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Hamas: Israel Must Change Flag


Thiebear

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Definitly seems like there won't be any problems in the "Near" future.

Near means the time right before Hamas was created...

(partial)

http://www.israelnationalnews.com/news.php3?id=97520

Mofaz: Hamas Acting Responsibly; Hamas: Israel Must Change Flag

15:22 Jan 30, '06 / 1 Shevat 5766

By Scott Shiloh

Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz told the Israeli cabinet on Sunday that since the election Hamas was acting responsibly. Shortly afterwards, a senior Hamas official called on Israel to change its flag.

Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz told the Israeli cabinet on Sunday that since Hamas won a sweeping victory in last Wednesday’s PA parliamentary election, the extreme Islamic terror group was acting “responsibly.”

Mofaz also said that in the short term, he thinks Hamas will refrain from terror attacks.

He added that it was likely that the Hamas will also attempt to block the Islamic Jihad from carrying out terrorist attacks against Israel. Islamic Jihad, trying to portray itself as more radical than Hamas, boycotted last week’s election. They claimed that the elections were based on the Oslo accords and played into the hands of the United States.

Shortly after making his comments about the Hamas, Hamas leader Mahmoud Zahar said from Gaza that Israel must change its flag. "Israel must remove the two blue stripes from its national flag", said Zahar. “The stripes on the flag are symbols of occupation. They signify Israel's borders stretching from the River Euphrates to the River Nile."

Israel’s national flag, a blue Star of David set between two blue stripes, was designed to resemble a Jewish prayer shawl which traditionally has stripes.

:doh:

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Well, to be honest, this sounds fairly promising. For Hamas to be doing anything other than calling for the destruction of the State of Israel sounds good. Even if it is some ridiculously stupid demand, complaining about the design of the flag is at least implicitly acknowledging the flag's right to exist.

Any "dialogue" is good, even if it is as hysterical as this.

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AFC

The leader of an electorally victorious Hamas gets up to talk, and the most reportable thing he has to say on the subject of Israel is that he doesn't much like the symbolism on their flag.

That doesn't sound better than "we believe in the immediate and total destruction of Israel" to you?

You're an educated guy, I'm sure you realise at this stage of a conflict, ANY talk is good, even if its a stupid rant, at least they are engaging on some level with the fact that Israel exists and is likely to do so for a long time to come.

Somebody above said " don't they have better things to do?" and that is exactly the point. Hamas have been calling for the violent destruction for decades, suddenly they are ****ing about their flag. Which would you prefer?

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Sure Hamas can change, just like the ANC, the IRA and a bunch of others changed. Its just not going to happen overnight.#

Anybody expecting them to suddenly get up and say "we accept that any solution to the plight of the Palestinian solution must involve the continuing existance of the State of Israel, secure within its borders" is kidding themselves, they will need coaxing (and coercing) over a significant length of time. Inevitably they will also want something in return.

It took the IRA 15 years from the start of back channel contacts with the British government to make the unequivocal statement " The war is over" towards the end of last year. I expect it may take several years with Hamas also.

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(Wheres the change your talking about?)

Seems like the same rhetoric as always with NO change whatsoever.

Israel has no right to be here..

Israel are occupiers

The flag proves it with its symbols

Step 1: Remove the occupation status of your flag

Step 2: Remove your occupation status..

What part of history makes you see otherwise?

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I understand your underlying point SMS- but my point is that you are not looking at about the other hundred articles in the last five days where Hamas DOES still call for the destruction of Israel and the end to Jewish rule.

here is one from ten hours ago:

http://www.abc.net.au/am/content/2006/s1557905.htm

"And I've spoken tonight to a Hamas military commander in the Jabaliah refugee camp who told me he rejects outright all of those three conditions. He says Hamas will never disarm. He said they are committed to the destruction of Israel because Israel is committed to the destruction of the Palestinian people."

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AFC - I understand what you are saying. I think what we are seeing, for maybe the first time, is that there is a range of opinion within Hamas. There is undoubtedly a hardline which may never be won over. What Israel, the US and others need to do is find a way to engage with the forces of moderation and marginalise the hardliners. Not an easy task, but it is possible.

That is what de Klerk did in South Africa, he realised he needed a moderate ANC guy that could deliver the rest of the organisation. When he reaslied that the leadership of ANC couldn't do that, it was clear that they guy he needed was in a prison cell on Robben Island. Maybe this Zahour person is that guy. I don't pretend to know.

Thiebear -

Which of these statements do you find more encouraging form the leader of Hamas.

