Your sole source of information regarding persecuted Christians of Egypt.  [Learn More]

Education
Impact
Action
Donate

322 items tagged "Hamas"

Results 1 - 322 of 322

As the Arab world crumbles, new alliances emerge

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Thursday, 25 August 2016 21:31
ISISSeveral looming challenges pose a clear and present danger to the Arab world's ability to continue as a viable culture and functioning political system. At the head of the list are Iran, Islamic State, and the deterioration of the status of the state itself in countries where terror, motivated mainly by Islam and its dictates, is on the rise.
 
The Iranian challenge received a boost last year from the signing of Iran's Nuclear Agreement with the West and the billions of dollars accompanying it, part of which will be invested in pouring more boiling jet fuel on the epicenters of Middle Eastern bloodshed and tension – Yemen, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon – in a way that poses a direct threat to certain key countries such as Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. The agreement will also make it easier for Iran to export the revolution to other parts of the world, starting with Europe and the United States.
 
The Islamic State challenge continues to threaten Syria and Iraq directly, but its influence is increasing in other focal points such as Libya and the Sinai Peninsula. Jordan, too, has been the scene of activities meant to prepare the population for the day after the monarchy, when an Islamic State-type regime can come to power. Although Islamic State lost territory in its battles with the Iraqi and Syrian armies, it is far from losing its ongoing ability to spread terror and propaganda and its defeat is not at all a sure thing.
 
The modern Arab state – as an ideology and political entity – is facing several difficult questions. Many of its citizens ask why they are forced to live in states created, designed and planned by the West to promote its own interests. Why, they ask, must they live under dictatorships where a ruling elite runs an economically and morally corrupt government?  Social media are the main platform for expressing these opinions and serve as the stage where large numbers of people take part in a public debate that puts their own countries in the dock.
 
There is a not insignificant number of people in the Arab world who have reached the conclusion that it is time to act against their own states by means of intimidation, threats, terrorist acts and murder. The main leader of this trend is the Muslim Brotherhood and the political Islamic organizations it spawned.
 
These organizations make use of social media to organize, plan, get new volunteers, all the while sending their messages anonymously and without the constraints of government censorship.
 
A clear example of the deteriorating situation is the terror state that was established in Gaza nine years ago, in June 2007, when an Islamic terrorist organization – Hamas – took over an area that is home to over one million people and established an entity that is the political implementation of the Muslim Brotherhood's ideology. The Arab world is paralyzed and prevented from reacting because every word against Hamas is immediately interpreted as being pro-Israel and therefore totally unacceptable in Arab circles.
 
The disastrous situation was actually strengthened when wealthy and important states such as Qatar and Turkey stood behind the Hamas state and aided it financially and politically, while Iran provided it with military support.
 
Meanwhile, the same phenomenon is developing in Lebanon, where the Hezbollah terrorist organization is taking over an entire country and turning it into a state run according to decisions made in Tehran. The most crucial decision that Iran made for Lebanon was throwing the country into the midst of the fierce civil war raging in Syria between Assad and his enemies.
 
This challenging state of events has been ruling the Arab scene for years with no solution in sight.  Iran not only is not disappearing, its influence is getting stronger by the day. Islamic State is also not disappearing, despite the West's declaration of war against it. The modern Arab state is not seen as a legitimate answer, causing the internal terror fueled by Islam to get more and more powerful.
 
In the past, the United States was a stabilizing factor that preserved the political systems in the region, but it has decided to step back and leave the area ripe prey for Iran, Sunni Jihadists, Turks and lately the Russians who have arrived to secure their own interests. Sadly, those who suffer most from this maelstrom of problems are peaceful citizens who once suffered under dictatorships and now suffer under Jihadist swords. They are fleeing en masse to Europe.
 
Israel
 
Israel can be accepted more easily while the Arab world is In this miserable situation because it does not pose a threat to any nations except the two terrorist mini states that have arisen in the Middle East: the Gazan Hamas and the Lebanese Hezbollah. Islamic State will also be a potential target for Israel from the second that its territory reaches any Israeli border, so that Israel has been transformed from being a problem to being a solution to problems.
 
The first Arab country to realize the Israel solution was Egypt, which shares Israel's concern about terror and Islamic State, especially since  IS has established a branch in the Sinai. Al Sisi's Egypt, since 2013, works stubbornly and steadily, with minimum sensitivity, against Hamas.  Egypt closed the Rafiah Pass almost hermetically, and has almost entirely eliminated the tunnel system  into Egypt that the Gazans worked hard to dig. Those tunnels were not used only for weapons smuggling – an entire circus once arrived in Gaza that way!
 
Rumors have it that Israel is helping Egypt in the shared struggle of both countries against Islamic State's "Sinai Province," an organization that was once called "Ansar Beit al Maqdis" and was affiliated with al Qaeda, and whose hands are smeared with the blood of hundreds of Egyptian civilians and soldiers.
 
It has reached the point where the Egyptian Foreign Minister, Sameh Shoukri, refused to accuse Israel of engaging in terror when it battles Palestinian Arabs. In his opinion, "Israel's history forces it to grant an important place to security because Israeli society is faced with challenges that demand strict attention to security, control of the area and the sealing of any breaches in its protective shield." He might well say the exact same words regarding Egypt.
 
Shoukri also noted that it is impossible to accuse Israel of terror since there is no accepted international definition for terror. This remark is actually a complaint aimed at all the Islamic countries which refuse to define terror in legal terms because doing so would by definition point to Islam as the factor motivating most terrorists today. The US government is not eager to identify the connection between Islam and terror either, so that his words seem to be pointed in that direction as well.
 
This week Israel struck Hamas in Gaza in retaliation for that organization's launch of a rocket at Sderot, an insult to Israeli sovereignty. Israel's reaction was what its enemies like to call "disproportionate.")It would be interesting to see what they would do to anyone who dared to launch a rocket over their borders.) This time, however, the reaction was barely heard  because most sane people in this world realize exactly what Shoukri, the Egyptian Foreign Minister, was talking about.
 
In contrast, the Turkish regime seems to have lost some of its ability to think rationally accused Israel of reacting disproportionately, of pointless violence that will not be allowed to go away quietly despite the newly signed reconciliation agreement, all this while using the old , tired rhetoric of former periods that divided the world into infidels and believers. Erdogan has not yet noticed that the world is divided differently today, between those who believe in political detente and those who cause trouble – among them Turkey, the country that played the most crucial role in making the rise of Islamic State in Syria and Iraq possible.
 
Erdogan's treaty with Hamas puts him on the wrong side of history. He, naturally, attempts to cover up and obscure his Islamist leanings by renewing Turkey's ties to Israel, Russia and NATO, but he cannot hide his abhorrence for al Sisi's Egypt and for Israel, because both of these countries are a unified front against the Islamic terror that he, Erdogan, supports wholeheartedly.
 
In the current situation, now that Israel has switched from being the problem to being a solution, relations with Israel have ceased to be an embarrassment and many countries, both Arab and non-Arab, do not deny that they have some sort of relations with the "Zionist Entity."
 
The other challenges, the real ones, threaten the very existence of any political order in the Middle East and countries in the region and outside it understand that Israel is the one to rely on for stability.
 
Considering all that, it is most definitely strange that there are still people in this world who believe that establishing a Palestinian Arab state is a positive and necessary step, despite the inevitability of it soon becoming another Hamas state.
 
Written for Arutz Sheva, translated from Hebrew by Rochel Sylvetsky, op-ed and Judaism editor.
 
Dr. Mordechai KedarDr. Mordechai Kedar
Dr. Mordechai Kedar is a senior lecturer in the Department of Arabic at Bar-Ilan University. He served in IDF Military Intelligence for 25 years, specializing in Arab political discourse, Arab mass media, Islamic groups and the Syrian domestic arena. Thoroughly familiar with Arab media in real time, he is frequently interviewed on the various news programs in Israel.

Why is Shi'ite Iran backing Sunni Hamas?

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 19 July 2016 11:28
Moussa Abu MarzoukHamas politburo member Mussa Abu Marzouk recently touted the "natural" ties between his Sunni terrorist organization and Shi'ite Iran, the leading state sponsor of terror in the world.
 
Speaking to the Turkish Anadolu Agency, Marzouk claimed there was no contradiction in the ties - even though Iran is fighting Sunni factions in Syria, Iraq and Yemen, and has killed hundreds of thousands of Sunni Muslims directly or through its regional proxies in recent years.
 
Marzouk said Hamas has connections with all the sources in the region regardless of their ethnicity or religious approach, in a stance based on the interests of Hamas and the "Palestinian nation."
 
It goes without saying that Hamas's approach does not extend to Jews, given that the terror group's charter calls for a genocide of the Jewish people.
 
Iran is an Islamic state and Hamas has a long history of ties with Tehran, Marzouk said, emphasizing that his group seeks to preserve its "natural ties" with Iran regardless of existing issues between the sides.
 
In remarks in February, Marzouk said, "there is no Arab or Islamic state that gave true aid to the Palestinian struggle like the Islamic Republic of Iran."
 
He praised Iran on its willingness to financially support the "martyrs" of the intifada terror war, and to rebuild homes destroyed in Hamas's numerous wars against Israel.

Hamas: Arab Peace Initiative 'threatens Palestinian interests'

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 21 June 2016 11:31
Mahmoud al-Zahar0Hamas is rejecting the Arab Peace Initiative and calling on Arab countries to stop promoting it.
 
Mahmoud Al-Zahar, a member of Hamas' political bureau, on Thursday said the initiative is a threat to vital Palestinian interests.
 
In an interview with the Al-Arabi Al Jadid newspaper, Zahar called on Arab countries not to promote the Arab Peace Initiative, explaining that it is merely a mechanism that will eliminate the idea of establishing a Palestinian state, due to the fact that negotiations with Israel have proven to be a failure.
 
The Arab peoples, Zahar continued, should first and foremost be concerned about the Palestinians before they seek peace with Israel.
 
The initiative, unveiled in 2002 and re-endorsed at the 2007 Arab League summit, says that 22 Arab countries will normalize ties with Israel in return for an Israeli withdrawal from Judea and Samaria.
 
Israel to date has rejected the plan due to the fact that it calls for Israel to accept the so-called "right of return" for millions of descendants of Arabs who fled pre-state Israel, effectively bringing an end to the Jewish state.
 
It has recently been in the headlines again, however, as Saudi Arabian Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said the initiative is the best solution for the conflict, and rejected Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's demand that the initiative be updated.
 
"It is on the table and it is a solid basis for ending the conflict," he said. "We and the rest of the world believe that the Arab peace initiative is the best option to resolve the conflict and we hope that this wisdom prevails in Israel too and that the Israelis would accept this initiative."
 
In Thursday’s interview, Zahar also addressed the reconciliation talks between Turkey and Israel, saying that Hamas is not up to date on the details, but does not oppose the idea that an Arab country will monitor the Gaza seaport after its construction, and ensure that it will never be used for transport of weapons.
 
He also claimed that Hamas does not need more weapons as it already has enough.

Haniyeh confirms: We are building tunnels

Category: News
Created on Monday, 01 February 2016 10:32
Ismail Haniyeh0Hamas is no longer denying that it is rebuilding its terrorist tunnel infrastructure.
 
On Friday, Hamas deputy leader Ismail Haniyeh publicly confirmed the group is developing its military capabilities and rebuilding the underground tunnels leading from Gaza to Israel in preparation for a future conflict, reported Haaretz.
 
Haniyeh made the comments as part of his weekly sermon at the end of Friday prayers in Gaza and ahead of a funeral for seven Hamas terrorists who were killed this week when a tunnel collapsed in northern Gaza.
 
"There are those who think that the calm is a time of rest," Haniyeh said, according to Haaretz. "But this is a continuation of the struggle. Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades are working and preparing for Palestine. Fighters are digging twice as much as the number of tunnels dug in Vietnam."
 
"In east Gaza there are heroes digging tunnels under the ground and in the west there are those testing rockets. The Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades are digging tunnels to defend Gaza and turn it into a launch pad for all of Palestine," he declared.
 
Haniyeh also praised Gaza steadfastness "thanks to the patience of the Strip's residents and despite the siege and war and schemes against Gaza. I tell all those who are doubtful at our resilience: forgo this logic. We are prepared to go without bread and without water, but we will not live without respect."
 
Hamas has been working feverishly to rebuild its infiltration tunnel network into Israel, after the IDF destroyed the network during Operation Protective Edge in 2014.
 
According to some estimates Hamas has already succeeded in digging tunnels into Israel sovereign territory once again, using materials sent by international donors which were earmarked for rebuilding Gaza's civilian infrastructure damaged during the war.
 
As recently as last summer, one year after Protective Edge, Hamas released a video clip showing its terrorist fighters training for attacks against Israel inside terror tunnels.
 
In the video, the terrorists of the so-called "tunnel unit" were seen practicing organized action, infiltration, attacking Israel military and civilian targets and evacuation of the wounded.

'Hamas turned Sinai into a jihadist hotbed'

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 12 January 2016 18:56
SinaiAside from its direct military conquests, ISIS is lethal due to the "atmosphere" it brews in the Middle East, said Kedar. He noted that the group encourages jihadist recruitment, with the affects being felt in the US and Europe.
 
ISIS has provided "an injection of motivation for the Muslims to take the knife or the rifle and to do whatever they have to do according to Islamic sharia (law)," said the expert.
 
{youtube}5F12SYuItRk{/youtube}
 
Turning his attention to the Sinai Peninsula, Kedar noted how the region has been turned into a jihadist hotbed thanks largely to Hamas in Gaza, which has used its smuggling tunnels to bring a strong influence into the area.
 
The IDF might not have the "right devices" to counter the threat of jihadists firing missiles from Sinai, he warned.
 
On the northern border, Kedar mentioned the Hezbollah terror group's threats to "take revenge" on Israel over its alleged assassination of the terrorist Samir Kuntar. Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah has threatened to take action, and the expert warned that when he makes threats he generally is referring to an attack already in the works.
 
Hezbollah already tried to launch an attack on Monday, by planting an explosive on the Lebanese border that fortunately did not wound any IDF soldiers.

ISIS's Sinai commander in Gaza for Hamas talks

Category: News
Created on Friday, 04 December 2015 08:06
shadi meneiShadi al-Menei, the commander of the Islamic State (ISIS) branch Sinai Province, is currently in Gaza on a secret visit to speak with Hamas leaders.
 
The surprising revelation reported late Thursday by Channel 2 exposes the deep level of coordination between the terrorist organizations, which has been kept tightly under wraps.
 
Al-Menei held talks with the heads of Hamas's "armed wing," the Al-Qassam Brigades, about expanding the cooperation between the groups according to the report.
 
The channel notes that Hamas is being aided by ISIS in order to smuggle in weapons through the cross-border tunnels that Egypt's army has not yet destroyed, and in return is providing Sinai Province with advanced weapons such as Cornet anti-tank missiles which ISIS has used in Sinai against Egypt - including against an Egyptian patrol ship.
 
The head of Sinai Province, which was called Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis before pledging loyalty to ISIS, has been a wanted man in Egypt for several years. Last May it was thought that he had been eliminated, but later it emerged that he survived the attempt.
 
Al-Menei is responsible for the terrorist attack on Highway 12 in 2011, in which nine Israelis were murdered. He also orchestrated rocket fire on Eilat, Israel's southernmost port city.
 
Back in July Israel announced it had information that Hamas had supplied ISIS with the weapons it used in a particularly brutal attack on Egyptian soldiers that left over 70 dead. Likewise, Hamas commanders were revealed as having supplied organizational support in the attack.
 
Days after the revelation, a senior IDF officer said Hamas was cooperating with Sinai Peninsula to keep its influx of weapons going through smuggling tunnels, and prepare for its next war against Israel.
 
Hamas, for its part, repeatedly rejected announcements by Israel that it is aiding ISIS, which is also gaining a foothold in Gaza itself through local Salafist groups voicing support for ISIS. Those groups are in conflict with Hamas, but are also not official branches of ISIS like Sinai Province is.
 
"Hamas is fighting ISIS in the Strip, but on the other side there is cooperation between Hamas elements from Gaza and ISIS in Sinai," Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon (Likud) explained in July.

Mashaal calls for diplomatic war alongside intifada

Category: News
Created on Friday, 13 November 2015 11:16
Khaled Meshaal0Hamas politburo leader Khaled Mashaal has called to establish a "Palestinian leadership united on the ground," so as to manage the current terror wave and use it to achieve an end of "the occupation and the Israeli settlement."
 
In a press conference with journalists from Gaza, Mashaal said the true goals of the current wave of terror attacks is to "put an end to the occupation and the settlement in the West Bank and Jerusalem."
 
Airing unfounded Arab claims regarding a change of status quo on the Temple Mount, he continued enumerating the goals as "thwarting the division of Al-Aqsa Mosque, and causing Israel to renounce its aggressive plans."
 
"The popular Palestinian intifada has given a message to the American government that its attempts to establish peace without any true solution and a continued management of the conflict, and giving empty gestures to the Palestinians, won't bring security and stability in light of the occupation," he said.
 
The Hamas leader continued by calling for a diplomatic campaign meant to harm Israel, in concert with the daily wave of attacks targeting Israelis.
 
"We must integrate the military action on the ground with policy and diplomacy and activities in the regional and international spheres, which will not have any value if they do not rest on the true pressures held by the Palestinian leader."
 
Giving a sign of the sort of diplomatic actions Mashaal envisions using against Israel, this Wednesday he called for the release of top terrorists being held in Israel in exchange for the return of the bodies of two IDF soldiers killed in last summer's war.

Hamas: Britain must apologize for the Balfour Declaration

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 12 November 2015 11:54
Hamas-Britain-must-apologize-for-the-Balfour-DeclarationHamas is demanding that Britain apologize for the 1917 Balfour Declaration, in which then-UK Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour declared that Britain would support the establishment of a national homeland for the Jewish people in the Land of Israel.
 
In an official statement to mark 98 years since the declaration, Hamas' refugee affairs department said the declaration is now null and void, imposing full responsibility for its consequences on Britain, and demanding that it apologize, retract the declaration and admit it was a mistake.
 
"The path of our people towards freedom, return and liberation goes like the path of other peoples who were under occupation - through struggle by all methods and means, first and foremost an armed struggle," the statement said, adding that “the Palestinian people” are very close to achieving their objectives and called on international institutions to press Britain to apologize for the Balfour Declaration.
 
The Palestinian Authority’s Culture Ministry also called on the British government to apologize for the "big crime" of the Balfour Declaration, "compensate the Palestinian people for the years of British and Zionist occupation of Palestine" and help the Palestinians establish a state on all "Palestinian land."
 
The demand for a British apology comes a day after a Hamas paper said that the “Al-Quds Intifada” which is what Hamas terms the current terror wave, has “killed” the Balfour Declaration.
 
"The city of Hevron and with it all the Palestinian cities declared the Al-Quds intifada, and all the sharpened knives struck the Balfour Declaration and killed it even before attacking the view of security and stability that the Jews hope for on this land, and against them the city of Hevron went out in tens of thousands at the end of October, to declare in the voice of the blood: the Balfour Declaration that was published in early November a hundred years ago is a worthless declaration, and this land is Arab...and will not be a homeland for the Jews," wrote Faiz Abu Shamalah in Hamas’s Palestine newspaper.

Hamas: The intifada has killed the Balfour Declaration

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 11 November 2015 21:50
intifada killed the Balfour DeclarationThe Hamas paper has given new significance to the Israeli government's concession Saturday, when it returned the bodies of five terrorists in breach of a Security Cabinet decision, and thereby let the Palestinian Authority (PA) hold a massive funeral for them in Hevron.
 
Faiz Abu Shamalah wrote in the Hamas-run Palestine Paper, analyzing the meaning of the funeral that was attended by thousands, and which led to violent attacks on IDF soldiers.
 
"The city of Hevron has become the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian nation expressing the will of the Palestinian nation, which spoke in its masses and with rage," wrote Abu Shamalah.
 
His comment indicates the strong support for Hamas in the city in Judea, a stronghold for the Islamist terrorist group and where local elections for seven spots in the municipal government reportedly saw all seven go to Hamas members.
 
That "will" according to the Hamas writer was expressed in "a call against the Oslo Accords, against the continuation of the (PA) security cooperation (with Israel), against the initiative of (US Secretary of State) John Kerry and against every Palestinian working against the intifada."
 
"The city of Hevron announced aloud to the entire Palestinian nation that the goings-on on Palestinian land are an intifada in every sense of the word, in terms of the sacrifice and the self-sacrifice," he continued.
 
"The city of Hevron and with it all the Palestinian cities declared the Al-Quds intifada, and all the sharpened knives struck the Balfour Declaration and killed it even before attacking the view of security and stability that the Jews hope for on this land, and against them the city of Hevron went out in tens of thousands at the end of October, to declare in the voice of the blood: the Balfour Declaration that was published in early November a hundred years ago is a worthless declaration, and this land is Arab...and will not be a homeland for the Jews."
 
In the 1917 Balfour Declaration, then-UK Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour declared that Britain would support the establishment of a national homeland for the Jewish People in the Land of Israel.

Hamas declares another 'Day of Rage' Friday

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 11 November 2015 08:28
Hamas declares another Day of RageHamas is calling for a “Day of Rage” on Friday throughout Judea and Samaria and encouraging rioting and clashes with IDF forces.
 
In a statement issued by Hamas on Thursday evening, the organization welcomed the "heroic actions" of young Palestinians, saying "the enemy understands only the language of force".
 
Meanwhile, the deputy leader of Hamas, Ismail Haniyeh, called on Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas, to rebuild the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and to act to preserve the “Al-Quds Intifada”, as he calls the current wave of terror.
 
Speaking to the Hamas newspaper Palestine, Haniyeh said that Abbas should summon a meeting of the PLO's interim leadership to establish a unity government and prepare for elections.
 
Haniyeh demanded a discussion on the “Palestinian national strategy” in order to protect the "Al-Quds Intifada" and put an end to any intervention (a hint at the United States’ initiative) which seeks to “stifle” the intifada’s goals.
 
Palestinian Arab terrorist groups have called for a “Day of Rage” nearly every Friday over the last few weeks.
 
Israel has continued to face international criticism as it has moved to defend its security forces from being attacked by violent Arab mobs on the Temple Mount compound, even though the riots have been initiated by the Arabs.
 
Despite being the holiest site in Judaism, the Temple Mount has been left in the de facto control of the Jordanian Waqf, which has banned Jewish prayer at the site in spite of Israeli law stipulating freedom of worship for all.

Hamas official says Israeli Arabs aid the intifada

Category: News
Created on Friday, 06 November 2015 08:08
Fathi HamadSenior Hamas politburo official Fathi Hamad has called for an increase in the terror wave sweeping Israel, and said Arab citizens of Israel are using their status to betray the state and facilitate the attacks.
 
Hamad, who previously served as Interior Minister in the Hamas terrorist government in Gaza, made the statements in an interview to the Hamas paper Palestine.
 
In it, he said the Palestinian problem has been abandoned and the intifada terror wave has come to remind Arabs and Muslims of their obligations towards "occupied Palestine."
 
"The intifada continues, and this is a popular intifada of residents of Jerusalem and the West Bank that enjoys support and aid from the Palestinians inside the occupation, in the diaspora and the Gaza Belt," said Hamad.
 
The term "Palestinians inside the occupation" is regularly employed to refer to Arab citizens of Israel. A number of attacks have in fact been conducted by Arab citizens, such as the lethal shooting and stabbing attack in Be'er Sheva's central station last Sunday.
 
According to the senior Hamas figure the intifada has two goals, both to harm Israel and to harm the security cooperation between the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Israel as well as chances for peace talks.
 
Such negotiations "haven't brought any good results for 20 years and during that time the number of settlements in the (West) Bank have grown," said Hamad.

