Yesterday, I took note of the Forward's interview with a senior Hamas leader, in which he reiterated his organization's stance that, at best, the group, which ultimately, by charter, seeks the destruction of Israel, could offer Israel a "truce." And I noted that this interview should give pause to people like Peter Beinart, who have argued that Hamas is moderating itself. I received an email from Peter this morning, in which he included a tweet on the subject he issued after the Forward interview:
@PeterBeinart: Note to Hamas: hudna is not peace, and you'll get nowhere till you ditch former + start talking latter.
Then he asked, "Kind of unfair for you to ignore it and use forward interview to attack me for my naivete about hamas, no?"
My response is as follows: One tweet marks a policy change? Seriously? Not even a series of tweets?
Peter Beinart has been arguing for several years, in columns and speeches and in his recent book, that Israel and the "American Jewish establishment" are willfully ignoring Hamas' turn to moderation in large part because they seek to prevent the emergence of a Palestinian unity government, which might force them to make (and endorse, in the Americans' case) concessions for peace they don't want to make.