The Mayor Is No Terrorist

The reputation for getting things done helped Hamas party official Omar Hamayel become the mayor of al-Bireh.

To get a sense of how Hamas might govern, consider the stoplights in al-Bireh. Many of the busiest junctions in this West Bank town didn't even have traffic signals until a few weeks ago. But after Hamas won power in municipal elections in December, city officials bought new lights from an Israeli contractor and dispatched teams of laborers who worked overtime to install them just before last week's legislative vote. Election gimmick? Perhaps. But in the West Bank, where services have deteriorated under years of Fatah misrule and the violence of the intifadeh, people appreciate even the smallest effort.

This reputation...

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