Hamas: '1948 and 1967 are Temporary Borders'

Category: News
Created on Friday, 30 October 2015 10:12
Mahmoud al-Zahar0Hamas continues to make clear that its ultimate goal is to drive all Jews out of what it perceives to be “Palestinian land”.
 
Senior Hamas member Mahmoud al-Zahar on Wednesday said he sees the latest terror wave as a springboard for “the liberation of all of Palestine”.
 
"The struggle against the occupation is strong and deep, and the Palestinian people cannot give it up," Zahar said in a speech in Gaza, adding that an armed struggle is no shame for any organization or movement, but a plan which all the Palestinian people embrace.
 
Zahar called on Arab countries to begin the establishment of an “Al-Quds Army” to help in the “liberation” of so-called “Palestinian land”. He who negotiates the Palestinian basic principles and gives up on them does not represent the Palestinian people, he added, calling for the abolishment of the Palestinian Authority’s security forces.
 
Finally, he stressed that "the borders of 1948 and the borders of 1967 are temporary borders and our goal is to liberate all of Palestine."

Hamas 'Reenacts' Jerusalem Bus Attack

Category: News
Created on Friday, 30 October 2015 09:11
Hamas Reenacts Jerusalem Bus AttackThe Hamas student group in Gaza has released a shocking video "reenacting" the lethal attack on the 78 line bus in Jerusalem this Tuesday, in which Arab terrorists murdered two Jews and wounded 15 others.
 
The video, revealed by Palestinian Media Watch (PMW), can be viewed below. Viewer discretion is advised.
 
{youtube}NkqgR0_4E74{/youtube}
 
The West Gaza branch of the Islamic Movement, Hamas's student movement, posted the video on its Facebook page, praising the attack by two terrorists on a bus in the southeastern Jerusalem neighborhood of Armon Hanatziv. 
 
Aside from the bad acting and the odd placement of an Israeli flag at back of the bus, the clip didn't even get the events of the attack right.
 
While the driver is seen merely sitting and facing forward with his hands up as the carnage takes place behind him in the "reenactment," in the actual attack the driver was chased from the bus by the knife-wielding terrorist into the 12 line bus immediately behind the bus, and then the terrorists locked in the passengers.
 
Police forces showed up shortly afterwards and shot their way into the bus, killing one of the terrorists and wounding the second.
 
A second attack took place in Jerusalem just minutes afterwards, in which a terrorist employee of Bezeq used his company car to attack before getting out and stabbing passersby. One Jew was murdered in the attack, and another moderately wounded.

Hamas, Fatah Welcome Samaria Terrorist Attack

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 13 October 2015 11:06
hamas membersBoth the Fatah and the Hamas organizations on Thursday night praised the terrorists who carried out the attack in Samaria, in which Rabbi Eitam and Naama Henkin were murdered in front of their four children.
 
According to Kol Yisrael radio, a Hamas spokesman said the group "welcomes the heroic attack and calls for more quality attacks. The Zionists will pay the price for Netanyahu’s criminal policy everywhere.”
 
Meanwhile, Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah movement, often touted as a “peace partner” for Israel, welcomed the terror attack as well.
 
Azzam al-Ahmed, a senior member of the group’s leadership, was quoted by Kol Yisrael as having told Hamas’s Al-Quds TV: “The attack is a natural response to the crimes of the settlers and every action has a reaction.”
 
The Henkins were murdered when terrorists opened fire at their car as they travelled between Elon Moreh and Itamar. Security officials later said that it is unknown as of yet which terror organization was behind the attack, though they did say the terrorists verified that the two victims were dead before fleeing the scene.
 
Hamas’s welcoming of the attack comes days after Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said that the Palestinian Arab world absolutely wants a new intifada to fight the "crimes of the occupation."
 
Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP) called on the PA to encourage even more violence against Jews and Israelis following the remarks, to halt security coordination with Israel and to unleash an armed struggle against the Jewish state.

Hamas: All of Israel is Ours

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 01 October 2015 17:19
Ismail HaniyehHamas leader Ismail Haniyeh pushed for Palestinian Arabs to rededicate themselves to resisting the "Zionist Occupation" on Sunday, in a speech in honor of the Muslim holiday of Eid Al-Adha. 
 
In his speech, Haniyeh claimed that Israel was attempting to "Judaize" Jerusalem, as well as Judaism's holiest site, the Temple Mount. 
 
"The occupiers want to change the characteristics of the history, geography and culture in Jerusalem, but our people, led by men and women clinging to the Al-Aqsa Mosque and around Beit al-Maqdis, stand against this attack and this war, with heroism and courage in their hearts, and they stress that this is our country," he said. 
 
Haniyeh also said that Gaza, the Palestinian Authority (PA), and "conquered lands of 1948" (i.e. Israel within 1949 Armistice lines - ed.) exist only for the sake of Jerusalem, and that, "regardless of price or victims," and that the "Occupation will not escape the punishment of our struggle." 
 
Echoing Hamas's stance on security coordination with Israel, Haniyeh called on the PA to disassociate itself completely with the Jewish state and foment an open war against Israel. 
 
Haniyeh gave his speech hours before a large terrorist mob camped out overnight on the Temple Mount - many wearing green Hamas regalia - with a stockpile of firebombs, rocks, and other weapons, and attacked Israel Police forced early Monday morning at the site. 

Egypt Floods Hamas Terror Tunnels

Category: News
Created on Friday, 25 September 2015 14:17
Gaza smuggling tunnel 0Egypt has begun flooding Hamas terror tunnels beneath the Egypt-Gaza Rafah border crossing Friday, in an apparent attempt to prevent terrorist infiltrations. 
 
According to Dutch news agency DPA, Egypt pumped water from the Mediterranean Sea into the tunnels, making good on threats it made to Hamas last month.
 
Egyptian officials apparently intend to turn the tunnels, and the border region, into a series of fish farms. 
 
As part of Egypt’s ongoing crackdown on terrorism, Egypt is establishing a buffer zone along the border with Gaza. The buffer zone was initially planned to be 500 meters wide, but was later expanded by another 500 meters.
 
In addition, Egypt has destroyed hundreds of tunnels used by terrorists to smuggle weapons between Egypt and Gaza.
 
Rafah, in particular, is Gaza's only gateway to the outside world, and Egypt has kept it mostly closed since the Hamas terrorist group seized control of the area in 2007.
 
Egyptian authorities have kept the crossing virtually sealed since a terrorist attack in the Sinai Peninsula in October 2014, though they have temporarily reopened the crossing several times.
 
Sources in Egypt have revealed that Hamas terrorists had provided the weapons for the lethal attacks in October, which killed 30 soldiers, through one of its smuggling tunnels under the border to Sinai. Hamas denies the allegations.

Hamas Threatens to Hang Abbas

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 24 September 2015 10:00
Abbas09Mahmoud al-Zahar, a member of the Hamas politburo and a senior official in the terrorist organization, threatened violence against the Palestinian Authority (PA) on Friday despite the unity agreement between the two groups sealed last April.
 
Speaking at a massive rally in Gaza's Khan Younis organized by Hamas in support of the Islamist rioters attacking police on the Temple Mount, al-Zahar slammed the PA for not openly conducting attacks against Israel.
 
"If (Hamas's) Al-Qassam Brigades, (Islamic Jihad's) Al-Quds Brigades and the forces of the struggle were to adopt the policies and the leaders and countries around them, they wouldn't be waving the rifle at the settlers, as their advice doesn't give us strength to confront the occupation and its soldiers."
 
Al-Zahar said the PA's security cooperation with the IDF is "spying for the enemy," reports Al-Risalah.
 
He said that "those who admit to doing it (i.e. 'spying for the enemy' - ed.), their fate is execution by hanging," in a direct threat against the PA and its chairman Mahmoud Abbas.
 
Al-Zahar said that "blood spilled in the way of Allah" for the Al-Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount is "holy," in a call for more violence. That call came just hours before three rockets were fired from Gaza, prompting an Israeli airstrike on a Hamas base in response.
 
The Hamas leader also spouted standard propaganda, saying that Palestinian Arab terror groups will "liberate Palestine" from the "occupation," and threatening retribution for "harming" Al-Aqsa Mosque.
 
Turning his attention to the future, al-Zahar said that Judea and Samaria is the most important place for the "liberation of Palestine," and that in the end "we will reach Jerusalem and Haifa."
 
"The day will come when buses will leave from Rafiah through the Gaza Strip to Al-Aqsa Mosque," he added, even though Israel has been allowing hundreds of Gazans to visit the mosque on Fridays for the last several months.

Angry Gazans Say 'Israel Better Than Hamas'

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 23 September 2015 11:12
Angry GazansProlonged disputes between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority (PA) have left Gazans without electricity for eight-hour stretches - and Gazans say that they prefer Israel over their Hamas rulers as the crisis continues. 
 
"The Israelis are better," Ibrahim, one Gazan, told Channel 2 Wednesday. "All talk on the street is about the electricity. All the public talks about is how hard it is in Gaza." 
 
Last Monday, amid an unprecedented heat wave in the region, protests turned into violent clashes between Gazans and the Hamas police force over the issue. Hamas threatened further violence against violators of public order; many residents are afraid to express their anger." 
 
"They have no mercy," Ibrahim said. "Whoever opens his mouth will be sent to jail for a year or two." 
 
Meanwhile, the electricity crisis is worsening. 
 
"I live in Rafah," another Gazan said to the outlet. "We have electricity for four hours, then 20 hours without electricity." 
 
"Living in a tent is better than living here." 
 
Gaza's main power plant has been out of order since July, when Hamas accused the PA of raising tax levies beyond the point at which the plant was maintainable. Hamas pays the PA for fuel imported to Gaza, but is short of cash and had been unable to cover the additional costs in tax. 
 
Relations between Islamist Hamas and the PA, which is dominated by bitter rivals Fatah, are at rock-bottom despite an April 2014 agreement that installed a "unity government" and was meant to centralize administration of the two.

4 Hamas Naval Commandos Abducted on Way to Iran - by Egypt?

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 20 August 2015 20:44
Egypt Abducted 4senior Hamas naval commandosHamas accused Egyptian intelligence of abducting four residents of the coastal enclave after they entered Sinai on a bus on Wednesday night - after Egypt learned that the four were senior Hamas naval commandos, reports Walla! on Thursday.
 
The four commandos were on their way from the Rafiah Crossing to the airport in Cairo, where they planned to set out for Iran to receive training according to the paper.
 
A Hamas source told Al-Jazeera on Thursday night that the Egyptian security forces were responsible for the abduction. The Rafiah Crossing was closed on Thursday, after having been opened in recent days.
 
Hamas naval commandos have received advanced equipment and training from Iran in the past.
 
That equipment is said to include "scooters," a device used to propel underwater divers quickly, allowing Hamas commandos to reach distant targets deep in Israel.
 
Iyad al-Bazam, spokesperson for Hamas's interior ministry, told the Palestinian Arab Safa that the bus the four commandos were abducted from was secured by Egyptian security forces. He called for Egypt to work for their release.
 
Armed assailants opened fire on the bus, and afterwards broke on board to kidnap the four who they beat repeatedly, according to one of the passengers on the bus cited in the report.
 
The witness said the attack occurred one or two kilometers past the Rafiah Crossing, and that afterwards Egyptian security forces arrived on the scene.

Hamas Official: There's No Room for Jews in 'Palestine'

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 13 August 2015 10:53
Hamas supporters hold copies of the Koran during demonstration in Khan Yunis GazaHamas continues to incite young people to violence and jihad against Israel.
 
On Tuesday, the group concluded a course entitled “Al-Quds Army for Girls”, which trains young female Hamas activists on basic combat skills and assistance to fighters.
 
Rajaa al-Halabi, who heads the Hamas women's movement, said at the closing ceremony of the course that "the liberation army, the pioneers of the liberation, the Al-Quds Army, will liberate Palestine from the defilement of the occupation ... and the next battle will be the decisive one."
 
Halabi added, "The Israeli occupation has begun to realize that it has no place on Palestinian land ... and the primary mission of the military camps of Al-Quds for girls is to liberate Palestine, all of Palestine, and to restore the rights to their owners, as Palestine, all of Palestine belongs to us, and we will never give up a single grain of its land. Al-Quds, Al-Aqsa and Palestine are indivisible."
 
Hamas has continuously incited youths in Gaza towards violence against Israelis. One of its trademarks is the annual military-style summer camp for 25,000 Gazans, in which young children are encouraged to commit jihad against Jews.
 
Past clips of footage from the group’s youth camps have shown young cadets learn how to use weapons and simulate the kidnapping of an Israeli soldier.
 
Another clip shows a televised graduation ceremony for a similar Hamas youth camp in Gaza. At the ceremony, suicide terror attacks against the “Zionist enemy” were glorified by Hamas officials.
 
Hamas has also in the past released a cartoon honoring its “military wing,” and last year began a program to teach “resistance” to Israel in Gaza’s public school system.

Fatah Demands That Hamas Hand Over Control of Gaza

Category: News
Created on Monday, 03 August 2015 08:55
Azzam al-Ahmed fileThe back and forth between rival Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas continued on Monday, with a Fatah official saying that Hamas must hand over rule of Gaza as a condition to forming a unity government.
 
Speaking to the Ma’an news agency, Fatah official Azzam al-Ahmad said Hamas has to "lift their hands" from Gaza and allow the unity government to work.
 
Al-Ahmad, who heads reconciliation talks for Fatah, added that his Hamas counterpart, Moussa Abu Marzouk, is "unqualified" to call for a unity government after their work was "foiled" by Hamas.
 
The Palestinian unity agreement signed in April 2014 sought to end seven years of bad blood between Fatah and Hamas, but the sides have continued to quarrel over many issues.
 
The unity government between Hamas and Fatah collapsed in June when Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas, who heads Fatah, decided to dissolve it amid a deepening rift between the sides.
 
Negotiations on a new government were set to restart after the Eid celebrations marking the end of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, but the sides have continued to quarrel.
 
Earlier this month, PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah criticized Hamas for creating a shadow government in Gaza and blocking efforts to reach political unity.
 
Hamas has in turn accused the PA of executing a plan to "eradicate" the movement from Judea and Samaria, saying that an arrest campaign of over 200 members was carried out by the PA to target reconciliation efforts between the two factions.
 
On the weekend, senior Hamas member Salah Bardawil sharply attacked Abbas, following Abbas’s claim that Hamas refuses to implement the final clauses in the reconciliation agreement regarding personnel changes in the unity government.
 
Bardawil told the Quds Press news agency that Abbas does not believe in national unity and proceeded to called him “a dictator who every day proves to be an enemy of the Palestinian people and who unsuitable to govern.”
 
He added that Abbas is the main reason that the reconciliation agreement between Hamas and Fatah is not being implemented, accusing Abbas of stalling the formation of a joint Arab effort to deal with the "Zionist enemy".

Hamas: Iran Cut Us Off

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 02 August 2015 12:12
Hamas-IranIran's financial assistance to Hamas has stopped completely, a senior Hamas official stated Monday night. 
 
"All assistance has stopped - both civilian aid to the Gaza Strip and military assistance to Hamas," Hamas politiburo chief Moussa Abu Marzouk admitted in an Al Jazeera interview. "It's difficult for us to deal with." 
 
Iran had provided a great deal of assistance to the terror group, Abu Marzouk said; and while relations between the Islamic Republic and Gaza are not as good as they have been in the recent past, the group is redoubling efforts to strengthen ties with Tehran. 
 
"Hamas was torn between wanting to get close to Saudi Arabia and keep a good relationship with Qatar, or come close to Iran," a senior security source told Walla! News. The big money from Iran will push that decision, without a doubt."
 
When Hamas gets "big money," it will be reflected in further tensions along the Gaza border, the security source predicted - and ominously noted the fact that Iran is due to get billions of dollars due to the Iranian nuclear deal. 
 
On-and-off relationship
 
Iran was once a stronger supporter of Hamas, but the two have been at odds over the uprising against Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad. As a result of Hamas’ refusal to support Assad in the uprising, an angry Iran reportedly stopped supplying the terror group with weapons.
 
Nevertheless, the two sides have been getting closer over the past year. The speaker of the Iranian parliament, Ali Larijani, recently boasted that Iran provided Hamas with the technology it has used to rain down rockets on Israel from Gaza, and Hamas later thanked Iran for providing the group with the rockets.
 
The Al-Hayat newspaper revealed several months ago that Hamas leader-in-exile Khaled Meshaal met with Iranian Revolutionary Guards commander Qasem Solemeini, in Turkey, just days after the end of Operation Protective Edge in Gaza over the summer.
 
That relationship may be at risk, however, as Hamas and Saudi Arabia reunite to battle Islamic State (ISIS) within their borders - and as Iran and Saudi Arabia continue to battle over a proxy war in Yemen. A Saudi Arabian-led alliance began launching airstrikes on the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels on March 26 of this year. 
 
And just last week, a Hamas official accused Iran of "inciting" against them via a false report that the group is sending terrorists to fight on Iran's side in Yemen. 

Hamas Delegation Visits Saudi Arabia

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 28 July 2015 19:56
Khaled Meshaal met Saudi King SalmanHamas leader Khaled Meshaal, met Saudi King Salman during a pilgrimage to Mecca, in a rare encounter since a two-year rift, state news agency SPA reported Saturday.
 
It said Meshaal headed a Hamas delegation on a two-day visit for the mini-pilgrimage to the Muslim holy city of Mecca in the west of the kingdom.
 
"The delegation offered Eid greetings" to King Salman during prayers at the Grand Mosque, SPA said, referring to the feast which started Friday following the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.
 
It said they also "praised the positive stance of the kingdom's leadership towards the Palestinian cause."
 
A Hamas statement said the delegation, including Meshaal's deputy Mussa Abu Marzuk, also met Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef and Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman , the king's son and defense minister.
 
Ties between Hamas and Riyadh deteriorated after the kingdom threw its support behind the Egyptian army's 2013 ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi and its crackdown on his Muslim Brotherhood.
 
The exiled Meshaal has been based in Doha since he abandoned his base in Damascus in 2012 after the group sided with Syrian rebels against President Bashar al-Assad.
 
But the rise of Islamic State (ISIS) may have brought the two together, according to reports Thursday, as Hamas has been battling the rival Islamist group from within Gaza, and Saudi Arabia faces threats from the terror group over its version of Islamic Sharia law, which ISIS insists is not strict enough. 

Haniyeh Demands Release of 54 Terrorists

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 28 July 2015 08:52
Ismail HaniyehFlashA senior Hamas official said Friday there could be no new exchange talks with Israel until it frees dozens of terrorist prisoners it has rearrested since their release in a 2011 swap.
 
Ismail Haniyeh, a former prime minister of the Hamas terror government, said Israel had re-arrested at least 54 of the more than 1,000 terrorists freed in exchange for soldier Gilad Shalit, who was captured in a cross-border raid by Gaza terrorists in 2006.
 
"We have told all the mediators who have mobilized to discuss a new exchange that there won't be any negotiations before the release of all those Israel detained from among the Shalit deal group," he said in a speech marking the Eid al-Fitr holiday. "There will be no talks without their unconditional release."
 
Haniyeh did not elaborate on what new exchange was being mooted.
 
Hamas has long acknowledged holding body parts of two Israeli soldiers killed during last summer's conflict in Gaza, Hadar Goldin and Oron Shaul. Likewise it is currently holding two Israeli civilians captive in Gaza. 
 
Hamas and Israeli sources have reported informal, indirect contacts on the possibility of a long-term truce between them, to cement an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire that ended the Gaza conflict last August.
 
Last Thursday, the Israeli defense ministry said that Avraham Mengistu, an Israeli of Ethiopian descent, had been held by Hamas since crossing into Gaza last September apparently due to a mental illness he suffers from. It said an Israeli Arab is also being held, although it has given no details of his case.
 
All of those rearrested since the Shalit exchange were implicated in fresh security offenses committed after their release.
 
Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon stated this week that a prisoner swap would not be arranged with Hamas, but that Israel would do everything in its power to free the captives. 

Abbas: Israel is in Talks to Give Hamas a State in Gaza

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 19 July 2015 17:05
Abbas penned a letter to Gazans - ReutersPalestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas claimed in a recent interview with an Egyptian paper that the Hamas terrorist group, which he signed a reconciliation treaty with early last year, is holding secret negotiations with Israel to establish an Arab state in Gaza.
 
Speaking with the paper Raz Al-Youssef last month in statements that were just recently translated by MEMRI, Abbas criticized Hamas for starting last summer's terror war against Israel, blaming it for the destruction to Gaza caused by the clash.
 
He said former US President Jimmy Carter had visited him after the war in an attempt to sign an accord on forming a full unity government between Hamas and PA ending the feud between them, to which Abbas said he had no need of such agreements and instead wanted PA elections held within three to four months. According to him, Carter left at that point and never came back.
 
But Abbas, who has remained in office since his term ended in January, 2009, said, "I cannot declare elections, because it would mean severing the Gaza Strip from the West Bank. I do not want that. I only want a whole homeland that includes Gaza, the West Bank, and East Jerusalem."
 
Abbas then claimed that "there is security coordination on the border between Hamas and the Israeli occupation. There is a stretch of 50-60 meters beyond the border that acts as a route along which both sides move freely" under an agreement signed with former Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi.
 
"Now there are direct talks between Hamas and the Israelis regarding the establishment of a Gaza state (by) Hamas, the preparations for which began during the Muslim Brotherhood (i.e. Morsi - ed.) regime," charged Abbas.
 
He said that members of the Muslim Brotherhood, to which Morsi belonged and of which Hamas is a Gazan offshoot, told him, "'we want to grant our beloved (Hamas - ed.) several kilometers in the Sinai' and I told them at the time that I would never demand an inch of Egypt and stressed, 'Egyptian land for Egyptians and Palestinian land for Palestinians.'"

Hamas: Israel Sent ISIS to Destroy Us

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 08 July 2015 22:01
Hamas terrorist in Gaza0After last Friday admitting Islamic State (ISIS) is active in Gaza after months of denial, Hamas has launched a string of criticism against the jihadist group indicating the deep-seated fears Hamas has that ISIS will realize its threats to seize Gaza.
 
Faiz Abu Shamala, a journalist for the official Hamas paper Palestine, on Sunday tried to harm ISIS's image by posing a series of questions.
 
"Why doesn't Daesh attack international naval ships on the Red Sea and the Israeli tourists in Sharm el-Sheikh?," questioned Shamala, using an Arabic acronym for ISIS. "Why does Daesh attack the Palestinian fighters and not the collaborators with Israel?"
 
"Why doesn't Daesh start a war front against Israel from the West Bank which could more greatly affect Israel than from the Gaza Strip? Why does Daesh spread a poster calling for Christians to leave Jerusalem but doesn't publish a similar poster against the Zionists? Why doesn't Daesh act against Israel from the Jordan border and (why) doesn't it attack the Jordanian regime even as the Jordanian air force strikes Daesh targets?"
 
Shamala posed an answer to his own questions with a conspiracy theory claiming that Israel is using ISIS to destroy Hamas, after being "unable" to destroy Hamas in direct warfare.
 
ISIS recently threatened to overthrow Hamas in a video message, expressing animosity to the Gazan offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood for not fully implementing Islamic Sharia law and for being too "moderate."
 
It is believed that ISIS has several hundred to a few thousand active members in Gaza.
 
The ISIS affiliate in Gaza has worked in tandem with the Sinai Province branch of ISIS, which just last Friday fired rockets at southern Israel from the Sinai.
 
Sinai Peninsula has also attacked Hamas in coordination with its Salafist affiliates in Gaza; in May it claimed launching two "bombs" - reportedly 82 mm mortar shells - at Hamas posts in Gaza.
 
