There are certain events that I call "audio-visual aids." They remind us of things that anyone knows who follows the news, but they give a certain immediacy, a certain sensory correlative to the truth--they suggest that there is hope for the inattentive. The election victory of Hamas is just such an audio-visual aid. So was the interception of the Korine A in 2002, carrying 50 tons of Arafat-paid-for weapons, including plastic explosives. 9/11 was the most dismal audio-visual aid of all.
Today the overhead projector of history is again showing us something very important concerning the true prospects for a negotiated peace between Israel and the Palestinians. Without a military victory, those prospects are as nil as the prospects for negotiating with Osama bin Laden.
Successful peace negotiations ratify circumstances that already exist. The circumstances for peace in the Palestinian conflict must be forced into existence by Israel--they cannot be negotiated into existence, and they cannot be created by withdrawal, not even by unilateral withdrawal. Some entities can be negotiated with and some cannot. The distinction should be made based on the evidence. Today we were given a very large and important piece of evidence.
Update: See the round-up at Boker Tov, Boulder. For gallows humor on this story, see AbbaGav.
Tags: Israel, Palestinians, Hamas, election