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Hamas 'victories' coming with heavy political cost, missed opportunities

Hamas' Oct. 7 attack seems to have been planned with specific goals in mind, yet without considering the wider consequences for the movement.
Yahia al-Sinwar (C), Gaza Strip chief of the Palestinian Islamist Hamas movement.
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A pattern is emerging in Hamas’ behavior where its short-term plans produce unexpected achievements and consequences that supersede the movement’s political capacity to deal with them. The Oct. 7 military surprise against the most powerful army in the Middle East is the most recent manifestation of such a pattern. 

Prior to that, two major turning points set in line which fit with this pattern: the movement’s victory in the Palestinian Legislative Council in 2006, and its military takeover of the Gaza Strip in 2007. In all three instances, Hamas’ plans were tactical with intentions to achieve specific objectives, yet the outcome of each turned out to be far-reaching and beyond the movement’s expectations as well as those of other concerned parties. 

A reminder of some context of previous incidents helps to see some parallels with the current situation, where unexpected "victories" lead to unintentional consequences, and unpicked opportunities.

The 2006 experiment

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