The ISIS presence in Gaza goes back to as far as last summer, when members of the group took part in Hamas's terror war against Israel. However, until recently, Hamas tried to play down the group's presence so as to hush up challenges to its iron rule in the coastal enclave.

PA Arrests Hamas Cell Planning to Attack It

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 08 July 2015 15:59
PA Arrests Hamas CellThe Palestinian Authority (PA) claimed its security forces caught a large Hamas cell that was planning attacks against the PA security apparatus.
 
PA Security Forces spokesperson Adnan Damiri said that Hamas had established a cell in the region to undermine security, according to the report on Israel Radio (Kol Yisrael) on Monday.
 
Damiri added that members of the cell - who were arrested in northern Samaria, most likely near the PA governmental seat of Ramallah - admitted to planning an attack and training to be able to carry it out.
 
Hassan Yousef, a senior Hamas member in the Judea and Samaria region who was recently released from jail by Israel, denied the claims.
 
Lending credence to the PA claims is the fact that last summer the IDF thwarted an attempt by Hamas to stage a coup against the PA in Judea-Samaria.
 
In recent days the PA has cracked down on Hamas, arresting over 100 of its members throughout the area of Judea and Samaria. Just last Thursday night a full 50 Hamas members were arrested and likewise electronic equipment belonging to the terrorist group was seized.
 
Hamas has threatened that if the crackdown continues the PA security apparatus will be in danger. It likewise accused the PA of conducting the arrests to try and appease Israel in response to the wave of Ramadan terror attacks emanating from territory under PA control.
 
The latest incidents come after negotiations to form a new unity government between the PA and Hamas reached an "impasse" last week, with Hamas saying the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) should not be tasked with forming the government. Hamas does not currently have representation in the PLO.
 
The bitter rivalry between Hamas and PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah faction was most vividly given expression after the 2006 elections in Gaza which Hamas won by a large margin, and which it followed by violently purging Fatah from the coastal enclave the following year.

Bankrupt UNRWA Could Close 'Palestinian Refugee' Schools

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 07 July 2015 19:58
hamas-kidsUNRWA, the UN body tasked with aiding "Palestinian refugees," has warned that it may have to close its schools as it goes bankrupt after years of falling into debt.
 
Adnan Abu Hasna, UNRWA media adviser, said that the financial deficit may cause the body to close 700 schools in Gaza, Judea and Samaria, Lebanon, Syria and Jordan at the start of the next school year.
 
Hasna said that an official decision on closing the schools has yet to be reached, but noted that UNRWA is staggering under a $101 million deficit.
 
UNRWA schools have been accused of being "incubators of terror" in teaching radicalism, aside from being weapons storehouses for Hamas, as seen last summer when rockets were found at three different UNRWA facilities. After the first discovery of rockets at an UNRWA school, the organization's workers reportedly called Hamas to come remove them.
 
A full 252 UNRWA schools are operating in Gaza, and are attended by roughly 248,000 students.
 
According to UN statistics the numbers of so-called "Palestinian refugees" - namely the descendants of the roughly 800,000 Arabs who left Israel in the 1948 War of Independence, and whose descendants uniquely "inherit" their refugee status - in Gaza stands at 1.3 million, in Judea and Samaria at 914,000, in Lebanon 447,000, 2.1 million in Jordan, and 500,000 in Syria.
 
While UNRWA was established specifically for "Palestinian refugees" and is separate from the UNHRC - which handles all other refugees, and unlike UNRWA actually seeks to resettle those it aids - no UN body was formed to aid the 850,000 Jewish refugees expelled from Arab lands after the establishment of the state of Israel.
 
Journalist David Bedein, head of the Center for Near East Policy Research, has revealed how UNRWA schools indoctrinate children in Gaza to create a "civilian army." He has also documented the symbiotic relationship between the agency and Hamas.

Egypt May 'Invite' IDF to Strike ISIS in Gaza

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 07 July 2015 12:28
Egypt-IDF to Strike ISIS in GazaAn Egyptian source has revealed that if after launching a brutal attack in Sinai the Islamic State (ISIS) terror group approaches Gaza, President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi may "invite" the IDF to strike it.
 
The source, who is "familiar with Egypt's decision-making process," told Haaretz on Thursday that Sisi may give the green light given that Gaza falls under Israel's responsibility.
 
"The two armies may already be coordinating in preparation for such a possibility," revealed the source. "The Egyptian problem is that a military campaign inside Gaza could lead to breaking down the fences and a mass flight of civilians from Gaza to Sinai."
 
The statement comes after Sinai Province, ISIS's affiliate in the region, conducted a massive coordinated string of attacks on Wednesday that left over 50 Egyptian soldiers dead.
 
Sinai Province, which was formerly Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis before swearing allegiance to ISIS and changing its name, has reportedly captured the Sinai town of Sheikh Zuweid and has mined the roads to block Egyptian forces from entering.
 
ISIS may spread its control to the city of El Arish, and thereby encroach on Gaza, leading to the potential cooperation between Egypt and the IDF.
 
In a video on Tuesday, ISIS threatened to topple Hamas, and likewise threatened the "state of the Jews."
 
Egypt has been willing in the past to confront Hamas, which is a Gazan offshoot of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood that Sisi's government has violently been putting down.
 
Aside from imposing a siege on Gaza, Egypt has evacuated over 2,000 homes on the Gaza border in occupying part of southern Gaza and creating a buffer zone to block the smuggling of arms between Hamas and Sinai terrorists.
 
Haaretz notes that many of the Gazan evacuees, who were not compensated for their demolished homes or offered alternative housing, have moved to El Arish and Sheikh Zuweid, and may be tempted to join forces with ISIS, which pays comfortable wages to its members.

New PLO Unity Government Talks 'Reach Impasse'

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 02 July 2015 09:38
Senior Hamas Fatah officials celebrate unity deal in Gaza -ReutersThe saga continues as the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) negotiations with Hamas and Islamic Jihad continue to sputter in their attempts to form a new unity government, after Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas dissolved the last dysfunctional government earlier this month.
 
Azzam al-Ahmad, a senior head of Abbas's Fatah faction and the leader of the PLO committee holding talks with Hamas, told the Palestinian Arab Ma'an News Agency on Monday night that talks have "reached an impasse," and that a meeting will be held with Abbas and all PLO members Tuesday to discuss the deadlock.
 
The talks, which started Saturday, were meant to form a new government consisting of factional leaders instead of technocrats.
 
But according to Hamas spokesperson Sami Abu Zuhri, who responded Monday to al-Ahmad's claims of an "impasse," the talks haven't really begun beyond "some phone calls."
 
"All that happened were some phone calls in which Fatah tried to impose its doctrines based on its false delusion that it owns the Palestinian people, and that it alone can decide whatever it wants regarding the Palestinian issue," said Zuhri.
 
The Hamas spokesperson added that it was "silly" for Fatah to think it could impose conditions on Hamas.
 
Al-Ahmad's announcement of an "impasse" came after senior Hamas leader Moussa Abu Marzouk said earlier on Monday that it was "unacceptable" that the PLO is being tasked with forming a new unity government.
 
He called for any new government to be a "non-political" entity, conducting various missions determined by the different factions, and said it was "unacceptable that the government adopts the agenda of the PLO."
 
Responding to Marzouk, al-Ahmad said he had receive contradicting messages from the Hamas leader since talks started on Saturday.
 
According to al-Ahmad, Marzouk at the beginning said in a phone conversation that Hamas supports a non-political government, but later added conditions conflicting with that position.
 
Marzouk demonstrated a "lack of seriousness" in forming a new government according to al-Ahmad, who said he doubted a unity government would actually be formed.
 
Hamas and Fatah have remained bitter rivals despite the rapprochement agreement signed last April which torpedoed peace talks between the PA and Israel. Just last summer Hamas staged a coup in Judea and Samaria to oust the PA, in an attempt that was thwarted by the IDF.

PLO Holds Unity Government Talks With Hamas, Islamic Jihad

Category: News
Created on Monday, 29 June 2015 23:18
Unity Government Talks With Hamas Islamic JihadA Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) committee launched talks with Hamas and Islamic Jihad on Saturday with the objective of forming a new unity government, after Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas dissolved the dysfunctional previous one earlier this month.
 
PLO Executive Committee member Hanna Amireh told the Palestinian Arab Ma'an News Agency about the talks, and said that they were meant to include the two terrorist organizations in the new government.
 
The move comes despite the fact that Abbas told French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius last Sunday that Hamas should not be included in the new government.
 
Amireh said that if talks with Hamas fail, a government headed by an individual of Abbas's selection could be formed without the group.
 
The PA torpedoed the last round of peace talks by sealing a rapprochement deal with its rival Hamas last April, showing how its goals are aligned with the organization that has the genocide of all Jews written into its charter.
 
Hamas is for or against?
 
Hamas gave conditional approval of a new government formed by the PLO but including Hamas and Islamic Jihad members, according to Amireh on Saturday.
 
However, Hamas released a statement Friday saying the PLO "isn't the right body to form a government."
 
"In light of what has been circulated about the PLO’s Executive Committee tasking Azzam al-Ahmad with conducting consultations over the formation of a new government, Hamas calls upon all factions signatories of the Cairo agreement to start comprehensive dialogue," Hamas added.
 
Al-Ahmad, a senior official of Abbas's Fatah faction, has been tasked with heading the committee and given a week to hold the talks, although Amireh said a time extension will likely be required.
 
Hamas has sharply criticized Fatah's unilateral decision to cut short the government, although the outgoing unity government has yet to officially tender its resignation.
 
The unity agreement signed last April sought to end seven years of bad blood between Abbas's Fatah movement and Hamas, but the sides have continued to quarrel over many issues and have even seen a string of assassination attempts targeting officials on both sides.
 
A new government is likely to consist of a different structural arrangement, including leaders of various factions as opposed to technocrats.
 
The rivalry between the secular Arab nationalist Fatah and Islamist Hamas exploded in 2007, when the latter, having won a majority of the votes in 2006 elections which was Gaza's first, and last democratic poll, carried out a bloody and violent purge of Fatah officials and fighters in the coastal enclave.

PA Unity PM Hands Resignation to Abbas

Category: Reports
Created on Thursday, 18 June 2015 13:42
abbasThe Palestinian Authority (PA) unity government of Hamas and Fatah was said to be on the brink of resigning Wednesday in a deepening rift with Gaza as its de facto rulers Hamas hold separate, indirect talks with Israel.
 
A Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) official said the government of technocrats formed last year to replace rival administrations in Gaza and Judea-Samaria would be dissolved sometime on Wednesday.
 
He said it would likely be replaced with a government of politicians.
 
Those words were given concrete action on Wednesday afternoon when unity government prime minister Rami Hamdallah tendered his resignation to Abbas, according to Al Arabiya.
 
Officials have said the move had been under discussion for several months because of the cabinet's inability to operate in the Hamas-dominated coastal enclave of Gaza.
 
But Hamas rejected any unilateral dissolution of the unity government.
 
PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas was quoted as telling members of his Fatah movement on Monday that the dissolution would go ahead within 24 hours.
 
"It will be sometime today," the PLO official told AFP on condition of anonymity.
 
"The government will continue to function until we have a new one...I think what's coming now is the formation of a government with politicians, not a government of technocrats."
 
Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri, however, said the Islamist movement had not been consulted and that it opposed any unilateral dissolution of the government.
 
"Hamas rejects any one-sided change in the government without the agreement of all parties," Zuhri told AFP.
 
"No one told us anything about any decision to change and no one consulted with us about any change in the unity government. Fatah acted on its own in all regards."
 
Senior Hamas official Ziad al-Zaza, however, struck a more conciliatory note, calling on Abbas "to form a unity government with all national and Islamic factions to face Israeli occupation."
 
Abbas reaction to Hamas talks
 
The move comes at an important time, with Hamas sources saying it is holding separate, indirect talks with Israel on ways to firm up an informal ceasefire agreement that took hold last August, ending the terror group's latest war against Israel.
 
It was not clear whether Abbas's announcement was linked to the talks, but the PLO official said he believed that it played a role in the decision.
 
"If you end up having a different kind of status for Gaza, then basically the idea of a Palestinian state completely disappears," the official said.
 
Another high-ranking Hamas official said he believed Abbas decided to act after receiving word of the indirect contacts.
 
"When Mahmoud Abbas heard of international envoys taking part in talks to solve the (Gaza) crisis, it caught him off guard, then he took that decision," Bassem Naim told AFP.
 
"He felt there was a possibility that a solution be found without the (Palestinian) Authority being involved."
 
The indirect talks are said to have gone through a number of Arab and European channels.
 
A Hamas source said senior members of the Islamist movement had met in Doha over the weekend for talks with the Qataris, with discussions about an agreement of five to ten years.
 
The source said they focused on key issues for Hamas such as ending Israel's "blockade," which has been allowing goods in on a daily basis, and the establishment of a sea passage between Gaza and the outside world, which Israel warns would pave the way for massive weapons smuggling.
 
He did not say whether other Palestinian Arab factions were involved in the talks, such as Abbas's Fatah movement, which was heavily involved in the Egyptian-brokered talks that ended the 2014 conflict.
 
An Abbas spokesman had on Tuesday said a truce that ended the suffering in Gaza would be welcomed, but added that it "must not have as its price a move away from the Palestinian and national consensus."
 
The PA unity agreement signed last April, which torpedoed PA peace talks with Israel, sought to end seven years of bad blood between Fatah and Hamas but was dysfunctional from the start.

Truce or Rearming? Hamas Doesn't Want Long-term Ceasefire

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 18 June 2015 05:50
Osama HamdanAfter Hamas and Israeli sources both confirmed indirect talks being held to reach a long-term ceasefire deal on Tuesday, a senior Hamas source revealed that a document of ceasefire ideas, drafted by former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair, had been received. Blair served in the past as the Quartet envoy to the Middle East. 
 
The source, Osama Hamdan, is responsible for the international relations of the Hamas terrorist organization.
 
He told the Hamas paper Palestine on Tuesday that the organization's leadership is currently debating the ideas outlined in the document, and that Hamas is demanding clear guarantees from Israel that it will implement the ceasefire sealed last August 26 after Operation Protective Edge.
 
Hamdan rejected the notion that Hamas is ready for a ten-year ceasefire, and generally ruled out a long-term ceasefire.
 
However, the group is ready for a agreement on "quiet" in return for a removal of the Israeli "blockade" of Gaza, he said, indicating the group's desire to continue covertly rebuilding its depleted weapons stockpiles.
 
The "blockade" is partial at best, seeing as hundreds of trucks carry goods into Gaza every day, despite the security checks. 
 
Hamdan stated that the terrorist organization reserves the right to "respond" at the time and manner of their choosing to any Israeli breach of the agreement.
 
Western states are aware that the situation in Gaza is liable to spin out of control and are therefore interested in a solution, he said, noting how the West is pressing for a ceasefire agreement.
 
Hamdan also emphasized that Hamas demands that an agreement include the opening of all border crossings to Gaza, as well as an opening of the Gaza port which Israel has warned would allow an unchecked influx of weapons to the terror group.
 
Hamas has already been busily siphoning off construction materials to rebuild its terrorist attack tunnels into Israel, and has likewise been developing its domestic missile program to prepare for its next attack on the Jewish state.

Israeli Source Confirms 'Indirect Contacts' with Hamas

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 18 June 2015 04:22
Hamas-chief-Khaled-Meshaal-L-and-senior-Hamas-leader-Ismail-HaniyehAn Israeli source confirmed on Tuesday night there had been indirect contacts between Israel and Hamas, hours after sources in the terrorist group said Israel and Hamas have been holding indirect contacts about ideas for cementing a long-term truce in Gaza.
 
"There are contacts with Egypt and other elements over an easing of the blockade and the entry of materials to Gaza in exchange for quiet," the Israeli source told AFP.
 
"But Hamas is finding it difficult to control Islamic Jihad and other elements in order to do this," he said, referring to the recent flurry of sporadic rocket fire from Gaza, most of which have been claimed by a small Islamic extremist group bent on challenging the ruling Hamas movement.
 
A source with Hamas told AFP earlier that the contacts with Israel have gone through a number of Arab and European channels in a bid to firm up an informal ceasefire agreement that took hold last August, ending a 50-day war in Gaza started when Hamas escalated its rocket attacks on Israeli civilian centers.
 
"There has been indirect contact between Israel and Hamas, messages passed via Arab channels as well as through European and Turkish sources," one of the sources said, describing it as "an indirect exchange of ideas."
 
The Egyptian-brokered truce came into effect on August 26, with the sides pledging to resume indirect contacts within a month to pin down a lasting ceasefire and discuss crunch issues.
 
But the follow-up talks were delayed several times and never formally resumed.
 
"We are ready for an agreement. Hamas wants to solve the problems in Gaza," the source said. But he insisted the contacts were purely informal and that there was no formal initiative or proposal on the table.
 
Tuesday’s report confirms an earlier report from May which said the sides were holding secret negotiations on finding a way to deliver goods more efficiently to Gaza.
 
Those reports described the talks as being directly between Israel and Hamas, and taking place in various European capitals, under the authority of Turkey.
 
Even as it negotiates an extension of the ceasefire, Hamas has been secretly rebuilding its terrorist attack tunnels into Israeli territory and developing its domestic rocket arsenal for its next attack against Israel; last summer's war was the group's third attempt to destroy the Jewish state.

Egyptian Court Upholds Mohammed Morsi Death Sentence

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 17 June 2015 10:28
court upheld the death sentenceAn Egyptian court upheld the death sentence handed down to former President Mohammed Morsi on Tuesday.
 
The sentence was originally given last month, but a final ruling on it had been postponed until June 16 pending consultations with Egypt's Grand Mufti, the country's highest religious authority.
 
Five other leading Islamists from the Muslim Brotherhood - including Brotherhood leader Mohammed Badie - also had their death sentences upheld by the court.
 
In addition to the death sentence ruling, the court also confirmed a lifetime prison sentence for Morsi over charges of espionage on behalf of Hamas and other foreign terrorist groups.
 
Morsi's was sentenced to death along with dozens of others over a mass jailbreak during the 2011 uprising against the rule of his predecessor, Hosni Mubarak. 
 
In 2012, Morsi was elected president, but was deposed just one year later by yet another popular uprising, backed by the Egyptian military.
 
Egypt's current leadership, headed by President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi, has cracked down hard on Islamist groups, including the Muslim Brotherhood and its Palestinian branch - Hamas - accusing them of fomenting armed rebellions against the government, particularly in the restive Sinai Peninsula, which borders Israel.

Hamas Accuses PA over Gaza Bombings

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 13 June 2015 16:02
PA Gaza BombingsThe interior ministry of the Hamas terrorist organization government in Gaza has accused sources in the Palestinian Authority (PA) of being behind a string of bombings that have plagued the coastal enclave in recent weeks.
 
The Hamas ministry claimed political and security sources in the PA were behind the explosions, and that they had launched the attacks to try and destabilize security in the Hamas terror stronghold, reports Yedioth Aharonoth.
 
Despite the unity deal signed between Hamas and the PA last April, tensions have remained high between the two rivals, with Fatah and Hamas officials in Gaza, Judea and Samaria becoming targets in mysterious assassination attempts over recent months.
 
As for the bombings, not only have Hamas training camps and the Hamas security headquarters been targeted, but so has been the Gaza home of PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, casting some doubt as to the PA's role in the attacks.
 
Despite the accusations against the PA - whose Fatah party members are closely monitored in Gaza - a more likely culprit is the growing number of Salafist-jihadist factions intent on challenging Hamas's rule.
 
Indeed, in recent weeks Hamas arrested scores of Salafists in Gaza, claiming that they were involved in the bombings. 
 
Those arrests have accompanied an uptick in tensions between local Salafist groups affiliated with Islamic State (ISIS) and Hamas, and last month led to an ISIS-affiliate in the Sinai Peninsula claiming it launched two "bombs" at Hamas posts in Gaza.
 
ISIS has been building its power in Gaza, and has threatened to destroy Hamas and replace it, for what it sees as Hamas's refusal to fully implement Islamic law (Sharia) in Gaza and accepting a ceasefire in hostilities with Israel.

Hamas Blames Israel for Defending Itself From Rockets

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 07 June 2015 19:52
HAMAS ROCKETSThe IAF airstrikes in response to Wednesday's rocket attack from Gaza that targeted Israeli cities is being denounced by the Hamas terrorist organization, which blames Israel of "aggressiveness" in defending itself.
 
Senior Hamas official Ismail Radwan said Hamas had turned to Egypt and other international sources demanding that they force Israel to maintain the ceasefire agreement sealed after last summer's Hamas terror war, which Gaza has already breached in several rocket attacks such as the one that prompted Wednesday's response.
 
Radwan blamed Israel completely for last summer's escalation, even though Operation Protective Edge was launched after Hamas cranked up its steady trickle of rocket fire to a torrent of hundreds of missiles within days necessitating the operation.
 
Wednesday's attack was claimed by an Islamic State (ISIS) affiliate Salafist group in Gaza, which said it had fired the rockets that led to an Israeli counter strike as an act of revenge for the death of a Salafist leader affiliated with ISIS, who on Tuesday was shot dead by Hamas forces in Gaza City as they tried to arrest him and he allegedly opened fire on them.
 
Mere minutes after the attack a senior Hamas source reportedly contacted Israel via Egypt, saying that the ISIS-affiliated Salafists had launched the attack to try and provoke conflict between Hamas and Israel.
 
Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon (Likud) responded to the message on Thursday, saying, "even if those firing on Israeli territory are gangs of rebels from global jihad organizations interested in challenging Hamas by firing at us, we view Hamas as responsible for the goings-on in the (Gaza) Strip, and we won't tolerate attempts to harm our citizens."
 
Hamas is said not to be interested in another conflict with Israel at the current stage, and instead is focusing on rebuilding its terrorist infrastructure including attack tunnels and domestic rocket production in ongoing missile tests.
 
In parallel Hamas is engaging in a diplomatic push for recognition; earlier this week Israel condemned the UN's decision to recognize a Hamas front group NGO.

ISIS Threatens to Destroy 'Heretical Hamas'

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 02 June 2015 10:28
ISIS Threatens to Destroy Heretical HamasA group that is operating in Gaza and which says it is associated with ISIS has claimed that it killed a top Hamas commander. According to the group, which calls itself the Army of the Islamic State, Saber Siam was killed when ISIS operatives placed a bomb on his car, blowing it up with him inside.
 
Siam was killed, the group said, because he was “a partner in a declared war against religion and against Muslims, working for the heretical government in Gaza.” ISIS warned Hamas to immediately “end its war against religion in Gaza” or “face the consequences.”
 
The group also sent out warnings on social media to Gaza residents to stay away from Hamas offices and buildings, lest they find themselves swept up in attacks against the group.
 
It was not possible to verify whether the group was associated with ISIS, or whether it even actually exists. However, Israeli sources confirmed that Hamas has been conducting actions against a group of Salafist rebels it accuses of trying to take over Gaza.

Gaza Terrorists Taught Tunnel Tactics to Syria Rebels

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 26 May 2015 10:02
Tunnel Tactics to Syria RebelsA powerful Syrian rebel faction has for the first time openly revealed that its forces were taught how to dig attack tunnels by Islamist terrorists in Gaza.
 
In a report for the pro-opposition Orient TV posted online earlier this month and translated by MEMRI, a reporter is given a tour of a tunnel dug by Ahrar al-Sham - an Islamist rebel faction which often fights alongside Al Qaeda's Nusra Front, and is considered one of the most prominent and powerful rebel forces in Syria.
 
The tunnel is located in Idlib province, where a rebel coalition including Ahrar al-Sham, called the "Army of Conquest," recently scored a series of victories against regime forces, seizing most of Idlib including its provincial capital.
 
