This article appeared in Embassy Magazine on June 24 2009. After reading it, I couldn’t help but think how the author had gotten the story wrong.
Davis’ support for negotiations with Hamas are truly alarming. Western nations have generally refused to negotiate with this terrorist organization, not only because Hamas has openly praised the murder of Israeli citizens through suicide bombings but also because Hamas robs its own population of basic human rights, such as the right to good governance and humanitarian aid, which Hamas terrorists take for themselves, upon reception from Israel. Hamas’ charitable societies provide monetary assistance to the families of those who have been killed in perpetrating acts of terror against Israeli citizens, which Davis neglects to mention. By refusing to negotiate with terrorists, Canada is upholding her democratic beliefs rather than negating them, as Davis suggests.
This approach has not undermined peace efforts but rather ensured that the peace process begins on a stable path. Recognizing Hamas would only credit their terrorist activities which deters the peace process.
Of course, no one is suggesting we should blatantly ignore Hamas. However, to suggest that decades of palestinian suffering have created, as Davis calls it, a “volatile mood of anger,” light words for terrorism, disregards the countless peace propositions Israel has offered the Palestinians. The complaints for statehood could have been alleviated had the Palestinians accepted peace in 1937, when they rejected the Peel Commission, in 1947, when they rejected the Partition Plan, in 1979 at Camp David, in 1993 when they rejected the Oslo Accords or most recently in 2005 when Israel evacuated Gaza and provided the Palestinians starting ground to choose their own leadership and establish their own state. This track record proves that Hamas leaders do not truly want to accept any peace plan at all, unless it involves wiping Israel off the map.
Israel’s recent invasion of Gaza suggest Israel is willing to do what Hamas refuses to do – protects her citizens. . To suggest Israel’s defensive attacks can be compared to Hamas’ terrorist activities is absurd and I wonder if Davis would find it more acceptable if Israel randomly launched rockets at Palestinian civilians, rather than risking the lives of her own soldiers to minimize the casualties.
Let’s not reward their violence – that strategy has only deterred peace and strengthened this sad cycle of violence.