish people.
“I feel jealous sometimes. This term that keeps coming up in the Old Book — the Chosen, the Chosen,” says the minister, who has made three trips to Israel and named his sons Isaac, Jacob and Joseph. “I’m a pardoned gentile, but I’m not one of the Chosen People. They’re the apple of His eye.” Scholars of religion call this worldview “philo-Semitism,” the opposite of anti-Semitism. It is a burgeoning phenomenon in evangelical Christian churches across the country, a hot topic in Jewish historical studies and a wellspring of support for Israel.
Yet many Jews are nervous about evangelicals’ intentions. In recent weeks, leaders of three of the nation’s largest Jewish groups — the Anti-Defamation League, the American Jewish Committee and the Union for Reform Judaism — have decried what they see as a mounting threat to the separation of church and state from evangelicals emboldened by the belief that they have an ally in the White House and an opportunity to shift the Supreme Court.
“Make no mistake: We are facing an emerging Christian right leadership that intends to ‘Christianize’ all aspects of American life, from the halls of government to the libraries, to the movies, to recording studios, to the playing fields and locker rooms … from the military to SpongeBob SquarePants,” the ADL’s national director, Abraham H. Foxman, said in a Nov. 3 speech.
Julie Galambush, a former American Baptist minister who converted to Judaism 11 years ago, has seen both sides of the divide. She said many Jews suspect that evangelicals’ support for Israel is rooted in a belief that the return of Jews to the promised land will trigger the Second Coming of Jesus, the battle of Armageddon and mass conversion.”That hope is felt and expressed by Christians as a kind, benevolent hope,” said Galambush, author of “The Reluctant Parting,” a new book on the Jewish roots of Christianity. “But believing that someday Jews will stop being Jews and become Christians is still a form of hoping that someday there will be no more Jews.”
The result is a paradox — warming evangelical attitudes toward Jews at a time of rising Jewish concern about evangelicals — that could be a turning point in the uneasy alliance between Jewish and Christian groups that ardently back Israel but disagree on much else.

Read the rest of the article here.

Marriage Defenders Lose Ground in Maryland, Move Forward in Virginia

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Keep praying that God will open people’s eyes to the sin of homosexuality.

(AgapePress) – A Christian activist says a dark shadow has been cast over traditional marriage in Maryland. Last week, a trial court struck down a state law banning same-sex “marriage” on the basis that it violated the Equal Rights Amendment, or ERA.
In 1972 voters in Maryland ratified the ERA, which stated that a person should not be denied rights because of their sex. The next year the General Assembly passed a law recognizing only traditional marriage. Now, however, Judge M. Brooke Murdock has ruled that the state’s marriage law violated the ERA.
Tres Kerns, executive director of
VoteMarriage.org, says a poll taken last year showed overwhelming support for traditional marriage. “We reached over 20,000 homes in the state and literally over 70 percent of them agreed with it,” he says. “Even in what we would call the most liberal area, which is Rockville, Maryland, 55 percent of the people said they believe that marriage is between a man and a woman.”
Hence, Kerns contends, “It’s clear what the citizens of Maryland want.” He says the case will be appealed and, at the same time, an effort is under way to amend the state constitution to protect traditional marriage.
“We are in a real battle here for our families,” the traditional marriage advocate says. “The family’s been under attack for a long time. You just can’t sit on the sidelines.” Those who are doing that are “acquiescing to the aggressor,” he contends.
“The aggressor is the people who are against the family and want to destroy the family as we know it so they can do whatever they want,” Kerns declares. “It’s what I call sexual anarchy, and we’ve got to stop that.”
Meanwhile, in nearby Virginia, the lengthy, nearly two-year process of amending that state’s constitution took another small step forward as the Senate voted to give Commonwealth citizens the opportunity to weigh in on the definition of marriage.
Victoria Cobb, executive director of the
Family Foundation, is hailing this latest bit of progress in the marriage protection battle. “Virginians will now have nearly ten months to consider this question before casting their ballot in November,” she notes.
However, Cobb points out, “Opponents to traditional marriage are well funded and are already on the offensive. While we have little doubt that the vast majority of Virginians support this amendment and will vote in favor of it in 2006, we will not sit by and allow those opposed to traditional marriage to dominate the debate.”
The Family Foundation spokeswoman says that group has, along with several other pro-family groups in Virginia, helped to create “
VA4Marriage.org” to lead the push to get the state’s marriage amendment passed. The pro-family project includes a website, voter registration and get-out-the-vote efforts, as well as representatives ready to speak on the amendment at community and church meetings. Radio, TV, and newspaper ads are also planned as part of an extensive media campaign.

