Subject: Terry Arnold on Hamas' Recognition of Israel
TO: Distinguished Recipients
FM: John Whitbeck
Transmitted below is an article by Terry Arnold on Hamas' "recognition" of Israel.
It is curious that, while so many Western governments are demanding in unison that the new Palestinian leadership must recognize Israel, renounce violence and honor all agreements with Israel, not a single one of them has thought to suggest (let alone demand) that Israel should recognize Palestine, renounce violence and honor all agreements with Palestine.
Digesting Hamas III -
The Recognition Stumbling Block
By Terrell E. Arnold
"Hamas has arrived at the doors of power through legitimate elections," said Russian President Putin last Thursday during a joint press conference with the Prime Minister of Spain. He said that Russia does not consider Hamas a terrorist organization. Moreover, he declared that Russia would invite Hamas representatives to come to Moscow for talks in the future. That presumably would be under Russia's role in the Quartet with the United States, the UN, and the European Community that is responsible for navigating the Road Map to Middle East peace. On Friday France indicated that it supported the Putin plan to invite Hamas to Moscow.
Israeli officials uniformly have loudly protested the Putin invitation, asserting that it threatens peace prospects. Israelis have been trying to have all governments shun Hamas because its charter calls for destruction of Israel. Calling the Putin invitation a "slap in the face" to Israel and to western countries, Israelis said it was Russia's responsibility to shun Hamas.
However, according to the New York Times, a French Foreign Ministry spokesman stated that "We share with Russia the goal of leading Hamas toward positions that permit reaching the objective of two states living in peace and security."
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