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Old 26-01-2006, 23:41   #1
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Post Hamas Election Victory Shocks World

RAMALLAH, West Bank


Islamic militant Hamas' landslide victory in Palestinian elections unnerved the world Thursday, darkening prospects for Mideast peace and ending four decades of rule by the corruption-riddled Fatah Party.

The parliamentary victory stunned even Hamas leaders, who mounted a well-organized campaign but have no experience in government. They offered to share power with President Mahmoud Abbas, the Fatah chief, who said he may go around the new government to talk peace with Israel.

Underscoring the tensions between the secular Fatah and fundamentalist Hamas, some 3,000 supporters of the militant group marched through Ramallah and raised their party's green flag over the Palestinian parliament. Fatah supporters tried to lower the banner. The two sides fought for about 30 minutes, throwing stones and breaking windows in the building.

Abbas, who was elected last year to a four-year term as president of the Palestinian Authority, has yet to decide how closely to work with a group that built its clout through suicide bombings. But his Fatah Party decided not to join a Hamas government, Fatah legislator Saab Erekat said.

"We will be a loyal opposition and rebuild the party," Erekat said after meeting with Abbas.

Hamas won a clear majority in Wednesday's vote, capturing 76 of the 132 seats in parliament, according to official, near-complete results released Thursday. The results of the popular vote were not announced.

Four independent candidates backed by Hamas also won seats. Fatah, which has dominated Palestinian political life since the 1960s but alienated voters because of rampant corruption, got 43 seats. The remaining went to smaller parties.

Palestinians across the Gaza Strip and West Bank greeted the election results with joy, setting off fireworks and firing rifles in the air.

But leaders across the world demanded that Hamas, which is branded a terror group by the U.S. and European Union, renounce violence and recognize Israel.

"If your platform is the destruction of Israel, it means you're not a partner in peace, and we're interested in peace," President Bush said in Washington.

Acting Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said Israel will not negotiate with a Palestinian government that includes Hamas members, and senior Cabinet officials held an emergency meeting to discuss the repercussions of the vote. Acting Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni asked the EU not to deal with a "terror government."

Hamas leaders immediately took to the international _ and even Israeli _ airwaves to send out a moderate message.

"Don't be afraid," Ismail Haniyeh, a Hamas leader, told the BBC.

Mahmoud Zahar, another Hamas leader, said the group would extend its year-old truce if Israel reciprocates. "If not, then I think we will have no option but to protect our people and our land," he said.

At a victory news conference late Thursday, however, Haniyeh said Hamas will "complete the liberation of other parts of Palestine." He did not say which territories he was referring to or how he would go about it.

Hamas has largely adhered to the cease-fire declared last February, while a smaller militant group, Islamic Jihad, carried out six suicide bombings against Israelis during that period.

Abbas said he remained committed to peace talks and suggested they be conducted through the Palestine Liberation Organization rather than the Palestinian Authority. That could help him sidestep a Hamas-run government in peace talks.

"I am committed to implementing the program on which you elected me a year ago," he said in a televised speech. "It is a program based on negotiations and peaceful settlement with Israel."

Prime Minister Ahmed Qureia and his Cabinet resigned to make room for a Hamas-led government.

The Islamic group quickly reached out to Abbas to try to work out a partnership, Haniyeh said, adding that he did not expect the Palestinian leader to resign.

Hamas leaders had said before the vote they would be content to be a junior partner in the next government. The group campaigned mainly on cleaning up the Palestinian Authority _ downplaying the conflict with Israel _ and Zahar said Thursday that Hamas planned to overhaul the government.

"We are going to change every aspect, as regards the economy, as regards industry, as regards agriculture, as regards social aid, as regards health, administration, education," he said.

Some experts believed the Hamas victory would force it to moderate. Others feared it would embolden the group to remake Palestinian life in keeping with its strict interpretation of Islam.

"We don't want the Palestinian people and cause to be isolated. We don't want a theocracy," said independent lawmaker Hanan Ashrawi. "Hamas promises reform, sure they will do that, I would like to see reform. But what worries me is things like legislation on education, culture, social welfare, the ramifications for peace in the future."