{youtube}gEf8SnP011w{/youtube}
 
During the report, a grinning rebel commander shows off a huge stash of explosives packed in the tunnel, and boasts of an imminent "earthquake" when the explosives - located beneath a regime position - are detonated.
 
Explaining how his forces managed such an impressive technical feat, the commander says: "We asked for the advice of our brothers in Gaza... They even sent me a video, and we did it exactly the way they do it."
 
Syrian rebels have repeatedly employed attack tunnels to strike at regime forces throughout the country, detonating tons of explosives under positions including command centers and other concentrations of pro-regime troops.
 
The rebel commander does not say which Gazan terrorist group he contacted, but reports Hamas was training Sunni rebels in Syria - and specifically instructing them on how to dig attack tunnels - first surfaced in 2013. An article in the UK's Times newspaper cited Syrian opposition sources who claimed that "several hundred" Hamas terrorists were operating out of the numerous Palestinian Arab "refugee camps" in Syria, and transferring their skills honed in warfare with Israel with their Syrian rebel counterparts.
 
The reports were contentious due to Hamas's complicated relationship with Damascus, and elicited a quick denial by Hamas at the time. Today, rebel factions linked to Hamas operate openly in places such as the Yarmouk camp on the outskirts of Damascus.
 
The confirmation that Syrian rebels are targeting Assad regime forces with tactics learned from groups such as Hamas and Islamic Jihad in Gaza contains no small measure of irony.
 
Those two factions - who control the Gazan tunnel network - are both funded, trained and equipped by Assad's key ally Iran.
 
But Tehran is also the key backer of the Assad regime, and many of the fighters targeted in rebel tunnel attacks belong to militias directly supported or even commanded by Iran, including Tehran's most important regional proxy Hezbollah.

Blast in Gaza 'Training Camp' Wounds at Least 50

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 16 May 2015 11:51
Blast in Gaza Training CampAt least 50 Palestinian Arabs were wounded in a blast that occurred Thursday inside a training camp for terrorists in Gaza, Hamas officials, medics and witnesses said, according to AFP.
 
"An explosion happened inside a post of the resistance in Beit Lahya," said interior ministry spokesman Iyad al-Bozum, in reference to the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas’s so-called “military wing”.
 
The health ministry spokesman in Gaza, Ashraf al-Qudra, said the blast wounded 50 people, five of them in a serious condition, and including children.
 
Witnesses said the blast took place inside a training camp of the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades in northern Gaza, where Hamas is the de facto power.
 
A doctor in the enclave, Baker Abu Safia of Al-Awda Hospital, said 30 wounded people were brought to his establishment, most of them women and children.
 
He said the hospital "declared a state of emergency" after the explosion took place.
 
The cause of the explosion is not yet known nor is it known who is behind it, but it comes one week after  a Salafist group in Gaza that is affiliated with ISIS threatened to kill Hamas members “one by one” in retaliation for the arrests of its members.
 
Last Friday, those threats appeared to be edging to fruition, after an ISIS-affiliate in the Sinai Peninsula claimed it launched two "bombs" at Hamas posts in Gaza.
 
There have also been explosions in Gaza related to the failed Hamas-Fatah reconciliation pact, as the sides continue to quarrel despite forming a unity government last year.
 
In addition, there have been “work accidents” in the region, involving terrorists who are in the midst of preparing an explosive device.

ISIS in Sinai Claims Attack on Hamas in Gaza

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 13 May 2015 20:27
ISIS in SinaiIslamic State's (ISIS) threats to declare war on Hamas in Gaza after the latter began a crackdown on local Salafist groups appears to be edging to fruition, after an ISIS-affiliate in the Sinai Peninsula on Friday claimed launching two "bombs" - reportedly 82 mm mortar shells - at Hamas posts in Gaza.
 
Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, which earlier this year swore loyalty to ISIS and changed its name to Sinai Province, claimed credit for the attack on a military post of Hamas's "military wing," the Al-Qassam Brigades in Khan Younis, located in southern Gaza.
 
The ISIS forces said they conducted the attack due to Hamas's actions towards Salafists in Gaza, reports Walla!.
 
They warned in a message to Gaza residents: "distance yourself from military and security posts and guard your lives." To the Salafists currently jailed by Hamas, who reportedly have been tortured, they wrote, "we will not give up on saving you."
 
Corroborating the claimed attack, witnesses told AFP they heard explosions close to Khan Younis.
 
But Hamas was in denial, with the spokesperson of its interior ministry Iyad al-Bozum denying to AFP any mortar fire and saying the claim of an attack is "baseless."
 
On Wednesday clashes were reported after Hamas demolished a Salafist mosque, arresting 40 members of the Salafist organization "Islamic State Supporters in Bayt Al-Maqdis."
 
The Hamas move was said to be a response to ISIS's assault on the Palestinian Arab Yarmouk neighborhood in Damascus, during which a senior Hamas official and other members of the group were beheaded.
 
In response to the demolition and arrests, ISIS in Gaza warned Hamas it had 72 hours to release them or else it would kill all of Hamas's personnel one by one.
 
The latest escalation comes after an explosion hit the Hamas general security headquarters in Gaza on Monday, with Salafists claiming credit and saying it was a response to the arrests and torture of Salafists in the Hamas stronghold.

Explosion Rocks Hamas Security Headquarters

Category: Reports
Created on Sunday, 10 May 2015 10:52
Hamas Security HeadquartersResidents of Gaza report that an explosion occurred on Monday at the Hamas general security headquarters.
 
According to the reports, which were cited by Yedioth Aharonoth, the blast was the work of Salafists who are demanding the release of several Salafist prisoners being held by Hamas.
 
The Salafist group Salafist Trend on Saturday accused Hamas of torturing the jailed Salafists, and of monitoring and cracking down on other members of the group, threatening Hamas that they must release the prisoners or face consequences.
 
"Once again we ask the wise people of Gaza to stop the ongoing Hamas criminality and abusive detention of our brothers before it's too late," read the Salafist statement. 
 
According to the report Monday, a group of activists published an announcement before the blast, stating "we give Hamas 72 hours to release all the prisoners." It remains unclear if the group of activists referred to in the report is the same Salafist Trend group.
 
Last month Hamas arrested Salafists who it claimed contacted Islamic State (ISIS), which has been growing a presence in Gaza, Judea and Samaria.
 
In the Salafist Trend statement, the group said it "has details about what is going on inside the detention cells of the interior security service, including names of the criminal interrogators who torture and insult our people."
 
Other than the prison guards, it said it has the names of security officers it says are monitoring Salafist supporters and raiding their homes, warning, "those also won't escape punishment, sooner or later," in a threat to the Hamas security forces.
 
In the background of the Salafist position in Gaza is the rivalry between Hamas and the Fatah faction which leads the Palestinian Authority (PA).
 
Reportedly Fatah views the Salafist movement as a counter-force to Hamas and has been supporting it, given that despite a unity agreement last April, Fatah and Hamas have only escalated in enmity recently. Hamas ousted Fatah from Gaza in 2007 after overwhelmingly winning in elections.
 
Aside from the Salafists, many in Gaza are feeling animosity towards Hamas over the organization stealing much-needed building materials, siphoning off the materials to build its terror tunnel infrastructure.

Hamas Accused of Torturing Salafists in Jail

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 10 May 2015 10:13
Egyptian Salafi leaderHamas has been accused of torturing members of a Salafist group in Gaza who are being held in jail, while monitoring and cracking down on other supporters of the group throughout its stronghold.
 
A statement by the Salafist Trend group on Saturday threatened Hamas that if it didn't release the members being tortured in prison, it would suffer the consequences, reports the Palestinian Arab Ma'an News Agency.
 
"Once again we ask the wise people of Gaza to stop the ongoing Hamas criminality and abusive detention of our brothers before it's too late," read the Salafist statement. The Salafist movement of Sunni Islam is characterized by its strict observance of Islamic Sharia law.
 
The accusation against Hamas and its prison system puts the group in a somewhat ironic position given how Hamas has long claimed its terrorists are "mistreated" in Israeli jails, despite the fact that despite their crimes they actually receive numerous perks and preferential treatment.
 
Salafist Trend said it "has details about what is going on inside the detention cells of the interior security service, including names of the criminal interrogators who torture and insult our people."
 
It warned that aside from the Hamas prison guards, it has the names of security officers it says are monitoring Salafist supporters and raiding their homes, threatening, "those also won't escape punishment, sooner or later."
 
The Salafist movement in Gaza has reportedly received the support of the Fatah faction which leads the Palestinian Authority (PA), and which views it as a potential counter-force to Hamas in Gaza.
 
In this way the position of the Salafists gives expression to the massive rivalry between Fatah and Hamas, which despite a unity agreement last April has only escalated in enmity recently.
 
Hamas violently seized power and ousted Fatah from Gaza in 2007 after overwhelmingly winning in elections.

Hamas 'Nakba' Rally at Terror Base on Israeli Border

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 10 May 2015 09:56
Hamas terrorist in Gaza fileThe "refugee" department of the Hamas terrorist movement will on Tuesday at 5 p.m. hold a massive rally marking 67 years to the "Nakba" - the "catastrophe" of the establishment of modern Israel, and the inability of the Arab countries to destroy the fledgling renascent Jewish state.
 
The massive rally is to be held at the "Palestine" terrorist training site located in Beit Lahiya adjacent to the border between Gaza and Israel in the northern part of Gaza.
 
Abdallah Hasuna, director of the "refugee" department which is tasked with handling descendants of the Arab residents of Israel who left during the 1948 War of Independence, noted this would be the first time a massive event was held at a base associated with Hamas's "military wing," the Al-Qassam Brigades.
 
Hasuna said by holding the mass rally at the terrorist base there was a message emphasizing the path of the "struggle of the Palestinian people." 
 
"The popular support for the struggle will continue to be the backing for it until all of our occupied lands are liberated," he stated.
 
The "Nakba" event is to be managed by Fathi Hamad, a senior member of the Hamas movement who served as interior minister in the Hamas government, and who during his term in office was responsible for the Hamas security forces including the Al-Qassam Brigades.
 
Senior Hamas officials are to take part in the event, and it is likewise to include a military parade by the Al-Qassam Brigades.
 
Telescopes are to be set up for those present to see "the lands occupied since 1948."
 
The Hamas terrorist organization aren't the only ones marking the "Nakba" - during Israeli Independence Day last month, thousands of Arab citizens of Israel mourned the "Nakba" in the Galilee, mourning the establishment of the state they are citizens of.

End of 'Unity'? PA Unity Govt. Cuts Contact With Hamas

Category: News
Created on Monday, 27 April 2015 09:55
Terrorist leadersThe unity government fraught with high tensions since being formed between Hamas and the leading Palestinian Authority (PA) faction Fatah last April appears to be closer then ever to a collapse, as the unity government cut contact with Hamas on Sunday.
 
PA unity government Labor Minister Mamoun Abu Shahla told the Palestinian Arab Ma'an News Agency on Sunday that the move has come as part of the fallout after a unity government delegation was allegedly held hostage in their hotel during a visit to Gaza last Monday.
 
The delegation, which had arrived on Sunday and left almost immediately after while charging Hamas with not allowing them to visit ministry headquarters to sort out a wage dispute, included eight unity government ministers.
 
According to Abu Shahla, "there has been no contact between the government and Hamas since the return of the ministerial delegation, which was unable to achieve its aims due to restrictions imposed by Hamas."
 
"The actions of Hamas during the delegation's visit will not go unnoticed and certainly there will be consequences," threatened the minister.
 
Abu Shahla warned that there is no reason to think the rapidly widening gaps between the PA and Hamas can be patched up, indicating that the growing tensions may be quickly leading Fatah and Hamas to the point of no return.
 
He added that unity government Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah's planned visit to Gaza this week will likely be cancelled amid the growing hostilities.
 
"Hamdallah was scheduled to visit Gaza tomorrow after returning from Indonesia, but there is currently no talk of the visit," said Abu Shahla, noting that future steps vis-a-vis Gaza are to be discussed during a government meeting next Tuesday.
 
Heading back to open warfare?
 
The latest brouhaha in Gaza revolves around a topic that has been a source of tension since PA chairman and Fatah head Mahmoud Abbas torpedoed peace talks with Israel last year by signing the unity agreement with Hamas - namely Hamas's demand that the unity government pay the wages of its employees.
 
Hamas wants payment for its 50,000 public workers, who were hired in 2007 when the organization violently seized control of Gaza after having resoundingly won in elections.
 
Those employees took the place of 70,000 PA employees in Gaza who continue to be paid by the PA, and who the unity government insists should return to their posts, with Hamas employees being retained "according to need." It has been estimated that the PA has avoided paying the Hamas salaries, fearing that paying the wages of members of an internationally recognized terrorist group may harm its own international funding.
 
After the incident last week with the delegation leaving Gaza early, Islamic Jihad spokesperson Daoud Shihab said the "crisis and the issue is bigger and deeper than the unity government."
 
The spokesperson of the Gaza-based terrorist group said the problem is that "each side interprets agreement based on personal and factional opinion."
 
Illustrating the depth of that "crisis" has been a series of assassination attempts and bombings targeting Fatah and Hamas officials both in Gaza as well as Judea and Samaria, in what appears to be a growing resurgence of violent conflict between the two factions.
 
As the tensions threaten to spill over again between Hamas and Fatah, a surprising Hamas victory at a student election at Birzeit University outside Ramallah last week, traditionally a stronghold of Fatah, indicates how the Gaza-based offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood has strong backing even in the stomping ground of the PA seat of government in Samaria.

Haniyeh: Hamas Will Continue 'Armed Resistance' Against Israel

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 23 April 2015 08:54
Ismail HaniyehFlashHamas deputy leader Ismail Haniyeh has declared that his movement would continue to use “armed resistance” against Israel, reports the Ma’an news agency.
 
"Hamas negotiates with the enemy with arms, not talks," Haniyeh said during a press conference, held Thursday, in honor Palestinian Prisoner's Day and the death of Hamas co-founder Abd al-Aziz al-Rantisi.
 
Al-Rantisi was killed by Israeli forces in 2004 along with his 27-year-old son, a body guard, and four bystanders in Gaza.
 
Hamas is committed to its principles and visions and prisoners will not be forgotten, Haniyeh added, according to Ma’an.
 
His remarks came after senior Hamas official Khalil al-Haya called for the abduction of Israelis, who would be used to release terrorists held by the Jewish state.
 
"We tell the Zionist enemy: you are all a target for us and the resistance, we will fight you until we finally get rid of you and take as many captives as possible to free our heroes," he said.
 
"Our men, our women, our children all envision kidnapping your soldiers and settlers, wherever they are," he added, "and it is our right because we have no other way to free our heroes, and it is the Zionist enemy responsible for this state of affairs."
 
 Haya said jailed terrorists should "rest assured" because terror groups led by Hamas's military wing Al-Qassam Brigades "will release you as they did your brothers" in 2011.
 
The year refers to when Israel released 1,027 Arab terrorists, many with blood on their hands, is in return for captive soldier Gilad Shalit. Many of those terrorists immediately returned to murdering Israelis.

Hamas Threatens Abduction of 'All Israelis' to Free Terrorists

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 21 April 2015 23:08
al-Haya Ahmed al-MudalalA senior Hamas official in Gaza called on Thursday for the abduction of Israelis, who would be used to release terrorists held by the Jewish state.
 
"We tell the Zionist enemy: you are all a target for us and the resistance, we will fight you until we finally get rid of you and take as many captives as possible to free our heroes," said Khalil al-Haya, whose Islamist terror group de facto rules the enclave.
 
"Our men, our women, our children all envision kidnapping your soldiers and settlers, wherever they are," he said on the eve of "Prisoners Day" which Palestinian Arabs set for April 17. This year it comes a day after Holocaust Remembrance Day.
 
"And it is our right because we have no other way to free our heroes, and it is the Zionist enemy responsible for this state of affairs," Haya told hundreds of Palestinian Arabs listening.
 
Haya said jailed terrorists should "rest assured" because terror groups led by Hamas's military wing Al-Qassam Brigades "will release you as they did your brothers" in 2011.
 
The year refers to when Israel released 1,027 Arab terrorists, many with blood on their hands, is in return for captive soldier Gilad Shalit. Many of those terrorists immediately returned to murdering Israelis.
 
Ahmed al-Mudalal of the Islamic Jihad terror group in Gaza promised the rally that "the resistance will not falter until Israeli prisons are emptied of their Palestinian prisoners."

Child Soldiers: Hamas Unveils its Youngest 'Terror Tot'

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 21 April 2015 08:01
Child SoldiersHamas evidently wanted to leave no doubts that when it comes to implementing its jihadist genocidal goals of wiping out the Jewish people by all terrorist means at its disposal, age is no barrier - and that brainwashing works all the better the younger you start.
 
Hamas's Ministry of Interior, which is part of its "governmental branch" that some in the international arena have sought to give legitimacy, posted a photo shoot on its official Facebook page last Friday, unveiling a tiny child soldier of the terror group.
 
The little boy, no older than five, is seen in full military fatigues holding an actual automatic rifle, with the accompanying text reading "these are our lion cubs.We have brought them up on the love of Jihad and Shahada (martyrdom-death)," as translated by Palestinian Media Watch (PMW).
 
Hamas touts its child soldier Palestinian Media Watch
Hamas's Ministry of Interior is in fact part of the unity government formed between the group and the Palestinian Authority (PA) last year, after they reached a unity agreement in April. In practice, the two bodies have been acting independently with the rival factions continuing to feud.
 
PMW has in the past revealed how the PA's leading Fatah faction enforces the same brainwashing of children to embrace "martyrdom," namely dying while conducting a terrorist attack.
 
The Fatah Culture and Information Commission in January released a statement on the official WAFA news agency, reading "we believe that martyrdom-death (Istish'had) for Palestine is a destiny we assume willingly and serenely, for a free and dignified life for our people in the paradise of the eternal homeland."
 
In encouraging child soldiers to fight for jihad, Hamas and Fatah share a similarity with yet another Arab terrorist organization - Islamic State (ISIS).
 
ISIS has entire child soldier brigades dubbed the "Cubs of the Caliphate."
  
ISIS's own "cubs" are regularly sent to take part in intelligence-gather and suicide missions - and have even carried out executions, including beheadings.

Senior Hamas Official: Abbas Has No Legitimacy to Lead PA

Category: News
Created on Friday, 17 April 2015 20:05
Mahmoud al-Zahar0The war of words between Hamas and Fatah is heating up, as a senior Hamas official asserted that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas had forfeited his legitimacy to lead.
 
In an article published in the Hamas journal "Palestine", senior official Mahmoud Al-Zahar accused Abbas of "treachery" over the PA's security cooperation with the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), saying that that - along with the fact that Abbas's term as "president" expired years ago - rendered him illegitimate to rule PA-held territory.
 
In the article, published Friday April 11, Zahar branded Abbas an "embarrassment" to the Palestinian Arab population and called on him to end security cooperation with Israel.
 
Responding to claims Hamas was interested in establishing its own official "Palestinian state" in Gaza, Zahar asserted that neither Gaza nor the "West Bank" (Judea and Samaria) were sufficient for the Islamist group, which aspires to destroy the State of Israel in its entirety.
 
"If we succeed in setting up a government in Gaza, autonomy, civil administration or any other framework on a portion of the land of Palestine (sic), that does not mean that we give up on one other grain of Palestine," he said.
 
The article is just the latest direct challenge by Zahar, who is among the closest to Iran of Hamas's senior leadership, to Abbas's rule.
 
In an interview just one week previously, he called for the overthrow of the PA administration in Judea and Samaria.

Hamas: No Palestinian State Without Gaza

Category: News
Created on Monday, 06 April 2015 18:56
Ismail Haniyeh0Hamas's deputy politburo chief Ismail Haniyeh, who previously was prime minister of Hamas's government, slammed how Gaza has been marginalized from the peace process after his terrorist group violently seized control of Gaza in 2007 after overwhelmingly winning in elections.
 
Speaking in a telephone speech for a Hamas student rally at Al-Najah National University in Shechem (Nablus) on Sunday, Haniyeh said "the struggle in all its aspects is a strategic choice of the Hamas movement. The struggle has political, military, security, media, legal and public expressions."
 
"There won't be a (Palestinian) state and there won't be any sort of state without Gaza, and there is no existence to a Palestinian state without Al-Quds," said Haniyeh, referencing the Arabic name for Jerusalem.
 
The call for Gaza to be included in peace talks comes as Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas has been calling for renewed talks, after he torpedoed the last set of negotiations last April by signing a unity deal with Hamas - a "unity" that has been fraught with coup attempts and massive in-fighting between the two rivals.
 
There have been many reports of negotiations for a three to five year ceasefire deal between Hamas and Israel, but Ziyad Zaza, also a member of Hamas's political bureau, denied the reports.
 
According to Zaza, the reports consist of statements made by international and local figures, but they haven't reached the level of plans and proposals.
 
Therefore Hamas is not dealing with the topic until concrete proposals are formed, said Zaza, who called for all nations interested in intervening to submit official ceasefire proposals to Hamas.
 
The reports on ceasefire deals were strengthened by the PA, which revealed last month that Israel decided to allow Portland cement into Gaza, reversing its ban on the dual-use materials despite evidence that Hamas is using such materials to rebuild its terror tunnel infrastructure.
 
Leaked documents purportedly from the ceasefire negotiations indicated Hamas was demanding an ease of imports as part of the ceasefire extension.
 
IDF Southern Command head General Sami Turgeman confirmed last week that Hamas has indeed started rebuilding its terror tunnels into Israel meant to attack Israeli civilian centers.

ISIS Beheads Senior Hamas Operative in Syria

Category: Reports
Created on Monday, 06 April 2015 12:29
isis-beheading-syriaAmong the Palestinian Arab fighters beheaded by the Islamic State terrorist group (ISIS) in Damascus's Yarmouk camp was a senior Hamas figure in Syria, according to emerging reports.
 
On Saturday, senior Israel Arab journalist Khaled Abu Toumeh posted a graphic image which appeared to show the severed head of Sheikh Abu Salah Taha, held aloft by an ISIS fighter in Yarmouk.
 
ISIS has been involved in fierce clashes inside the camp since Wednesday, as it seeks to wrest control of it from Palestinian Islamist rebels aligned with Hamas.
 
As of Sunday morning, ISIS were said to be in control of between 50-90% of Yarmouk, according to various reports. The takeover of the camp - located at the southern edge of the Syrian capital - is the closest ISIS has come to the heart of the Assad regime. Even more alarming for the regime are reports that ISIS's Yarmouk offensive was made possible with the cooperation of the Nusra Front, Al Qaeda's official arm in Syria, which until now has been involved in a bloody rivalry of its own with ISIS.
 
Concerns over the possibility of further jihadi advances into Damascus have even reportedly spurred the regime into making the unprecedented move of facilitating military aid to rebels inside the camp to fend off the ISIS assault.
 
Yarmouk has been under siege by government forces for nearly two years, with some 18,000 civilians still trapped inside, and the regime is currently in control of its northernmost areas, to block off any rebel advances further into the capital. Around 2,000 of those remaining civilians have been evacuated over the weekend as the fighting worsens, according to Palestinian sources.
 
Regime airstrikes have also been witnessed in the past several hours, although as yet there is no word on any casualties.
 
Despite that ISIS appears to have the upper hand, and has reportedly set about beheading Palestinian fighters and civilians alike in areas under its control in a grisly campaign of retribution, posting evidence of its atrocities online.

Hamas Official Calls to Overthrow Abbas

Category: News
Created on Monday, 06 April 2015 10:49
Mahmoud al-ZaharAny lingering "honeymoon period" between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority (PA) has ended, more than one year after the "unity government" was announced, with the two rivals re-launching a war of words. 
 
