Netanyahu's Comfort Zone
Bibi is who he is. Right now, he's a legitimate Israeli leader who may well be the only political figure capable of leading the country. Whether he can lead Israel to real peace with the Palestinians is another matter entirely.
It's politically inconvenient to admit it, but given Bibi's world view -- which is profoundly shaped by suspicion and mistrust of the Arabs and Palestinians -- he's more comfortable in the world of Hamas than of Abbas. This is a world of toughness, of security, and of defending the Jewish state against Hamas rockets, incitement, and anti-Semitism. Hamas's behavior merely validates Netanyahu's view of reality -- and it empowers him to rise to the role of heroic defender of Israel.
Netanyahu didn't seek out a war over Hamas's rockets, which threaten an increasing number of Israeli towns and cities. But he is truly in his element in dealing with it. Sure he'd like to destroy Hamas and negotiate with Abbas -- but on his terms. Indeed, the world of a negotiation over borders, refugees, Jerusalem is a world of great discomfort for Netanyahu, because it will force choices that run against his nature, his politics, and his ideology.
Hamas isn't a cheap excuse conjured up to avoid negotiating with the Palestinians, of course. But the fact that Abbas can't control Hamas and that Arab states, particularly Egypt, now embrace it openly is precisely why Bibi believes he must be cautious in any negotiations. He may intellectually accept the possibility that the absence of meaningful negotiations actually empowers Hamas. But never emotionally. If you see the world through an us vs. them filter, you're rarely responsible for the problem -- it's almost always the other guy's fault.