Recognizing the right of Israel to defend itself against attacks from Gaza and reaffirming the United States’strong support for Israel in its battle with Hamas, and supporting the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.
Whereas Hamas was founded with the stated goal of destroying the State of Israel;
Whereas Hamas has been designated by the Secretary of State as a Foreign Terrorist Organization;
Whereas Hamas has refused to comply with the requirements of the Quartet (the United States, the European Union, Russia, and the United Nations) that Hamas recognize Israel’s right to exist, renounce violence, and agree to accept previous agreements between Israel and the Palestinians;
Whereas, in June 2006, Hamas crossed into Israel, attacked Israeli forces and kidnapped Corporal Gilad Shalit, whom they continue to hold today;
Whereas Hamas has launched thousands of rockets and mortars since Israel dismantled settlements and withdrew from Gaza in 2005;