Mahmoud al-Zahar, a member of Hamas's political bureau, said in an interview to Al-Aqsa news agency Friday that PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas did not conduct any elections in the PA, and ergo has lost the legitimacy to rule. 
 
Zahar advocated a Hamas takeover of the PA as the only "real solution" against the "occupation." 
 
He added that the PA's location entails the potential for an "armed struggle," i.e. rocket fire from Gaza. 
 
Zahar also claimed that Israel sent representatives to Gaza in an attempt to sign a cease-fire agreement, citing many of the same claims revealed in an expose last month. Among them: demands for a seaport and airport.

Abbas Calls on Arab States to Attack Hamas

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 31 March 2015 12:17
Abbas0Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas used the platform of the Arab League summit in Sharm el-Shekh, Egypt, this Saturday to attack his "unity partner" Hamas, making a subtle call for the Arab states to take military action against the Gaza-based Muslim Brotherhood offshoot.
 
Speaking at the 26th summit in the southern Sinai peninsula, Abbas made reference to the campaign of airstrikes launched last Thursday by Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries against Iran-backed Shi'ite Houthi rebels in Yemen - the Houthis have overthrown the government while rapidly expanding their control.
 
"I hope that the Arab countries will take the same policy they employed in Yemen for all Arab countries suffering from internal conflict - like Palestine, Syria, Libya and Iraq," Abbas said according to Yedioth Aharonot, in an open jab at Hamas in Gaza. 
 
Making Abbas's comments calling for military intervention in "Palestine" all the more pointed is the fact that just two days earlier, Abbas's adviser on Religious and Islamic Affairs Mahmoud Al-Habbash, who also serves as PA Supreme Sharia (Islamic law) Judge, made similar remarks.
 
Al-Habbash urged the Arab countries to take action and strike Hamas with an "iron fist," in an open call for military intervention.
 
Hamas and the PA signed a unity deal last April, which has done little to damper the enmity raging between the rivals ever since Hamas violently seized control of Gaza in 2007 - the most obvious example of the how the deal has not changed tensions was when Hamas tried to stage a coup against the PA in Judea and Samaria last year.
 
Responding to Al-Habbash, Hamas said the comment is "a dangerous and not nationalist call."
 
Abbas's call for Arab intervention comes after Arab foreign ministers meeting in Egypt last Thursday declared the establishment of a joint Arab military force, reportedly meant to rapidly respond to security threats to Arab nations.
 
Arab League secretary-general Nabil al-Arabi was assigned with coordinating the details with the chiefs of staff of the various Arab armies within one month, so as to work out the logistics of establishing the new force.

Hamas Denounces EU Decision to Keep it on Terror Blacklist

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 29 March 2015 10:55
hamas membersHamas on Friday denounced a European Union decision to keep the group and de facto Gaza ruler on its terrorism blacklist, despite a court ordering its removal.
 
"This decision completely contradicts the court's ruling," Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhum told AFP.
 
"It is unjust and wrong to our people and legitimate resistance, and also encourages the occupation to continue its crimes," he added, referring to Israel.
 
"We reject this decision and call for its review, and to remove all forms of injustice against our people and Hamas," Barhum declared.
 
Brussels has lodged an appeal against a December ruling by the bloc's second highest court that Hamas should be removed from the list for the first time since 2001 - a ruling made the same day the European Parliament overwhelmingly voted “in principle” to recognize Palestinian Arab statehood as an outcome of peace talks.
 
A spokeswoman for the European Council said on Friday Hamas would stay "on list" during the council's appeal process, which is expected to take around a year and a half.
 
Hamas's so-called “military wing” was added to the EU's first-ever terrorism blacklist drawn up in December 2001 in the wake of the September 11 attacks on the United States.
 
The EU then blacklisted the political wing of Hamas in 2003, but the General Court of the European Union ruled last year that the Hamas blacklisting was based not on sound legal judgments but on conclusions derived from the media and the Internet.

Hamas Tells Abbas Elections Spell End of Peace Talks

Category: News
Created on Friday, 20 March 2015 21:10
Ismail Haniyeh0As elections results finalize and signify a resounding victory for Likud, the Hamas terrorist organization that rules Gaza commented on the process.
 
Hamas called on Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas to abandon peace talks with Israel, after the latter previously indicated he would be willing to resume negotiations after the elections.
 
"The results are enough to convince the (Palestinian) Authority to forget a continuation of the absurd peace talks," Hamas stated.
 
The last round of talks, which were prodded onward by US Secretary of State John Kerry, collapsed last April when the PA torpedoed them in sealing a unity deal with Hamas, after previously taking unilateral steps for international recognition in breach of the 1993 Oslo Accords.
 
PA chief negotiator Saeb Erekat on Tuesday night responded to the elections as well, vowing to continue those unilateral breaches of the Accords that formed the PA.
 
"It is clear that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will form the next government, so we say clearly that we will go to the International Criminal Court in the Hague and we will speed up, pursue and intensify" all diplomatic efforts, he told AFP.
 
The PA recently tried to pass a UN Security Council resolution forcing an Israeli withdrawal from Judea and Samaria, which failed to secure enough votes in order to pass.
 
The PA followed up that move by presenting a request to join the International Criminal Court (ICC). Israel responded by freezing the transfer of tax revenues collected for the PA, in response to which Erekat accused Israel of trying to topple the PA.

Hamas Leader on Iran: They Can Liberate 'Palestine'

Category: News
Created on Friday, 20 March 2015 17:48
Mahmoud al-Zahar -ReutersIn a recent television interview translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), senior Hamas leader Mahmoud Al-Zahar defended his group’s ties with Iran.
 
"We have maintained that countries that believe in our ideology and can help us - countries like Iran that believe we are capable of liberating Palestine... These are the countries with which we must develop relations," Al-Zahar said in the interview on the Lebanese Palestine Today TV, which originally aired in February.
 
{youtube}fAUgpGQakgg{/youtube}
 
“We did not join the PLO when it acted against Jordan in 1970, and we did not join its wars in Beirut and against Hafez Al-Assad. We did not join the PLO when it supported one Arab country that occupied another Arab country. To this day, we have never intervened in the internal Arab conflicts, even in countries where we lived, like Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, or elsewhere. We have kept our force directed at the Israeli enemy,” he said.
 
Iran was once a stronger supporter of Hamas, but the two had been at odds in recent years over the uprising against Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad. As a result of Hamas’ refusal to support Assad in the uprising, an angry Iran at one point stopped supplying the terror group with weapons.
 
Nevertheless, the two sides have been getting closer in recent months as Tehran has been clandestinely supplying Hamas with arms and financial support. The speaker of the Iranian parliament, Ali Larijani, recently boasted that Iran provided Hamas with the technology it has used to rain down rockets on Israel from Gaza, and Hamas later thanked Iran for providing the group with the rockets.
 
The Al-Hayat newspaper recently revealed that Hamas leader-in-exile Khaled Mashaal met with Iranian Revolutionary Guards commander Qasem Solemeini, in Turkey, just days after the end of Operation Protective Edge in Gaza over the summer.

Qatar Emir Meets Erdogan in Surprise Visit to Turkey

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 14 March 2015 09:35
Qatar Emir -ErdoganThe emir of Qatar on Thursday met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for surprise talks in the capital Ankara, a Turkish presidential official said.
 
Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani was holding closed-door talks at Erdogan's newly built presidential palace in Ankara, the official told AFP, without elaborating further.
 
The meeting, which was not on Erdogan's official daily schedule, comes amid renewed tensions stemming from the presence of Islamic State (ISIS) terrorists in Iraq and Syria right up to the Turkish border.
 
Turkey and Qatar, both overwhelmingly Sunni Muslim, have emerged as close allies in the last years during the conflict in Syria and Arab Spring uprisings.
 
They have closely aligned their policies on Syria and have also both intensively engaged with Palestinian terror organization Hamas.
 
Qatar has been one of the main supporters of the rebellion against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and has allowed demonstrations against him to be held in its capital, Doha.
 
However, some have accused the country of backing jihadists, a charge denied on several occasions by officials in the oil rich Gulf state, which joined the US-led coalition against ISIS terrorists in Syria and Iraq.
 
Vocal against the regime in Damascus, Turkey has similarly backed opposition rebels fighting to topple Assad and plays host to nearly two million refugees.
 
But it has remained reluctant to take robust action against the ISIS threat in a US-led coalition, further straining ties with Washington, its NATO ally.
 
United States special envoy John Allen, who is coordinating international efforts against ISIS, is due to travel to Ankara this week to meet with Turkish officials after a visit to Italy, the US State Department said in a statement.

Hamas Leader: We'll Respond to Egypt as We Do to Israel

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 05 March 2015 20:16
Salah BardawilDays after a court in Egypt declared Hamas a terrorist organization, one of its leaders on Monday issued a threat against Cairo.
 
The leader, Salah Bardawil, declared that Hamas will not allow the Egyptian regime to touch the Palestinian people and will react to any aggression in the same way it reacts to Israel.
 
“Hamas will not allow the Egyptian regime to assault the Gaza Strip and it will resist against it like it resists against Israel,” he was quoted by the Alresalah newspaper as saying.
 
Bardawil warned that Hamas “will not be subject to the mercy of the Egyptian judges or politicians” and added, "Gaza is not like Libya, and those threatening us will lose their people and nation.”
 
Saturday’s ruling in Egypt was directed at Hamas’s political wing, and it comes after Hamas’s “military wing”, the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, was designated as a terrorist organization by Egypt at the beginning of February.
 
Hamas has been the subject of a crackdown by Egyptian authorities ever since the military ousted former Islamist President Mohammed Morsi.
 
The military-led government that ousted Morsi has cracked down on Hamas, which it accuses of an attack on Egyptian police headquarters, and of planning church bombings in Sinai.
 
Most recently, Egypt accused Hamas of providing the weapons used by terrorists for two lethal attacks in El-Arish in October, in which dozens of soldiers were killed.

Hamas: Egypt a 'Friend of the Israeli Occupation'

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 28 February 2015 21:52
Jihad terrorists in GazaHamas denounced on Saturday night the decision by an Egyptian court to declare it a terrorist organization, accusing Egypt of being “a friend of the Israeli occupation”.
 
According to the statement quoted by the Alresalah newspaper, Hamas said the ruling is “serious and shocking”.
 
The statement added that the ruling targets “the whole Palestinian people as well as the Palestinian resistance, making Egypt a friend of the Israeli occupation and the Palestinian people an enemy.”
 
Saturday’s ruling was directed at Hamas’s political wing, and it comes after Hamas’s “military wing”, the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, was designated as a terrorist organization by Egypt at the beginning of February.
 
Hamas has been the subject of a crackdown by Egyptian authorities ever since the military ousted former Islamist President Mohammed Morsi.
 
The military-led government that ousted Morsi has cracked down on Hamas, which it accuses of an attack on Egyptian police headquarters, and of planning church bombings in Sinai.
 
Most recently, Egypt accused Hamas of providing the weapons used by terrorists for two lethal attacks in El-Arish in October, in which dozens of soldiers were killed.
 
Egypt declared a state of emergency in the Sinai following that attack and began to create a buffer zone along the border with Gaza.

Fatah Official Accuses Hamas of Stabbing Him in Samaria

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 24 February 2015 10:44
Mahmoud Abbas -ReutersAs the "unity partners" of Hamas and Fatah appear to be sliding into war in Gaza, Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas on Saturday tried to downplay the stabbing, a day earlier, of a Fatah official. The official accuses Hamas of trying to assassinate him.
 
"Some people are trying to create chaos but we will not allow anybody to undermine the security and stability of citizens," Abbas said according to the official PA news agency WAFA. "Any individual who took part in this criminal attack will be subject to punishment by law."
 
Before the statement, Abbas spoke with Fatah official Munir al-Jaghoub, who was stabbed numerous times last Friday after prayers outside a mosque in the town of Beita near Shechem (Nablus) in Samaria, reports the Palestinian Arab Ma'an News Agency.
 
After surgery al-Jaghoub's condition stabilized, and while several suspects have been arrested by PA police the identity of the assailants remains shrouded in mystery.
 
However, al-Jaghoub, who is the public information officer of Fatah's recruitment and organization commission, pointed his finger squarely at Hamas for being behind the attempted assassination.
 
"The attempt to murder me is a reproduction in the West Bank of the bloody coup and the state of chaos in the Gaza Strip in 2007," al-Jaghoub said Saturday to local radio station Mawtiny, referencing the violent Hamas conquest of Gaza from Fatah following an overwhelming Hamas victory in elections.
 
Al-Jaghoub said he had filed a complaint against the attackers, saying "those who stabbed me dozens of times are affiliated to the same groups who have been inciting against Fatah in media and electronic websites for months trying to disfigure the movement's image and its national heritage."
 
He further compared the stabbing to the assassinations of Fatah officials leading up to the 2007 overthrow of Fatah by Hamas in Gaza, hinting that Hamas is attempting a repeat performance.
 
The incident comes after another Fatah official survived an assassination attempt in Gaza just last Monday.
 
Mamoon Sweidan, the Fatah official who serves in the Gaza office on foreign relations, said two masked gunmen in a Subaru conducted a drive-by shooting, targeting him as he was getting into his car outside the al-Saadi building in Gaza City where he lives.
 
The official said two of his guards exchanged fire with the would-be assassins, and that both guards were wounded.
 
The assassination attempt caps off a string of numerous car bombings, in which both Fatah and Hamas officials have been targeted in Gaza with their cars set on fire.

Hamas Slams Egyptian Media Over 'Incitement and Deception'

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 22 February 2015 10:03
Hamas spokesman Sami Abu ZuhriHamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri on Saturday slammed what he described as a campaign of "incitement and deception" by a number of Egyptian journalists against the Palestinian people in Gaza.
 
According to the Ma’an news agency, Abu Zuhri denied reports that Palestinian Arabs have been traveling via tunnels into Egypt recently, denouncing what he called a "Zionist-like" network that had spread the rumors and sought to sow discord between Egypt and “Palestine”.
 
All of the tunnels under the border area, he said, have been destroyed and both Egyptian and Palestinian Arab security forces have been guarding both sides of the borders.
 
Similarly, Hamas interior ministry spokesman Iyad al-Buzm denounced the "attempts to accuse the Gaza Strip of (culpability in) the ongoing events in Egypt."
 
Commenting on a report on an Egyptian TV channel Friday evening claiming that gunmen infiltrated Egyptian territory from Gaza, al-Buzm argued that "the channel which circulated the rumor is the same channel which falsely claimed a few days ago that a Palestinian resistance fighter was killed in Sinai."
 
The military-led government that ousted former Egyptian Islamist President Mohammed Morsi has cracked down on Hamas, which it accuses of an attack on Egyptian police headquarters, and of planning church bombings in Sinai.
 
Most recently, Egypt accused Hamas of providing the weapons used by terrorists for two lethal attacks in El-Arish in October, in which dozens of soldiers were killed. Following that attack, Egypt started working on a buffer zone along the border with Gaza, expelling Gazans and destroying their homes in the process.
 
Earlier this month, an Egyptian court blacklisted the so-called “military wing” of Hamas as a terrorist organization.
 
In addition to labeling Hamas a terrorist organization and outlawing it, the Egyptian government has kept the Rafah border sealed completely shut and destroyed underground tunnels that once provided a lifeline for Gaza's 1.8 million people to the outside world, but which have also been used to smuggle terrorists and weapons into Gaza.

Hamas Accuses Tony Blair of Imposing 'Preconditions'

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 21 February 2015 18:16
Tony Blair in IsraelDays after Quartet envoy Tony Blair demanded that Hamas clarify whether it’s an Islamist group or if it is interested in peace, a senior Hamas official on Wednesday accused Blair of imposing “a new set of preconditions before Gaza could be rebuilt.”
 
Blair, who visited Gaza on Sunday, called on Hamas to clarify whether it is part of a "broader Islamist movement with regional designs" or if it would accept a long-term peace alongside Israel.
 
In a statement posted on Facebook and quoted by the Ma’an news agency, Deputy Hamas leader Mousa Abu Marzouk said that Blair's remarks were completely different from what he used to propose when he served as British prime minister.
 
"In January 2009, Blair admitted he was mistaken and explained then that Hamas was a major player in the conflict and in the peace process. He didn't then talk about the Quartet’s three preconditions of recognition of Israel, renouncing violence and accepting what the Palestinians have already signed, but rather he spoke of appropriate preconditions," he wrote.
 
Blair is now talking about five new preconditions to be imposed on Hamas before Gaza reconstruction and improvement to the living conditions, Abu Marzouk charged.
 
"He is now using the tragedy inflicted on Gaza by the Zionist enemy who demolished Gaza houses leaving children in the open," he claimed.
 
Blair's five new preconditions, said Abu Marzouk, include Palestinian reconciliation, a Palestinian political program based on a Palestinian state on the pre-1967 borders, and confirmation that Hamas is a Palestinian movement seeking to achieve Palestinian goals rather than being part of an Islamic movement with regional dimensions.
 
He also said that Blair wants approval that the two-state solution is a final solution to the conflict and a reassuring message to Egypt that Hamas won't be a base for "terrorism in Sinai" and that it would hold talks with the Egyptian government to "prevent terrorism."
 
In a response to Blair’s so-called preconditions, Abu Marzouk reiterated that Hamas “is a Palestinian, Arab and Islamic resistance movement” whose goals are to achieve the “Palestinian people's aspirations of return, freedom and liberation”.
 
Hamas’s top priorities "at this stage" are reconciliation, ending the inter-Palestinian dispute and achieving unity among all the Palestinian Arabs wherever they live,” he added, according to Ma’an.
 
Abu Marzouk also stated that Hamas looks forward to operating within a national Palestinian consensus whose goals are “withdrawal of Israeli occupation from the West Bank and Jerusalem and establishment of an independent Palestinian state whose capital is Jerusalem.”
 
With regards to the “two-state solution”, he confirmed that Hamas "won't agree to sign" an agreement that "confiscates the rights and aspirations of the Palestinian people."
 
Abu Marzouk finally reiterated that it was indisputable that Hamas cared about Egypt's security and stability and would never intervene in Egyptian internal affairs.
 
The Quartet, which is made up of the United Nations, the United States, the European Union and Russia, has demanded that Hamas renounce violence against Israel and recognize past agreements signed with the Jewish state, whose existence it does not accept.
 
The Quartet was set up in Madrid in 2002 as part of efforts to find a comprehensive settlement to the conflict between Israel and the PA. In 2011 the group suggested a timetable which it said would bring forth a peace agreement by the end of 2012, one of several initiatives proposed by the Quartet which have failed.
 
The group has been mostly silent over the past year as it let U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry try to broker a deal between the sides. Kerry’s efforts ultimately failed when the PA torpedoed talks by requesting to join 15 international agencies in breach of the conditions of the negotiations.
 
Last week, the Quartet called for a “speedy resumption” of Israeli-PA peace talks, urging both sides to avoid any action that could undermine efforts to settle the conflict.

Hamas and Fatah Sliding Towards Open War in Gaza

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 17 February 2015 08:50
Azzam al-Ahmed  Ismail HaniyehDespite having formed a unity agreement last April torpedoing peace talks, Hamas and Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah faction seem to be slowly sliding into open warfare in Gaza, as an attempted assassination on a Fatah official on Monday caps off incessant back and forth car bombings.
 
Mamoon Sweidan, the Fatah official who serves in the Gaza office on foreign relations, told the Palestinian Arab Ma'an News Agency that on Monday two masked gunmen in a Subaru conducted a drive-by shooting, targeting him as he was getting into his car outside the al-Saadi building in Gaza City where he lives.
 
The official said two of his guards exchanged fire with the would-be assassins, and that both guards were wounded.
 
The assassination attempt is just the latest in a recent string of attacks that risk pushing Hamas and Fatah back into outright warfare; the two have been enemies since Hamas ousted Fatah by force in 2005, seizing control of Gaza, and the lukewarm unity deal has done little of substance to lessen that enmity.
 
On Sunday unidentified attackers set the car of Fatah official Abed al-Munim Ramadan Tahrawi on fire in the Nuseirat "refugee camp" before fleeing the scene.
 
That arson came just hours after the car of a senior Hamas official in the interior ministry of the terrorist organization's government was likewise set on fire in Jabaliyah in northern Gaza earlier on Sunday.
 
Just over a week ago, the car of Hamas official Sheikh Sami Hams was bombed in Nuseirat.
 
The spate of back and forth car bombings was in full swing in January as well, with the car of Fatah official Adil Udeid set on fire in front of his Gaza home, and Fatah leader Ahmad Alwan's car blown up in Gaza City.
 
Just prior to that the car of Administrative and Financial Manager of the Hamas-run military police, Helmi Khalaf, was blown up in Gaza City.
 
ISIS wild card
 
While the likelihood is that Hamas and Fatah are slowly returning to all-out war, there is a chance that Islamic State (ISIS) is behind some of the attacks, possibly fanning the flames between the two so as to advance its own position in Gaza, Judea and Samaria.
 
In the bombing of Sheikh Sami Hams's car over a week ago, it was reported that he had recently delivered a critical sermon against ISIS, feasibly raising their ire and sparking the attack.
 
ISIS hinted in a publication distributed in Gaza, Judea and Samaria last month that it intends to depose Hamas and the PA. 
 
The publication emphasizes that there's an obligation for jihad holy war in fighting the police and army of "the rule of tyranny and heresy," giving a not-so-subtle call for ISIS followers to attack Hamas and the PA, and further framing such a coup as a religious command.
 
Israeli security sources estimate hundreds of Hamas terrorists have been steadily switching over to ISIS, viewing Hamas as "too moderate" in comparison. 
 
An ISIS terror cell was recently busted in Hevron, showing its presence in an area controlled by the PA, and last October ISIS showed its power in Gaza by claiming a bombing attack on the local French Cultural Center.

Did ISIS Blow Up a Hamas Official's Car in Gaza?

Category: News
Created on Monday, 09 February 2015 10:14
carbombIslamic State (ISIS) has steadily been gaining hold in Gaza since taking part in last summer's terror war on Israel, but an attack Friday indicates the terror group may have turned its sights on Hamas to vie for leadership of the coastal enclave.
 
The car of a Hamas official was detonated on Friday night, according to Al-Akhbar and other Arabic reports.
 
"Police have opened an investigation after a makeshift bomb blew up the car of Sheikh Sami Hams in Nuseirat refugee camp," south of Gaza City, a security official told AFP on condition of anonymity.
 
While some reports indicate the bombing is part of an internal feud, other local reports significantly reveal that Hams recently delivered a sermon criticizing ISIS, possibly running him afoul of the brutal group.
 
The official of the Hamas terror organization was not in the vehicle when it detonated and only the car was apparently damaged. Pictures of the mangled wreckage were posted to Twitter.
 
If the bombing was indeed the handiwork of ISIS, it comes after the group hinted in a publication distributed in Gaza, Judea and Samaria last month that it intends to depose Hamas and the Palestinian Authority (PA).
 
The publication emphasizes that there's an obligation for jihad holy war in fighting the police and army of "the rule of tyranny and heresy," giving a not-so-subtle call for ISIS followers to attack Hamas and the PA, and further framing such a coup as a religious command.
 
Israeli security sources estimate hundreds of Hamas terrorists have been steadily switching over to ISIS, viewing Hamas as "too moderate" in comparison. 
 
An ISIS terror cell was recently busted in Hevron, showing its presence in an area controlled by the PA, and last October ISIS showed its power in Gaza by claiming a bombing attack on the local French Cultural Center.
 
The car bombing last Friday is in fact the latest in a series of similar blasts, after late last month a Fatah leader's car was similarly targeted, just two days after the car of the Administrative and Financial Manager of the Hamas-run military police, Helmi Khalaf, was blown up.
 
