A panel of experts tells TIME what Hamas' victory might bring.
Dennis Ross, Moises Naim, Abdul Sattar Kasim, Ziad Abu Amr, Richard Haass, Daniel Pipes
[for the responses of the other panelists, see http://www.time.com/time/magazine/printout/0,8816,1154218,00.html]
DANIEL PIPES, Director of the Middle East Forum: The Hamas victory will have the largest impact not in relations with Israel, where its goals and those of its predecessor Fatah resemble each other, but in two other arenas. Within the Palestinian Authority, Hamas will run a very different show from the anarchic, corrupt, sloppy dictatorship bequeathed by Yasser Arafat. Expect to see a far stricter, more religious, more disciplined order, with Fatah members, including Mahmoud Abbas, sidelined and probably repressed.
Second, Arab Islamists have already achieved electoral success and takeover in Iraq, but Hamas represents the first Arab Islamist terrorist group to be legitimated through the ballot box. Comparable groups in countries such as Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco will watch and be encouraged, should there be any show of acceptance of Hamas by the U.S. and other governments.