Washington brushes aside Mashaal's offer of ten year truce with Israel

In Washington Monday, deputy State Department spokesman Tom Casey brushed aside Hamas's truce offer, saying the group's past rhetoric contained "all this language about truces and other kinds of issues." "But the bottom line is, Hamas still believes in the destruction of the state of Israel, they don't believe Israel has a right to exist," Casey said, adding it was clear "that nothing has changed" in Hamas's attitude - including that the group still refuses to explicitly recognize Israel and denounce terrorism. Earlier, Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal offered Israel a ten year truce in return for a Palestinian state within the pre-1967 borders. Mashaal used the Arabic word "hudna," meaning truce, which is more concrete than "tahdiya" - a period of calm - which Hamas often uses to describe a simple cease-fire. Hudna implies a recognition of the other party's existence.