Commentary Magazine


Contentions

Reality Check: Hamas Isn’t Moderating

The Sydney Morning-Herald, one of Australia’s major newspapers, can make The New York Times look like National Review. Paul McGeough, its senior foreign correspondent, has a long track record of not letting facts get in the way of his advocacy for a number of causes that would make Noam Chomsky blush. McGeough’s most recent piece was a front page profile of Khaled Meshaal, Hamas’ military chief, which also appeared in the Sydney Morning-Herald’s sister paper, The Age. McGeough’s article is well-worth the read, simply as an example of how some journalists eschew honesty and conduct intellectual somersaults to embrace terrorists. While even left-of-center Australian officials recognize that McGeough should not be taken seriously, none other than the Council on Foreign Relations sees sophistication in his embrace of terrorists.

Thankfully, AIJAC’s Sharyn Mittelman has eviscerated McGeough’s latest “love letter to Hamas.” While McGeough claims Meshal and Hamas are moderating, and that Hamas seeks to negotiate a truce with Israel, Mittelman notes:

Firstly, Hamas has not shrunk its claims to the West Bank and Gaza. McGeough is clearly ignoring key parts of Meshal’s recent speech on 7 December 2012 when he returned to the Gaza Strip to mark Hamas’ 25th anniversary and reportedly stated:

“First of all, Palestine – from the [Jordan] River to the [Mediterranean] Sea, from its north to its south – is our land, our right, and our homeland. There will be no relinquishing or forsaking even an inch or small part of it. Second, Palestine was, continues to be, and will remain Arab and Islamic. It belongs to the Arab and the Islamic world. Palestine belongs to us and to nobody else.”

She continues:

Secondly, Hamas has not moved from “jihad to hudna”. Hamas is clear that any ‘truce’ would only be temporary to facilitate Israel’s destruction, and Hamas also continues to believe in armed resistance, as evidenced by Meshal’s speech on December 7:

“… Jihad and armed resistance are the proper and true path to liberation and to the restoration of our rights, along with all other forms of struggle – through politics, through diplomacy, through the masses, and through legal channels. All these forms of struggle, however, are worthless without resistance… Politics are born from the womb of resistance. The true statesman is born from the womb of the rifle and the missile.”

The whole take-down is a must read, not only as a reminder of what Hamas truly stands for, but also to recognize just how mendacious and dishonest some prominent foreign correspondents have become.