Jan 19 2009
…Arabs Quietly Backing Israel Against Hamas.
Yesterday, a friend of One Jerusalem who lives in Tel Aviv sold a car he owned to an Arab who lives in Haifa. After concluding the transaction that Arab taxi driver and our friend engaged in a little chit chat about the ongoing battle between Israel and Hamas.
The taxi driver told our Jewish friend that he should not misinterpret the silence of Arab Israelis on the topic of Hamas. He said it would be personally dangerous for Israeli Arabs to voice their real feelings on the topic of Gaza and Hamas. But he prayed that Israel does not finish its operations in Gaza before Hamas is destroyed.
Last night, a poll conducted in Israel showed that a large majority of Israelis support continuing the operation in Gaza until Hamas is destroyed. You even get the sense from the reports that Egypt and Saudi Arabia are stepping up diplomatic efforts to end the conflict that there is no sense of urgency to bring the Israeli military operation to a close.
Israel is not only defending its citizens against attacks from Hamas but it is crippling a terrorist organization that threatens other Arabs.
And If Hamas is the victim, why is Ramallah so quiet?
If this is a struggle between Israel and the Palestinians, then why are the streets of Ramallah so quiet? Indeed why are the streets of Cairo, Amman, Riyadh and Tunis so muted? Why so much concentration on the position of politicians, and the precise kind of ceasefire they favour, and so little on the political position of Arab leaders? There has been a great deal of focus on Israeli tactics and very little examination of the strategic context – the nature of the real threat Israel faces.
Whatever view one takes of Israel’s actions, either in moral or military terms, no proper judgment of this conflict is possible without context. And that is what so many seem to miss. Hamas is not a national liberation movement, it is not a force dedicated to establishing a free and democratic Palestine. It is a branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, a fundamentalist Islamist organisation which wants to unite the Islamic world in submission to its own, austere and totalitarian, view of Islam.
The reason there has been so relatively little support and agitation on Hamas’s behalf among Arab leaders is their recognition thatHamas does not want to see Palestine take its place among other stable Arab nations, Hamas wants war in Palestine to be the launch pad for a jihad against those it considers apostate secular rulers in Egypt, Jordan and elsewhere. Worse than that, as far as other Arab states are concerned, Hamas, like its sister party in Lebanon, Hezbollah, is a tool of the Iranian regime and Iran’s ambitions to become the dominant regional power in the Middle East threaten their own interests and security…
Michael Grove of Scotland on Sunday
Why Israeli-Arabs are happy in Israel.
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