Palestinian officials met in Doha on Sunday, as part of a Qatar-led initiative to cause rival factions Fatah and Hamas to bury the literal and figurative hatchet. Turkey was also in on the act, ostensibly interested in getting the leaders in Ramallah and Gaza to present a united front for the sake of an agreement with Israel.
This is amusing, to put it mildly, since the only thing on which Fatah and Hamas actually do agree is the ultimate goal of annihilating the Jewish state.
They are at odds about everything else, including the pace at which their shared aim should be carried out. But mainly, they — like the rest of their Islamist brethren throughout the region and the world — are engaged in a deadly power struggle.
So perpetual is this battle that the so-called unity deals the two groups signed in the past, most recently in April 2014, have unraveled before the ink on their contracts was dry. But the signatures did serve an unwitting purpose: to show those who still could not see that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas was a partner for jihad, not peace with Israel.
In order to hide the egg on their faces, all the leftist Israeli and foreign politicians and pundits who were making a distinction between Hamas, the recognized terrorist organization controlling Gaza, and Fatah, Abbas’ party ruling the PA, came up with a creative way to justify the internal rapprochement. Rather than saying they had been wrong to view Abbas as a moderate, the PA apologists said Abbas would now be able to speak on behalf of the entire Palestinian population when negotiating a two-state solution.
This was a moot point, of course, because Fatah and Hamas have never honored their own agreements with anyone. Furthermore, Abbas was not then, nor is now, interested in Palestinian statehood. So let us all rest assured that no good can come of the talks taking place in Doha right now. Oh, other than a reiteration of enmity on everyone’s part towards Israel.
As was reported in the London-based newspaper Asharq Al-Awsat ahead of the negotiations, Fatah and Hamas “were set to discuss ways to end divisions and to unite their ranks in the face of ‘Israeli aggression,’ stressing that unity was necessary to rebuild Gaza and end the Israeli blockade on the Strip.”
Where fighting Israel is concerned, consensus already exists, however. The current wave of violence against Jews, through the use of rocks, knives, cars and pipe bombs, is being carried out predominantly by PA Palestinians, not all Hamas loyalists.
For its part, Hamas is not only rebuilding the terror tunnels destroyed during Operation Protective Edge in the summer of 2014, but it keeps releasing videos boasting of this endeavor and threatening to kidnap and kill Israelis. Even Egypt is having a hard time flooding and demolishing all the new underground passageways Hamas has been digging to transport ISIS terrorists from the Sinai to Gaza for medical treatment, in exchange for weapons, cash and other contraband.
Hamas’ latest production, released on Sunday (coinciding with the jump-start of negotiations with Fatah in Qatar) is a music video calling on Palestinians to resume suicide bombings on Israeli buses — a practice that was hindered by Israel’s withdrawal from Gaza in 2005. Preventing terrorists from infiltrating Israel on a daily basis to blow up innocent people riding to work or dining in restaurants was the whole purpose of closing off the hornet’s nest in the first place. And opening it up to enable a repeat performance is precisely what the parties in Doha, including Turkey, are demanding.
But Hamas doesn’t feel like having to kill Jews by launching rockets from Gaza all the time, now that the Iron Dome intercepts most of them and Israel fights back with mighty force. Strapping explosive belts on its young people and dispatching them to Israel to detonate themselves in crowded population centers is far more efficient.
How appropriate, then, that the discussions between the stabbers and the bombers should be held in Qatar, a state sponsor of terrorism. The only minimally positive outcome will be a lack of a resolution. The fact is that the PA already committed to help rebuild Gaza, with the tons of foreign dollars and euros it was given for this purpose. But neither side ever wants to spend money on productive measures.
Nor will Abbas want to hold new elections, for fear of being ousted.
The only player in this jihadi “peace” farce that has something to gain is Turkey, which will get its pipeline from Israel, even without turning its back on Hamas.
Ruthie Blum is the web editor of The Algemeiner.