Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Who's Targeting Hamas - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
Select Page

Jordan’s accusations have put Hamas to the test. but how are they going to deal with it? The Jordanian charge has been interpreted as one of the following; a fabrication aimed at embarrassing Hamas, boycotting it, and consequently, hindering its popular victory. The other interpretation is that it is a plot hatched by other agencies, Israeli, Iranian, or others, to embroil Hamas with Jordan and other countries and start a regional battle with Hamas. The final interpretation is that Hamas cannot control all those who are affiliated with it and that it is a military, and not a political movement, and thus, it is possible for anyone who disagrees with it to split from it and engage in military activity without the knowledge of the Hamas leadership.

In all the three possibilities, Hamas is the one that makes its own decision regarding its situation and future and on how it should deal with the serious charges levied against it. The matter does not need much contemplating, especially since the first step is for Hamas is to scrutinize the evidence against them.

The second and more important is that Hamas should make a decision on its real position concerning militant activity. It is either a political institution that accepts negotiations, or a liberation movement that believes in armed struggle. If its final decision is the second one, then it should say this without deception or political maneuvering. It is illogical for it to be a civilian government and an armed struggle movement at the same time, taking into consideration that the entire current political system was based on previous agreements that are binding for anyone who assumes government responsibilities.

As for the charge on the reconnaissance team, which was arrested in Jordan while searching for targets to attack them; it is not the main problem, whether it was true, exaggerated, or fabricated. The challenge facing Hamas as a government is that it should decide its status and work program. This is its duty and the Palestinian people have the right to hear it from it. Many people thought that its participation in the parliamentary elections from the beginning was a change in concept and performance, and an acceptance of the political game. If the movement rejects the civilian job of the government and insists on considering weapons as its only option, then this will have many other results. Hamas will then have succeeded in destroying the Palestinian political structure, which brought it to power, and threatened the entire structure, which was established by the late Yasser Arafat, in terms of government executive agencies and legislative institutions, like parliament, as well as judicial institutions. The structures of the Palestinian state were built under difficult circumstances. Every step toward establishing a Palestinian state was wrested from Israel, which has not stopped rejecting this principle (establishment of a Palestinian state), casting doubt on its legitimacy, defaming its (PA’s) practices, and also attacking it militarily. This precious legacy is now in the hands of Hamas after it won the elections that were produced by the establishment of the PA.

If Hamas, does not want to comply with governmental duties and the civilian concept of the state, and wants to sanctify armed struggle, then it becomes its duty to tell this frankly to its voters, announce its withdrawal (from government), and return to armed confrontation. However, if it believes that it is also a political establishment that shares with the PA, whose house it has entered, the same principle, and that it is ready for responsible civilian governance and for assuming its responsibilities, then this is its opportunity. It is also the opportunity of the Palestinian people to see a respected democracy and a government that performs its duties. The real culprit in the Jordanian charge, however, could be any party, friend or enemy, who wants to reshuffle cards and prolong the conflict.

Abdulrahman Al-Rashed

Abdulrahman Al-Rashed

Abdulrahman Al-Rashed is the former general manager of Al-Arabiya television. He is also the former editor-in-chief of Asharq Al-Awsat, and the leading Arabic weekly magazine Al-Majalla. He is also a senior columnist in the daily newspapers Al-Madina and Al-Bilad. He has a US post-graduate degree in mass communications, and has been a guest on many TV current affairs programs. He is currently based in Dubai.

More Posts