The ceasefire negotiations between Israel and the Hamas terror group’s regime in Gaza point to a central truth about the nature of the Palestinian conflict with Israel. Before anyone speaks any more about a possible “deal of the century,” or a “two-state solution,” it is imperative that the implications of those talks be fully understood.
The ceasefire talks are being held between the sides of two separate international coalitions. On the one side are Israel, the U.S., and Egypt. On the other side are Hamas, Qatar, and Turkey.
The party that has been most notably absent from the discussions is the Palestinian Authority (PA). The PA, which was formed in 1994 in the framework of talks between the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and Israel, is charged with running the Palestinian autonomous areas that Israel transferred to PLO control. Until June 2007, that included the Gaza Strip and the Palestinian population centers in Judea and Samaria.
In 2006, the PA held elections to its legislative council. Hamas won. In 2007, Hamas forcibly ejected the PA from Gaza and set up its own terror regime, which has ruled – with public support – ever since.