Hamas v. Fatah, Round 1

by Ryan on June 14, 2007

in War on Terror

Suddenly the situation in Palestine has deteriorated to the point where the two main factions, Hamas and Fatah, are in an open armed conflict tantamount to a potential civil war.  90 people have been killed in the fighting since Sunday.  In Gaza, Hamas executed many members of the Fatah Party yesterday at a Fatah-controlled security station, prompting Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to tell Fatah to fire back and that the coalition government is to be dissolved.  Abbas is expected to call for a multi-national force to ease the violence in Gaza.  While Abbas refers to the Hamas fighters as an “outlaw militia,” the Hamas fighters cheer, “the era of justice and Islamic rule have arrived.”  Why does that sound eerie and ominous to me?

This is bound to spread violence in the West Bank, and if a full-fledged civil war were to begin Hamas would easily take Gaza, and Fatah would end up pacifying much of the West Bank, oddly enough with the potential of Israeli aid!  Are we looking at the potential of two Palestines forming? 

Israel would love that.  They already feel that Abbas is someone with whom they can do business, so this could give Israel and Fatah the impetus for a major peace breakthrough through productive cooperation.  However, Hamas is a faction of radical Islamic terror, under the guise of a political party.  They won’t go quietly and the bloody carnage is apt to continue.  The rest of the Muslim world, instead of sending their own aid and peace-keepers, will probably use this as another reason to kill Jews and Americans in other parts of the world (they’re getting predictable).  I had a feeling that this summer would bring Mideast violence– just wait until Hezbollah kicks it up again and Iran makes good on its plans to foment more violence in Iraq just before General Petraeus’ report in September.

AP photo.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Noonan June 14, 2007 at 9:07 pm

News has it that Hamas is overrunning Fatah, dragging captured men and killing them in front of their families.

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Ryan June 15, 2007 at 7:07 am

I suppose that’s consistent with their view of “the era of justice and Islamic rule.” It seems to be standard operating procedure for Islamic militants nowadays. One hates to be haunted by the thought that the only way to defeat this ideology is to kill all of the radicals. They don’t believe in the concept of conversion and they’re acting on what they think is at the behest of God.

Gaza is such a mess that a full-fledged, unabridged armed conflict is perhaps what they need. They’ve never had one of those conflicts in the modern era. It’s always been quelled by Israel or the UN or Egypt. Maybe they just need to fight until someone wins decisively. And for those of you who are historical revisionists, it is possible for a people to be defeated and we’ve seen many examples. Yes, they’ll still complain about stuff, but Rome used to do it often, we did it with Germany and Japan and the American Indians and the Confederacy. They still complain, but they’re peaceful and know their place after being fdefeated. It’s not nice, but the status quo cannot hold. Something must change.

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matt June 18, 2007 at 2:07 pm

Ryan: Good insight. Whenever there is a conflict with multiple parties one side must prevail overwhelmingly. Actually this is our problem in Iraq. A power sharing agreement will take many years to take hole, and even then it will be suspect to failure. Each side will forever be suspicious of the other.

I also think that you have pointed to a possible outcome: Hamas controlling Gaza while Fatah holds the west bank.

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