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Hamas in a Showdown

  1. Jan 30, 2006 #1

    russ_watters

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    Countries are saying they won't deal with Hamas and now pulling financial aid, which they need to support their government (did anyone realize we gave them so much money?). Hamas and their constituents are quickly going to find themselves in a world of hurt. It won't survive to the spring without foreign aid - any predictions on how they will react?

    http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/2006-01-30-hamas-aid_x.htm
    I honestly didn't know we (the world) gave them so much money. From what this article is saying, it doesn't sound like the PA can exist even for a month without this aid. That doesn't leave Hamas with a lot of options.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2006
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  3. Jan 30, 2006 #2

    Art

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    They have gone to other Arab countries to see if they will make up the shortfall resulting from the cut-off of western aid. If as is likely this is unsuccessful their options are to struggle on for a while and then either resign prompting new elections in which they will presumably ask people not to vote for them :rofl: or they will split as the more moderate opt for a less offensive stance whilst the die-hard militants refuse to compromise.
    Possibly the resulting militant splinter group will undergo a name change so Hamas will be able to distance themselves from them and so become eligible for foreign aid.
    Personally I suspect resignation is the slightly more likely option to avoid a damaging split (which is likely to be bloody) and to avoid having to make a major change to their charter, specifically renouncing the piece calling for the destruction of Israel.
     
  4. Jan 30, 2006 #3

    Bystander

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    Does anyone have any estimates on assets previously embezzled, lost, stolen by Fatah that might be recoverable? It would probably still require cooperation of other governments, but there might be international law on Hamas' side in such an effort.
     
  5. Jan 30, 2006 #4

    russ_watters

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    There is a real hypocritical irony there. The PA depends on for its survival the very people whom it says needs to be destroyed. Now it must go to the people who should be its friends for help. Perhaps it will find that it had its friends and enemies reversed...?
     
  6. Jan 30, 2006 #5

    Art

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    The outgoing PA leadership Fatah wasn't calling for the destruction of Israel.They recognised it's legitimacy long ago.

    I doubt the Arab leaders will help Hamas. Not particularly for ideological reasons but because of the effect such help would have on their own relations with the west.

    The Palestinians' friends in the ME are found amongst the ordinary Arab people. The dictatorships which govern these people are not representative of the general populace.
     
  7. Jan 30, 2006 #6
    well, i think iran will give hamas money, they already pay hezbollah to fight israel, and controlling hamas might be a golden opertuninty for them.
    by the way, why didnt you post the OP in the "hamas wins again" thread?
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2006
  8. Jan 30, 2006 #7

    Hmm... marginalizing extremist groups who win mainstream support of a "nation" in a fair election.... Sounds like a bad idea to me.

    What ever happened to the policy of diplomatic engagement? Heck... if we do even more than that, perhaps Hamas would come toward the center.
     
  9. Jan 30, 2006 #8

    russ_watters

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    Dunno - who inherited Arafat's assets?
    You are correct, it is just the new leadership - I should have been clearer about that.
    I agree with the predicion, but I'm not sure I agree with the reasoning - ie, it isn't like Syria can do much to make our relationship worse.
    New news - I want to focus specifically on this money issue.
    Why?
    The policy of appeasing such regimes ended in 1938. And before someone invokes Goodwin's law, there is an obvious and direct correlation: both regimes had/have as a primary goal the extermination of the Jewish people.
    Perhaps.... Perhaps they won't change at all - perhaps they will grow bolder if we appease them. Is appeasement worth a "perhaps"? I don't think it is.

    No, wait - appeasement isn't the right word. All we did in 1938 is agree to not start a war. We're talking actual postive support of a terroristic regime here. It is quite simply immoral to give money to a person or group who has stated explicitly that they will use that money to kill people.
     
  10. Jan 30, 2006 #9
    Are you trying to same that the Nazi's and Hamas are the same?
     
  11. Jan 30, 2006 #10

    PerennialII

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    .... in any event, since Hamas is forced to a 'showdown' of sorts, would hope that the other participants would use the opportunity to induce some change, since now there might be a driving force for it (and in the other direction as well (&naturally) if a "cornering" policy is 'sought-after'). I'd still like to believe this can be turned into an opportunity to resolve some of the issues, or give it a nudge in the appropriate direction.
     
  12. Jan 30, 2006 #11
    Russ... when you isolate a country from the rest of the world, you force them to engage in tactics that are worse than those of which you want to discourage.

    Embargoes and isolation has NEVER WORKED. Libya came out because Kadafi knew the US would invade him and he wanted to stay in power, it had nothing to do with embargo. How is it working in Cuba? Iran? N. Korea?

