You\'re Cheering Now...Hamas, showing up the Conservatives in Canada’s recent election, cleaned up in the recent elections taking 76 seats in the 132 member legislature. For those of you who are less than minimally competent with math, that’s well over half giving them a solid majority. Their main opponents, Fatah, took a pathetic 43 seats with 13 seats going to independents.

Like the Canadian election, a primary reason for the result was the perceived (and real) massive corruption in the dominant party. So Muffti guesses we should be glad that a corrupt government got its due and was shmiced in a democratic election. And, in an impressive display of democratic participation, 77% of the eligible voters turned up! In comparison, Israelis in the 2003 election ran about a 68% turnout rate, US (2000 presidential election) was at 68% [63% in the 2000 house elections], 61% in Canada (2000 Parliamentary elections) and 69% in the 2000 Russian Federation elections, 60% in the 2003 French Parliamentary elections (though, in fairness, a whopping 80% in the Presidential election of 2002!]. So, it’s like the Pals are a democratic light unto the nations! Mazal tov on the turnout and making democracy work for you! Just a shame you don’t have better taste…

It’s not easy to find a silver lining on this cloud, but Muffti is trying. Things have really gone from bad to worse. Mostly for the Palestinians. The US has already announced a refusal to deal with them, hinting that desperately needed aid will dry up. The Israelis have announced that they won’t bargain with Hamas. Hamas refuses to recognize the state of Israel. It’s really worse than being back at square 1. It’s more like being back at square minus 5.

As Homer said during a classic Simpsons moment: When are people going to learn? Democracy doesn’t work. First Harper and now Hamas. Not to mention any other obvious egregious decisions by democractic nations in recent years. Maybe Homer isn’t so stupid.

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grandmuffti

22 Comments

  • Actually, quite the contrary my dear Mufti.

    Democracy worked, because the Palestinians got what they wanted… more dead Jews. Democracy is supposedly about the will of the people afterall.

    With that being being said, I honestly prefer Hamas over Fatah anyway.

    With Fatah, they wave an olive branch with one hand, and hide a gun behind their back with the other.

    At least with Hamas, they openly display two guns in both hands for the entire world to see.

    Fatah is notorious for crying for peace to Western media, but “death to Jews” to their own media.

    Hamas on the other hand says the same thing to both their own and our media.

    I prefer an enemy who says what they mean, and means what they say.

  • I remember reading in an English history class that Queen Elizabeth I would give castles to rebellious lords…not to reward them, but to tame them. They had to spend considerable time and energy renovating, repairing, and cultivating the castle and grounds, as it had to be fit for a visit by the Queen at any time. Of course, the side effect was to make rebels just too busy to think about rebelling when there was castle infrastructure to be attended to.

    My sincere hope is that Gaza becomes Hamas’ equivalent castle gift, and when they realize they are now in charge of the sewer systems, agriculture, trade and industry, etc. they’ll grow up a little. The photo of the kid with the pistol just creeps me out.

  • I have a joke. We don”t we “”love bomb”” Hamas and the Palestinians in general. Why don”t we get all the rabbonim to start saying how Judaism and Islam aren”t that different theologically and why are we fighting, etc. And go on and on, quoting the Torah, Talmud, Koran, etc. We”ve tried other things, why not try this.

  • I’m just curious is anyone actually surprised by this, or happy because “Democracy prevailed”?

  • I don’t know if I agree with Tovya about her preference, but I do agree with her position on the “silver lining.” Unlike then-Arafat/now-Fatah English/Arabic double speak that seemed to bring on so much world sympathy and cries for more “balanced” policies, now the world can plainly see what we all knew; this is who we’re really dealing with.

  • Muffti – sure there’s a grain of truth in the assertion that this was a vote against Fatah corruption, but… that kinda begs the question: if there really is a “silent majority” that want coexistence, why didn’t “moderate” Pali technocrats (Ashrawi, the Husseinis and other old-line Jerusalem families) form a party that embraces BOTH reform AND negotiation?

    Such a party would have grabbed a lot of airtime, and garnered much international support. And they would have had great success at the ballot box.

    So why didn’t it happen?

    Because such a silent majority – the last wispy straw of hope for many messianic peaceniks – Does. Not. Exist.

    Calling for Israel’s liquidation is the Palestinian political equivalent of kissing babies.

    Maybe now many hopeful lefties will get a clue…

  • muffti,
    this is one of the best things to happen to Israel. If in the past ten Oslo years, Israel could fool itself into think that there was a silent moderate majority of the Palestinians who want ‘peace’ with Israel, then GOOD MORNING SAMARIA!

    I’m sure the day after, more of these arabs were kicking themselves for not voting Hamas either.

  • A Hamas victory is for sure better for Israel. Also, Hamas has done more for the Palestinian people than any other party around, so in a really perverse way, it’s probably better all around.

