Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Pipes agrees with Zakstradamus

In a recent post "Zakstradomus predicts the future" I wrote that eventually Israel would find itself slowly being pushed to neogitiate with Hamas by the International community. Daniel Pipes seems to agree: http://www.frontpagemag.com/Articles/ReadArticle.asp?ID=21096

I predict an approximate repeat performance of the pressure on Arafat in 1982-88 to renounce terrorism. But Robert Satloff of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, an acute observer of the Arab-Israeli conflict, doubts that Hamas will be compelled even to match Arafat’s concessions back then.

I also expect that, despite bold statements how it will not change, Hamas will play along with the verbal demands on it. Feeling a financial pinch and diplomatic pressure, its leaders will adopt Arafat’s habit of delivering opaque hints and saying one thing in English and another in Arabic. Like Arafat, they might even “renounce” terrorism or pretend to change their Protocols-laced covenant.

Indeed, what Yossi Klein Halevi calls “the era of the wink and the hint” has already begun, with Hamas largely desisting from terrorism against Israel during its declared tahdiya (calming down) in 2005, then somewhat moderating its rhetoric in recent weeks; for example, it proposed a 15-year truce with Israel. The makeover shows signs of success: former U.S. president Bill Clinton, often an opinion bellwether, has just urged the Bush administration to consider dealing with Hamas.

I predict Palestinian-Israeli negotiations will resume their glorious record of bringing goodwill, harmony, and tranquility, with Israel this time facing a far more determined and clever foe than the blighted Arafat or the hapless Mahmoud Abbas.

Would somebody give this boy a job as a Middle East analyst?


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