    Light of day and fresh air is what kills bacteria and disease, not boxing it off and leaving it in the dark. If Hamas can get power and influence though legitimate means, it will.
     
  13. Jan 30, 2006 #12

    SOS2008

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    I would be interested to know a comparison between U.S. aid to the PA versus Israel, and which country receives the most per capita beginning when (i.e., for how long)?
    My first thought too.
    :rofl: The money issue (aid) was being discussed in the other thread.
    What happened to the policy of spreading democracy throughout the world? Oh, right, the neocon agenda is two-part. To democratize countries for purposes of controlling the country.
    Now there’s another topic that would be more worthy of discussion. How effective is the stick compared to the carrot?

    It would be great if there was some data provided here.
     
  14. Jan 30, 2006 #13
    You should have seen the clip of bush on the daily show when they asked him about the elections. He was like a deer caught in head lights. Abde-abde-abde thats all folks. He had nothing to say, he was winging it.
     
  15. Jan 30, 2006 #14

    Hurkyl

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    But is this money issue related to the stick, or the carrot? (I'm bringing this up now, since I suspect it will arise later, or at least cause confusion for a while)

    Judging from people's tones (correct me if I'm wrong), they think that this is the world community wielding the stick... but isn't this really just cutting off the carrot supply?
     
  16. Jan 30, 2006 #15

    SOS2008

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    I agree that aid is a carrot. I am interested in knowing what are most effective, embargoes (stick) versus financial aid for example. This applies to a lot of countries right now, and policy based on real data regarding effectiveness would be a good thing to know before proceeding.
     
  17. Jan 30, 2006 #16

    Hurkyl

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    Blah, this one kept irritating me so I had to respond. :tongue: Nowhere was it written that we're supposed to be good friends with every democracy out there!

    And reference to the "neocon"s seems entirely off-base: I got the impression that threats of cutting support happened across the board, so it is entirely misleading to single out the neocons. (Let alone make wild accusations about their intentions. :rolleyes:)
     
  18. Jan 30, 2006 #17

    Gokul43201

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    I've heard two different reports (one on NPR) saying the US and the EU will be very wary about withdrawing financial support. The fear is that such an action will cause Hamas to (i) seek/get aid from Iran, and (ii) react emotionally towards the West, for refusing support to a legitimate democracy in the ME.
     
  19. Jan 30, 2006 #18

    Hurkyl

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    I agree. It would be nice to have some sort of comprehensive list of countries, the sorts of actions taken against them (sticks and carrots), and some sort of in-depth analysis of the effects.

    While I suppose I could find a lot by spending an eternity looking through the text of U.N. resolutions, that still doesn't tell me, say, what effects were to be had from the tightening of sanctions against Southern Rhodesia in resolution #232 in 1966.

    But since you seem to be rather strongly asserting some level of knowledge about this, would you care to start us off?
     
  20. Jan 31, 2006 #19
    Hi Hurkyl and ComputerGeek - sorry for 'jumping in' here, but to state my own understanding on this issue: I think sanctions have sometimes 'worked' (ie. coerced governments to do as they are told by the powerful nations' representatives), though not always. They did not 'work' against Iraq, for example, but they did 'work' against both Rhodesia and South Africa. Here is a link to a brief article that describes the effects of the use of sanctions on five countries: http://www.colorado.edu/conflict/peace/example/sanc7318.htm
     
  21. Jan 31, 2006 #20

    SOS2008

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    The premise that democracy = peace has been around for some time, at least to Levy who argued that Democratic states do not fight each other. (1988: 88). Bush has also made reference to this many times, for example, “It’s hard for some in our country to connect the rise of democracy with peace,” Bush said in Louisville. “History has proven that democracies yield the peace.”

    While it may be nice to think of democracies as inherently peaceful–-the historical reality is often quite different, which we have seen again:

    http://www.iht.com/articles/2006/01/29/news/mideast.php

    The idea of spreading democracy most certainly is a neocon concept:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/4358045.stm

    Wolfowitz also criticised Bush for not backing Israel enough!

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neocon

    The first problem is there has been no proof that democracy = peace. The second problem is can you lead a horse to water and make it drink? Look at the Middle East and examine what this thinking has produced, and not just Iraq or the PA. Look at so-called moderate states like Egypt and Saudi Arabia. Military force, particularly unilaterally against international law and conventions will yeild nothing good.

    This is why I am interested in data to support policy, whether comparing the carrot to the stick, etc. In the meantime, since the U.S. has been tooting it’s horn about democracy, freedom and peace, Bush must be mindful in regard to Hamas.
     
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