Gaza and Hamas Administration
Dion Nissenbaum writes in Checkpoint Jerusalem:
The last time I was in Gaza, a Palestinian Authority armored personnel carrier parked on the corner outside my apartment building spent day and night firing its .50 caliber machine gun to ward off Hamas attacks.
The city was cordoned off by rival masked gunmen. Mortars and bullets whizzed by us in the streets as Hamas took military control of the Gaza Strip.
Today, members of Fatah’s presidential guard joined a member of the Hamas executive force (all of them cousins) under a beach umbrella by the Mediterranean.
An unusual calm has swept over Gaza. Though the conflict is never far away.
And, sometimes, it can still get a little too close.
We spent the day talking with Fatah and Hamas members who agree that Hamas has brought relative safety to the streets.
Family clashes have come to an end. The bombing of Internet cafes has stopped. And, following the release of kidnapped BBC reporter Alan Johnston, the threat of kidnappings has dropped off dramatically.
Hamas has even hung new green banners in the streets of Gaza City to drive home the point: “No more threat for our foreign visitors and guests – Hamas.”
But the conflict always has a way of making itself felt.