"I don't like the Israeli flag, I don't like its symbolism and I think its indicative of the wider prolblems we have with them. I'd like them to change it."

" I don't give a rats ass what the Israeli flag looks like, it won't matter a damn once we, with Allah's help, have driven them into the sea"

Any engagement with the reality of Israel's long term existance seems good to me. I'm not saying this guy should be expecting his invitation to Camp David anytime soon, all I'm saying is that this may be progress, lets wait and see.

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This whole point is moot. Hamas wants nothing but to destroy Israel, it's flag, and it's people. And this is coming from a bleeding heart liberal.

What needed to happen was for both sides to shift towards the center. Neither of them have. It's just going to end in more war. Maybe after the 3rd time Israel is attacked by a consortium of Muslim states they'll at least be able to keep the land they win in order to have defendable borders.

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He said they are committed to the destruction of Israel because Israel is committed to the destruction of the Palestinian people

That's progress right there! Now they are trying to make sense of everything. Doors are closing. Next station - realization that Israel is not committed to the destruction of Palestenian people.

We probably won't get there with Hamas in charge, but at least progress is there. I think Hamas getting the wheel in a "HERE!!! You think you know how to do it? YOU DRIVE" fashion could actually go a long way to curb extremism in the area.

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(Wheres the change your talking about?)

Seems like the same rhetoric as always with NO change whatsoever.

Israel has no right to be here..

Israel are occupiers

The flag proves it with its symbols

Step 1: Remove the occupation status of your flag

Step 2: Remove your occupation status..

What part of history makes you see otherwise?

Exactly.

See this is why you dont give unlawful terrorists an inch, because they will demand a mile.

Israel has to tell them to go stick it.

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This whole point is moot. Hamas wants nothing but to destroy Israel, it's flag, and it's people.

All extremist entities need an external enemy to function. They cannot function without an external enemy. That is the only way for an extremist to retain power - to ride the human hate train. Only humans filled with hate can be blind enough. Extremism and reason simply cannot coexist, and hate is the way reason can be silenced.

Also, you seem to think about Hamas as if it were a person. Hamas is an organization.

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All extremist entities need an external enemy to function. They cannot function without an external enemy. That is the only way for an extremist to retain power - to ride the human hate train. Only humans filled with hate can be blind enough. Extremism and reason simply cannot coexist, and hate is the way reason can be silenced.

Also, you seem to think about Hamas as if it were a person. Hamas is an organization.

Extremism by your characterization is extremism within the realm of logic. Palestinian terror, and Islamic terror on the whole, do not follow the laws of logic. The mere existence of Israel gives groups like Hamas a reason to hate.

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Chopper Dave - I think I kind of disagree, I'm not sure the centrists will ever be able to make a deal that will stick. Its the extremists that are strapping on the semtex, its those guys you need to influence/marginalise. Any deal that is struck by some centrist politician is going to be attacked by the fundamentalist faction. Any deal will need to have been done by somebody who has he respect of the extemists. THe ultr-hardliners are not likely to be convinced but you need somebody that can bring the majority of Hamas with him. It was in this role that Mandela was so useful in South Africa, he was held in so much reagard that he brought the WHOLE of the ANC with him.

In Northern Ireland Gerry Adams and Martin McGuiness had to serve time on active service with the IRA (McGuiness was probably a brigade commander at one point) and carry the coffins of a bunch of IRA murderers, publicly before they were trusted to try and find a political solution. Israel and the US need to be on the lookout for one of these guys in Hamas.

Just pronouncing that you will never talk to terrorists isn't going to wash, the British needed to talk to Sinn Feinn and the SA goevernment needed to talk to the ANC and the Israeli's will end up having to talk to Hamas (in some form). After all its the terrorists you want to stop bombing Israel, isn't it?

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Chopper Dave - I think I kind of disagree, I'm not sure the centrists will ever be able to make a deal that will stick. Its the extremists that are strapping on the semtex, its those guys you need to influence/marginalise. Any deal that is struck by some centrist politician is going to be attacked by the fundamentalist faction. Any deal will need to have been done by somebody who has he respect of the extemists. THe ultr-hardliners are not likely to be convinced but you need somebody that can bring the majority of Hamas with him. It was in this role that Mandela was so useful in South Africa, he was held in so much reagard that he brought the WHOLE of the ANC with him.

In Northern Ireland Gerry Adams and Martin McGuiness had to serve time on active service with the IRA (McGuiness was probably a brigade commander at one point) and carry the coffins of a bunch of IRA murderers, publicly before they were trusted to try and find a political solution. Israel and the US need to be on the lookout for one of these guys in Hamas.

