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December 28, 2008

Structural Disaster

June 15, 2007 Abbas HQ Gaza.jpg

Hamas Abbas Gaza.jpg

Abbas HQ Gaza.jpg  

With the term of Palestinian president Abu Abbas expiring on January 9th and Hamas refusing to further recognize him, one way to think about yesterday’s bombing of the so-called “Presidential building” in Gaza is in terms of the corrosive Palestinian power split.

Nobody wants to consider war and the loss of life in ironic terms, although the fact that Israel felt the need to bomb the former headquarters of its own Palestinian ally has that feeling. The sequence of images goes like this:

Image 1: June 15, 2007 –  Hamas members drive armoured vehicle seized from Fatah in front of Gaza offices of Palestinian President Abbas. (Hatem Moussa/A.P. )

Image 2: June 15, 2007. Hamas militants stand at/on Abbas’s desk in takeover of his office and Palestinian control in Gaza. (Hatem Moussa/A.P.)

Image 3: Yesterday, December 27, 2008. Israeli warplanes destroy Hamas-controlled former offices of Abbas. (Adib Katib/Getty.)

If there was one other photo that might have fit here as still a further symbol of futility, it would have been a shot of Abbas at the White House a week-and-a-half ago saying goodbye to Bush (and his so-called “roadmap”). It looks like TIME, accompanying its article on Abbas, picked out a fitting example, though.

  • thirdeye pushpin

    When I see these pictures and read about Israel killing 200 plus people during a ceasefire. I wonder why in the hell do we sell these dangerous idiots weapons. Can we simply stop supporting Israel’s killing habit. It is not doing them or anyone else any good. I do not care if they are our best “ally”. They are a dangerous thorn in a bear’s paw and simply attacking those you do not want in your neighbor’s ofice is a heinous foreign policy. As long as we continue to support Israel’s childish and bullying actions we can expect more resentment and terror to come our way.
    If the world boycotts Israel and Netanyahu, then maybe the israelis will choose someone else to run their county, of course we could just do it like the israelis do and bomb the likud to smithereens…
    take that in your eye for an eye and smoke it with mirrored fragments of rage

  • http://profile.typekey.com/Michaeldg/ Michaeldg

    I’m having a bit of trouble understanding the “shock and outrage” about the current Israeli offensive being expressed in the Arab world and by posters such as thirdeye pushpin. Lets see, Hamas breaks a ceasefire and fires hundreds of mortars and rockets into Southern Israel, hitting civilian areas. After a week of enduring these attacks, Israel bombs Hamas security targets. How can anyone be surprised? You hit someone much bigger and stronger than you, what kind of delusional thinking makes you surprised when your nose gets flattened? What did Hamas expect when they started this round of attacks? The Jews should just sit and be bombed? I think that history has shown that Jews sitting passively while their enemies try to kill them is not a viable survival strategy.
    When I look at these photos, I see Hamas gunmen who like to strut around in their war-like costumes, with their war like toys, talking big. But when they try to kill civilians and the government whose responsibility is to protect it’s citizens responds to repeated attacks, the Hamas gunmen suddenly seem to think their attacks were a game. It is no game. If they want to protect their families and neighborhoods, they should act like adults and start building a sustainable life based on political compromise, economic development and peace.

  • richard dent

    I agree that Israel has not found an effective strategy, but I can’t blame it for trying to defend itself.
    Israel aimed at military targets only after the cease fire was ended. It is in a miserable position, as Hamas has embedded its rocket launchers in civilian areas (against international law), while spending its energy demonizing the “Zionists/Jews” and inciting violence and hatred. The barrage of rockets are aimed at civilian locations in the “pre-67″ Israel.
    Israel’s position is partly of its own making, but in light of the fact that it exited Gaza three years ago, it isn’t that hard to understand why many in Israel think that Hamas, anyway, has no interest in any kind of peaceful co-existence. (This is beyond the fact that Hamas, like Iran and some of the other Arab states, continually says Israel has no right to exist at all.)
    The idea that all the problems in the Middle East are caused by US support for Israel has been disproved again and again.
    Criticism of only Israel makes me wonder what some people think of the conduct of Hamas, for example. Hamas took over Gaza by force, killing many Palestinians there. Is that OK?
    I also have to say that rhetoric like “bomb the Likud to smithereens” strikes me as more than a little bit bloodthirsty.