Hamas' victory was cheered in the Arab world, though many said they feared the group would become even more radical under pressure from its hard-line backers, Syria and Iran.

The rise of Hamas was certain to be a key issue in Israel's March 28 election.

"Today, Hamastan was formed, a representative of Iran and in the image of the Taliban," said Benjamin Netanyahu, leader of the opposition Likud Party. Labor Party politician Ami Ayalon, a former head of the Shin Bet security service, said Israel might have to change the route of its West Bank security barrier because of the Hamas victory.

Immediately upon taking power, Hamas will be confronted with an avalanche of issues, including what to do about the Palestinian security services, which are comprised of hard-core Fatah members, said Basem Ezbidi, a political science professor at the West Bank's Bir Zeit University. "It's not going to be easy for Hamas to govern these bodies," he said.

Others expected Hamas to fold its own fighters into the security forces.

Hamas' victory virtually ruled out a resumption of stalled peace efforts, and could push Israel to take further unilateral moves to set its permanent borders, following last year's Gaza pullout.

It also could jeopardize hundreds of millions of dollars in foreign donations to the cash-strapped Palestinian Authority.

Speaking at a news conference, Bush did not directly answer a question about the fate of U.S. aid to the Palestinians, though he suggested Hamas' victory could have an impact. "I made it very clear that the United States does not support political parties that want to destroy our ally Israel, and that people must renounce that part of their platform," he said.

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is to meet in London on Monday with U.N., Russian and European leaders as the so-called "Quartet" of would-be international peacemakers evaluates the results and tries to decide how to proceed.

Despite the rhetoric, it will be almost impossible for Israel and the Palestinians to sever ties completely. Much of their infrastructure, including water and electricity networks, is intertwined, and the vast majority of Palestinian imports pass through Israeli-controlled borders. Hamas ministers would also need Israeli permission to travel between the West Bank and Gaza.
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Old 27-01-2006, 04:15   #2
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Hey captainK,sounds like you posted this in the wrong forum,what you need is THE BILGE,We all know where that is .!!!The only thing you should find there is water and a bit of oil maybe.Hopefully that crap wont block ya pumps before you realize its there.Im not smart enough to put in Icons but if I were than they would all be the funny smart-arse ones.
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Old 27-01-2006, 04:37   #3
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Interesting summary.

I was at a convention earlier this week in which George Tenet, former Director of the CIA spoke and answered questions. During the Q & A he said that he's more concerned about the Israel Palestinian situation than ever.

Sure hope world affairs doesn't mess up our sailing nor other aspects of our lives, and wish they could find a way to happily coexist!!!

I once thought there might be a market for offering "Christian charters," to take people sailing on the routes of the Apostle Paul's voyages and visit the same towns/cities, etc.; that would be rather dicey in the current state of affairs in that part of the world!!
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Old 27-01-2006, 07:06   #4
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I think you may be stepping out of line? If you're into the news of world affairs. And if you read that story throughly. Hamas, is a large militant terrorist organisation.

For the world traveler. And with them in power. For people traveling through that part of the world. The Middle East. Will have to be even more extra cautious. Especially, for sailors traveling through the Suez canel. Or just sailing into that region through the Med.

Either way. It just goes to show that the peace of the middle east is a very daunting task. Of trying to bring peace into that region, between these two people. And terrorism is mostly what the Palestinian people choose. To deal with Israel, and the rest of the world?

