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Sunday, May 19, 2024

Hamas self-destructs and damages the dreams of Palestinian statehood

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Writing this from our blessed island of peace and tolerance, the land of human fraternity. We have known wars and extreme suffering. But we never surrendered to hatred and revenge. Today we live in peace and mourn for Israelis and for Palestinians.

Hamas brazen assault on the State of Israel, slaughter of civilians, is a blatant violation of international law and amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity. No cause can justify such carnage.

Hamas all out war against Israel and deliberate massacre of innocent Israeli civilians has dealt a death blow to Hamas itself and profound damage to the dream of Palestinian statehood.

Gaza could have been a peaceful, prosperous enclave, to be followed by West Bank. It took courage, audacity, of Israeli leaders to vacate Gaza. International aid and investments were flowing in and the future seemed promising. But instead of showing mature, moderate, wise leadership, Hamas first began a terror against the Palestinian Authority and forced it out of Gaza and, supported by Iran, it began to arm itself against the Palestinian Authority and Israel. Total madness. Would Israel vacate West Bank while witnessing what Gaza turned out to be? Would Israel be persuaded to accept the naive, idealistic notion of two State solution?

What’s more, if there were skeptics in Israel about the viability of the two-State formula, what Hamas has achieved with its calculated terror aggression against Israel is the death of this irrealistic formula.

As Israel masses troops and weaponry around Gaza, fully justified to defend itself, we beg, there cannot be collective punishment. IDF is not Hamas. Israel can come out of this catastrophe morally stronger.

Jews who endured centuries of discrimination and survived the Genocide, and always stood for just causes, must show they are better, show their best humanity, avoid revenge killings, do everything to protect innocent Palestinians, women and children of Gaza.

And Israel and neighbours will show the wisdom and courage of great peace makers and search for an end to this ignominious, endless tragic situation of Palestinians without a home and without peace, and Israelis with a home but without peace.

J Ramos-Horta

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