The talking heads in both the Finnish media and foreign ministry, as well as Finnish research institutes (UPI pdf report click here) have all been on record as supporting the idea that Islamist movements should be engaged. The thinking behind this is that by accepting the Islamists into the political debate, their inclusion into mainstream political life would lead to their eventual moderation, thereby reducing the risk of their further radicalization.
I however, take an opposing position that these groups –whether already “radicalized” or threatening to radicalize if their political platforms aren’t sanctioned by the democratic system– should be shunned by the political process until they amend their intolerant and anti-democratic political agendas. Simply put, in spite of their numbers, their racist/religious supremacist views make them totally unsuitable for participation in the political process.
A recent polling of the Palestinians residing in the Gaza strip are now showing signs that life under Hamas rule is not what it promised to be. Though some in the Finnish media want to portray the Gazans as victims of the Israeli decision to boycott the Hamas military junta now in control over all of Gaza, the truth is that Hamas itself holds the keys to the future of the average Gazan under their control.
J’lem Post: “Most residents of the Gaza Strip are afraid to openly express their political views following Hamas’ takeover of the area in June, according to a poll released Wednesday, the latest sign of public discontent with Gaza’s Hamas rulers.
The poll found that a majority of Gazans oppose rocket attacks on Israel, favor a peace agreement with the Jewish state, and do not consider the Hamas authority in Gaza to be the legitimate Palestinian government. It also concluded that Hamas would lose elections if a new vote were held today.
The poll was conducted by Near East Consulting, a research firm based in the West Bank. The firm said it surveyed 470 Palestinians in Gaza by telephone on September 25-27. It did not give a margin of error.
This is further proof that the decision to “not engage” the Islamists was the right decision to make, and that the European states that were “chomping at the bit” to recognize the Hamas as a legitimate party to do business with….were hopelessly naive and badly mistaken.
The average Palestinian in Gaza has found life under Hamas to be ….a nightmare, with freedoms being curtailed, and strong arm tactics being the standard approved method in dealing with opponents.
According to the survey, 58 percent of respondents said they are now afraid to express their political views following the Hamas takeover, and 60% say Hamas’s paramilitary police, known as the Executive Force, has done a poor job respecting individual rights.
It also found 52% of respondents consider Abbas’s government to be the legitimate Palestinian ruling authority, while only 26% favor the Hamas government led by Ismail Haniyeh. Sixty-four percent said they trust Abbas, compared with 36% who trust Fatah.
In another blow to Hamas, 72% said they support a final peace agreement with Israel, and 55% called on Hamas to change its position toward Israel”
If this survey is to be trusted, it should serve to prove that a “stiff arm policy” in place of “engagement” –accompanied with strong boycotting initiatives– can effectively force a public (and its admiration for intolerant groups) to change course. The US had its KKK, and Germany its Nazi’s, and now the Palestinians and the Islamic world have supremacists of their very own.
The Islamic world (including the Palestinians) must deal a harsh blow against its own intolerant supremacists (Islamists) as did the West against their own versions of the same sick ideology. A heeding of the call for an end to Arab anti-Semitism would show just how serious the Arabs are in tackling the problem of their own “home grown” religious, racist bigots. More here *L* KGS