Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Palestinian Civil War Watch

From an AP story in the Jerusalem Post:
Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas will demand that armed groups disband immediately after parliament elections in January, a top aide said Wednesday, outlining what he described as a new plan to impose order in the Gaza Strip after the Israeli pullout earlier this week.

But Abbas' main rival Hamas reiterated it will not disarm, and Palestinian officials cautioned they would not risk civil war, despite intense international pressure to confront the armed groups. An ongoing stalemate could hamper the rebuilding of impoverished Gaza and cloud prospects for the resumption of peace talks.
Here is what Hamas has planned for Gaza:
Officers from Hamas's militia are vowing to turn Gaza into a huge armed camp devoted to digging Israel's grave, with tunnels, rocket attacks and a free flow of weapons and militants from Egypt. "If Israel attacks the West Bank, we will fire rockets from here," thundered Hamas officer Abu Muad, bouncing his young son on his lap during a "victory parade" in the abandoned Jewish settlement of Kfar Darom in central Gaza.
In other words, whenever Israel responds to terrorist attacks, Hamas will attack Israel. Most likely, Abbas is merely paying lip service to the West by saying that in the future he will demand that terrorists disarm.

Hamas is dedicated to the destruction at Israel. At some point Abbas has to either risk civil war and disarm Hamas by force, or do nothing and let Israel deal with Hamas. The question is also open as to whether Abbas believes in a two-state solution. Peace is dependent on what Palestinians do, or fail to do.