The unification of the Palestinian Authority governing the West Bank and Hamas governing the Gaza strip has essentially paved the way for the PA to support Hamas. This is a problem for the USA.
In a post last week I reported (The Ugly Complexities of Political Prostitution) on the awkwardness of the US selling billions of dollars worth of weapons to Qatar, an American ally in the Persian Gulf but also committed to the destruction of Israel.
The USA also supplies Israel with weapons, so there is a serious possibility that one day a war between Israel and Qatar could be fought entirely with American weapons. This is pure bliss for American arms manufacturers - they must be smiling all the way to the bank.
Now, with the PA-Hamas merger, the USA has again put itself in the absurd situation of funding both sides of a war, not a possible war or a future war, but a current war. America funds the Palestinian Authority to the tune of more than $400 million.
Abbas has appointed an interim government over Gaza with no significant links to Hamas. Obama is gambling that this government is real and will take over power and authority from Hamas. That looks seriously doubtful right now though it may have some validity in the long term.
It seems very unlikely that Hamas would simply hand over control of Gaza with no way to significantly influence the new government. I am pretty sure they still have considerable influence though it may not be obvious.
In any event, it is quite probable that some of that $400 million dollars will seep into Gaza and be used against Israel. Some reporters, unfortunately, make it sound like President Obama is buying weapons and shipping them to Gaza. Hyperbole, if not outright lies, are an unfortunate habit of the anti-Obama movement. Truth seems to have no place in politics anymore, if it ever did.
Is the PA likely to become more like Hamas, or is Hamas more likely to adopt Mahmoud Abbas' pragmatic ways? Let me put it this way; if a clean man jumped on the back of a filthy pig, would the pig suddenly become clean?