Could there be a bigger waste of time than Israel trying to negotiate with these people?
Via Times of Israel:
For the first time since 2006, more West Bank Palestinians support the political approach of Hamas as opposed to that of Fatah and its leader, Mahmoud Abbas, a new poll shows.
The poll, conducted earlier this month by the Arab World Research and Development (AWRAD), a Ramallah-based research center, sampled 1,200 Palestinians from both Gaza and the West Bank. It set out to examine political opinions among Palestinians following Operation Pillar of Defense in Gaza and Mahmoud Abbas’s UN bid.
While both events are overwhelmingly viewed as positive by Palestinians, adding popularity to both Palestinian factions, 42% of West Bank respondents said they preferred the approach of Hamas to that of Fatah, as opposed to only 28% who preferred Fatah’s approach.
While Abbas tends to favor a two-state solution reached by negotiations, Hamas — recognized internationally as a terrorist group — refuses to recognize Israel and vows eternal Jihad against the Jewish “infidels” who reside there.
Interestingly, more Gazans, 40%, said they preferred Fatah’s approach to that of Hamas, which rules over them. Thirty-seven percent of Gazans said Hamas’s approach was better.
An overwhelming 88% of the entire sample believed that the result of Operation Pillar of Defense proved that armed struggle is the best means of achieving Palestinian independence.
Another trend revealed by the poll is a sharp decline in support for negotiations with Israel among West Bank residents.
In May 2011, 59% of West Bank residents supported an immediate return to negotiations with Israel. That number dropped to 52% in May 2012, but declined sharply to 43% in the most recent poll. Meanwhile, support for negotiations remained largely stable in the Gaza Strip at around 50%.