Just pronouncing that you will never talk to terrorists isn't going to wash, the British needed to talk to Sinn Feinn and the SA goevernment needed to talk to the ANC and the Israeli's will end up having to talk to Hamas (in some form). After all its the terrorists you want to stop bombing Israel, isn't it?

This is a different animal. You have some good points, but this is all assuming that Hamas wants peace. I don't think they do. And unlike Sinn Fein, they're not actually occupied. Their version of ending occupation is the ending of Israel's existence.

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Extremism by your characterization is extremism within the realm of logic. Palestinian terror, and Islamic terror on the whole, do not follow the laws of logic. The mere existence of Israel gives groups like Hamas a reason to hate.

Everything follows laws of logic!

Middle East is not in another dimension. Objects dropped in the middle east do not start floating. Terrorists are still Homo Sapiens and terrorist organizations are still organizations of humans. They operate under same basic principles of power, money, faith, human convictions, etc.

Terrorists do not roll dice every morning. Everything they do is still based on reason, but THEIR reason. Are you saying their basic operational parameters are so different that we are 100% unable to put ourselves in their shoes? Or that their reason is so foreign to us we are unable to comprehend and retrace their steps? I would think both are possible. We are able to comprehend what is going on and explain dynamic of such organizations and people with great accuracy.

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Everything follows laws of logic!

Middle East is not in another dimension. Objects dropped in the middle east do not start floating. Terrorists are still Homo Sapiens and terrorist organizations are still organizations of humans. They operate under same basic principles of power, money, faith, etc.

They don't follow the same logic as you or I. They wouldn't rather have peace. Not Hamas, anyway.

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They don't follow the same logic as you or I. They wouldn't rather have peace. Not Hamas, anyway.

Logic is the same - operational parameters are different. Different parenting, education, blahblah. What do you mean by "they do not follow the same logic?" They do not come to same conclusions we do? They could have used the same logic to make different conclusions. Logic is the same, people using it are different.

I think smsmith40 had an interesting point there. Who has a higher chance to bring peace, a moderate trying to keep an extremist in check? Or an extremist that realized the damage extremism brings? I would go with the latter. You cannot overpower hate. You can only dissolve it from within. It will go away only if you examine it. Hamas coming to power might make that happen for a lot of Palestenians.

This is what I was referring to in my earlier post. THE ENEMY, which is Israel, is a source of power for Hamas. Nothing more, nothing less. They were able to rally people and gain power under the banner of Hate of Israel. Now that they have power they suddenly have to make decisions. Now Hate of Israel is not good enough to keep power. Do you see where I am coming from?

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This is a different animal. You have some good points, but this is all assuming that Hamas wants peace. I don't think they do. And unlike Sinn Fein, they're not actually occupied. Their version of ending occupation is the ending of Israel's existence.

I think if you asked anybody in Sin Feinn prior to the Good Friday Agreement, 6 or 7 years ago they would have said that the British were an occupying force, they certainly said so at the time.

What I thought was encouraging about the original statment from the Hamas gut was that, in a coded round about way, he may have indicated that he could envisage an end game in which the existance of Israel was a reality. That's a long way from saying he wants peace, its not really even a first step but it may be the sound of shoelaces being tied (stretching the metaphor I know).

The fact is in all these sitautions you end up having to talk to someone who you regarded at one time as a terrorist.

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I think if you asked anybody in Sin Feinn prior to the Good Friday Agreement, 6 or 7 years ago they would have said that the British were an occupying force, they certainly said so at the time.

What I thought was encouraging about the original statment from the Hamas gut was that, in a coded round about way, he may have indicated that he could envisage an end game in which the existance of Israel was a reality. That's a long way from saying he wants peace, its not really even a first step but it may be the sound of shoelaces being tied (stretching the metaphor I know).

The fact is in all these sitautions you end up having to talk to someone who you regarded at one time as a terrorist.

I know Sinn Fein thought the British were occupying; and they were. Hamas and the like think Israel is occupying; they're not. Therefore, if an end to the occupation, which has been stated many times as the only acceptable solution on the extremists part, is the only solution, then there can't be any solution with the extremists in power.

You're just hoping for the best in your analysis of his words. Why should we believe a message that just happens to not be outwardly hostile over a message that has been repeated over and over again?

I agree that at some point you'll have to go to the table with someone who you once considered a terrorist; I just don't think that you can with someone you still do consider a terrorist, if you're Israel.

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