Atallah in a post to The Washington Note, on January 20, 2009, displayed his inimitable originality as a political thinker when he claimed that the “cease-fire” in Gaza was Obama’s “first foreign policy success.” On August 17, 2009, from among the ashes of his by now burnt out originality he rises like a phoenix to claim that Hamas is showing the first symptoms of a unique metastasis from a virulent fanatic radical organization to a moderate one. The demiurge of this beatific poetically transcendental transformation from the ugly reality of Hamas as an irreconcilable terrorist organization is Hamas itself. By fighting the extremist pro-Al Qaeda Salafist group of Jund Ansar Allah and killing its leader Abdul Latif Musa, on August 14, 2009, Hamas is blazing a new course of political moderation that according to Atallah would be foolish for the US under Obama not to take advantage of that could change the whole configuration of the Palestine Israel conflict.
Thus the offspring of the Islamist fanatical coupling of Ahmed Yassin and Sayyid Qutb, the founder and the spiritual leader of Hamas respectively who both have their roots in the Muslim Brotherhood, like a poisonous snake is shedding its skin and metamorphosing itself into an amiable friendly python.
Atallah is either unaware of the historical fact or deliberately hides it so he can make his case, that throughout history all widespread and toxic fanatical movements had variable degrees of fanaticism among their members and often created within the general movement their own groups that fought each other to the death. The virulence of fanatical Islam in our times and the internecine and fratricidal warfare that goes and will go within it illustrates in a pellucid manner the above historic fact.
In this context, the attempt of Atallah to transform Hamas into a moderate organization that President Obama could deal with diplomatically and persuade its leadership to stop permanently its deadly attacks on Israel and accept the two-state solution by recognizing Israel is a mockery of serious thinking.
This is a question that I was to put to Clemons from another thread but at the time I was under the surgeon’s knife. Since my question, however, is not completely unrelated to the present thread, I’m posing it here.
The question is related to Clemons ‘sweet’ emotional rapprochement to the leader of Hamas, Khaled Mashal, in the face of the ‘bitter’ realities of the Middle East. Is the West including that outpost of Western civilization, Israel, and especially the U.S., currently engaged in a mortal fight with a hard core fanatical Islam which includes its terrorist satrapies Hamas and Hezbollah or not? If the answer to the question by the “hybrid” realist Clemons, to use his term, is in the affirmative, then the latter is the grand appeaser toward fanatical militant Islam. If he answers it in the negative, with all the expected equivocations that he is capable of, then he is afflicted by an incurable virus of political necrophilia.
But in my humble opinion, Clemons will go down in the chronicles of American history, if he ever makes its footnotes, as the mini American Chamberlain in contrast to Churchillian mettle and sagacity. Appease! Appease! Is the shout of Clemons and the prophets.
“Absolutists on both sides need to be overcome” which Steve obviously agrees with this statement of former Secretary of State James A. Baker. This statement however ravages the truth by its direct reference of a ‘political equivalence’ between Hamas and the Netanyahu government. No Israeli government ever governed on behalf of the minority absolutist interests of the religious fanatics of Israel unlike Hamas which governs Gaza in the interests of its millenarian goals. It’s like saying that Republican governments, such as the former Bush administration, governed on behalf of the narrow interests of the religious right and not for the general interests of the United States.
If this is the quality of strategic thinking that the four eminent persons of Carter, Baker, Scowcroft, and Brzezinski, are offering to the Obama administration for resolving the Palestinian-Israeli conflict then such advice will be a repeat performance of past failures as it rises from the lowest ebbs of their strategic ‘cogitations.’
And Steve will be found to be completely wrong if he thinks that the new turbulent situation in Iran might ‘force’ the Khatami-Ahmadinejad regime to change its policy toward its Hamas and Hezbollah terrorist surrogates. Steve in his misplaced realism does not realize that Iran will never abandon its pawns as long as it engages in its power-play in the region.