Israel's peace-seeking ambassador, Shmuel Ben-Shmuel, is outraged. Outraged:
"As a parent, I'm terrified by the too-true revelations that a school-aged boy called the police in a panic to say he and his friends had been kidnapped. As an Israeli, I'm resigned to the reality that the abduction of 16-year-olds Gilad Shaer and Naftali Frenkel and 19-year-old Eyal Yifrah is just the latest chapter from the Hamas terror playbook. Just 10 days after Hamas and Fatah signed a so-called unity deal, the fairytale is over. No longer can we continue to delude ourselves that there will be lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians while Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas aligns himself with such a murderous organisation." (Abbas has made a pact with the devil: kidnaps are but one outcome, The Australian, 20/6/14)
Hamas must be a pretty scurvy crew then.
But doesn't that sort of go with the territory? I mean, isn't the Middle East a tough neighbourhood after all?
So I guess the question has to be: Just how far down (or is it up?) on the scale of bad is Hamas?
"In addition to having a charter that directly calls for the violent destruction of Israel, Hamas has launched more than 10,000 rockets and mortars at, and infiltrated dozens of suicide bombers into, my homeland."
My homeland! Nice touch...
"Since taking power in Gaza, thousands have perished as the result of Hamas's murderous commitment to frontier justice, cronyism and administrative indifference. In the ensuing civil war, Hamas militants threw their opponents gleefully off roofs and out of hospitals. Their children's television shows glorify martyrdom, jihad and ridding the earth of Jews; thereby instilling in an entire generation hate, fear and mistrust."
Blimey, they're practically off the scale! Fugly as...
In fact, with all of that Hamasian murder, mayhem, pillage and plunder going on inside the Gaza Strip, you've really got to wonder why the Israelis even bothered launching Operations Rainbow, Days of Penitence, Summer Rains, Autumn Clouds, Hot Winter, Cast Lead, Returning Echo, and Pillar of Defence.
No wonder the ambassador didn't mention them... after Hamas pulling such a Pol Pot on its own people, Israeli ops must come as something of a welcome diversion to the suffering masses of Gaza.
But seriously now, if only the Palestinians knew just how much Israelis such as Ben-Shmuel care about them (and, more importantly, if only they had the sense to listen to, and follow, their always sage, indeed Nobel Prize quality, advice):
"The Palestinians deserve a government that will represent their needs and aspirations, and this is not one with Hamas as a core element."
It's just as well we in Australia have the Murdoch press on hand to host such a factual, no-nonsense, yet warmly sympathetic, portrayal of Palestinian suffering under the Hamas yoke as Ben-Shmuel's. I mean, if this were Israel, we'd have to put up with the likes of self-hating, bleeding-heart party-poopers such as Avraham Burg:
"All of Palestinian society is a kidnapped society. Like many of the Israelis who performed 'significant service' in the army, many of the readers of this column, or their children, entered the home of a Palestinian family in the middle of the night by surprise, with violence, and simply took away the father, the brother or uncle, with determination and insensitivity. That is kidnapping, and it happens every day. And what about their administrative detainees? What is all this if not one big official, evil and unjust kidnapping that we all participate in and never pay the price for? That is the fate of tens of thousands of detainees and others under arrest, who stayed, or are staying, in Israel's prisons - quite a few of them for no good reason, falsely imprisoned on false pretexts. The vast majority of them have been exposed to the appendages of military justice, and none of us cares a whit. All these things have turned the topic of the prisoners into the main subject in the lives of the occupied society. There is not a single household without a detainee or prisoner." (The Palestinians: A kidnapped society, Haaretz, 18/6/14)