  • i foot

    Israel, not Hamas, broke the cease fire November 5th with a raid that killed 6 Palestinians.
    Also Hamas was elected as government by the people of Palestine.

  • NoContest

    Tzipi Livni, Israel’s foreign minister, appeared on American talk shows to press Israel’s case. She said on “Fox News Sunday” that the operation “is needed in order to change the realities on the ground, and to give peace and quiet to the citizens in southern Israel.”
    High price to pay for a little peace and quiet.
    I would personally set the nuclear clock at one minute past 12:00 at the present time.

  • http://profile.typekey.com/[email protected]/ DennisQ

    I think I know why we’re spending billions of our much-needed tax dollars to support wealthy Israel. It’s to keep them from calling us anti-Semitic. (Try it – just ask around.)

  • richard dent

    Hamas won the parliment, because it ran fewer candidates, while Fatah spread its vote too thin. The people were also quite rightly tired of Fatah corruption and Arafat’s failure to use the massive international aid to build an economy or infrastructure. In any event, Hamas did not win the presidency, but took Gaza by force from Fatah, and as these photos show, claim to have total authority in Gaza. Moreover, Hamas has opposed having elections now. Doesn’t sound like Hamas feels too secure about the opinion of the Palestinian people.

  • http://reciprocity-failure.blogspot.com Stan B.

    Remember when Israel tried to humiliate and neutralize Arafat by refusing to negotiate with him because he was a “terrorist?” Well, they won! Now they must deal with Hamas…

  • dramaturg id

    “oh he knows right enough….he knows, doctor, he knows—but he won’t believe, he can’t—and keep living.” – Eugene ONeill

  • thirdeye pushpin

    replace the word likud with hamas in my earlier comment as in “bomb Likud to smithereens” does that sound as bloodthirsty as “bomb Hamas to Smithereens” and who is bombing more and who broke the ceasefire and whose representatives are made to look like angry monkeys…Israel if they deserve our support needs to take the high road and set the moral example of how to conduct oneself. Killing 300 people in 3 days is not it, destroying Lebanon’s economic infrastructure is not it, building walls through ancient olive groves is not it…I am not commending Hamas’ actions but if Tennessee was being treated by the chinese the way Israel treats the Palestinians you would see similar resistance.

  • Chris

    “…Hamas did not win the presidency, but took Gaza by force from Fatah…” Have you read this from Vanity Fair?
    “According to Dahlan, it was Bush who had pushed legislative elections in the Palestinian territories in January 2006, despite warnings that Fatah was not ready. After Hamas—whose 1988 charter committed it to the goal of driving Israel into the sea—won control of the parliament, Bush made another, deadlier miscalculation.
    Vanity Fair has obtained confidential documents, since corroborated by sources in the U.S. and Palestine, which lay bare a covert initiative, approved by Bush and implemented by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Deputy National Security Adviser Elliott Abrams, to provoke a Palestinian civil war. The plan was for forces led by Dahlan, and armed with new weapons supplied at America’s behest, to give Fatah the muscle it needed to remove the democratically elected Hamas-led government from power. (The State Department declined to comment.)
    But the secret plan backfired, resulting in a further setback for American foreign policy under Bush. Instead of driving its enemies out of power, the U.S.-backed Fatah fighters inadvertently provoked Hamas to seize total control of Gaza. [And the weapons are now in Hamas' hands. CiJ]
    Some sources call the scheme “Iran-contra 2.0,” recalling that Abrams was convicted (and later pardoned) for withholding information from Congress during the original Iran-contra scandal under President Reagan…”

  • http://www.bizimlesohbet.com sohbet

    After Hamas—whose 1988 charter committed

  • http://www.manhattanmoldremoval.com/ Manhattan Mold Removal

    The real disaster is when water leaks in to structures and starts rotting everything. Then it’s 5 times more expensive to rebuild.

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  • Bruce y

     ”According to Dahlan, it was Bush who had pushed legislative elections
    in the Palestinian territories in January 2006, despite warnings that
    Fatah was not ready. After Hamas—whose 1988 charter committed it to the
    goal of driving Israel into the sea—won control of the parliament, Bush
    made another, deadlier miscalculation.

  • http://www.idresshop.com/ wdess

    Criticism of only Israel makes me wonder what some people think of the
    conduct of Hamas, for example. Hamas took over Gaza by force, killing
    many Palestinians there. Is that OK?
    I also have to say that rhetoric like “bomb the Likud to smithereens” strikes me as more than a little bit bloodthirsty.

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