It remains unclear who perpetrated the various attacks, as no credit has yet been claimed.

Thousands of Gazans Protest 'Pro-Zionist' Egypt

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 08 February 2015 09:49
Hamas supportrsThousands of Gazans demonstrated on Thursday night at the border between Gaza and Egypt, in protest against a decision by an Egyptian court  to define the Al-Qassam Brigades - the "military wing" of Hamas - as a terror organization. 
 
Palestine newspaper, the official mouthpiece of Hamas, says that protesters gathered near the Rafah crossing and waved Hamas flags, shouted slogans against the Egyptian court's decision and demanded that Egypt open the border with Gaza.
 
Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said in a speech at the demonstration that the Egyptian court's decision is "a real disaster because it turns the tables and sees the occupiers [Israel - ed.] as a friend and the Palestinian people as a foe." 
 
He called the Egyptian judges and members of the media in Egypt a "pro-Zionist group," which harms Gaza from afar through their actions and via the Egyptian army. 
 
While the Egyptian government of Islamist Mohammed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood, of which Hamas is a Gazan offshoot, was friendly with Hamas, the military-led government that ousted him has cracked down on the group, which it accuses of an attack on Egyptian police headquarters, and of planning church bombings in Sinai.
 
Most recently, Egypt accused Hamas of providing the weapons used by terrorists for two lethal attacks in El-Arish in October, in which dozens of soldiers were killed.
 
Egypt declared a state of emergency in the Sinai following that attack and began to create a buffer zone along the border with Gaza, expelling thousands of residents and demolishing hundreds of homes.
 
Hamas has been particularly indignant over the blacklisting announcement, however, and another official stated earlier this week that calling Hamas a "terror group" is "rewriting history."

Hamas Claims Egypt Opened Fire on its 'Military Posts' in Gaza

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 04 February 2015 17:10
Hamas Military Posts in GazaNot only has Egypt been able to expel Gazans from the border with Sinai and demolish their homes and mosques to create a counter-terror buffer zone as the world silently watches, but on Tuesday morning Egyptian troops reportedly opened fire on Hamas "military posts" in Gaza near the border with impugnity.
 
Reports of the shootings were relayed by witnesses in Gaza to the Palestinian Arab Ma'an News Agency, although there were no reports of wounded.
 
Iyad al-Buzm, a spokesperson for the Hamas terrorist government's "Ministry of Interior," accused the Egyptians of "firing directly and deliberately at two Palestinian military posts on the southern Gaza Strip borders."
 
He said the Egyptian soldiers fired without warning, and that the Hamas side had not committed any breach of conditions that would have warranted the potentially lethal response.
 
"This is a dangerous indicator which necessitates an immediate investigation to call to account those involved in it," al-Buzm said.
 
However, the Egyptian army had a different version of events. Earlier on Tuesday it reported that a bomb exploded in a military vehicle near the Gaza border, marking the first such incident, and possibly initiating a military response against the apparent terrorist attack.
 
Casting further doubt on the claims by the Hamas ministry and Gaza residents was Abu Ubayda al-Jarrah, commander of Hamas's Gaza national security forces, who said the incident was not intentional.
 
The Egyptian troops accidentally opened fire "near our forces," said al-Jarrah, saying the burst of gunfire was part of the ongoing Egyptian operations in Rafah and did not specifically target Hamas forces.
 
If the shooting on Tuesday did actually target Hamas watch towers, it would provide further testimony of the dual standard imposed by the world when judging Israel's counter-terror operations in Gaza as compared to those actions taken by Egypt.
 
Egypt has demolished thousands of homes in expelling all Gazans from the Sinai border to create a wide one kilometer (over half a mile) buffer zone.
 
The decision to do so was made following two deadly attacks last October in Sinai's El-Arish, which killed dozens of Egyptian soldiers and were claimed by Egypt’s deadliest terrorist group, Ansar Bayt Al-Maqdis.
 
Egyptian sources have revealed that Hamas terrorists had provided the weapons for the lethal attacks in El-Arish through one of its smuggling tunnels under the border to Sinai, thus necessitating the buffer zone.
 
As a follow-up, Egypt on Saturday banned Hamas's "military wing," the Al-Qassam Brigades, as a terrorist organization.
 
Hamas responded by saying it no longer views Egypt as a mediator in talks with Israel, and on Monday hundreds of supporters of the Hamas terrorist organization marched in protest.

Hamas Supporters Demonstrate Against Egypt

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 03 February 2015 11:45
Hamas terrorists parade rocketHundreds of Hamas supporters marched in Gaza on Monday to protest a ruling by an Egyptian court to declare the group’s “military wing” as a terrorist group, AFP reported.
 
Waving the green flag of the movement, which is the de facto power in the coastal enclave, the demonstrators chanted "Hamas is not terrorist" and "Hamas is our pride", the report said.
 
In a speech to the crowd, senior Hamas official Mushir al-Masri said that Saturday's ruling against the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades was "political" and meant to "conceal failure and the lack of security in Egypt at this time."
 
Saturday’s verdict followed a complaint from a lawyer accusing the Hamas armed wing of direct involvement in "terrorist operations" in the Sinai, which borders Gaza, a court official said.
 
The lawyer also accused the movement of using tunnels under the frontier between Egypt and Gaza to smuggle arms used in attacks against the police and army, the official added.
 
The Egyptian court’s decision to blacklist Hamas comes as no surprise. While the government of Islamist Mohammed Morsi was friendly with Hamas, the military-led government that ousted him has cracked down on the group, which it accuses of an attack on Egyptian police headquarters, and of planning church bombings in Sinai.
 
Most recently, Egypt accused Hamas of providing the weapons used by terrorists for two lethal attacks in El-Arish in October, in which dozens of soldiers were killed.
 
On Sunday, senior Hamas official Mousa Abu Marzouk said that the Egyptian ruling against the Al-Qassam Brigades “is a coup against the history, ethics of Egypt and its principles.”

Hamas Official: Egypt's Decision a 'Coup Against History'

Category: News
Created on Monday, 02 February 2015 09:36
Moussa Abu MarzoukA senior Hamas official on Sunday slammed a decision by an Egyptian court to brand Hamas’s “military wing” a terrorist organization.
 
Meanwhile, the group’s spokesman toned down Hamas’s initial response to the move, in which it said that Hamas no longer viewed Egypt as a mediator between the group and Israel.
 
Mousa Abu Marzouk said that the Egyptian ruling against the Al-Qassam Brigades “is a coup against the history, ethics of Egypt and its principles,” reported the Alresalah news website.
 
"History recorded the Qassam Brigades has always been civilized in dealing with Egyptian intelligence … Is it today a terrorist organization?" Abu Marzouk reportedly wrote on Facebook.
 
“In a move, the first of its kind, Cairo Court for Urgent Matters, considers the Qassam Brigades as a terrorist organization; for the first time in the Arab and Muslim world, alongside with most countries in the world except for Israel and its supporters in the West, the Palestinian resistance has been condemned," he continued.
 
Abu Marzouk further said he considered the ruling "a coup against the history, the rights of the Palestinian, Egypt and its principles that we know."
 
"Most of the countries of the world, especially the Arab and Muslim world, stand next to the resistance, and this is what we expect from Egypt, which has suffered from the terrorism of the Zionist entity! Israel has targeted the Egyptian civilians in the cities of the Suez Canal, and killed thousands of Egyptian soldiers, including hundreds of prisoners in Sinai,” he wrote.
 
Meanwhile, Hamas spokesperson Sami Abu Zuhri toned down comments originally attributed to sources close to Hamas, who had reportedly said the group would no longer accept Egypt as a broker between it and Israel due to the court’s ruling.
 
Abu Zuhri, according to Alresalah, said the comments were “fully incorrect .”
 
The Egyptian court’s decision to blacklist Hamas comes as no surprise. While the government of Islamist Mohammed Morsi was friendly with Hamas, the military-led government that ousted him has cracked down on the group, which it accuses of an attack on Egyptian police headquarters, and of planning church bombings in Sinai.
 
Most recently, Egypt accused Hamas of providing the weapons used by terrorists for two lethal attacks in El-Arish in October, in which dozens of soldiers were killed.
 
Egypt declared a state of emergency in the Sinai following that attack and began to create a buffer zone along the border with Gaza.

Egyptian Court Blacklists Hamas's 'Military Wing'

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 01 February 2015 09:24
Qassam BrigadesAn Egyptian court on Saturday banned the so-called “military wing” of Hamas and listed it as a terrorist organization, Reuters reported.
 
Hamas is an offshoot of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood, which authorities in Cairo have also declared a terrorist group and have cracked down on since the army ousted one of its leaders, Mohammed Morsi, from the presidency in 2013.
 
"The court ruled to ban the (Hamas) Qassam Brigades and to list it as a terrorist group," said Judge Mohammed al-Sayid of the special Cairo court which deals with urgent cases, according to Reuters.
 
The case was based on allegations that the Al-Qassam Brigades staged terrorist attacks to support the Brotherhood, and carried out a bombing and shooting operation which killed 33 security personnel in the Sinai Peninsula in October of 2014.
 
The decision comes just days after Egypt's emergency state security court overturned an earlier decision to list Hamas as a terrorist organization, claiming that determining whether or not Hamas is a terror group does not fall under its jurisdiction.
 
Hamas responded angrily to Saturday’s ruling, claiming it would serve Israel.
 
"We reject the Egyptian court's decision against Qassam Brigades. It is a political, dangerous decision that serves only the Zionist occupation," Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri was quoted by Reuters as having said.
 
A source close to Hamas later signaled the group would no longer accept Egypt as a broker between it and Israel.
 
"After the court's decision Egypt is no longer a mediator in Palestinian-Israeli matters," the source told Reuters.
 
While Morsi’s government was friendly with Hamas, the military-led government that ousted him has cracked down on the group, which it accuses of an attack on Egyptian police headquarters, and of planning church bombings in Sinai.
 
Most recently, Egypt accused Hamas of providing the weapons used by terrorists for two lethal attacks in El-Arish in October, in which dozens of soldiers were killed.
 
Egypt declared a state of emergency in the Sinai following that attack and began to create a buffer zone along the border with Gaza.

Egyptian Court Overturns Hamas Ban

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 27 January 2015 09:08
A PRC terrorist commanderEgypt's Emergency State Security Court on Monday overturned an earlier decision to list Hamas as a terrorist organization, the Ma’an news agency reported.
 
The court ruled that determining whether or not Hamas is a terror group does not fall under its jurisdiction.
 
The same court had decided in March 2014 to ban Hamas activities in Egypt and ordered the movement's assets to be seized.
 
At the time, Egyptian lawyer Samir Sabri filed a lawsuit against Hamas, saying it was behind attacks in the Sinai Peninsula and that Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal had planned them.
 
Hamas has denied any involvement in any attacks in Egypt, as has the Muslim Brotherhood, which was also blacklisted by Egypt as a terror group in 2014.
 
While the government of former Islamist president Mohammed Morsi was friendly with Hamas, the military-led government that ousted him has cracked down on the group, which it accuses of an attack on Egyptian police headquarters, and of planning church bombings in Sinai.
 
Most recently, Egypt accused Hamas of providing the weapons used by terrorists for two lethal attacks in El-Arish in October, in which dozens of soldiers were killed.
 
Egypt declared a state of emergency in the Sinai following that attack and began to create a buffer zone along the border with Gaza.
 
Most of the attacks in the restive Sinai Peninsula have been claimed by Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, a group that has pledged allegiance to the Islamic State (ISIS).

ISIS Hints it Wants to Depose Hamas and PA

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 25 January 2015 08:17
ISIS Islamists in Iraq fileThe Islamic State (ISIS) branch in "Bayt al-Maqdis," an Arabization of the Hebrew Holy Temple and a term for Jerusalem, has started distributing publications explaining ISIS's platform, in a campaign to expand its influence in Gaza, Judea and Samaria.
 
On the opening page of the publication by ISIS in "Palestine" is written "this is our position, this is our worldview, these are our founding principles. ...The liar will not be left with an excuse, and the supporters will not be left with doubt."
 
A large ISIS symbol is drawn on the center of the page, including the oath of allegiance to Islam that reads "there is no God but Allah." Along with it appears a ring of Mohammed, the founder of Islam, with three words on it: Allah, Prophet, Mohammed.
 
Jihad holy war in the path of Allah is a commandment for all to "liberate the Muslim lands," states the publication, emphasizing that there's an obligation to fight the police and army of "the rule of tyranny and heresy."
 
From the statement, it can be inferred that ISIS is calling for its followers to attack the Palestinian Authority (PA) in Judea and Samaria, and Hamas in Gaza, framing such a coup as a religious command.
 
The publication stresses that Jews and Christians will no longer enjoy "defense" among the Muslims as it claims was practiced in the past, calling for the non-Muslims to reach a new agreement with the Islamic State that aims for global domination.
 
Addressing the PA, the local ISIS branch added that any agreement reached with the "occupier" does not obligate Muslims, and is completely worthless.
 
The threats on the PA and Hamas come as Israeli security sources estimate hundreds of Hamas terrorists have been steadily switching over to ISIS, viewing Hamas as "too moderate" in comparison.
 
An ISIS terror cell was recently busted in Hevron too, in an area controlled by the PA.
 
ISIS already reportedly has a foothold in Gaza where it took an active part in last summer's terror war against Israel, and where it claimed a bombing attack on the French Cultural Center last October.

Hamas's Deif Tells Hezbollah's Nasrallah: Let's Join Forces

Category: News
Created on Friday, 23 January 2015 08:29
Muhammad Deif -NosrallahMuhammad Deif, leader of Hamas's military wing, published a letter Thursday morning sending his condolences to Hezbollah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah. 
 
The Al-Qassam Brigades chief commander has not been seen publicly since Operation Protective Edge last summer, in which he was reported to have been killed. 
 
In the letter published on the Hezbollah-affiliated Al-Manar website, Deif sends comfort and blessings to Nasrallah and other top Hezbollah leaders following the deaths of six of their members by an Israeli air strike in Syria on Monday. 
 
Jihad Mughniyeh, son of the late Imad Mughniyeh who was Hezbollah's former military commander, was among those killed, as was a Hezbollah commander. Six Iranian soldiers and commanders, including a general were also killed in the strike. 
 
Deif stressed that the blood of these martyrs is a "resounding call and stinging blow to those who are demoralized and wish to surrender," likely a reference to the Palestinian Authority and their Chairman Mahmoud Abbas who are not engaged in a military struggle with Israel.
 
Additionally, Deif noted called for "all weapons to be directed toward Israel." 
 
"There is an obligation on all opposition forces to challenge the Zionist enterprise and put up a strong unified hand against the Zionist enemy and its partners."
 
During Operation Protective Edge an Israeli air strike struck Deif's house killing his wife and child. Fox News reported Deif had been killed as well - a claim Hamas has consistently refuted. 
 
In a recent video released for Hamas's 27th anniversary, an old recording of Deif from Operation Pillar of Defense in November 2012 can be heard. A short time later, the shadow of a man, similar in appearance to Deif, can be seen, despite blurry photography.
 
Deif has reportedly survived five Israeli air strikes. His location remains unknown. 

Hamas Blackmail: Pay for Rebuilding or Face Gaza Extremism

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 18 January 2015 08:23
Hamas Blackmailofficial with the Hamas Islamist terrorist organization warned on Wednesday that Gaza could "become" a breeding ground for extremism, unless the world forks over more funds to rebuild after Hamas's latest terror war against Israel.
 
"Our message to the world, which is scared of terrorism and extremism, is that the delay in rebuilding Gaza and the continuing blockade against it will make it a ripe environment for the spread of extremism and terrorism," Khalil al-Haya told a Gaza City meeting of Hamas MPs.
 
"We warn of the consequences," he said without elaborating, reports AFP.
 
The statement is ironic given that Hamas is an extremist terrorist organization, which called its unity partner Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas a "hypocrite" for attending an anti-terror rally in Paris this Sunday. Likewise a Hamas-linked publication last Friday lauded the three Islamist terrorists who conducted the attacks last week, murdering 17 people.
 
Hamas issued a perfunctory condemnation of the Paris attack on satire magazine Charlie Hebdo, but refused to condemn the hostage crisis at a kosher supermarket in which four Jews were murdered.
 
However, the Hamas statement may indicate that the organization is indeed worried about extremism and terror - just not it's own.
 
Israeli security officials have estimated that hundreds of Hamas terrorists are switching over to Islamic State (ISIS), viewing Hamas as too "moderate" evidently in terms of strictly instituting Sharia Islamic law.
 
That accusation of "moderation" comes despite the fact that Hamas's charter clearly calls for the genocidal slaughter of all Jews and the destruction of Israel.
 
Hamas's threat of terrorism if it doesn't receive funds comes on the background of pledges by world nations to give the Hamas-stronghold $5.4 billion - four months since the end of Operation Protective Edge that aid still has been slow in arriving.
 
Part of the reason for the delay is that Hamas has been limitations in transfer to Gaza due to the fact that Hamas has been using the reconstruction materials, including cement, to rebuild its massive array of terror tunnels meant to attack Israeli civilians.
 
In the operation over 30 such tunnels were destroyed by the IDF, but from the moment the operation ended Hamas and Islamic Jihad have been busily rebuilding.
 
Hamas has also breached the truce from last August that ended the operation several times, with a rocket attack last month leading Israel to conduct an airstrike on concrete factories used to rebuild the terror tunnels.

Hamas Calls United States 'Rude and Racist'

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 14 January 2015 05:26
Obama HamasThe United States last week expressed its dissatisfaction over Turkey’s contacts with Hamas, and the terror group took exception.
 
State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said in her daily press briefing on Thursday that Washington's position on Hamas has not changed and classified the group as a "designated foreign terrorist organization that continues to engage in terrorist activity."
 
Psaki's remarks came after she was asked about a statement by Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, who said Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal is welcome to Turkey whenever he wants.
 
Cavusoglu’s comments came after it was reported that Qatar had expelled Mashaal and that he was considering moving to Turkey instaed.
 
Hamas condemned the State Department’s criticism as "rude and racist," expressing its belief that Ankara would not be affected by such positions.
 
Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri stated, according to Hamas’s website, that the U.S. position was proof that Washington is "the archenemy of the nation's issues."
 
Mashaal recently visited Turkey where he praised the country as a "source of power" for all Muslims.
 
"A democratic, stable and developed Turkey is a source of power for all Muslims," he said in an address to the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) annual congress in the conservative central Anatolian city of Konya.
 
Mashaal said a "strong Turkey means a strong Jerusalem, a strong Palestine," voicing hopes to "liberate Palestine and Jerusalem."
 
Under Recep Tayyip Erdogan's rule, and particularly in recent years, Turkey has become home to one of the most active Hamas branches in the world.
 
Among the Hamas terrorist masterminds currently based there is Salah al-Arouri, who claimed responsibility for ordering the kidnap and murder of three Israeli teenagers in June of this year.

Hamas-Linked Publication Praises 'Heroic' Paris Terrorists

Category: News
Created on Monday, 12 January 2015 09:14
Paris terroristsA Hamas-linked publication has praised the recent terrorist attacks in Paris, and hailed those responsible as "martyrs".
 
An image posted on Friday evening to the Facebook page of the Al-Rasalah publication featured the faces of the three Islamist terrorists eliminated by French security forces Friday, with a caption reading: "The shahidim [martyrs] who were dispatched by God, the heroes of the raid in Paris."
 
Brothers Cherif and Said Kouachi, Muslims of Algerian descent, murdered 12 people and wounded 11 others on Wednesday in an attack on the offices of the Charlie Hebdo magazine in central Paris. They claimed to be acting on behalf of the Yemen-based Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), which released a statement celebrating their attack and warning of more to come.
 
They were killed after a standoff at a warehouse in Dammartin-en-Goele, 22 miles north of Paris, after they burst out of the building firing at police.
 
Amedy Coulibaly, who claimed to be a member of the Islamic State (ISIS) terrorist group, was shot dead after taking shoppers hostage at the Hyper Casher kosher store in the French capital. Coulibaly murdered four shoppers before armed police killed him in a surprise raid.
 
On Saturday, Hamas's official leadership released a statement condemning the Charlie Hebdo attack - but notably did not similarly condemn the murder of French Jews on Friday.

Hamas Condemns Charlie Hebdo Attack - But Not Murder of Jews

Category: News
Created on Monday, 12 January 2015 08:39
Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade terroristsHamas released a statement on Saturday condemning the killing of 12 people in an attack on French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo's offices - but was notably silent on the murder of four French Jews in a terrorist attack on Friday.
 
A statement in French said Hamas "condemns the attack against Charlie Hebdo magazine and insists on the fact that differences of opinion and thought cannot justify murder."
 
It also rejected Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's comments, in which he compared the Paris attack to Hamas firing rockets from the Gaza Strip at civilians in Israel.
 
"Hamas condemns the desperate attempts by... Netanyahu to make a connection between our movement and the resistance of our people on the one hand and global terrorism on the other," it said.
 
The statement made no mention of Friday's attack on a Jewish supermarket by a third Islamist, in which four hostages were killed.
 
Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas called France's Francois Hollande to express condolences, Palestinian foreign minister Riyad al-Malki told AFP.  
 
He said that Abbas assured the French president of "the solidarity of the Palestinian people and leadership with France after this terrorist attack." It was unclear whether the statement was also referring to the kosher supermarket attack.
 
Malki said Abbas would have liked to attend Sunday's rally in Paris but must stay home to manage the responses to brutal storms that have hammered the Middle East.  
 
Malki said that a delegation of Palestinian Muslim and Christian clerics would pay a solidarity visit to France "in the coming days."    
 
The Palestine Liberation Organisation called for a public rally to be held in Ramallah on Sunday "in solidarity with France against terrorism."

Qatar Expels Hamas Chief Khaled Mashaal

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 06 January 2015 10:29
Khaled Meshaal0As Qatar continues its shift away from the Muslim Brotherhood and its Gaza-offshoot Hamas in favor of stronger ties with Egypt, Hamas politburo chief Khaled Mashaal was expelled from the country on Tuesday along with Muslim Brotherhood members.
 
Mashaal and the Muslim Brotherhood members are likely on their way to Turkey according to the report, which appeared in a Hamas-run news agency and was cited by CNN.
 
It was rumored last September that Mashaal was to be expelled from Qatar, rumors which Hamas at the time denied, but which came after Qatar expelled seven senior Muslim Brotherhood members in an effort to close ever growing gaps with Egypt.
 
For its part Turkey, also a leading sponsor of Hamas like Qatar, said it would welcome the seven leaders.
 
Qatar has likewise in the past threatened Mashaal with expulsion; last August during Operation Protective Edge, a senior member of the Palestinian Authority (PA) said Hamas chose to breach one of the many ceasefires with Israel due to a Qatari threat to expel Mashaal.
 
The source reported that Qatar had pushed Hamas to demand it play an active role in Cairo truce talks, a proposal which Egypt refused, stipulating that Qatar apologize for its policies as the leading sponsor of the Muslim Brotherhood. Qatar specifically stated it would force Mashaal to leave if Hamas agreed to the Egyptian truce proposal in its structure at the time.
 
Likewise last month it was reported that Qatar had informed Hamas it would temporarily cut its funding for the terror group to cultivate ties with Egypt, reports that Hamas denied.
 
Cutting funding would be part of active steps Qatar has been taking to solidify improved relations with Egypt, after years of tension due to Qatar's support of Muslim Brotherhood.
 
As part of those steps of rapprochement, Qatari-owned Al-Jazeera news network last month shut down its Egypt channel, easing a source of tension as Egypt has accused the news source of being a mouthpiece for the Muslim Brotherhood.
 
Just two days earlier, a Qatari envoy met with Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi, the first such meeting since he was elected in June.
 
