Palestine: From The River To The Sea
There will be no hudna. Mahmoud al-Zahar made that clear just days before uttering the word to the West through CNN.
Three days ago, it was widely reported that Hamas leader Mahmoud al-Zahar offered ‘hudna’ (truce) to Israel if they simply recognize the pre-1967 borders and give them more land. Al-Zahar told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer in an interview that if Israel “is ready to give us the national demand to withdraw from the occupied area [in] ‘67; to release our detainees; to stop their aggression; to make geographic link between Gaza Strip and West Bank, at that time, with assurance from other sides, we are going to accept to establish our independent state at that time, and give us one or two, 10, 15 years time in order to see what is the real intention of Israel after that. We can accept to establish our independent state on the area occupied [in] ‘67….after that, let time heal.”
Many in the West assume al-Zahar means ‘heal the differences between Israel and the Palestinians.’ This is a dangerous assumption.
Today, for the West, the true taqiyyah of al-Zahar’s words is exposed, thanks to the translators and observers from MEMRI. Hamas leader Mahmoud al-Zahar gave an interview on Al-Manar TV just four days before his setting conditions for ‘hudna’ with Israel on air with the West’s CNN. al-Manar is on the State Department’s Terrorism Exclusion List and was established by Hezbollah in 1991. What he said to them bears no resemblance to what he told Blitzer, CNN and the English-speaking West.
Said al-Zahar, ””Palestine means Palestine in its entirety - from the [Mediterranean] Sea to the [Jordan] River, from Ras Al-Naqura to Rafah. We cannot give up a single inch of it. Therefore, we will not recognize the Israeli enemy’s [right] to a single inch. That is one thing. The second thing is that if the right of return is an individual right, neither Mahmoud Al-Zahar nor ‘Abbas Zaki can relinquish it, because all these concessions will constitute a national catastrophe.”
If Israel were to appease Hamas and return to the pre-1967 borders, this would not be the beginning of a time to ‘heal’ relationships. This would be the beginning of a time for Hamas to grow, arm and develop in order to reach for The Sea, possibly after “one or two, 10, 15 years time”.
Regarding the feigned acceptance of a Palestinian state drawn by pre-1967 borders, those who remain (somewhat understandably) blinded by hope should heed his next words in the interview. He states clearly in Arabic that Hamas’ ultimate destination is the entire coast of the Mediterranean Sea, From Lebanon to Egypt, extending eastward to the River Jordan, regardless of where they start from.
al-Zahar continued, ”The third point is that we can found a state on any piece of the land, and this will not mean we give up on any other part of the land.”
There can be no mistaking and there can be no negotiating. Any concession will be received not as settlement, but as one step towards The Sea today on their way forward to reaching it tomorrow.
Those calling for a reformed Hamas would be well advised to reconsider. Hamas must be abandoned by the moderates within it and reconstitute themselves under a completely new and unaffiliated banner, one which is founded with a clear recognition of the right of both states to exist under a mutually agreed border and condemns and forgoes terrorist attacks on civilians. Hamas has no credibility to market themselves under a charter rewritten or edited to state as such, in the unlikely event they chose to take taqiyyah that far. The moderates who constitute Hamas, if they exist, should grant their angry, murderous brothers sole ownership of Hamas, but not join them and perpetuate the suffering of all Palestinians, both this generation and the next.