Prominent law professor Alan Dershowitz had some harsh words for Jimmy Carter after the former president called on the U.S. to recognize Hamas.
“Jimmy Carter has now become an all-out cheerleader for Hamas,” he said Thursday on Newsmax TV.
“Even if you’re a former president, it’s against the law to provide material support to a listed terrorist organization,” he explained, “and Jimmy Carter’s coming awfully close to that line.”
Dershowitz’s comments come after Carter’s anti-Israel opinion piece earlier this week, in which he argued that the U.S. and the E.U. should recognize the terrorist group Hamas’s “legitimacy as a political actor.”
“There is no humane or legal justification for the way the Israeli Defense Forces are conducting this war,” Carter added. “These are war crimes.”
Dershowitz explained that although Israel is a democracy while Hamas murders its enemies, engages in coup d’états, and uses children as soldiers, to Carter “there’s no difference between Hamas and Israel.” By calling for Hamas’s recognition, Carter is “equating terrorism with established governments,” he said.
“Has Jimmy Carter read the Hamas charter?” Dershowitz asked. He noted that the charter calls for the killing of all Jews. “This is Jimmy Carter’s organization,” he said.
He explained that the former president’s proposal could go beyond just a political gesture. If Carter’s support for Hamas becomes material, that would “violate the criminal laws of the United States.”
Dershowitz also had fierce criticism for Carter’s past actions, explaining their dreadful consequences for the Israel–Gaza conflict. He recalled that 14 years ago, Carter advised then-PLO leader Yasser Arafat to reject Israel’s offer of statehood. Carter “has blood on his hands,” he said.
“Can you imagine how much better the world would have been if Arafat had accepted the offer of ending the occupation of Gaza?” Dershowitz asked. “Jimmy Carter has a lot of answering to do. There are a lot of people who would be alive today if Jimmy Carter had advised Arafat to accept the deal rather than to object to it.”
Watch the full interview here.