The moment, the overwhelming victory of the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) was declared, voice were loud asking Hamas to recognize Israel as a pre-requisite for resuming negotiations and making peace, as if negotiations were running smoothly and very productive.
The world seems to have a very short memory. It is less than four months when Israel carried out its unilateral disengagement plan from the Gaza Strip.
That was an un-negotiated step that Israel decided to take, which will be among many other steps in the future based on the letter of guarantees given to Israel by U.S. President George W Bush after his summit meeting with the Israeli Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon who is now fighting for his life in the hospital.
Hamas so far refuses to recognize Israel saying that the victim should not be asked to recognize the victimizer. Hamas and all the Palestinians recognize Israel as an occupation that should end. Once Israel stops being an occupier, there will be no reason to recognize it.
Meanwhile, some media sources reported that Israel along with Jewish groups in the U.S. are lobbying Academy Award organizers to refrain from saying a nominated film about Palestinian suicide bombers comes from "Palestine."
Their objection was not against the film itself or its content, but rather about referring the country of origin of this film as "Palestine."
"Paradise Now" is nominated in the "best foreign film" category of the Oscars. It is about two West Bank men who are recruited to detonate themselves in Tel Aviv. The film was also nominated for a Golden Globe. During the award ceremony, it was announced as coming from "Palestine."
"Both the Israeli consulate in Los Angeles and several concerned Jewish groups pointed out that no one, not even the Palestinians themselves, have declared the formal creation of ‘Palestine’ yet, and thus the label would be inaccurate."
Israel does not even want the entity "Palestine" to be mentioned, yet the world demands the Palestinian Government to recognize Israel, as a pre-requisite for peace. Why there is no international pressure to force Israel to resume negotiations with the Palestinians.
Bottom line is, Palestine being under the Israeli occupation does not mean that it does not exist or never existed. If the stones of the terraces Palestinian farmers built around their farmland are lined up, they will be enough to wrap the globe.