Qatar's support for Hamas has led to calls to stop Qatar from hosting the World Cup in 2022 unless it ceases its funding of terrorism.

Hamas: Abbas Has No Authority to Join ICC

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 04 January 2015 08:48
Palestinian-leader-Mahmoud-AbbasAhmed Bahar, acting speaker of the Palestinian parliament, on Thursday poured cold water on Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s application to join the International Criminal Court (ICC) and several other international conventions and treaties.
 
In a statement, Bahar said that Abbas bears responsibility for the applications which, he claimed, do not serve the interests of the “Palestinian people.”
 
Bahar stressed that any signing of a treaty or an international agreement requires national responsibility and the entire Palestinian parliament must approve it.
 
Thursday’s statement stands in sharp contrast to Hamas’s statement from Wednesday, in which it praised Abbas's move as a "step in the right direction."
 
"This step needs to be part of a general policy and a joint national program," Hamas said in a statement.
 
Hamas's previous embrace of the ICC bid oddly contrasts with its utter rejection of the PA's UN draft resolution to boot Israel out of Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, which it said in multiple statements did not 'represent the Palestinian people. 
 
Hamas's spokesman said last week the resolution "doesn't represent [the] consensus of the Palestinian people," and Hamas leader Mahmoud al-Zahar added that the draft resolution in favor of Palestinian statehood was "disastrous," and that it has "no future in the land of Palestine." 
 
The last elections for the PA parliament were held in 2006, and Hamas won an overwhelming majority. The group later staged a bloody military coup in Gaza in the summer of 2007, creating a rift between Abbas’s Fatah movement in Ramallah and the Hamas-led government in Gaza.
 
The sides formed a unity government last year but the government has been unable to function and there have been signs that it is crumbling.
 
The most recent reconciliation attempt has been rocked by tensions, most notably Hamas's attempt to stage a violent coup in Judea and Samaria against the Palestinian Authority.

Hamas Praises PA ICC Bid

Category: Reports
Created on Thursday, 01 January 2015 06:13
Hamas terroristsHamas has praised Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas's application to join the International Criminal Court (ICC) as a "step in the right direction." 
 
"This step needs to be part of a general policy and a joint national program," Hamas said in a statement, according to the Gaza-based Daily Sabah.
 
Hamas also called for the various Palestinian Arab terror groups to meet and devise a plan for halting all bilateral negotiations and security coordination with Israel on a permanent basis - as well as lifting the "Israeli blockade" on Gaza, reconstruction, and solving domestic issues between Hamas and rival Fatah. 
 
Hamas's embrace of the ICC bid oddly contrasts with its utter rejection of the PA's UN draft resolution to boot Israel out of Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, which it said in multiple statements did not 'represent the Palestinian people. 
 
Hamas's spokesman said last week the resolution "doesn't represent [the] consensus of the Palestinian people," and Hamas leader Mahmoud al-Zahar added that the draft resolution in favor of Palestinian statehood was "disastrous," and that it has "no future in the land of Palestine." 
 
Zahar explained that Hamas would not accept the resolution because of its focus on the pre-1967 borders, and not on all of Israeli territory which Hamas considers to be “historic Palestine”.
 
He further added that the movement refuses to consider allowing to be Jerusalem a capital for both Palestinian and Israeli states.
 
On Tuesday - hours before the UN Security Council vote - another Hamas spokesman, Mushir al-Masri, yet again blasted the move as "giving in" to Israel.
 
According to Masri, adhering to the draft resolution would be walking through pointless negotiations of a political settlement, without a clear national strategy and adherence to the basic principles of the Palestinian people, in his words. 

Hamas Denies Qatar Cut its Funding Over Egypt

Category: News
Created on Monday, 29 December 2014 08:16
Mahmoud al-Zahar -ReutersHamas on Sunday denied a Kuwaiti newspaper's report that Qatar has informed Hamas that it would be temporarily halting its financial support, reports i24news.
 
The Kuwaiti Al Jarida reported last week that the move was made in order to push Hamas to change its policy against Egypt, which the Gulf state has just reconciled with.
 
The report continued on to say that Hamas must end its incitement against Egypt as well as stop smuggling weapons to terror organizations in the Sinai peninsula from the Hamas-controlled strip.
 
Hamas leader Mahmoud al-Zahar said, however, that the report was completely untrue.
 
“Hamas does not meddle in the internal affairs of Egypt,” al-Zahar said, adding, “Nor does Hamas pose a threat to Egypt’s national security."
 
He welcomed the rapprochement between Qatar and Egypt, saying, according to i24news, “We are against wasting Arab efforts on internal differences, while the enemy is waging war on us and confiscating our rights in Jerusalem.”
 
Qatar had pledged its "full support" to Egypt on Monday, ending more than a year of regional isolation over its support for Cairo's ousted Islamist president.
 
The statement came a day after Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi met in Cairo with a Qatari envoy.
 
Qatar repeatedly denounced Sisi's ouster of former Muslim Brotherhood president Mohammed Morsi and it still provides shelter for some Brotherhood leaders who fled Egypt.
 
The crackdown led to a months-long diplomatic spat pitting Qatar against Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Bahrain, which all supported the ouster of Morsi.
 
In an unprecedented development, the three nations had recalled their ambassadors from Doha back in March, in protest against Qatar's support for the Islamist movement, then returned their diplomatic staff to Qatar in November.
 
Earlier this month, at a reconciliation summit hosted by Riyadh, Qatar joined its Gulf neighbors in supporting Egypt under Sisi.

Hamas Bans Gaza War Orphans from Traveling to Israel

Category: News
Created on Monday, 29 December 2014 07:47
Gaza War OrphansHamas on Sunday prevented dozens of children orphaned during its 50-day war with Israel from entering Israeli territory in a pre-arranged trip, organizers and officials said - despite Israel making the effort to allow the children to visit. 
 
The week-long visit was planned for 37 children whose parents were killed by Israel in the Gaza Strip in July and August this year. It was organized by an Israeli kibbutz group and local Arab-Israeli officials.
 
Kibbutz Movement spokesman Yoel Marshak told AFP that the trip was supposed to allow the Palestinian Arab children, aged between 12 and 15, "to circulate and learn about Israeli children their age." 
 
The group had been due to visit several Israeli kibbutzim close to the Gaza Strip and travel to Ramallah in the Palestinian Authority (PA) to meet PA Chairman Mahmud Abbas, Marshak said.
 
"The Shin Bet (security service) had given the green light for the children and their five minders to enter Israel," he added.
 
But Hamas, which has controlled Gaza since 2007, said the trip was cancelled as the children would have "had to visit settlements and occupied towns." 
 
The Islamist terror group's interior ministry said the visit was forbidden in order to protect the children from "the politics of normalization" with Israel.
 
An AFP photographer saw Hamas security officers turn the 37 orphans away from the Erez border crossing with Israel on Sunday.
 
This is not the first time that Hamas has taken action that in essence punishes Gazans. In the past, it has refused to cooperate with the Palestinian Authority in allowing Gazans to cross into Israel for medical treatment, due to its longstanding row with the Fatah movement.

Hamas Shows Off Army 'Ready to Conquer Jerusalem'

Category: Media
Created on Sunday, 28 December 2014 07:07
Hamas Ready to Conquer JerusalemThe propaganda unit of Hamas's "military wing", the Ezzedine Al-Qassam Brigades, kicked into overdrive recently with a new film, which attempted to portray the terrorist organization's Gazan fighting force as a modern Islamic army, exhibiting advanced weaponry training for a wide range of scenarios - and with its sights on Jerusalem.
 
{youtube}s_NuCRMUJrA{/youtube}
 
In the video a large unit of terrorists are shown with all the equipment of a modern army, from combat vests to advanced assault rifles. Several are seen bearing a flag reading "the army of Al-Quds (Jerusalem)."
 
The Hamas "army" is seen conducting an array of operations modeled on attacks launched against Israel from Gaza - including several attacks in recent weeks that the terror group has denied responsibility for.
 
It appears to be an attempt to showcase a recently-announced "popular army", which the Islamist terror group said it formed following Operation Protective Edge to "liberate Palestine".
 
In one scene, the terrorists are seen raiding a model IDF post and kidnapping an Israeli soldier. In another, a sniper is seen shooting an IDF soldier; just last Wednesday an IDF soldier was critically wounded by sniper fire during repairs on the security barrier, although Hamas denied it was behind the attack from territory it controls. Tellingly, however, the head of Hamas's reconnaissance unit was killed by IDF return fire during the incident.
 
Rockets, including the domestically produced M75, are seen being fired on numerous occasions throughout the propaganda film, after just two weeks ago a rocket was fired on Israel from Gaza in a breach of the truce, marking at least the third such case of rocket fire since Operation Protective Edge.
 
In response to the latest rocket attack, the IAF struck Gaza concrete factories used to rebuild the terror tunnels leading into Israel and built to attack Israeli civilians. Over 30 such tunnels were destroyed in the operation, but since it ended Hamas has been busily rebuilding them.
 
Indeed, the propaganda film shows Hamas terrorists in terror tunnels, preparing for new attacks. Likewise naval commandos sporting diver equipment are shown firing from boats, before hopping off into the water and continuing to fire with assault rifles made for maritime usage.
 
Aside from attempts to model itself as a modern, conventional army of sorts, the video is equally a clear attempt to emphasize the group's jihadi credentials, at a time when other actors - from Islamic Jihad to Al Qaeda and most recently ISIS - have in many ways stolen its thunder.
 
The opening scene includes a commander riding a horse, a common prop utilized by jihadi groups to hark back to the early Islamic armies; equally the white flag of jihad its terrorists are waving - though not identical - bears a resemblance to the classic jihadi flag adapted by groups such as Al Qaeda and ISIS.
 
At the end of the film, the Hamas army is seen crossing a security barrier and approaching Jerusalem with the Dome of the Rock glittering on top of the Temple Mount, clearly advertising the terror group's aspirations of creating a Palestinian state on the ruins of Israel.
 
Propaganda aside, the much-vaunted "commandos" of Hamas did not fair quite as well during the recent summer war with Israel. Numerous attempts to infiltrate via sea - comprised of terrorists most likely from the same "naval unit" as the one shown in the video - failed miserably, with the terrorists cut down by IDF fire almost immediately upon landing ashore.
 
Indeed much of the propaganda surrounding Hamas's "new" army is unlikely to be much more than that - an attempt to rebuild its image after a largely futile war with Israel which saw it, and the territory it controls, ravaged by fighting with little to show for it.
 
But Israeli intelligence officials will be studying such videos carefully, and those politicians and military leaders who pushed for a more decisive victory during Operation Protective Edge will likely view such a show of force as vindication of their position.

Hamas Leader Praises Turkey for Support

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 27 December 2014 19:45
Khaled Meshaal0Hamas chief Khaled Meshaal on Saturday praised Turkey as a "source of power" for all Muslims in gratitude to Turkey's leaders for supporting the "Palestinian cause".
 
"A democratic, stable and developed Turkey is a source of power for all Muslims," Meshaal said in an address to the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) annual congress in the conservative central Anatolian city of Konya.
 
Meshaal said a "strong Turkey means a strong Jerusalem, a strong Palestine," voicing hopes to "liberate Palestine and Jerusalem," according to the state-run Anatolia news agency.
 
His brief address was interrupted repeatedly by cheering crowds in the hall waving Turkish and Palestinian flags and chanting: "Allahu Akbar (God is greatest)" and "Down with Israel!"
 
The Hamas chief often shows up at the ruling party's events. He also attended the AKP's congress in 2012 when Islamist President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was serving as prime minister.  
 
Current Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, in his speech said Turkey's red flag featuring a crescent with a star was a "symbol of the innocent in the world."  
 
"God is witness... we will make this red flag a symbol of the innocent. This red flag will fly side by side with the flags of Palestine, free Syria and all other innocents' flags anywhere in the world," he told the congress. 
 
Turkey's leaders, in particular Erdogan, are known for their angry outbursts against Israel. A staunch supporter of the Islamist Hamas terrorist group, Erdogan has often blasted the Jewish state over its military operations against terrorists based in the Gaza Strip, which is ruled by Hamas.
 
Under Erdogan's rule, and particularly in recent years, Turkey has become home to one of the most active Hamas branches in the world. Among the Hamas terrorist masterminds currently based there is Salah al-Arouri, who claimed responsibility for ordering the kidnap and murder of three Israeli teenagers in June of this year.
 
In response, Israel has turned to NATO - which Turkey is a member of - to take steps against Ankara for its open support for terrorism.
 
AFP contributed to this report.

Qatar Cuts Hamas Funding for Egypt Alliance

Category: Reports
Created on Saturday, 27 December 2014 15:23
qatar-abbas-hamasReports in a Kuwaiti paper Friday morning indicate that Qatar has temporarily cut its funding for the Gaza-based Muslim Brotherhood-offshoot Hamas terrorist organization, in an attempt to cull favor with Egypt and lead to rapprochement between the two rival nations.
 
The report in Al Jarida cited a senior Egyptian source saying that Qatar has informed Hamas leaders that it will temporarily stop its support of the group to press it to make several concessions that will aid ties with Egypt, which has been cracking down on Muslim Brotherhood.
 
Those concessions include a cessation of Hamas's antagonistic policy towards Egypt, incitement against Egypt, and an end to transferring weapons to Islamic terrorist organizations in the Sinai Peninsula.
 
In return, Hamas asked that Qatar serve as an intermediary between it and Egypt so as to reduce the tensions between the two, according to the Egyptian source; the reports have yet to be officially confirmed.
 
Hamas reportedly supplied the weapons used in lethal attacks on Egyptian soldiers in Sinai last October, which led Egypt to expel Gazans in establishing a wide buffer zone on the Gaza border with Sinai that has severely impacted Gaza.
 
Meanwhile Qatar has been taking active steps to solidify improved relations with Egypt, after years of tension due to Qatar's support of Muslim Brotherhood.
 
As part of those steps of rapprochement, Qatari-owned Al-Jazeera news network on Monday shut down its Egypt channel, easing a source of tension as Egypt has accused the news source of being a mouthpiece for the Muslim Brotherhood.
 
Just two days earlier, a Qatari envoy met with Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi, the first such meeting since he was elected in June.
 
Al-Sisi’s office said Egypt hoped the meeting, which was attended by a Saudi royal envoy, was the beginning of a "new era" that puts the past disagreements between the two countries behind.
 
"The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has expressed its welcome regarding ongoing steps that will strengthen relations between the Arab Republic of Egypt and the State of Qatar, including the visit made by Special Envoy of the Emir of Qatar Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdelrahman Al Thani to Egypt," read a Saudi Royal Court statement after the meeting.
 
"Saudi Arabia stressed its support and keenness on opening a new page between the two countries for enhancing integration and cooperation between the two countries to achieve higher interests of the Arab and Islamic nations, hoping of all honorable scientists, intellectuals, writers and men of the media outlets responding and supporting this step," it added.

Saudi Arabia to Hamas: Stay Away from Iran

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 24 December 2014 09:48
FlagThe Hamas-affiliated Al-Rai website reported on Monday that Saudi Arabia recently sent an angry message to the Hamas leadership over the group’s rapprochement with Iran, which Riyadh considers to be an enemy of the Sunni Muslim world.
 
According to the report, senior officials in the Saudi intelligence contacted Hamas leaders and asked them to stop all contact with the regime in Tehran, offering in exchange to place more significant pressure aimed at lifting the "blockade" of Gaza. Palestinian Arab sources who spoke to the website said that the Hamas leadership is considering the Saudi request and has yet to respond to it officially.
 
Just last week, a delegation from Hamas arrived for talks with Iranian officials on repairing ties between the two, local media reported.
 
The Iranian Tasnim news agency said the team was led by Hamas political bureau member Mohammed Nasr and included Osama Hamdan, who is in charge of international relations. Iran has been a key source of funds and weapons for Hamas.
 
Iran was once a stronger supporter of Hamas, but the two have been at odds over the uprising against Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad. As a result of Hamas’ refusal to support Assad in the uprising, an angry Iran reportedly stopped supplying the terror group with weapons.
 
Nevertheless, the two sides have been getting closer in recent months. The speaker of the Iranian parliament, Ali Larijani, recently boasted that Iran provided Hamas with the technology it has used to rain down rockets on Israel from Gaza.
 
Saudi Arabia also was not pleased with the policy of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, under ousted president Mohammed Morsi, who preferred an alliance with Iran over Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states, and it was one of the key factors that helped the Egyptian military oust Morsi.
 
Immediately after the army took power following Morsi’s removal, Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states pledged about $12 billion to the Egyptian treasury.

Senior Hamas Official Accused of Sexual Harassment

Category: Reports
Created on Tuesday, 09 December 2014 04:06
Sami Abu Zuhri0Sami Abu Zuhri, one of the most high-profile spokesmen for Hamas, is apparently being investigated by the Islamist terrorist group for sexually harassing a foreign female reporter.
 
According to several Fatah-linked websites, the unnamed foreign reporter approached Fouzi Barhoum - another Hamas spokesman - and complained that Abu Zuhri had sexually harassed her.
 
According to sources inside Gaza, Barhoum then relayed the accusations to his superiors, who temporarily suspended Abu Zuhri pending an internal investigation.
 
{youtube}eQ6S0-o3uFI{/youtube}
 
The report has not been confirmed by Hamas or by any independent sources, so it is difficult to ascertain its veracity, or whether it is simply an attempt by Fatah activists to discredit one of their Islamist rival's most visible figureheads. However, it is notable that the once-prolific Abu Zuhri has all but disappeared from the limelight in recent weeks.
 
During the summer's 50-day conflict between Israel and terrorists in Gaza, Abu Zuhri became a familiar face, relaying Hamas's official line to Arab and international media outlets.
 
In one particularly infamous instance he was recorded encouraging Palestinian civilians in Gaza to act as human shields - a blatant violation of international humanitarian law which was cited as yet more evidence by pro-Israel groups of Hamas's policy of using human shields to deter Israeli strikes or otherwise inflate the civilian death toll.

Hamas Official Vows to Annihilate 'Brothers of Apes and Pigs'

Category: News
Created on Monday, 08 December 2014 14:15
Fatahs Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades0An official in Hamas recently vowed to annihilate the “brothers of apes and pigs” - that is, the Jews.
 
The comments by former Hamas Interior Minister Fathi Hammad aired on the Al-Jazeera Network on October 31 and were translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).
 
{youtube}e9F2sDVgQKk{/youtube}
 
“We say to the brothers of apes and pigs: No matter how much you destroy, dig, and try to build settlements around the Al-Aqsa Mosque, we are coming to uproot you, to annihilate you, and to destroy you,” he threatened.
 
“The hypocrites will find themselves in the lowest level of Hellfire. Whoever shackles his people and their resistance, whoever shackles the AK-47s, will be trampled under the feet of our people in this world, and will find himself in the lowest level of Hellfire in the world to come,” added Hammad.
 
Hammad has in the past called on Fatah to join Hamas and “wage Jihad” against Israel. He previously declared that Israel will be gone in eight years.
 
Other Muslim leaders who have in the past compared Jews to apes and pigs include Palestinian Authority Mufti Sheikh Muhammad Hussein and former Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi.

Hamas Threatens 'Holy War' Over Jewish State Law

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 02 December 2014 08:47
Gaza Hamas terroristsHamas has an opinion on the 'Jewish State Law' making rounds in the Knesset, Channel 2 reports Tuesday - claiming that the law could provoke a "holy war." 
 
"The law sounds an alarm regarding Israel's ambitions in the region, and threatens to bring about a religious war," Hamas representatives in Gaza threatened Sunday. 
 
"The Israeli occupation is trying to protect Zionist myths and take control of Arab-populated areas, steal resources and humiliate [Palestinians]," it claimed. 
 
Hamas also appealed the international community to crack down on Israel for considering the law, which is claimed is "racist." 
 
"The movement will continue to act against the Israeli occupation to overthrow the imperialist enterprise", stressed the organization's leaders.
 
Jewish State Law: 'racist' or 'nationalist'?
 
The 'Jewish State Law' is comprised of two bills by three MKs: Ze'ev Elkin (Likud), Yariv Levin (Likud), and Ayelet Shaked (Jewish Home). Both bills, which are similar in their principles, effectively raise the Jewish influence on the legal system, elevating it over the "democratic" elements of Israel's identity as a "democratic and Jewish state."
 
The proposal, in practice, would see Hebrew defined as the only official language and Arabic relegated to a language with "special status"; concretize the Jewish star and holidays as national symbols and holidays; and define Israel as a state which "endeavors to settle Jews within its borders" - leaving out Israeli Arabs, detractors claim. 
 
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's amendments to the law would reduce its efficacy to make the Jewish elements of the law equal to - but not higher than - the "democratic" character of Israel, and emphasizes that "the State will allow anyone in Israel, regardless of religion, race, or nationality, to preserve their culture, heritage, and identity."
 
It also leaves out the definition of Hebrew as the official language and the clause on Jews settling within its borders. 
 
Despite these amendments, leftist MKs have deemed the law to be "racist," claiming that even Netanyahu's clause on equality does not prevent the bill from making Arabs and other minorities "second-class citizens." 
 
The US apparently supports this position as well, after US State Department spokesman Jeff Rathke urged Israel Monday that "Israel is a Jewish and democratic state and all its citizens should enjoy equal rights," and "we expect Israel to stick to its democratic principles."
 
Hamas: bent on starting a war?
 
Hamas's position, meanwhile, reflects not only the terror organization's well-known stance against Jews and Israelis, but also growing calls to incite hatred against Israel in recent weeks. 
 
Hamas leader Mahmoud Al-Zahar publicly declared last week that the group was intending to widen its terror scope throughout Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria, and that it intends to continue to lead the Palestinian Arab camp which advocates for armed struggle until Israel is destroyed.
 
Earlier this month, the group threatened another war outright unless Gaza was allowed to be "rehabilitated" - in other words, for construction materials to be flooded into the territory without supervision over their usage. 
 
And in October, Hamas declared the rising tensions in Jerusalem an official "third intifada" (terror war against Israel - ed.) as the "solution to Israeli aggression." 
 
Hamas has also been escalating its incitement campaign against Jews and Israelis through heightened rhetoric and social media, releasing a music video in broken Hebrew this month encouraging "car attacks" against Israeli citizens. 

Hamas Leader: We Plan to Carry Out Terror from Judea and Samaria

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 22 November 2014 16:29
Mahmoud al-Zahar -ReutersSenior Hamas leader Mahmoud Al-Zahar declared on Sunday that the terrorist movement is planning to develop its capabilities to carry out terror attacks against Israel from Judea and Samaria, and that it intends to continue to lead the Palestinian camp which advocates for armed struggle until Israel is destroyed.
 
Al-Zahar, who spoke in Gaza, said that the movement views the carrying out of terror attacks from Judea and Samaria as important, and plans to use available means and new methods, such as stabbing and hit-and-run attacks, against Israelis.
 
He further said that in the last war, Hamas’s rockets reached as far as Haifa, and that now the time has come to increase the range and destructive power of the missiles so that they can hit any point in Israel. Al-Zahar added that Hamas’s terror tunnels destroyed Israel’s security strategy as well as its plan to establish a buffer zone along Gaza.
 
He went on to say that there are two different streams in the Palestinian arena. The first one is represented by Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other terrorist organizations, and it views Israel as an enemy that must be fought against and believes that armed struggle is the only way to “liberate Palestine” and bring about the return of the refugees.
 
The second stream, said Al-Zahar, is Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah movement, which sees Israel as a partner for peace and negotiations and believes that only some of the refugees will return to Israel.
 
The threats of terrorism come just days after Hamas’s “military wing” warned of renewed violence unless Israel allows the reconstruction of Gaza.
 
