For Peace Talks to Resume, Israel Insists Hamas Must Change – Steve Inskeep interviews Israel’s ambassador to the U.S. Ron Dermer
(dailyalert.org, Apr. 30, 2014)
Q: Why is it so bad if you have a unified Palestinian Authority that you can deal with?
Dermer: If you had a reformed Hamas that accepted Israel, that abandoned terrorism, then a unified Palestinian society would be good, because that would be unity for peace. But…Hamas is a terror organization. They call openly for Israel’s destruction.
And what we won’t accept also is the Palestinians putting forth some technocratic government where Hamas remains in the back office. If Hamas is there in the back office, Israel’s not going to be at the negotiating table.
Q: Could the Palestinians push back at you and say, look, there are members of the Israeli governing coalition we don’t like, either, but we’re willing to talk to Netanyahu?
Dermer: Of course not, because we don’t have terrorists who are sitting in the Israeli government. We don’t have people who call for the extermination of the Palestinians….You cannot have a political party [in Israel] that would call for the extermination of the Palestinians. (NPR)
What Would Hamas Have to Do for Israel to Deal with Them? – Christa Case Bryant (Christian Science Monitor)
Hamas’ charter calls it a religious obligation to wage jihad for the Palestinian cause, and to restore all of Palestine to Palestinian control. That includes modern-day Israel.
Israel, like the international Quartet – the U.S., UN, EU, and Russia – insists that Palestinian parties to the peace process must recognize Israel, give up violence, and adhere to previous diplomatic agreements. Hamas has done none of these things.
Therefore, Israel has refused not only to deal with a government that includes Hamas, but also a government that is “backed by” Hamas.
So even if Abbas led a government with no Hamas members, and it agrees to the Quartet principles, that wouldn’t be enough for Israel. Hamas itself would have to adopt those three principles.