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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 12:32 PM
Original message
Fatah wins Palestinian elections
Fatah wins Palestinian elections
By RAVI NESSMAN

Friday, September 30, 2005 Posted at 7:53 AM EDT

Associated Press

Jerusalem Final results Friday showed the Fatah movement of Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas making an unexpectedly strong showing against key rival Hamas in local elections in dozens of West Bank towns and villages, with 54 per cent of the vote compared to Hamas' 26 per cent.

Although the elections were mostly about local issues such as roads and water, Fatah's showing was in line with a recent rise in support for the party following Israel's pullout from the Gaza Strip.

snip



Results in local elections are not necessarily a clear reflection of the respective strengths of political parties, since many voters choose candidates according to clan membership, not party affiliation. The biggest contest between Hamas and Fatah will come in parliamentary elections in January.

Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat, a Fatah member, said Thursday's vote would not necessarily predict the outcome of the parliament election.



http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.2005...
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Frederik Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 12:33 PM
Response to Original message
1. That's good news
Hamas means perpetual war.
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Kagemusha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 12:44 PM
Response to Original message
2. Hamas has hurt itself publicly in the very recent past
So, once memories of that fade it may do quite a bit better again. It'd be like if there was a special election five days after Katrina. More representative of current anger than long-term (though some of both).

But, we'll see.
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 04:26 PM
Response to Original message
3. West Bank Elects Councils
LA Times version.

BEITUNIA, West Bank The militant group Hamas captured up to one-third of the votes in Palestinian municipal elections held Thursday, according to preliminary unofficial results, a solid showing that could presage its performance in parliamentary balloting early next year.

The Palestinian commissioner for local elections, Jamal Shobaki, said it appeared that the governing Fatah movement had won a majority on councils in 45 towns or villages and Hamas had captured 22. The initial results in 15 locales were inconclusive.

---

"My vote is important," said Haniyeh Qurt, 54, a veiled woman who emerged beaming from the polling station at the Boys' Secondary School in the West Bank city of Beitunia, outside Ramallah. "You see, I'm a citizen, and this is my right."

I do like Ms Qurt.

---

The costal strip is the home base of Hamas, the chief rival to Fatah. But Hamas, formally known as the Islamic Resistance Movement, has a considerable following in the West Bank as well and has done well in previous local votes.

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-pal...
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 08:39 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. the Guardian's reporting
Edited on Fri Sep-30-05 09:01 PM by barb162
Hamas loses ground in West Bank election


http://www.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,3604,15...
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 09:45 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. Yeah, the contrast is interesting.
Who are you going to believe?
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-01-05 02:10 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. I think once you go past spin, Fatah won by a rough 2 to 1 margin
overall and they all seem to say the same thing, numbers-wise at least. I believe all of them, with a small margin of error, because some of them reported before all the votes were in.
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-01-05 02:55 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. There doesn't seem to be any disagreement on the facts. nt
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-01-05 03:02 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. "Hamas drubbed in Palestinian polls"
Edited on Sat Oct-01-05 03:03 PM by barb162
look at this headline for the same agreement in numbers
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articleshow/1249190....
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-01-05 05:30 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. That's what I mean.
LA Times say "solid showing".
Times of India says "drubbed".
It's almost like these reporters put their own opinions
into the stories ...
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-03-05 10:29 PM
Response to Original message
10. Helping Hamas
The official Palestinian announcement reported a relative successful showing by the Fatah movement in the third round of local council elections in the West Bank, held last week. But this success is cast in doubt. According to official data, Fatah won 53 percent of seats in the local councils, and Hamas only 26 percent. Yet if you take a closer look at the numbers of voters for the two movements, it becomes clear that Hamas actually carried more votes.

In any event, Hamas clearly is the ascendant power among the Palestinian public. The movement is deeply rooted in public life. "Our enemies are trying to stick us with an image of Al Qaida-type terrorist fanatics, but the truth is that we are a legitimate national resistance movement," said Hamas spokesmen last weekend.

The Israel Defense Forces, which in the past two weeks has been targeting terrorists in the West Bank and Gaza Strip for assassination, struck mainly at members of Islamic Jihad and Fatah's Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigade. Not Hamas activists. Conversely, the vast majority of the approximately 400 activists arrested in the past few weeks in the West Bank have links to Hamas. Many of the detainees are considered political activists and are not linked to terrorist activity, including Hassan Yusef of Ramallah and Mohammed Ghazal of Nablus. Both men belong to the moderate wing of Hamas, and Ghazal recently announced that Hamas might consider modifying its charter, which denies Israel's right to exist. (Although Ghazal denied making the statement, Reuters responded that it had a recording of his statement in its possession.)

As far as can be discerned from the response of the Palestinian street to the targeted assassinations and arrests, they have, as one might expect, increased the bitterness toward Israel. What's more, the assassination victims included a child (in Balata) and at least two other young people who had nothing to do with terror attacks. No less important is the fact that the arrests evidently adversely affected the status of the Palestinian Authority chairman, Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen).

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/631820.html
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Lithos Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-03-05 10:56 PM
Response to Reply #10
11. I'm not so sure
I remember polls which had Hamas at around 40% of the total vote at a high point. They are down to 26%. However, what is striking to me is that while Fatah has not changed much (they've been a little over 50% for sometime), is the rise of other parties which have evidently made ground at the expense of Hamas.

L-
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-04-05 08:35 AM
Response to Reply #11
12. Me either.
Edited on Tue Oct-04-05 08:36 AM by bemildred
I just like to see the different sorts of spin that are being spread
around, and the reasons given therein. It helps me get an idea of
what's really going on, although that is always a murky business.

I believe that location (Gaza vs West Bank) makes a big difference
in this issue.

The one trend here that I do believe will hold up is the decline of
Fatah, politically speaking, and more in Gaza than the WB. Abbas
is not a replacement for Arafat as a political leader.

And I do believe you are right that there are other parties doing
better at the expense of Hamas, which has not covered itself with
glory of late. Too many hotheads.

There is an opportunity here (as I never tire of pointing out) for
someone who can provide a sense of order and security for Gazans,
but it won't be an easy job.
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