The Armor of God

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might.
Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.
Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm.
Stand firm therefore, HAVING GIRDED YOUR LOINS WITH TRUTH, and HAVING PUT ON THE BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS, and having shod YOUR FEET WITH THE PREPARATION OF THE GOSPEL OF PEACE; in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.
And take THE HELMET OF SALVATION, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

Ephesians 6:10-17 (New American Standard Bible)

Response to “Anonymous” to Comments Made About My Article “World Taken by Surprise by Hamas Victory”

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Anonymous said…
“Why should Hamas recognize Israel when they live under occupation? If we had lost WWII and had lived under Nazi occupation since then perhaps we would have similar bad feelings towards Germany. It is sad that the Christian Zionists are destroying our country by behaving in a very un-Christian way and never considering the Palestinian viewpoint. Check out dundeesblog.blogspot.com”

My response:
“Hello anonymous. Thank you for posting on my blog.
Let’s give this situation a rational thought for a moment; put the emotion aside and try to think logically. Let’s start by taking a look at history.

1917-1922: From 1517-1917 Turkey’s Ottoman Empire controlled what is today Lebanon, Syria, and Palestine. During World War I (1914-1918), Turkey supported Germany. When Germany was defeated, so were the Turks. In 1916 control of the southern portion of their Ottoman Empire was “mandated” to France and Britain under the Sykes-Picot Agreement, which divided the Arab region into zones of influence. Lebanon and Syria were assigned to France… and “Palestine” (today’s Jordan, Israel and “West Bank”) was assigned to Great Britain. It is important to mention that “Palestine” is a name that was coined by the Europeans. It did not exist before this point. Because no other group of people had ever established a national homeland here since the Jews had done it 2,000 years before, the British “looked favorably” upon the creation of a Jewish National Homeland throughout all of Palestine. The Jews had already begun mass immigration into Palestine in the 1880’s in an effort to rid the land of swamps and malaria and prepare the rebirth of Israel. This Jewish effort to revitalize the land attracted an equally large immigration of Arabs from neighboring areas, who were drawn by employment opportunities and healthier living conditions.

1923-1947: In 1923, the British divided Palestine into two administrative districts. Jews would be permitted only west of the Jordan River. The British had allocated 75% of the originally proposed Jewish Palestinian homeland to lay the seeds of what would become in 1946 the Arab Palestinian Nation of “Trans-Jordan,” meaning: “across the Jordan River.” The Palestinian Arabs now had their “Arab Palestinian” homeland. The remaining 25% of Palestine (now WEST of the Jordan River) was to be the Jewish Palestinian homeland. However, the Arab population was determined to claim all of Palestine for itself, and wanted to “drive the Jews into the sea.”

Encouraged and incited by growing Arab nationalism throughout the Middle East, the Arabs of that small remaining Palestinian territory west of the Jordan River launched incessant terrorist attacks upon the Jewish Palestinians in an effort to drive them out. The British at first tried to maintain order but soon (due to the large oil deposits being discovered throughout the Arab Middle East) turned a blind eye. It became obvious to the Palestinian Jews that they must fight the Arabs AND drive out the British.

1947-1948: The Palestinian Jews, forced to form an organized defense against the Arabs, formed the Hagana, the beginnings of the Israeli Defense Forces [IDF]. There was also a Jewish underground called the Irgun, led by Menachem Begin (who later became Prime Minister of Israel). Besides fighting the Arabs, the Irgun was instrumental in driving out the pro-Arab British. Finally, in 1947 the British turned the Palestine matter over to the United Nations.The U.N. Resolution 181 partition plan was to divide the remaining 25% of Palestine into a Jewish Palestinian State and a second Arab Palestinian State (Trans-Jordan being the first) based upon population concentration. The Jewish Palestinians accepted the proposal, but the Arab Palestinians rejected it. The Arabs still wanted ALL of Palestine – both east and west of the Jordan River. On May 14, 1948 the Palestinian Jews finally declared their own State of Israel and became “Israelis.” On the next day, Israel was at war with seven neighboring Arab armies: Egypt, Trans-Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Yemen. Most of the Arabs living within the boundaries of the newly declared “ISRAEL” were encouraged to leave by the invading Arab armies to facilitate the slaughter of the Jews and were promised to be given all Jewish property after the victorious Arab armies won the war. When the 19-month war ended, however, Israel won and survived, despite a 1% loss of it’s entire population. Those Arabs who did not run away became today’s Israeli Arab citizens. Those who fled became the seeds of the first wave of “Palestinian Arab refugees.”

