Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Hamas Is The Terrorist

The Independent Coast Observer, March 3, 2006, included this Letter to the Editor. My response to Mr. Lopatecki follows.

(The accompanying picture: Twenty-three people were killed and over 130 wounded when a Palestinian suicide bomber detonated a five-kilogram device packed with ball-bearings on a crowded No. 2 Egged bus in Jerusalem's Shmuel Hanavi neighborhood. Many of the passengers were returning from prayers at the Western Wall when they were killed. Hamas claimed responsibility for the attack.)

Who's the terrorist


If Hamas is to be desig­nated a terrorist organiza­tion that the west cannot negotiate with, then the state of Israel should get the same designation because it kills innocent people from the air with rockets. Or would you argue that God lets Israelis write off the col­lateral damage they have done?

The west needs to drop its hypocritical name call­ing and deal with Hamas as it is: the rightfully elected representative of the Pales­tinian people. If America is now going to starve out Hamas by withholding aid to Palestinian (sic) it will show its mission 'to bring democ­racy to the mid east' for what it is—a sham. And the more frantically Condi Rice tries to stomp out the fundamen­talist fires the faster they will grow.

Michael Lopatecki, Point Arena

Hamas Is The Terrorist

Editor, Independent Coast Observer

Michael Lopatecki stated (Who's the terrorist, ICO, 3 March 2006) that if Hamas is designated a terrorist organization, so too must Israel. Apparently, Mr. Lopatecki feels that if Israel responds to Hamas terrorist attacks, and anyone but a Hamas terrorist is hurt or killed, Israel has committed an act of terrorism. This is a distinction without discrimination, since Hamas indiscriminately targets innocent Israelis, and Israel retaliates by targeting Hamas terrorists. It is a sad but unavoidable fact, that although all killed by Hamas are intended, some killed by Israel in the pursuit of Hamas terrorists are not. Hamas could stop the slaughter of innocent Israelis, and thereby end the accidental Palestinian deaths, by stopping their terrorist attacks.

The United States and Israel are not the only nations that list Hamas as a terrorist organization. Australia, Canada, and the European Union do also, and Hamas is banned in Jordan. The United States, the European Union, Russia, and for that matter, the United Nations, have announced that future aid to the Palestinians is tied to "Three Principles": Hamas must renounce violence, must recognize Israel's right to exist, and must express clear support for the Middle East peace process, as outlined in the Oslo accords. The efforts of the world to bring pressure on Hamas have nothing to do with "a mission to bring democracy to the Middle East." The intent is to stop an organization harbored by the Palestinians from continuing terrorist attacks on the innocent civilian population of a UN member nation.

The United States would be foolish to support a nation that sponsors terrorism. In fact, we and the world have an obligation to bring pressure, including financial, on such nations. I am no fan of the United Nations, but even their support depends on Hamas agreeing to the "Three Principles."

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