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Posted: 1/27/2009 12:40:36 AM EDT
Last update - 03:31 27/01/2009

ANALYSIS / Recognizing that Israel's effort to topple Hamas has failed

By Avi Issacharoff and Amos Harel, Haaretz Correspondents

Tags: Israel News, Gilad Shalit

Hamas Monday rejected an Israeli offer that linked the opening of Gaza's border crossings to the release of kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit. Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum told Haaretz that under no circumstances would the organization accept such a linkage. First, Israel must open the crossings, he said; then the parties can talk about Shalit.

A senior Hamas official in the Gaza Strip, Ayman Taha, told the Egyptian paper Al-Ahram that Israel had offered to free 1,000 Palestinian prisoners and open the crossings in exchange for a cease-fire and Shalit's release. The Lebanese paper Al-Sharq Al-Awsat, citing Israeli sources, said the offer was for 1,050 prisoners, including 280 of the 350 senior terrorists whose release Hamas has demanded by name. Prior to the Gaza operation, Israel had agreed to release only some 220 people on this list.

In practice, the talks have been stalled in any case by a dispute between Hamas and Egypt, the chief mediator, over the former's rejection of the latter's proposals for a Fatah-Hamas reconciliation and a long-term truce with Israel. And defense sources said it was "not certain" that the figures given by the Arab newspapers would indeed be the final formula.
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If it is, however, the deal will provide Hamas with significant gains. The organization's main rationale for ending its last truce with Israel, in December, was to end Israel's blockade of Gaza, so Israel's offer allows Hamas to achieve the primary goal for which it went to war.

Additionally, Hamas would receive a massive prisoner release, including many of the people it specifically demanded. It would thereby have bested the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority in terms of both the number and the "quality" of the prisoners whose freedom it was able to secure. While Israel has released prisoners to the PA several times in recent years, it has always decided whom to release, rejecting any input from the PA.

Finally, the prisoner release, coupled with the reopened border crossings, would essentially constitute de facto Israeli recognition of "Hamastan," since it would bolster Hamas' grip on Gaza by giving it the image of a winner. It would also boost Hamas' popularity in the West Bank. Effectively, therefore, it would constitute an Israeli recognition that its three-year-old effort to topple Hamas has failed.

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1059091.html
Link Posted: 1/27/2009 6:23:48 AM EDT
[#1]
Q:  What do you call freed Hamas terrorists released by Israel?

A:  Future dead Hamas terrorists killed by Israel.
Link Posted: 1/27/2009 6:26:41 AM EDT
[#2]
Quoted:
Q:  What do you call freed Hamas terrorists released by Israel?

A:  Future dead Hamas terrorists killed by Israel.




Q: How many of the many hundreds of Hizbullah prisoners released by Israel were killed afterwards?


A: Nil, Zip, Nada
Link Posted: 1/27/2009 6:39:54 AM EDT
[#3]
Quoted:
Quoted:
Q:  What do you call freed Hamas terrorists released by Israel?

A:  Future dead Hamas terrorists killed by Israel.




Q: How many of the many hundreds of Hizbullah prisoners released by Israel were killed afterwards?


A: Nil, Zip, Nada


End of February or first of March.

Link Posted: 1/27/2009 6:42:15 AM EDT
[#4]
Quoted:
Quoted:
Quoted:
Q:  What do you call freed Hamas terrorists released by Israel?

A:  Future dead Hamas terrorists killed by Israel.




Q: How many of the many hundreds of Hizbullah prisoners released by Israel were killed afterwards?


A: Nil, Zip, Nada


End of February or first of March.





They were released in June last year, nothing to see, move along.
Link Posted: 1/27/2009 6:50:32 AM EDT
[#5]
Just a question, I heard that Hamas was democratically elected, is that correct?
Link Posted: 1/27/2009 6:53:53 AM EDT
[#6]
Quoted:
Quoted:
Quoted:
Quoted:
Q:  What do you call freed Hamas terrorists released by Israel?

A:  Future dead Hamas terrorists killed by Israel.




Q: How many of the many hundreds of Hizbullah prisoners released by Israel were killed afterwards?


A: Nil, Zip, Nada


End of February or first of March.





They were released in June last year, nothing to see, move along.


Tagged.

Link Posted: 1/27/2009 7:45:02 AM EDT
[#7]
Quoted:
Just a question, I heard that Hamas was democratically elected, is that correct?


Yes, but they later mounted a coup to take full control of the Gaza strip from Fatah.
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