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Consider Lincoln's maxim

Reader comment on item: George Mitchell's Return to Middle East Diplomacy

Submitted by Ron Thompson (United States), Jan 26, 2009 at 09:44

In Dec, 1864, in his last State of the Union message, Lincoln said

"On careful consideration of all the evidence available, it seems to me that no attempt at negotiation with the insurgent leader (i.e. Jefferson Davis) could result in any good. He would accept nothing less than severance of the union, precisely what we will not and cannot give. His declarations to this effect are explicit and oft-repeated. He does not attempt to deceive us. HE AFFORDS US NO EXCUSE TO DECEIVE OURSELVES." (emphasis added)

Substituting Hamas' "explicit and oft-repeated" statements that Israel must cease to exist, why has it been so impossible for so long, and is presumably impossible for George Mitchell and others pushing for talks with Hamas now, to accept the blunt truth of Lincoln's admonition? One hopes that President Obama was serious when he laid down three conditions for Hamas to accept, none of which they will meet, which should effectively exclude any negotiation with them.

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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