1949-1967: The end result of the 1948-49 Israeli War of Independence was the creation of a Jewish state slightly larger than that which was proposed by the United Nations two years before. What remained of that almost-created second Arab Palestinian State was occupied by Egypt (occupying the Gaza Strip) and by Trans-Jordan (occupying Judea-Samaria (the “West Bank” of the Jordan River) and Jerusalem. In the next year (1950) Trans-Jordan formally merged this West Bank territory into itself and granted Jordanian citizenship to all those Arabs who lived there. Since Trans-Jordan was no longer confined to one side of the Jordan River, it renamed itself simply “JORDAN. In the final analysis, the Arabs of Palestine ended up with nearly 85% of the original territory of Palestine. But that was still not 100% and thus the conflict between Arab and Jew for “Palestine” would continue through four more wars and continuous Arab terrorist attacks upon the Israeli citizens. It continues to this very day.From 1948-67 when all of Judea-Samaria (the West Bank, including Jerusalem) came under Arab [Jordanian] control, no effort was made to create a second Palestinian State for the Arabs living there. It seems ironic that Yassir Arafat and his Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), discovered their “ancient” identity and a need for “self-determination” on this very same West Bank ONLY AFTER Israel regained this territory (three years later in 1967) following Jordan’s attempt to destroy Israel. Why was no request ever made upon King Hussein of Jordan when he “occupied” the West Bank? The PLO later went on to become the Palestinian Authority of today.

The 1967 War (Six-Day War): Throughout much of May 1967, the Egyptian, Jordanian and Syrian armies mobilized along Israel’s narrow and seemingly indefensible borders in preparation for a massive invasion to eliminate the State of Israel. But the Israel planned and executed a perfect pre-emptive strike against Egypt. Within two hours, the Egyptian Air Force did not exist. Most of its planes were destroyed while still on the runways! Unaware that the Egyptians had no more air force, King Hussein of Jordan, launched his attack from the West Bank into Israel’s belly while Syrian troops prepared to descend down the Golan Heights mountain range into northern Israel. After ONLY six days grueling warfare, Israel defeated all three Arab armies along three separate fronts, taking control of the entire Sinai Desert from Egypt, the Golan Heights from Syria and the West Bank (including East Jerusalem and its Old City) from Jordan. Most importantly was the return to Israel of its holy 3,000-year-old city of Jerusalem along the western edge of the West Bank.Unfortunately, Israel then became an “occupier” of this “West Bank” and the Gaza Strip along with its 850,000 Palestinian Arabs who were living there. These Arabs would refer to themselves as “refugees” and joined the masses of refugees from the previous war of 1948-49.The Arabs in the West Bank and Gaza Strip were packed and ready to leave following their defeat. Suddenly the victorious IDF General Moshe Dayan persuaded them to stay. Dayan’s plan was to educate them, offer them modern medical treatment, provide them with employment both in the West Bank AND inside Israel Proper, and to live amongst them in hopes of building a bridge to the Arab world.

1982: Israel wanted to gain some international respect, and therefore returned the entire Sinai (oil fields, air bases and endless miles of security buffer) to Egypt. Israel still occupies Syria’s Golan Heights, which had been used solely for terrorist incursions into and artillery bombardment upon Israel’s northern settlements. And of course, Israel still occupies the West Bank with its population of 1,200,000 “Palestinian” Arabs.
(courtesy of Contender Ministries)

You called me a “Christian Zionist”. Let’s look at that term and see how it may apply to me.

