Graham, Kevin W.
Thesis (M.A.L.S.)--Georgetown University, 2009.; Includes bibliographical references.; Text (Electronic thesis) in PDF format. On January 26, 2009, Hamas won a large majority in the new Palestinian Parliament, shocking the world and Hamas leadership. As the international community attempted to explain how the organization, classified by many as terrorists, could possibly have won the elections, Hamas members and supporters prepared for a Palestinian renewal.; This thesis defines Hamas as an organization by examining its history starting with its roots as a radical splinter group of the Egyptian Ikhwan. The first Intifada catalyzed Hamas' creation and directly impacted the organization's structure and operations. The organization's ideals, belief in sharia and practice of da'wa can also be traced back to the Ikhwan.; Once this analysis of the history and formation of Hamas is complete, a set of conclusions are presented that explain how this violent extremist group has achieved the degree of success that enabled it to win the 2006 elections and take its place in Palestinian politics.; The environment in which Hamas ran its campaign was ideal for the group's victory and the failings of Yasser Arafat and al-Fatah made Hamas an attractive alternative for Palestinians. The campaign strategy used by Hamas also aided its success. The U.S. pressured Palestinian leadership to proceed with elections in spite of warnings from the Palestinian Authority that it was not strong enough to defeat Hamas. The organization's longstanding use of da'wa not only earned the group favorable recognition by Palestinians, but also established a system of servitude that allowed Hamas to expand its logistic network that bolstered its ability to successfully carry out attacks against Israel.; Many Palestinians are hopeful that Hamas will lead them to a free and independent state. The final resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, however, is no closer to fruition with Hamas in power. Regardless of the progress Hamas has made politically, its violent past defines the organization's present and will most likely continue to plague its future.
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Mitchell, Joshua; Schall, James V.; Sullivan, Kevin; Casey, Caitlin; Firn, Jessica; Dill, Joshua; Lambert, Christian F.; Morell, Caleb; Raval, Kieran; Pulaski, Marya; Sidiki, Bassam F.; Lessman, Michael; Welch, Graham D.; Donnay, Michael; White, Tyler Joseph; Fischer, Michael; Wynter, Amanda; Fields, Stephen M. (Georgetown University. Tocqueville Forum on the Roots of American DemocracyGeorgetown University. Toqueville Forum on the Roots of American Democracy, 2013)