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Dealing with Hamas: What a former hostage negotiator learned
Dealing with Hamas: What a former hostage negotiator learned | GZERO Media

Dealing with Hamas: What a former hostage negotiator learned

What's it like to negotiate directly with Hamas?

On GZERO World with Ian Bremmer, Alex Kliment spoke with Gershon Baskin, a hostage negotiator who's dealt directly with Hamas, about the 240 estimated Israeli hostages being held captive in Gaza, what it will take to bring them home, and how to find common in tough negotiations. When Baskin secured the 2011 release of Gilad Shalit, an Israeli solider held captive for 5 years, he developed a relationship with Ghazi Hamad, a Hamas leader who’s currently a spokesperson for the war in Gaza.

“The main thing that worked in the past was time,” Baskin tells Kilment, “[Hamad and I] spoke more than a thousand times. In the end, it was the trust that developed between us that enabled us to expose all our cards.”

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Members pf the Jewish youth group, Hillel, raise posters of hostages during a demonstration in support of Israel on the National Mall attended by tens of thousands of people.

Allison Bailey via Reuters

The Gaza hostages: Can Israel really negotiate their release?

Reports continue to circulate of a possible deal between Israel and Hamas that would see the release of as many as 70 women and children held hostage in Gaza since Hamas abducted them on Oct. 7. In exchange, Israel would grant a five-day cease-fire and possibly liberate a number of Palestinian women and children jailed in Israel on minor charges.

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Art by Jess Frampton

What should Israel do next?

An Israeli ground incursion into Gaza has been inevitable from the moment Hamas launched its shocking Oct. 7 surprise attack into southern Israel, where it brutally massacred more than 1,400 Israeli citizens and took over 200 to Gaza as hostages. Israel’s objective: to destroy Hamas once and for all, ensuring it can never pose a threat to Israeli security again.

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