Monday, April 21, 2008

Jimmy Carter: Peacemaker or Useful Fool?

Jimmy Carter, 39th President of America, seems to have completed his much-opposed meeting with the terrorist organization Hamas, returning with the message, “Hamas is prepared to accept the right of Israel to live as a neighbor next door in peace.”

In a normal world, such a message would be welcomed and readily accepted. But, we don’t live in a normal world and Israel lives in even less of a normal world, with Hamas’ daily rocket attacks raining down. Messages as this from Hamas must receive a critical look before Israeli’s jump and accept what could be a Palestinian Trojan Horse.

Carter tells us that Hamas promised it wouldn’t undermine Palestinian President Abbas’ efforts to negotiate peace with Israel, as long as the Palestinian people approved it in a referendum.

Carter, a 2002 recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, urges Israel to engage in direct negotiations with Hamas, whose charter explicitly calls for the destruction of Israel. Carter calls the refusal of America and Israel to discuss with Hamas a “problem.” Says Carter,

The problem is not that I met with Hamas in Syria. The problem is that Israel and the United States refuse to meet with someone who must be involved.”
He continued,
There’s no doubt that both the Arab world and Hamas will accept Israel’s right to exist in peace within 1967 borders.”

Hamas followed up with notice that the Palestinian militant group would offer Israel a 10-year truce as implicit proof of recognition of Israel, if it withdrew from all lands it seized after the 1967 Six Day War. Khaled Mashaal, who met with Carter this past Saturday said,
We have offered a truce if Israel withdraws to the 1967 borders, a truce of 10 years as a proof of recognition.”

Within hours, Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri claimed, “Carter’s comments do not mean that Hamas is going to accept the result of the referendum.” Shortly after, a 4-year-old Israeli boy was wounded as seven rockets were fired on Israel from Gaza, under Hamas control.

Tom Casey, deputy spokesman for the State Department there was no indication Hamas wanted peace with Israel.
What is clear to us is that there certainly is no change in Hamas’ position. It does not recognize Israel’s right to exist, it has not eschewed or walked away from terrorism and violence, nor has it said it will honor any of the previous agreements that have been made with the Israeli government,” Casey said.

Abu Jandal, another Hamas leader said that Saturdays suicide bombing of an Israeli position on the Gaza border on Saturday was just a warm-up. That attack wounded 13 Israeli Soldiers. “The previous attacks were just a walk in the park,” Jandal told Al Risala, a Hamas linked newspaper.

Carter, credited for brokering a peace between Egypt and Israel, said that the indirect talks between Hamas and Israel through Egypt, for the release of Israeli Soldier Cpl. Gilad Shalit, captured nearly two years ago and in exchange for 1,000 Palestinian prisoners, were making only very slow progress and could drag on for years.

Independent analyst, Mouin Rabbani said Hamas is using Carter to convey the message that, under certain conditions, it is willing to accept a two-state solution.
Where he demanded specific actions, they didn’t respond because he isn’t in a position to deliver anything in return,” Rabbani said.

Arye Mekel, Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman said,
It was sad to see how Hamas is using former president Carter to try to get legitimization it does not deserve.”

Israeli political and security analyst, Yossi Alpher says that while Carter had not achieved any dramatic breakthroughs, his meetings were “symptomatic of a slow erosion in the boycott of Hamas at the international level.”

Carter says said that furthering that erosion was his goal and he believed Hamas was no longer determined to destroy the Jewish state saying,
It may be something they wish, but they know it’s a fruitless concept.” He continued, “[Hamas’] ultimate goal is to see Israel living in their allocated borders, the 1967 borders, and a contiguous, vital Palestinian state alongside.”

Reading from an English version of an agreement worked out this weekend, Carter read,
If President Abbas succeeds in negotiating a final status agreement with Israel, Hamas will accept the decision made by the Palestinian people and their will in a referendum monitored by international observers . . . even if Hamas is opposed to the agreement.”

Leaving themselves room to back out of the agreement, something Hamas has done time and time again, Hamas officials, say that “any referendum must include Palestinians living in exile worldwide,” which could make the vote logistically impossible.

Khaled Meshal, an exiled Hamas leader who met with Carter says,
“[Hamas] would not formally recognize Israel even if it accepts a peace deal that implicitly acknowledges Israel's existence.” Meshal told reporters, “We accept a state on the June 4 line with Jerusalem as capital, real sovereignty and full right of return for refugees but without recognizing Israel.”

Hamas foreign affairs adviser Ahmed Yousef, part of the Hamas group that met with former president said Carter was brave for meeting with Hamas.
He represents the real conscience of the American people, not like George Bush and his one-sided vision for peace,” Yousef said.

Of the talks President Bush has been encouraging between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, Carter said he believed that those talks have gone nowhere, and that the prospects for peace have actually “regressed.”

Hamas also rejected a 30-day cease-fire, disappointing Carter.

Is Hamas extending an Olive Branch? Or are they extending their usual thorned branch? Is former President Jimmy Carter a Peacemaker or just a useful fool, giving a terrorist group legitimacy they don’t have coming?

Carter also said, “If you don’t give people hope that their plight will be alleviated, then violence is almost inevitable.”

What hope does Carter give the Israeli’s in their plight as Hamas rockets rain down day after day?

UPDATE: Hamas says, "Carters Trip Accomplished nothing!"


Mark Harvey aka Snooper said...

I'll vote that Jimmy Carter is an idiot. Does that count?

LewWaters said...

Idiot? Moron comes to my mind.

His naivete not only makes him the worst president ever, he is working hard at being the worst ex-president too.

I'm amazed that he can place so much faith in Hamas while denying the Israelis.

klatu said...

Hi Lew: Put me down on the "USEFUL IDIOT" side for Jimmaa Cataaa.

Jimmaa Cataaa a Joke of a President
and now a Joke of an Ex-President.

LewWaters said...

Jimmuh is trying really hard to not only be the worst president, but he worst ex-president as well.

Rosalyn should confine him to the peanut farm before he does more harm.

Roger W. Gardner said...

This is a terrific article Lew. I especially love that sentence that Carter represents the real heart of the American people. That's the damage he's doing. And I think it's considerable. He should definitely have his passport taken away -- at the very least. Considering how many Americans Hamas is responsible for killing, either directly or indirectly, Carter could be tried for treason. Somebody, somehow has to step up to the plate and stop him before he does any further damage.

LewWaters said...

Nixon set the tone of allowing treasonous conduct when he didn't prosecute Hanoi Jane, Roger.

Carter is getting old and it appears senile.

Even Hamas said his trip accomplished "nothing!"