According to Wikipedia, “as a noun, Christian is an appellation and moniker deriving from the appellation “Christ”, which many people associate exclusively with Jesus of Nazareth. The first known usage of this term can be found in the New Testament of the Bible, in Acts 11:26. The term was first used to derogate those known or perceived to be disciples of Christ. As an adjective, the term may describe an object associated with Christianity. For many this also means to be a member or adherent of one of the organized religious denominations of Christianity. The term Christian means “belonging to Christ” and is derived from the Greek noun Χριστός Khristós which means “anointed one,” which is itself a translation of the Hebrew word Moshiach (Hebrew: משיח, also written “Messiah”), (and in Arabic it is pronounced Maseeh مسيح). According to the New Testament, those who followed Jesus as his disciples were first called Christians by those who did not share their faith, in the city of Antioch. Xian or Xtian is another word used to describe Christians and is similar to using Xmas in place of Christmas; the X or Xt used as a contraction for “Christ” (“X” resembles the Greek letter Χ (Chi), the first letter of “Christ” in Greek (Χριστός [Christos]).”
Put more simply, according to “WordNet, a lexical database for the English language”, part of the Cognitive Science Laboratory at Princeton University, a Christian is “a religious person who believes Jesus is the Christ and who is a member of a Christian denomination.
So far so good. I do believe, without a doubt that Jesus is the Christ and I do belong to a Christian denomination.

A Zionist is part of Zionism and as ascribed by Wikipedia is “a political movement and an ideology that supports a Jewish homeland in the Land of Israel, where the Jewish nation is believed to have originated and where Jewish kingdoms and self-governing states existed at various times in history. While Zionism is based heavily upon religious tradition linking the Jewish people to the Land of Israel, the modern movement was originally secular, beginning largely as a response to rampant anti-Semitism in late 19th century Europe.”
Again, simplified by the folks at Princeton, a Zionist is “a Jewish supporter of Zionism.”
Well, I’m not Jewish, but I do support a Jewish homeland in the Land of Israel. Hummm…guess we’ll have to split hairs here and say that although I’m not a card carrying Zionist, I do support the main crux of their cause. If you are determined to assign me the title of Zionist, I guess that means you also lump the United States Government, the entire European Union, the entire United Nations and the majority of the Christian faith into this category? All of these entities have pronounced by law or declaration that they support a Jewish homeland in the Land of Israel. Guess I’m in good Company.

You said “It is sad that the Christian Zionists are destroying our country by behaving in a very un-Christian way and never considering the Palestinian viewpoint.” I have to ask, in what way is supporting the chosen people of God and being a follower of Jesus “un-Christian”? What viewpoints about the palestinians are not being considered? Is it the one where they walk into malls and restaurants and blow up innocent civilians, woman and children, just trying to live their lives, using explosive belts filled with nails to make sure they kill and maim as many civilians as they can? Or maybe the one where their leaders call for the complete destruction of every man, woman and child in Israel; complete genocide? You probably agonize when a palestinian gets their house destroyed, or a stray bullet finds one of them, while completely ignoring the fact that armed gunmen were using the house as a firing position and that the bullet could just as easily be from the pali side as much as from the return fire from the Israeli side.

I’ve tried to answer your comment from a complete secular view. Keep in mind that to Jews and Christians alike, the land belongs to the Jews, given to them by our God many thousands of years before a “palestinian” was ever heard of. The palis are the squatters, not the Jews.”

Moussa: Hamas must accept Israel, despite its declarations

Friday, January 27th, 2006

So now that the slimy terrorist organization, hamas, is in charge of pali land, it seems that even the arab world is sweating a bit. I’m not sure why though. The only use they have for the pali’s is to use them to kill Israelis. That way they don’t have to get their hands dirty. Hamas is ready and willing to continue to do that. The arab world really doesn’t care for the palis at all. If Israel had not been reformed in 1948, the palestinian people would not even exist today. The land they current covet would be a part of Egypt, Jordan and maybe Syria. If Israel was ever destroyed, you would see just how quick the palis would follow as the arab word got rid of all of it’s undesirables.

