Interesting article in the LA times about Hamas and Fatah. Not sure if anyone in L.A. will actually read it, but since it also made the top-three list on Google News, it's guarenteed to get some readership.
Once again it seems like the U.S. is choosing to back a politically-acceptable dictator (OK, jury is still out on whether Abbas is a dictator or not, but dismissing the elected assembly is not a good start. Who wants to bet Hamas won't be allowed to run in the next election?) over the radical but popularly-supported alternative.
The U.S. is scared of creating another Iran in Palestine, but the more opposition the U.S. creates to the current Hamas leadership, the more they empower the radical elements of the party. The way to moderate them is to bring them to the negotiating table. Radicals cannot abide compromise. When people have nothing, the guy standing up for their rights is a hero. When people see a promising offer on the table and the guy next to them says "No! XXX at any cost!" they stop seeing him as a hero and start seeing him as a loony.
(Found a Wall Street Journal article following writing this, on why support for Fatah isn't the answer. It illustrates the problems with support for Fatah pretty well, although I have serious doubts about the author's proposed solution)