Sunday, April 16, 2006

The Hamas Gambit

Hamas thinks that expanding the government to include Fatah will somehow take the pressure off their own terrorist group. It's a last ditch effort to try and overcome the PA's loss of financial support from most of its major backers, the inability to recognize Israel or the road map, or any other reality.
Hamas held talks with rival factions on Sunday to try to persuade them to join a Palestinian government which the militant group said was facing a "state of crisis" because of Western pressure.

Iran, extending a helping hand, said it was giving $50 million to the cash-strapped Palestinian Authority to fill gaps left by Western aid cuts and frozen Israeli tax transfers.

But the amount is small compared to the government's monthly wage bill of nearly $118 million and debts of $1.3 billion it inherited. March salaries for 140,000 government workers have not been paid, sparking protests and fears of growing unrest.

Hamas, which won January's parliamentary election and formed a government last month that included a scattering of independents, said it held discussions with 12 rival factions and could decide to widen its current cabinet of 24 ministers.
Fears of growing unrest? In the past week alone, there have been security guards who have forced their way into government buildings demanding payment, and it is only going to get worse. Hamas has no ability to govern any more than Fatah ever could. They're terrorist organizations with no interest in governance and providing for basic services other than suicide bombing recruitment.

And all this is complicated by the fact that Hamas and Fatah each have their own militias, control their own territory, and each seek dominance over the whole of Palestinian controlled territory from which to launch attacks on Israel. Fatah controls the Rafah border crossing and has special forces to man them. You want a civil war? This is the place/issue where it is most likely to start.

And while many in the West are trying to limit the flow of money to the terrorists running the PA, others are lining up to fill the gap. Russia. Saudi Arabia. Iran. UAE. You can be sure that Hamas has no problem accepting money from anyone, so long as it lets them continue their war against the West. Michelle Malkin has the details.

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