September 16, 2014

CENTRALIZATION:

Did Hamas Win? (Mkhaimar Abusada, 9/15/14, Project Syndicate)

Before the latest war erupted, Hamas was politically isolated. It had lost traditional allies in Syria, Iran, and Hezbollah. Most damaging, the ouster of former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood government had deprived Hamas of its lifeline of supplies and armaments.

Egypt's military regime, led by General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, has been unrelentingly hostile toward Hamas, blaming it for the fighting in Sinai between the army and insurgent groups. Egypt even mounted an operation to destroy the tunnels between Gaza and Sinai, isolating Gaza completely.

Hamas faced an intensifying crisis. Unable to pay the salaries of more than 40,000 public employees in Gaza, it was being slowly strangled by the Israeli and Egyptian authorities. And the unity government that it established with the Palestinian Authority in June brought no relief.

With nothing to lose, Hamas decided that another round of fighting with Israel was the only way to shake things up. Despite its modest military capabilities, Hamas managed to hold out for 51 days - and, in the process, place itself at the center of Palestinian and regional politics.

Posted by at September 16, 2014 5:19 PM
  

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