Monday, January 30, 2006

Catholic professor says not to worry

An online friend of mine wrote at his blog the other day about how the election of Hamas has absolutely no positives. A Fatah professor who is Catholic was elected and thinks differently.

Jerusalem (AsiaNews) – Within the new Palestinian government there are some who still have faith in dialogue between Hamas and Israel. Prof. Bernard Sabela, a Catholic member of Fatah elected to parliament is “optimistic” : if Hamas wants to avoid disappointing voters then it will have to continue the peace process, Palestinians want stability. Then he reassures Christians : it’s premature to speak of sharia.

Sabela, who is also a professor at the Pontifical University in Bethlehem, won one of the two seats assigned to Christians in Jerusalem. The politician holds the January 25th poll “ a victory for Hamas and for democracy”. “People decided – he says- and now Hamas must respond to the peoples demands and needs and they must do so quickly”. “If the leaders are sincere in their intent in to help the population, then Hamas must answer the calls of the people who voted them into power”. For this reason Sabela says he “hopeful” that a path to peace is still possible: “The government cannot separate the political plan from the social need and to ensure stability education , employment , to fight the economic crisis, they will have to have an agenda which foresees the end of occupation and progress in the peace process”. “If you lead the political process in your nation and the people are in need of basic services, and stability you must make that political process work”, he adds.

Read the complete article Palestine, Catholic Fatah member elected to parliament; a path to peace is still possible from

I just don't believe that the election of Hamas is a completely bad thing. The terrorist activities of Hamas must end before it can be a legitimate partner for peace. However, the Palestinians since the creation of the Palestinian Authority have lacked internal security. The Fatah-staffed security agencies have up to this point been either powerless or simply apathetic. Hamas is in a position to seriously clean up the security services, end corruption and enforce order within the areas controlled by the Palestinian Authority in the Occupied Territories.

After watching the Palestinians self-destruct over and over again over the last decade, a serious effort at efficient government that works for the people will open a lot of eyes as long as it is done fairly.

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