9.9 on the Richter Scale

The earthquake was centered in Ramallah, Palestine and the aftershocks are still being felt all over the world. The political tsunami is unprecedented since 1945.

The usage of the word “terrorist” with respect to Islamic resistance movements lost all rational meaning in the space of 24 hours with the victory of Hamas in the Palestinian elections.

The stakes are high now: Bush was mumbling sheepishly — ok, a bit more than usual! Rice was at a loss for words. The Israelis are locked in meetings as I write this and Amre Moussa was on CNN somewhere in between the lines. Even Daniel Pipes, the inplacable foe of Islam and Palestine, said, “Now that Hamas has apparently won the Palestinian elections, the West is hoist with its own petard.” We hope that Daniel Pipes’ vitriol has now turned against the West and rational people will see him for who he really is — another casualty of democracy!

A word of caution: the US knew last week that Hamas would win, the Israelis wanted to and Mahmoud Abbas offered to cancel elections — but the US was adamant that the elections proceed. It was anticipating a Hamas opposition like the MMA opposition in Pakistan and the IM opposition in Egypt. The strategy of the US is now clear: defuse Islamic extremism with more politicization. Ayman Al-Zawahiri anticipated this but erroneously asked Palestinians not to vote. He did not recognize the will of the people and the transparency of the Palestinian elections (unlike Pakistan or Egypt).

The reason behind the Hams stealth majority: just like the last Bush victory — massive turnout of the unpolled masses.

Let me make a bold statement: The democratic future of the Islamic world is with the Islamist ideology — the masses are just too disenchanted with Westernization that has not brought anything. Khomeini and the Taliban have had a go at this — let us now hope that Hamas sets the model for a sincere, open and moderate Islamic government: a government rooted in ideology but NOT a theocratic government. I have full faith in the Palestinian people that it will be so.

At this point, Hamas needs all our help — not the Hamas that was labeled as a “terrorist organization” but the Hamas that is going to form the next Palestinian government. And forming the government is the challenge, and the failure of which will be greatly expected by many, and the success of which is absolutely essential to the success of Palestine, the Middle East and the world.

No spin, not euphemisms, no labels, no tyranny and no laws can hide the freely expressed will of a resolute and knowledgable people. If Hamas is a terrorist organization, then the only logical conclusion is that one-fourth of humanity is terrorist. May God bless the Palestinians and enable world peace through rational dialogue.