In the midst of the Arab uprisings, strategic nonviolence is gaining powerful momentum in Palestine—and the loose coalition of actors advocating civil resistance is growing.
Fatah and Hamas share a parochial perspective on elections, with each looking to exploit the issue in order to gain the upper hand against its rival and shore up its battered legitimacy.
Contrary to popular misconception, Hamas and its supporters have expressed pragmatism and openness toward a political solution with Israel.
Fatah's infighting subverts Palestinian democracy and the prospects of a peace process.
Hamas is capitalizing on Palestinian anger over Israeli steps in Jerusalem to incite unrest. But do Palestinian Authority leaders believe a third intifada would serve their interests?
President Mahmoud Abbas's difficulties have torn the veil from competition going on inside his Fatah movement. Outsiders might find it surprising who the real contenders for Palestinian leadership are.
What is the survival strategy of Hamas inside the West Bank, in light of strong pressure from Fatah and Palestinian security forces?
Holding a General Congress is a critical step for Fatah in selecting new leadership and competing with Hamas. Can the movement overcome intense competition between older and younger generations on one hand, and politicians and military members on the other?
Hamas has faced pressures to recognize Israel and give up "resistance" since its 2006 election, and such issues are at the heart of the Fatah/Hamas talks in Cairo. Egypt wants to keep the pressure up on Hamas, but also wants the talks to succeed. Which way will Hamas go?
The Israeli war on Gaza simultaneously restored Hamas’s damaged legitimacy as the leader of the Palestinian resistance and pulled the rug out from under President Mahmud Abbas.
Efforts to reconcile Fatah and Hamas are doomed; here is another way to promote Palestinian statehood and peace, even in the absence of a unified leadership.
Will President Mahmud Abbas postpone the presidential election? Ghassan al-Khatib, a former minister and Vice President of Bir Zeit University, discusses the implications for Palestinian politics and Fatah-Hamas relations.
During the Arafat era, Israelis were ambivalent, even cynical, about the Palestinian reform process. The election of Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen), who appears to be more genuinely committed to reform, will perhaps produce a more positive Israeli attitude. But for a host of reasons, in some circles the skepticism will persist.
By adopting free and democratic elections at the presidential, legislative, and local levels, Palestinians may be laying down the foundation of another working democracy in the Middle East. In the January 9 presidential election, none of the seven candidates, including Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen), took victory for granted.
On April 29, 2003 Mahmud Abbas (widely known as Abu Mazen) won a vote of confidence from the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) to serve as the first prime minister of the Palestinian National Authority (PNA). Beyond its much-discussed implications for a revived Israeli-Palestinian peace process, this step could also mark a departure in Arab governance.
On March 1, the Quartet (the United States, United Nations, European Union, and Russia) and other donors will meet in London to discuss ways to support the new Palestinian leadership in carrying out political, economic, and security reform, as well as preparing for Israeli disengagement from Gaza.
Events since PLO Chairman Arafat’s demise—the unexpectedly smooth transfer of business to a pragmatic leader committed to negotiations and reform, Palestinian security forces’ efforts to stop militant attacks, and the Israeli-Palestinian truce announced at the February 8 Sharm Al Sheikh summit—have brought a wave of optimism to analyses of Palestinian affairs.
On July 17, 2005, Palestinians are scheduled to elect a new parliament. The stakes are enormously high, especially as groups that sat out the 1996 parliamentary election—notably Hamas but also smaller factions—will field candidates. Various parties have been squabbling over the electoral rules.
Tunisians took to the streets in February protesting Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's scheduled visit to their country in November 2005 to attend the World Information Summit. Inviting Sharon, seen as a war criminal by many Tunisians and other Arabs, was an undemocratic decision by the Tunisian regime exercised against the popular will of the Tunisian people.
In the few weeks that have passed since Israel's unilateral withdrawal from Gaza, the urgent challenges facing President Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian Authority (PA) have become clear but whether Abbas will succeed has not. The stakes are high.