As for posting this in the wrong place. This is posted in the right place. Cause we're talking about pirates and terrorists inside this area.
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Old 27-01-2006, 15:34   #5
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captainK,yep you are right! It would make the present situation a bit more dangerous.But it is still politics plain and simple.If I recall rightly the Palastinans and others in the region didnt want a jewish state,and certainly didnt want THEIR land aquisitioned for the purpose.Maybe the Palastinans would never have resorted to terrorism to send their message out to the world ,I guess its a bit hard when the people stealing ya land has bigger guns.Dont get me wrong,I dont condone the way they go about blowing people up and I supose those people in the middle east are about as radical as you could get,but the fact is its all political now and all the countries that stuck their finger in this pie are to blame from day one.Did England want a Jewish state"NO" Did America"NO"Hey guess what,neither did the Palastinians.Safe or not terrorism comes in many forms and politics is one of them.
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Old 27-01-2006, 18:02   #6
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Well, mudnut.

You're right about this certain piece being more towards politics. But, still...they are terrorists. Plain and simple.

And the region is more under heat from all that terrorism crap.
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Old 27-01-2006, 22:49   #7
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captainK,hey heres a thought,we have a really big desert here in the middle of Australia.Maybe if we fenced it off and rented it to countries and religous groups that didnt like onenother,simple rules,no nukes two go in one limp out ,winner found,argument over.We could share the TV rights,you could supply all the small arms"you would have heaps in surplus if all wars were held here in that manner"We could sell tickets,not to mention chillie dogs ,hey we could even have terrorist nights where two terros go in strapped up with nail bombs and try to out-smart each other.Typical me allways out to make a buck,and again ya right "just plain old terrorists"Somone ought too blow em up,once and for all.
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Old 27-01-2006, 22:54   #8
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Yeah. Sort of have a TV version of Survivor. Sell Hot dogs. Chilli Dogs. Hambugers & Fries. Nachos. Beer & Pretzels.

Make'em go at eachother. Have them off eachother on TV. Probably would make great ratings?

Yeah. The US just might jump in on that deal. But who knows what Uncle Sam might do?
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Old 28-01-2006, 01:22   #9
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Hey mudnut and cpn K...

Sorry but that was already done re "Thunder Dome" Not a bad idea anyway though. And besides... I'm working this side of the street!! I'll let you have the chillie dogs (in australia?? chillie dogs??) but I get the meat pies and beer concessions
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Old 28-01-2006, 10:27   #10
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Maybe there is hope buried in this election outcome.
If McGovern had won the presidency in '68 it would have been political suicide for him to recognise China. The pinko commie label would never have worn off in those troubled years, yet Nixon was able to bring China to the table without much fuss.
When two bullies face each other in the playground the outcome is usually unspectaular but when the bully meets a victim the sparks will fly.
The whole rent-a-battlefield scenario sounds interesting.
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Old 28-01-2006, 10:54   #11
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Well Bob.

You got yourself a deal there.

Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome. Oh yes. I remember that movie very well. Also the most commericized of the three movies. Tina Turner sings the theme song, "We Don't Need Another Hero...Thunderdome."

Speaking about Mad Max. They were suppose to be making a fourth Mad Max movie. This film was scheduled to go into production a few years earlier, but the project was delayed due to travel restrictions imposed after the terrorist attacks on the USA of 11 September 2001. Many cast and crew members could not get to the proposed location. The production office for the project has since been closed.
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Old 28-01-2006, 20:11   #12
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Ahhhhh... politics. :)

Um... the Hamas group (like GWB) did win the election, so they have every right to run the territory that was once Palestine.

This conflict goes back a long, long way, and I will upset both Palestinians and Israelis and say their great, great, great, great, grandparents are both at fault.

Either way, Hamas won and now is the government. It woudl be suicidal to them politcally and as a country to do anything to jeapordize the position of power they now have, so I suspect we'll see some more unified, tempered behavior out of them.

They will still fight for Gaza and the West Bank, since it was taken from them (even though they also took it from others earlier). But... I think this might make for more stability if the Israelis can find a way to work with them.
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Old 28-01-2006, 22:00   #13
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Sailing Through Time

Lightfin,

I like your idea about operating a charter business to take clients sailing to some of the same sites mentioned in the bible. A few years ago, I chartered a boat out of Athens and sailed part of the Cyclade island chain. What an amazing area to sail!! I made it as far southeast of Athens as the island of Santorini. I would've loved to have sailed on to the island of Patmos where the Apostle John wrote the book of Revelation, if I had of had more time. Out of all the Apostles, John was the only one that wasn't martyred. He wrote the book of Revelation while in his eighties. If you're familiar with the prophecies within the book, you probably can easily see where the current affairs of the world are leading us?

