“Israel considers giving Fatah military support,” by Carolynne Wheeler for the Telegraph:
Israel is considering giving military support to the moderate Palestinian faction Fatah in its power struggle with radical rival Hamas.
Even though Fatah is closely connected to Palestinian militants with a long record of attacks against Israel, the Jewish state is coming round to embracing the movement as a more pragmatic bulwark against Hamas, which they believe receives military aid from Iran.
“We believe that time is working against the moderates,” said a member of the Israeli cabinet yesterday.
The media continues to define Fatah as “moderate.” The same Fatah that prepares “martyrs” for suicide attacks against Israel. The same Fatah that just recently approved the Independence Day rocket attack and attempted kidnapping.
Fatah is moderate in comparison to Hamas in that Fatah pretends to want peace and will not publicly state its goal to destroy Israel. Other than that, Fatah is a terrorist organization. Period. How Israel can be so short-sighted and plan to arm Fatah is astounding. The minute that the infighting in Gaza comes to any sort of break, each and every one of the Israeli sponsored guns will be pointed directly at “¦Israel.
Not a few military analysts have pointed out that the recent surge in the Gaza violence is nothing more than a ploy to evoke an Israeli response which will unite all Palestinian terror groups. That could very well be true. However Israel must take this opportunity to crush the enemy, not arm it. It is only a matter of time before a Lebanon style war breaks out in the Gaza Strip. The longer Israel waits the tougher it will be. During the time that Israel restrained itself by imposing a unilateral ceasefire, Hamas and Fatah took advantage of the relative quiet to rearm and dig in.
Fatah has no chance against Hamas. Fatah is a nominally secular group who relies on an indifferent West for support. Hamas is a fanatical Islamic cult who is backed by a very interested Syria, Iran, Hezbollah and al-Qaeda. Who wins that battle?
Israel continues its policy of appeasement; help Fatah beat Hamas and then we can make peace with Fatah. This argument is doubly wrong. Firstly, Fatah will not beat Hamas, and most of the weapons that Israel does supply to Fatah will wind up in Hamas” hands. Secondly, even if Fatah would defeat Hamas, Fatah will in no way, shape or form make peace with Israel.
Olmert continues to stumble down the path of disaster. Unfortunately, at this pace, he is going to take a lot of people with him.