In response to the Thursday announcement of Hamas’s landslide victory in Palestinian Legislative Council elections, the secretary-general of the Arab League, Amr Moussa, said on Friday that Hamas must accept the Arab League’s Beirut Initiative, including the recognition of Israel, despite the organization’s declared positions.
Moussa made the statement at a discussion dealing with the results of Wednesday’s Palestinian Legislative Council elections at the Davos Economic Forum meeting.
The initiative, which advocates an Israeli withdrawal to the 1949 cease-fire lines and the implementation of UN Security Council resolutions 242 and 338, was rejected by Prime Minister Ariel Sharon as soon as it was approved by the Arab League in 2002.
Acting Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, however, declared during a security cabinet meeting Thursday night that any Palestinian Authority government that included
Hamas would not be a partner for Israel.
“If a [Palestinian] government should arise of which Hamas is a participant, the world and Israel will ignore it and render it irrelevant,” Olmert said.
READ MORE ON THE PLC ELECTIONS
In one Nablus home, Hamas is all in the family
Peaceful vote something to celebrate
Hamas leader: Negotiations ‘not taboo’
Hamas political platform
Former head of the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) Avi Dichter said that Hamas would not be able to lead the Palestinian people while it persisted with the type of extremism it has employed until now.
“They need to define their status and choose which direction to take,” Dichter said, adding, “They need to decide whether they want to go with Iran or Israel.”
MK Silvan Shalom said on Friday morning that both the Israeli and Palestinian leaderships could have prevented the Hamas victory by deciding not to allow the elections to take place with its participation.
He said, “The Palestinians made a commitment that terror organizations would be forbidden from taking part in the elections, but Abu Mazen [PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas] chose to appease Hamas rather than to confront them.”
The Prime Minister’s Office issued a statement after the cabinet meeting that read, “Israel will not negotiate with a Palestinian government, even if only part of it is an armed terrorist organization calling for Israel’s destruction, and in any case will continue to strenuously fight terrorism everywhere.”
Olmert effectively muzzled his ministers and government spokesmen Thursday as the government grappled with how best to deal with a brand new reality: “Hamastan,” following the Hamas victory in the Palestinian elections
.

Read the rest here.

Re-Post: Hamas Without Veils

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Hamas Without Veils
No more hiding behind the PA.
By Emanuele Ottolenghi

