Ismail Haniyeh
Photo: AP
We're not terrorists
This is what a Hamas cabinet session would sound like; sounds familiar?
Somehow we managed to get our hands on the minutes of the meeting convened this week by the Hamas government's political-security cabinet. Some harsh words were uttered during that meeting; hair-raising words.


"There's no other choice," said the deputy to Prime Minister Haniyeh, "we must boost the pressure exerted on Israel's civilian population." The participants nodded in agreement around the table.


"It's impossible," continued the deputy, "that our people are going hungry and suffering unemployment, closures, and endless bombardments from the air, sea, and land – while over there life goes on as usual. The only way to make the Israeli government understand that we are holding it responsible for everything that takes place is to exert more pressure on it by disrupting the lives of citizens there."


"He's right," said the police and culture minister as he rushed to back his colleague. "We must set a price tag for every child that is hurt and every bomb that falls on our homes."


Indecent act

The head of the Preventive Security Service, who was also present at the meeting, explained the logic of this approach to those present: "The Olmert government wishes to demonstrate governability…"


Embarrassed gazes were traded among those present upon hearing the strange word. Yet they were already used to the confusing terms uttered at times by the head of the security services, so they didn't say a word.


The security chief continued to explain: "If we embitter the lives of the population even more, the Olmert government won't be able to demonstrate governability. Residents will start resisting his rule and demand that he put an end to the bombings and siege."


"So what do you suggest?" the prime minister asked his deputy.


"If only we controlled their water and electricity supply," the deputy mumbled with misty eyes, "I would cut off their water and electricity supply…"


"You're exaggerating," said the minister of Qassam workshops and welfare, "cutting off the power and electricity to the entire population? That's truly an indecent act." Some of the ministers concealed their smiles, and one of them couldn't hold back and muttered: "indecent maybe, but it doesn't carry disgrace with it…"


The deputy prime minister blushed slightly in embarrassment and anger, but immediately regained his composure and continued: "Yet we can't cut off their water and power, so we'll have to make do with rockets, explosive devices, and suicide bombers."


The minister in charge of strategic whining again proposed, as usual, territorial and population exchanges: Gaza residents will move to Israel, and Israeli residents will move to Gaza. The ministers politely allowed him to finish with his nonsense. As long as he obediently backs Prime Minister Haniyeh, nobody intends to argue with him.


Fear and suffering

Therefore, everyone agreed that for the time being the current activity would continue, yet at the same time the legal advisors and PR department will be tasked with preparing the legal and PR foundation ahead of the expansion of attacks on Israel (including attacks on water reservoirs) in order to create more fear and suffering, thus pressing the Olmert government.


"Excuse me," the young man who handed out cups of coffee to the ministers suddenly said, "can I ask something?" "Go ahead, my friend," said the prime minister.


"When I was a student," the young man said, "we explicitly learned that the word 'terror' meant sowing fear and creating suffering among innocent civilians in order to press their government and achieve political, religious, or ideological objectives,"


"True," said the prime minister while stroking his beard. "What's your question?"


"I heard what you were talking about," the young man continued hesitatingly, "does that mean we're terrorists?"


All those present were overcome by laughter. "God forbid," the prime minister quickly reassured the young man, "God forbid. Only the other side can be a terrorist. It's never our side. This is how it is in nature."


First published: 09.08.07, 20:02
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