The Apostle Paul was also an amazing man. He spent a lot of time on sailing vessels on both his first, and second missionary trips. How I wish more was included in the bible concerning these adventures. The most intriguing one we're told of is the shipwreck of the "Alexandria Voyager" in the books of Acts 28. I would like to sail to Malta one day and see if the people there are still as hospitable as they were to the Apostle Paul when he and others swam ashore there after the shipwreck.

When I retire, I hope to buy a boat in Europe and work my way back towards Israel, sailing some of the same paths as the Apostle Paul. I thought I would sail to Joppa where many biblical events occured such as the Apostle Peter having his vision of the " large sheet coming down with many animals on it." He later learned that he was to travel to Caesarea to meet the Roman Centurian "Cornelious." The word of God was to be delivered to the Gentiles also.

But from what I've read, Joppa isn't a very kindly seaport. Treacherous shallows, and rocks abound. I've not done a lot of research on it yet, but possibly a better seaport might be found close to Caesarea. Of course Caesarea is where the Apostle Paul was questioned by Agrippa before being sent to Rome to be tried by Caesar. Once in Caesarea, I'll make my way towards Jerusalem. To follow the steps of the Christ in, and around Jerusalem would be a dream come true for me. To see the sealed east gate of the Temple mount would be a wonder to my eyes. Surely the Muslims know that they can't stop the Son of God from returning to his throne through it as is written?

I would also like to sail on a small fishing boat on the sea of Galilee. It would be awesome to sail the same waters as where Jesus taught, and walked on the water.

Will there be peace in the middle east? Yes, but it will be short lived. After it, there will be wrath like the world has never seen before, or will see again.There is only one that can bring lasting peace, for he is the prince of peace. The only safe haven Gods' people have had, or will ever have, is within obeying his commandments, and following his ways
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Old 28-01-2006, 22:09   #14
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ssullivan,you actually might be right on that,and it would be about time but **** man I just bought 10,000 chillie dogs on consignment!!**** thunderdome,that was just a movie,this is business.You could understand that after all you own a charter.All jokes aside,I do respect everyones opinion and expertise on this forum even the political ones,truth is I didnt buy 10,000 hot dogs ,but I do think that for a little while I turned a scary post into a commical one , life is too short to be messed up with long-term ****.And god help the next generation.
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Old 28-01-2006, 23:18   #15
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That one word you mentioned, mudnut. "God."

Like what Stede has said, at the end of his first paragraph.

Quote:
Out of all the Apostles, John was the only one that wasn't martyred. He wrote the book of Revelation while in his eighties. If you're familiar with the prophecies within the book, you probably can easily see where the current affairs of the world are leading us?
I have said something similar in a few posts in the past. And I can come to agree with Stede. I have never seen as much calamity. Disasters, fueding with their own people. Sons & daughters fighting their own parents.

I'm not trying to turn this site into a religous forum. Everybody has freewill. And with your freewill of choice, you could choose to follow a good life. Following the commandments. Or sin like crazy, and follow satan. But in the New Testament, of the bible. It talks about all the things that are happening today.

A few things that the bible mentions like tatoos. Piercings. Sons & daughters fighting their parents. Killing over petty stuff. Wars and rumors of wars. Plauges, famaine. Stealing. Sloth. Vain. Pride. This is now happening!!

The problem with the Palestinians and Israelis. Stems back before modern history. But, I will not discuss that right now. And it would take too long to type it up, under one post?

If you are not familar with ancient history. Go to a library. And check one out. Read about what the ancients once did. Especially, the Palestinians and Israelis of that itme had fought and killed one another back then.

Yeah mudnut. That was kinda funny about you buying then denying about the 10,000 hot dogs. (chilli dogs)
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