Contrary to initial responses, Hamas’s projected victory in the Palestinian parliamentary elections is a positive development. Not, as its apologists claim, because the proximity of power will favor a process of cooptation into parliamentary politics, and therefore strengthen the pragmatic wing of Hamas. There is no pragmatic wing in Hamas, and all differences within the movement — the armed wing and the political wing, Palestine Hamas and Hamas in Syria — are arguably tactical differences. No, the reason is, as Vladimir Ilich Lenin would put it, “worse is better.”
Hamas’s favored outcome was not victory, but a strong showing that would leave Hamas with the best of both worlds: It would remain in opposition (or would be invited to join a coalition as a junior partner) but would impose severe limitations on the Fatah-led government on how to manage its relations with Israel. Hamas could thus claim to reject Oslo, decline to recognize the Palestinian Authority and its commitments under the Oslo accords and the roadmap, and continue to use its rising political clout and its military strength to sabotage any effort to revive the moribund peace process.
What victory does to Hamas is to put the movement into an impossible position. As preliminary reports emerge, Hamas has already asked Fatah to form a coalition and got a negative response. Prime Minister Abu Ala has resigned with his cabinet, and president Abu Mazen will now appoint Hamas to form the next government. From the shadows of ambiguity, where Hamas could afford — thanks to the moral and intellectual hypocrisy of those in the Western world who dismissed its incendiary rhetoric as tactics — to have the cake and eat it too. Now, no more. Had they won 30-35 percent of the seats, they could have stayed out of power but put enormous limits on the Palestinian Authority’s room to maneuver. By winning, they have to govern, which means they have to tell the world, very soon, a number of things.
They will have to show their true face now: No more masks, no more veils, no more double-speak. If the cooptation theory — favored by the International Crisis Group and by the former British MI-6 turned talking head, Alistair Crooke — were true, this is the time for Hamas to show what hides behind its veil.
As the government of the Palestinian Authority, now they will have to say whether they accept the roadmap.
They will have to take control over security and decide whether they use it to uphold the roadmap or to wage war.
There will be no excuses or ambiguities when Hamas fires rockets on Israel and launches suicide attacks against civilian targets. Until Tuesday, the PA could hide behind the excuse that they were not directly responsible and they could not rein in the “militants.” Now the “militants” are the militia of the ruling party. They are one and the same with the Palestinian Authority. If they bomb Israel from Gaza — not under occupation anymore, and is therefore, technically, part of the Palestinian state the PLO proclaimed in Algiers in 1988, but never bothered to take responsibility for — that is an act of war, which can be responded to in kind, under the full cover of the internationally recognized right of self-defense. No more excuses that the Palestinians live under occupation, that the PA is too weak to disarm Hamas, that violence is not the policy of the PA. Hamas and the PA will be the same: What Hamas does is what the PA will stand for.
Continuing to pursue a violent path will automatically switch off all international aid. Perhaps Hamas intends to offset the resulting loss of revenue by hosting Holocaust-denial conferences in Gaza and terrorist training camps in Rafah, but it will still have to explain to the Palestinian public why it’s better to renounce public aid to wage war.
Meanwhile, Hamas will have to confront the Egyptians (and the Jordanians) and tell them what the PA under Hamas now stands for. And Egypt and Jordan will have to change course, accordingly. Egypt has an increased military presence along the Gaza border and several officers in Gaza to help “stabilize” the security situation — which so far has meant keeping the flames low enough not to bother Egypt but high enough not to let Israel off the hook completely. What will Egypt do now? Cooperate with Hamas in Gaza while it dreads Hamas’ twin, the Muslim Brotherhood, at home? Will it act more decisively to stop the ever growing flow of illegal weapons being smuggled into Gaza from the Sinai, or turn a blind eye even as the increased militancy in Gaza might embolden the Brotherhood in Egypt? No more ambiguity for Egypt either.
The Arab world will also be watching wearily. Hamas now will have to show to the Arab world that an Islamic party that wins a democratic election — everyone’s nightmarish scenario — is not as bad as it seems. For now, the Palestinians have chosen an Islamic option over a secular one. Let them have it. Let them enjoy life under Sharia. It is their choice — that is what self-determination is about — and we must respect it. After all, the spectacle of an Arab government that is defeated in a fair and free election, and that as a consequence resigns (resigns!), has no precedent in the Arab world. This is good news. Let’s have some more and put Hamas to the test of democracy: this experience will tell us if Islamists can embark on a road that leads to the Turkish model or whether Palestine will become a Sunni Iran. If democracy succeeds under Hamas’s leadership, there is a legitimate government in power that enjoys support and popularity in Palestine and might be more honest and more competent than its predecessor — not a difficult task, given the ineptitude of Fatah. Otherwise, we can tell once and for all that co-optation is not the way to moderation, but a recipe is self-defeating appeasement.
Hamas hoped that a narrow Fatah victory would allow Hamas to enter government in junior positions while pursuing violence against Israel — much like Hezbollah in Lebanon. Their victory forces them to make a choice now, and the international community, while respecting the democratic verdict of a fundamentally fair electoral process, must hold them to account. The issue is not whether Europe, the U.S., or Israel should talk to Hamas. The issue is whether there is anything to talk about with Hamas, and the burden of proof is on Hamas to demonstrate they are capable of becoming interlocutors. If Hamas meets the true test, namely accepting the road map, renouncing violence, disarming its own terror network, recognizing Israel and embracing the two-state solution, then no obstacle should remain for a dialogue with Hamas. Otherwise, they can taste Israeli steel, courtesy of the U.S. and the full backing of the EU of Israel’s right to defend itself.
Don’t hold your breath though.
In commenting on this electoral upheaval, Jerusalem Post’s editor David Horovitz has written
Some may seek comfort in the belief that an ascent to government could prompt a greater sense of responsibility, a move to moderation. But Hamas’s intolerance is based on a perceived religious imperative. No believing Muslim, in the Hamas conception, can be reconciled to Jewish sovereignty in the Middle East. To deny that, for Hamas, is blasphemy. And that is the ideology to which the Palestinian people, for whatever reason and by their own free hand, have just tied their fate. That is the guiding ideology with which Israel and the West will now have to grapple.
The appeasers and the apologists are already cuing up to argue that Hamas has already embarked on the road to realism. But unless Hamas reneges on its ideology and endorses a new course, then Israel’s claim that there is no Palestinian partner is vindicated. The resulting Israeli policy of unilateralism is vindicated. Israel’s argument that the Palestinians do not want peace is vindicated. Israel’s argument that Islamists’ nuances and differences of opinion are just tactical, not strategic, is also vindicated. And the prospects of a Palestinian state will become even more remote.
The uniform message that the world gives Hamas should thus be: Take off your veil, and expose your true face for the entire world to see in the naked and transparent light of democracy.

— Emanuele Ottolenghi teaches Israel studies at Oxford University.