  • Ben David, Muffti totally disagrees; not totally with the conclusion but with the style of argument. Its nonsense in general to think that within a little while one can cobble a political party together. Sharon could, Muffti supposes, but a new party requires positions, funding, members with a unified stance…all of which is a difficult matter. Look at the Canadian election where across the board people reported disatifaction with the LIberals and hten either voted liberal due to even massiver (hehehe) dissatisfaction with the Conservatives or voted Conservative out of slightly less massive dissatisfaction. [obviously this is a simplification]. This is especially the case when your opponents are either well funded terrorists or US aided well funded Fatah (a.k.a. terrorists) and in an area where it is not especially uncommon for Hamas to terrorize members of the other parties (as they did to members of Fatah up until they were allowed to run in the election).

    So, in essence, Muffti thinks that you are massively oversimplifying the complications, dangers and general problems with running a brand new party. These parties tend not to do well, especialy during an election with a massive protest vote.

    Let Muffti conclude with a reiteration. It doesn’t follow that there is “such a silent majority”, but that the evidence against it is rather piss poor. Hamas, as Laya points out, has provided social services for years: the cleverness of Hamas is precisely that they are a party concerned with the plight of Palestineans AS WELL as a terrorist organization. What moderate party can compete with a socialist progressive party like Hamas that actually has a track record of providing services like hospitals?

  • GM: Hamas is more populist, not socialist in the common understanding of the political term.

    Laya: You’re right. But I get a weird feeling when I start to realize that I get excited by events which might help Israeli hasbarah, but actually will lead to more Jewish suffering… :-/

    Ben-David: What most people fail to realize is that democratic institutions in the Palestinian territories are very corrupt and weak, so these are mere proxy contests for the armed groups/militias, which are the real power structures/brokers. In other words, for any group to effectively hold power in the territories, they have to be backed by their own armed gunmen. That’s why it is unlikely that the PLO groups will silently go into that dark night without a fight. Who would freely give up power? They’ll engage Hamas if not for supremacy then for just maintaining the status quo.

  • If the Arabs remain true to form, the bodies should be piling up in Gaza and Ramallah pretty soon. I hope that Fatah will resist the Hamas takeover to the last terrorist, so that both sides will just pound each other into little piles of Islamic dust, but I doubt that we’ll be so lucky. My guess is that after a few desultory scuffles most of the Fatah “activists” will just change uniforms, unfortunately.

    The last few Xians in the territories are probably checking out real estate prices in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv right about now.

    The real problem here is that when Hamas faces the inevitable problems of trying to run a gummint (if they even bother), they will up the violence against Israel to “mobilize the masses” and direct their attention elsewhere. No matter what happens, attacks on Israel will increase, and increase soon.

    And don’t hold your breath expecting the US and the EU to honor their promises of not dealing with and not funding terrorists. I assume that, as always, they’ll find a way to weasel out of their promises.

    No matter what happens, this is not going to be pretty.

    But, man, did Hamas hand Fatah its ass on a plate or what? “Bend over and grab your ankles,Ab-ass, and don’t bother asking for any lube!”

    But I just can’t believe all of these people who say they were “shocked” at Hamas’ victory. What are they, stupid? Anybody with any sense saw this coming from miles away. It was as obvious as the setup and punch line in a Threee Stooges movie, like when Curly is working at a gas station and uses a match to check what he thinks is the water level in the radiator.

    Of course, it is the gas tank. Ka-BOOM!

    Surprise, surprise.

  • I’m a natural pessimist, Muffti. I just can’t help it.

    I don’t want to wax all religious and Messianic, since I know the Muffti, he isn’t down with that, but IIRC there is a prophecy in Isaiah, in one of the haftorot, that says that at the time of the geulah, Hashem will make Israel’s enemies “drunk on their own blood as though with sweet wine” or something along those lines.

    Here’s hoping.

    Drink away, boys.

  • EEEEEEEW. Gross! Yuck! Why are so many prophecies about vengence rather than every getting along and getting drunk together on real wine?

  • Bomb mecca and stop the freaking muslims NOW.
    The idiot americans are not safe the muslims hat all that is not muslim. The cult must be stopped.

  • Yes. May we all hail the glory of American democracy, which has never failed throughout its storied history to give to the American people a pretend choice between two total douchebags. Yay limited representative pseudo-democracy! Where are my Commie-stompin’ boots?

  • It ain’t perfect Michael but way ahead of second place. If you don’t like it, why don’t you just leave us….uh, I guess you did. Well….then…..why don’t you just buy your own shopping basket then.

  • I agree with Tovya: better an honest enemy than a false friend. Also, their supporters have something to lose; those clinics, schools, etc. This gives Israel some leverage.

    All will turn out well, given only intelligence, integrity, vision and competence on the part of Palestinian, Israeli and American officials. Unfortunately, those qualities rare in general, and especially so amongst the above-mentioned officials.

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