Caroline Glick, today:
Today Hamas stands on the cusp of international acceptance. It may take a week or a month or a year, but today Hamas stands where Fatah and the PLO stood in the late 1980s. The genocidal jihadist terror group is but a step away from an invitation to the Oval Office…
…last Saturday, The Boston Globe reported that Paul Volcker, who serves as President Barack Obama’s economic recovery adviser, and several former senior US officials have written a letter to Obama calling for the US to recognize Hamas. As one of the signatories, Brent Scowcroft, who was national security adviser under president George H.W. Bush, explained, “I see no reason not to talk to Hamas.”
Scowcroft further argued, “The main gist is that you need to push hard on the Palestinian peace process. Don’t move it to end of your agenda and say you have too much to do. And the US needs to have a position, not just hold their coats while they sit down.”
Congressional sources claim that Obama has selected Scowcroft to replace Chas Freeman as chairman of the National Intelligence Council.
This last, if it turns out to be true, is in one way shocking — Scowcroft, if anything, is even more anti-Israel than Freeman — and in another way unsurprising. After all, what did you think would be the reaction to a perceived defeat by the pernicious ‘Israel Lobby’?
But leaving this aside, Glick’s worries about a coming recognition of Hamas are very, very troubling. She continues,
The US and Europe said they would recognize Hamas if it announced that it forswore terror, accepted Israel’s right to exist, and committed itself to carrying out previous agreements signed between the PLO and Israel. The Americans and the Europeans undoubtedly viewed these conditions as a low bar to cross. After all, the PLO crossed it.
The West’s conditions were given with a wink and a nod. Everyone understood that the only thing it wanted was for Hamas to say the magic words. They didn’t have to be true. If Khaled Mashaal and Ismail Haniyeh would just tell the US and Europe what they wanted to hear, all would be forgiven. Hamas – like the PLO before it – would be removed from the US and European terror lists. Billions would pour into the bank accounts of Hamas leaders in Gaza and Damascus. The CIA might even agree to train its terror forces.
It is obvious that all that the West wanted was for Hamas to lie to it, because that is all it ever required from the PLO. After Yasser Arafat said the magic words, the Americans and the Europeans were only too happy to ignore the fact that he was lying…
But Hamas, despite the urging of ‘pragmatists’ like Mahmoud Dahlan — read Glick’s whole piece, it’s good — won’t even pretend to find any outcome short of Israel’s destruction acceptable.
Here’s more about the letter to Obama, from the Boston Globe (linked above):
The bipartisan group, which includes economic recovery adviser Paul A. Volcker and former national security advisers Brent Scowcroft and Zbigniew Brzezinski, made the recommendation in a letter handed to Obama days before he took office, according to Scowcroft.
The group is preparing to meet this weekend to decide when to release a report outlining a proposed US agenda for talks aimed at bringing all Palestinian factions into the Mid east peace process, according to Henry Siegman, the president of the US/Middle East Project, who brought the former officials together and said the White House promised the group an opportunity to make its case in person to Obama.
Siegman said the letter, which was handed to Obama by Volcker but has not been made public, said the administration should “at least explore the possibility” that Hamas, which took control of the Palestinian territory of Gaza after elections in 2006, might be willing to transition into a purely political party and join with its rival, Fatah, which holds the Palestinian presidency in the West Bank. [! — ed.]
It turns out that much of the funding for the Council’s “U.S./Middle East Project” comes from overseas, including the European Commission, the government of Norway, Kuwaiti and Saudi businessmen, a Lebanese politician, and, for one year, an official of the commercial arm of the Palestinian Authority, Munib Masri.
Mr. Siegman tells us that his views have been consistent over his career and that his project’s funding sources — which he points out are a matter of public record — haven’t influenced his opinions. — NY Sun, 2005
Siegman, who is an Orthodox rabbi, escaped the Holocaust when his family fled Germany for Belgium when he was three years old. He was the Executive Director of the American Jewish Congress from 1978-1994. He claims that his experiences as a child gave rise to his understanding of the ‘plight of the Palestinians’. Right.
The increasingly evident influence on the Obama Administration by people who could reasonably be called anti-Israel or worse — Brzezinski, Scowcroft and others — has me worried. You should be, too.