By Khalid Amayreh in the West Bank
The Egyptian-mediated ceasefire agreement between Israel and the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) is, ostensibly at least, a wise, dignified and expedient step for several reasons.
To begin with, the ceasefire deal would suspend the daily acts of murder and terror carried out by the Israeli occupation forces against the nearly totally unprotected people of the Gaza Strip.
For years, the Gestapo-like Israeli army used excessive force, including tanks, warplanes, heavy artillery and other lethal machines of death to wreak death, havoc and terror on the civilian population of Gaza, resulting in the murder and maiming of thousands of innocent people.
Thus, the latest arrangement would give the thoroughly tormented Gazans a certain respite, however uncertain, from Israeli terror and criminality.
Moreover, the arrangement, which is due to go into effect Thursday morning, is also supposed to lead to the gradual lifting of the 18-month-old harsh and callous blockade Israel has been imposing on 1.5 million Palestinians of the Gaza Strip.
This alone should be viewed as a worthy achievement if only because Gaza was being decimated by a genocidal siege unprecedented since the Nazi blockade of Ghetto Warsaw in 1943.
It is therefore hoped that the gradual dissipation of the nefarious blockade, which really reflects the brutal ugliness of the Zionist mentality, will allow Gaza to revive and rehabilitate itself and bring a smile back on the faces of its tormented children and savaged men and women.
Needless to say, the decision by Hamas to accept the ceasefire is a strong proof that Hamas is not a nihilistic organization, e.g. like al Qaeda, as Israeli and Zionist hasbara has been trying to portray the Palestinian-Islamic movement.
In fact, Hamas had always called for a cessation of violence in Gaza whereby both sides would refrain from targeting innocent civilians. However, it was always Israel, not Hamas, that rejected such calls by keeping up murderous attacks on Palestinian civilians.
Israel, especially when addressing western audiences, repeatedly but mendaciously claimed that its army didn’t deliberately target innocent Palestinians civilians.
However, that fact that hundreds of Palestinian children and other civilians continued to be killed and maimed throughout the Gaza Strip, and else where, eviscerated the Israeli pretensions of innocence of any veracity and credibility. In the final analysis, Israel was not only a brutal murderer, but a big a liar as well.
After all, killing knowingly is killing deliberately, and when the number of innocent victims is so high, even intent becomes irrelevant.
There is no doubt that Hamas’s heroic steadfastness, resilience and patience are being vindicated.
Thus, the enduring vigor of Hamas and the people of Gaza, who defied death and clang to life, should serve as a lesson for the Palestinian people that steadfastness in the face of brute power eventually pays off.
This is also a lesson for the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority (PA) that the stubbornness of justice can eventually triumph over the arrogance of oppression.
Winners and losers
There is no doubt that the forces of peace and reason on all sides have won against the forces of bellicosity, hatred and terror, especially in Washington and Tel Aviv and some other regional capitals as well.
The people of Gaza, the victims of American-Israeli criminality, are undoubtedly the biggest winners of this deal. At least, they can breathe again, following 18 nightmarish months of unimagined brutality and ruthlessness.
In addition to the gung-ho neocons in Washington and war-drummers in Tel Aviv who wanted to exterminate Hamas, not a small amount of consternation is also likely to be permeating now in Ramallah where a Zionized group within Fatah had been hoping to see the Israeli army overrun Gaza, murder hundreds, and then hand Gaza over to the Fatah leadership on a silver platter.
On this occasion, one feels prompted to call on Fatah to eject these traitors from their midst for the sake of Fatah itself and for the sake of Palestine.
Non the less, it would be naïve, even stupid, to be carried away or give Israel the benefit of the doubt by thinking that the Zionist regime is going to abide by the agreement and terminate its murderous aggressions on our people.
Israel, after all, has repeatedly proven itself to be a venomous snake which must never be trusted.
Hence, Palestinians, especially Hamas, ought to be constantly vigilant and ready to repulse any Israeli aggression.
However, Hamas should make meticulous efforts to preserve the ceasefire since doing so is first and foremost a supreme and paramount Palestinian interest.
Hamas should also make it abundantly clear to the military wings of other Palestinian factions that the security and safety of the people of Gaza must not be subject to the whims of this or that faction.
In fact, preserving the ceasefire would send a positive message to the international community that Hamas is responsible organization with which “business can be made.”
Moreover, a careful abidance by the agreement on Hamas’s part would show good- will toward Egypt whose support and backing is essential for the survival of the Gaza Strip, at least at this juncture of the Palestinian struggle for freedom and liberation from Zionism.