"We are saying to all sides  -- if the siege on Gaza and the obstacles for reconstruction remain, there will be a new explosion," said Abu Obeida, a spokesman for the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades.

Anti-Islam Group Sues NY Transit System for Rejecting Ad

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 01 October 2014 21:56
AFD Sues NY Transit System for Rejecting AdAn anti-Islam group filed a civil rights lawsuit against New York City's Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) on Wednesday for refusing to run a "Hamas Killing Jews" advertisement on city busses, the group's attorney said, according to Reuters.
 
The American Freedom Defense Initiative claims the state agency violated its constitutional rights by turning down advertisements that included the slogan "Killing Jews is worship that draws us close to Allah - Hamas MTV," the lawyer said.
 
David Yerushalmi, lawyer for Pamela Geller, whose group is sponsoring the ad, said in a statement quoted by Reuters that the MTA banned the advertisements because they threatened to incite violence.
 
The MTA denied comment on Wednesday, citing pending litigation.
 
Geller’s group had paid for a six-ad series scheduled to run for a month on the city's mass transit system.
 
"When our clients run ads exposing this Jew hatred, all of a sudden the transit authorities are worried about the 'tone' of the conversation or conjure up some threat of violence," Yerushalmi said, according to Reuters.
 
He added the MTA has allowed what he termed misleading advertisements sponsored by Muslim groups.
 
Earlier this week, Geller agreed to remove a photo of American journalist James Foley, taken shortly before his beheading, scheduled to appear on advertisements on 100 New York City buses and two subway stations.
 
The removal followed a plea from Foley's mother to remove the image and criticism from city politicians and religious leaders who said no faith should be subject to attack ads and calling it an attempt to divide the city.
 
Geller was behind a similar ad campaign in 2012 on the city's transport system that the MTA originally rejected, before a federal judge determined that the state agency's rule against ads that demeaned race, gender, religion or several other categories was unconstitutional.
 
In 2013, Geller’s group purchased space next to 228 clocks in 39 New York subway stations for ads with an image of the burning World Trade Center and a quote attributed to the Quran saying: “Soon shall we cast terror into the hearts of the unbelievers.”

Netanyahu to UN Chief: Hamas is Committing a Double War Crime

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 01 October 2014 15:53
Netanyahu and UN Chief Ban Ki-moon archivePrime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Tuesday told United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon that Hamas commits a double war crime by using civilians as human shields and firing rockets at Israel.
 
Netanyahu’s comments were made in a meeting with Ban at the UN headquarters in New York. Also attending the meeting was Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman.
 
Netanyahu told the UN chief that the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) should focus its investigation of war crimes in Gaza on Hamas, which also used UN buildings to fire rockets towards Israel. He added that the UNHRC is biased against Israel while protective towards Hamas.
 
The Prime Minister further told Ban that there is no justice in the fact that the standards used by the UN when it comes to Israel are different than any other country. Netanyahu said that while that 200,000 civilians have been massacred in Syria, there is no proportionality in the way the UN acts towards Israel.
 
Netanyahu also stressed that Israel never directed its attacks in Gaza against civilians, and regrets any harm caused to innocent people.
 
The comments are in line with the contents of Netanyahu’s speech at the UN on Monday, in which he said the UNHRC “has become a Terrorists' Human Rights Council”.
 
Netanyahu told Ban in the meeting that Hamas had taken the residents of Gaza hostage, and compared Hamas to the “Islamic State” (IS) group. He did this in his UN speech as well.
 
Finally, Netanyahu told the UN chief that there was no change in Israel’s position with regards to a demilitarized Palestinian state that will recognize Israel as the Jewish state, subject to security arrangements that would allow Israel to defend itself against any threat.
 
He reiterated that the conflict with the Arabs is not about “settlements”, but rather about the very existence of Israel as a Jewish state.

U.S. Distances Itself from Netanyahu's Comments

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 30 September 2014 18:33
Jennifer PsakiThe U.S. State Department distanced itself on Monday from comments made by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu during his speech at the United Nations General Assembly.
 
Speaking to reporters, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki particularly referred to Netanyahu’s comparison between Hamas and the “Islamic State” (IS or ISIS), as well as to his criticism of the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC).
 
“We believe they’re both terrorist organizations,” she said, responding to a question regarding Netanyahu’s saying that Hamas and IS are one and the same.
 
“We obviously believe that [IS] poses a different threat to the United States, based on, of course, the military action and other efforts that are underway,” added Psaki.
 
“We don’t believe that Prime Minister Netanyahu or anyone else from Israel is suggesting that the United States launch a military campaign against Hamas, so we certainly – they are both designated terrorist organizations under the United States designations, but certainly we see differences -- in terms of the threat and otherwise,” she said.
 
Psaki also distanced herself from Netanyahu’s comment that the UNHRC “has become a Terrorists' Human Rights Council", though she acknowledged Washington had some issues with some of the UNHRC’s actions.
 
“We would not agree with that,” she said, when asked if the U.S. agreed with Netanyahu’s statement that the UNHRC is a “terrorists’ commission”.
 
“We have obviously voiced concerns when we have them about actions that are taken, but no, we would certainly not agree with that characterization,” added Psaki.
 
“We don’t see the need for heated rhetoric. But obviously there are times when we certainly agree, and we’ve expressed concerns in the past as well about the same organization and how they operate,” she said.
 
Speaking to reporters on Sunday just before takeoff on his way to New York, Netanyahu reiterated his pledge to "refute the lies" against Israel at the UN General Assembly, particularly in the speech by Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, who accused Israel of “genocide” and “war crimes”.
 
His associates later said the speech would be "razor sharp" and "worth the wait."

Egypt Set to Boycott Turkey Over Muslim Brotherhood Support

Category: News
Created on Monday, 29 September 2014 12:36
Erdogan R Mohamed Mursi  AFPOfficials in Egypt are demanding an immediate and total boycott of Turkish goods, and even a breakoff of diplomatic relations between the two countries, Egyptian media reports said. The call is the latest chapter in the steady and ongoing decline in relations between the two countries, with Turkey accusing Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi of everything to “illegitimacy” to “terrorism” to “war crimes.”
 
The sour relations between the two countries have their roots in the overthrow of former Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi by the al-Sisi led Egyptian army several years ago. Since then, Turkey has slammed al-Sisi as being a “dictator” who is “persecuting Muslims.” Just last week, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he would welcome seven top Muslim Brotherhood figures being forced to leave Qatar, indicating his strong ties with the Islamist group - and by extension with its Gaza offshoot Hamas.
 
"In the event that they request to come to Turkey, then necessary investigations will be carried out. ...If there are no obstacles, the mandatory convenience provided to everyone will also be provided to them," Erdogan said on returning from an official trip to Qatar, reports the Turkish Hurriyet Daily News.
 
"They can come to Turkey just like any other foreign visitor, if there are no problems," added Erdogan, in a position contrary to that of most Arab states which have supported Egypt's crackdown on the group.
 
Tensions between the two countries were exacerbated during Operation Protective Edge, when, according to Turkey, Egypt took an active role against Hamas, assisting Israel in battling the Gaza terror group, and saying he could not be relied upon to negotiate a truce with Israel. "Is Sisi a party (to a ceasefire)? Sisi is a tyrant himself," Erdogan was quoted by the AFP news agency as having told reporters. "He is not different from the others," he said, adding that it was Egypt's current rulers who were blocking humanitarian aid channels to Gaza.
 
Egypt, for its part, has had enough, reports in the Egyptian media said Monday, and the government was seriously considering a total economic boycott of Turkey. In a statement, Egypt's Foreign Ministry slammed a speech by Erdogan at the World Economic Forum last week, in which he repeated many of his accusations against al-Sisi and his government.
 
Turkey, the statement said, “has been suffering over the past 12 years of Erdogan's rule of non-democratic practices with all disregard to human rights.” The statement also denounced Erdogan's restrictions on freedom of expression “as well as the use of excessive force against political activists and peaceful protesters, citing the closure of social networks such as Twitter in a flagrant breach of the freedom of opinion as well as restrictions on press and judiciary, corruption charges as well as unjust sentences against journalists and writers.
 
“Such recurrent practices and non-democratic acts could never give Erdogan any ethical or political justification for speaking about democracy, but they only reflect a personal ideology for the Turkish leader who has illusions about restoring the glory of the Ottoman Empire away from the national interests of his country and people,” it added.

Gaza Schoolchildren Traumatized by Sounds of Hamas Torture

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 27 September 2014 08:50
Hamas terrorist leads condemned man to his execution - ReutersChildren at a school in southern Gaza are reportedly being terrorized by the sounds of Hamas detainees being tortured at an adjacent police compound.
 
Arabic-language Al Hayat Al-Jadida says parents of children attending the school in central Khan Younis have complained to authorities on numerous occasions about the phenomenon, which includes the chilling sounds of "shrieks and cries of pain", and has left students shaken. The sounds of torture apparently emanate from a building belonging to the Department of General Intelligence, which is tasked among other things with detaining and interrogating suspected "collaborators" or informants for Israel.
 
One ninth-grade student, identified only as "Y", testified how on her first day in the school she was shocked when her class was interrupted by bloodcurdling screams. She said she was left traumatized by the incident and feels "unsafe" at the presence of the compound near her school.
 
"Y" complained that the police were meant to make Gazans feel safe "not to provoke fear and terror."
 
Hamas authorities in Gaza have been widely accused of torturing detainees, as well as carrying out executions without due process.
 
The Islamist movements brutal repression of its own people - particularly political rivals from the secular-nationalist Fatah party - was highlighted during its 50-day war with Israel, when dozens of people were summarily executed in public after being accused of "collaboration" with Israel.
 
Human rights groups condemned the executions, as did Palestinian Authority officials, who claimed that the condemned men were not in fact "collaborators" but were shot in an opportunistic purge by Hamas of its rivals.
 
One leading Fatah party official went so far as to compare Hamas with the Islamic State (also known as IS or ISIS) - a comparison made repeatedly by Israeli officials including Prime Minister Netanyahu.

Mashaal: Disarmament Isn't Open for Negotiations

Category: News
Created on Friday, 26 September 2014 12:31
Khaled MashaalHamas leader Khaled Mashaal on Sunday asserted that the group’s weapons are for use only against Israel, Bloomberg reported.
 
Speaking at a conference in Doha, Qatar, Mashaal ruled out Israeli demands for disarmament in Gaza.
 
“The subject of the resistance’s weapons isn’t open for negotiations,” Mashaal said, adding, “Those weapons are for fighting the occupying enemy. They are not for internal affairs.”
 
Talks between Israel and Palestinian Arab factions, which started after 50 days of deadly fighting between in Gaza ended on August 26 with an open-ended truce agreement, are scheduled to restart this week.
 
The Egyptian-brokered negotiations are aimed at discussing key issues, including Hamas's unprecedented demand for a port and an airport and for terrorist releases, as well as Israel's demands for the area's demilitarization.
 
Hamas has repeatedly declared that it would reject any attempts to disarm the terrorist groups in Gaza.
 
Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri recently said that the demilitarization of the factions was "inconsistent with international law and our people will not allow it."
 
Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon, on the other side, has clarified that there is “no chance” Israel would agree to Hamas’s airport and seaport demand.
 
"Hamas in essence accepted the terms of the ceasefire as we wanted, without all the issues it tried to bring up - a seaport, airport and prisoners. In accepted a ceasefire as we wanted without conditions," Ya’alon said in a television interview, making clear that "there is no chance that Hamas will receive a seaport - it is not in Israel's interest, it is not an Egyptian interest, it's not even in the interest of the Palestinian Authority."
 
In Sunday’s comments, Mashaal also declared that Hamas is committed to its unity agreement with Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah party, saying talks with Fatah will take place in the next few days, as was reported on Saturday

'Thousands' Sneaked Out of Gaza During Operation Protective Edge

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 25 September 2014 22:11
Egyptian soldier guards Rafiah crossingA human smuggling ship reportedly was intentionally capsized by traffickers last week off the coast of Malta, killing all but four of the 100 Gaza residents on board who were part of "thousands" of Gazans fleeing the Hamas stronghold in recent months.
 
Osama, who lives in the United Arab Emirates and whose 23-year-old brother Yasser was on the ship, revealed to AFP details about Gaza's human trafficking network, which Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah faction exposed as being run by Hamas.
 
Yasser boarded the Italy-bound ship with 500 other passengers at Damietta in Egypt last week, after struggling to find work in Gaza following his graduation from a local Gazan university last year.
 
"There is no future for them in Gaza," Osama told AFP. "I tried to bring him to the Emirates but after seeing several of his friends reach Europe by boat, he decided to leave too." Osama said he still doesn't know if Yasser was among the ten total survivors of the shipwreck.
 
While Osama said Yasser crossed the Rafah crossing and paid "local Egyptians" $3,000 to fix passage to Europe, he added "you never know who you're giving the money too."
 
As noted, Fatah revealed this week that Hamas is running a human smuggling network, charging between $2,000 and $3,500 per person to traffic Gazans to Europe via Egypt.
 
"Thousands" have left Gaza in the last two months
 
Despite the recent Egyptian siege and Israeli blockade on the Hamas-enclave of Gaza, reportedly thousands of residents of the coastal strip of land have illegally made their way out in recent months through Hamas's smuggling tunnels to Sinai.
 
The International Organization for Migration (IOM) estimates that some 2,890 self-defined "Palestinians" have arrived in Italy this year. Some doubt has been cast on that figure, as some migrants claim to be "Palestinians" to avoid repatriation to countries with extradition agreements with the European Union (EU).
 
However, a Gaza-based human rights worker confirmed the appraisal, revealing to AFP "we estimate that thousands of people have left the Gaza Strip clandestinely over the past two months, especially during the war," referring to Operation Protective Edge.
 
"Due to the fact they left through tunnels to Egypt - an illegal, secret way to leave - we have no precise figure," added the worker, speaking on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the matter.
 
Hamas has remained markedly tight-lipped about the entire issue of residents fleeing their territory, where they are often used as human shields directly on top of targeted buildings, or indirectly due to Hamas embedding its terrorist infrastructure in civilian centers.
 
Hamas official Iyad al-Buzum claimed to AFP there are only "isolated cases (of emigration), which do not reach into the hundreds."
 
However, Raji Sourani, director of the Gaza-based Palestinian Center for Human Rights, said if the numbers are indeed limited, it is merely because Hamas is not allowing residents to leave freely.
 
"If Gazans had the right to free movement, tens of thousands of young people would leave the country because all their opportunities are blocked here," said Sourani, incorrectly referring to Gaza as a "country."
 
The appraisal by the Gaza human rights director surprisingly dovetails nicely with the strategy proposed by MK Moshe Feiglin (Likud), who during the operation called on Israel to provide a financial stimulus for Arab residents to leave Gaza, allowing the Jewish state to declare sovereignty over the region.

Why Qatar is Abandoning the Muslim Brotherhood - And Hamas

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 25 September 2014 19:30
emir-of-qatar-sheik-hamad-bin-khalifa-al-thaniHamas this morning denied claims that its Political Bureau chief, Khaled Mashaal, was being expelled from longtime ally Qatar. The initial report came just days after seven leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood were expelled from the country, having sought refuge from an Egyptian government crackdown.
 
That move naturally lead to speculation that Qatar might take a similar move against Hamas, which is the Palestinian branch of the Brotherhood, but a Hamas spokesman dismissed reports of Mashaal's impending departure as mere attempts to "sow tension and confusion". For the time being at least, Mashaal looks set to remain in Doha.
 
Yet according to Professor Hillel Frisch of the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies (BESA) - an expert on political Islam and particularly the Muslim Brotherhood - he may not be there for much longer. 
 
Qatar's decision to give the Muslim Brotherhood the boot "does not bode well at all" for Hamas, he says, and adds that it's only a matter of time before Mashaal follows suit - whether he is expelled outright or simply pressured into moving. Worse still for Hamas, when that break in relations does occur the terrorist group can expect to see its pool of funding shrink considerably.
 
On the surface, Doha's sudden rejection of the Brotherhood is surprising, given that the Qatari government has long been the Islamist movement's top financial sponsor and political supporter. Even Qatar-based Al Jazeera TV is widely seen in the Arab world as a mouthpiece for the Brotherhood - an association which led it to be banned in Sisi's Egypt. 
 
So what lies behind this apparent about-turn?
 
Arab Spring 'counter-revolution'
 
Frisch describes the current crackdown on the Brotherhood across the Middle East as part of a "counter-revolution" by regional powers in reaction to the series of Arab uprisings once optimistically termed the "Arab Spring", likening it to the way in which European powers reacted to the 19th Century French Revolution. Combating the Muslim Brotherhood - "a popular movement which won elections in Egypt, the major Arab state" - is the main test for counter-revolutionary Arab governments, as it is a prime example of the way in which political Islam has ridden the waves of revolutionary fervor in the region to challenge existing regimes.
 
As such, recent years have seen the formation of an anti-Brotherhood alliance including nearly all of the major Arab states in the region, from secular Egypt to Wahhabi Saudi Arabia. Such counter-revolutionary efforts throughout history have seen various levels of success, but "in this case it's been very successful so far," he notes, citing the overthrow of Mohammed Morsi in Egypt and the general decline of the Islamist movement's fortunes since then.
 
Until now only one "recalcitrant actor" refused to join that counter-revolutionary coalition: Qatar.
 
It is crucial to understand why Qatar's ruling family - hardly a band of revolutionary religious zealots - chose to back the Brotherhood in the first place. Small in size and population, the gulf peninsula state has sought to project power and punch well above its weight internationally by utilizing its seemingly endless oil revenue to buy friends and influence. The Brotherhood, which until recently was clearly on the ascent and had (and still has) a presence in most Arab countries, seemed like the perfect proxy for power-projection. Indeed, apart from backing the Egyptian branch, Qatari money helped fund Muslim Brotherhood-linked rebel groups in Syria - although those groups too have recently seen their fortunes wane - and of course Hamas.
 
And then there is Doha's longstanding rivalry with the Saudis in particular. Qatar's attempts to assert itself in the face of its much larger and militarily superior neighbor was already evident in its decision to pursue warm relations with Iran, in defiance of Riyadh and other Arab states. So it came as no surprise that "when the Saudis decided to suppress the Brotherhood, Qatar decided to support them," Frisch says.
 
Nevertheless, growing pressure on Qatar appears to have finally encouraged its relatively new leader, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, to jettison the Brotherhood. 
 
While threats of financial sanctions would hardly have ruffled the oil-rich state, Frisch suggests a number of other ways in which Arab states might have applied pressure. Apart from cutting diplomatic relations and starving Qatar of the international influence it craves - as has already begun after Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain withdrew their ambassadors to Doha - the Saudis and others could have threatened to expose Qatari connections to global terrorism, endangering relations with the west, he speculates.
 
In the face of such pressure, it is not difficult to imagine why al-Thani - who has already previously indicated his desire to scale back from his father's aggressive foreign policy anyway - finally yielded.
 
"Qatar couldn't care less about the Muslim Brotherhood, it means nothing to them... there is nothing sentimental in this," just cold, hard realpolitik, Frisch insists.
 
"They are reassessing the strategic landscape... They realize that, particularly since the recent (ISIS) beheadings, there is a growing international sentiment against Islamism, political Islam, and they don't want to find themselves on the wrong side," he adds.
 
Moreover, the Qataris may themselves be alarmed at the rapid gains made by Islamism in the region. Perhaps noting the Saudi experience of the early 2000's, when the jihadis they themselves nurtured turned on them, al-Thani could understandably fear becoming the next victim of a Frankenstein's monster of his own creation.
 
Down but not out
 
It is clear then that the growing public outcry over Qatar's support for terrorism is having an impact, "but whether this is permanent remains to be seen," Frisch cautions. The regime's "divorce" from the Brotherhood may be genuine, but equally could just be a temporary ruse to allay pressure.
 
What's more, even if its rejection by Qatar is final, "the Muslim Brotherhood is hardly finished."
 
"It has a permanent constituency in the Arab world. You can't simply wipe them out and I don't think anyone believes that."
 
But what about Hamas? While closely linked to the Brotherhood, could Mashaal's group be spared due to its status as champions of the fight against Israel and the "Palestinian cause"?
 
That's not likely, according to Frisch.
 
"I think it's all part of the same thing. If Qatar moves away from supporting the Muslim Brotherhood it's also going to move away from Hamas, for the simple reason that all the Arabs states will say: 'If you want to be pro-Palestinian you can support the Palestinian Authority.' There is an alternative."
 
For both Hamas and the Brotherhood the most likely place to relocate to would be Turkey, he posits. "Turkey is basically the state that is closest to reflecting the Muslim Brotherhood values and ideology."
 
Indeed, Turkey's Islamist President Recep Tayyip Erdogan recently declared he would welcome the exiled Muslim Brotherhood leadership with open arms. For Hamas, the move would be perhaps even likelier given that much of its leadership is already based in Turkey - including the notorious Salah Al-Aruri, who Israeli authorities say was involved in the kidnap and murder of three Israeli teens back in June.
 
It would of course be a blow to the prestige of the Brotherhood and Hamas in the eyes of their mostly Arab constituency to seek refuge in a non-Arab country such as Turkey - but far more significant would be the financial cost of relocation.
 
"Don't forget that there's one thing Turkey can't do: Turkey can't and won't give big money. They don't have the kind of money the Qataris have," Frisch notes.
 
Moreover, Turkey's banking system and status as a NATO member would make it harder to directly fund Hamas, a proscribed terrorist group in Europe, the US and much of the rest of the western world.
 
That would only add to the financial pressure on Hamas, which is already starved for funds after falling out with its former Iranian sponsors over the Syrian civil war.
 
There has of course been a partial rapprochement with Tehran, but there is no doubt that Hamas, and Mashaal, are looking increasingly isolated - and precisely at a time when funds are desperately needed to recover from an exhausting conflict with Israel.
 
In conclusion, says Frisch, while no killer blow, "this is all very bad news for Hamas, and good news for Israel."

Palestinian, Egyptian Commentators Argue about Gaza War

Category: Media
Created on Thursday, 25 September 2014 17:10
Israeli airstrike in GazaThe Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) has translated a recent TV debate between Dr. Muhammad Al-Shtayyeh, a Fatah leader in Cairo, and Ashraf Abu Al-Houl, deputy editor-in-chief of the Egyptian Al-Ahram newspaper.
 
The two argued over the achievements that Hamas had claimed following the Gaza war.
 
{youtube}eStlzrR5xRs{/youtube}
 
The debate was broadcast on the Egyptian ON TV channel on August 28. While Shtayyeh said that “the victory can be attributed to the Palestinian people”, Al-Houl blasted Hamas and said the group gave justification for Israel to attack by kidnapping and murdering Israeli teenagers Eyal Yifrah, Naftali Frenkel and Gilad Sha’ar.
 
Al-Houl also said that Hamas had humiliated Egypt by refusing its ceasefire proposal and asking for another country to mediate in the ceasefire talks.

Fatah Official: What's the Difference Between Hamas and ISIS?

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 20 September 2014 10:05
Member of IsisA leading Fatah party member has compared Hamas's methods of executing and brutalizing its political opponents in Gaza to the gruesome executions carried out by the "Islamic State" terrorist group, or ISIS.
 
In an interview with the Palestinian Authority's official TV station, Fatah Central Committee member Tawfiq Tirawi expressed his anger over a string of executions and shootings of Fatah members in Gaza during Operation Protective Edge, and said the "unity deal" between Hamas and the Fatah-run Palestinian Authority was "a mistake."
 
{youtube}ATu_xquX0HM{/youtube}
 
Prior to his interview, which was translated by MEMRI (Middle East Media Research Institute), Al-Awda TV aired footage from an interview with a Fatah member from Gaza who said he was maimed by Hamas gunmen for leaving his home after being put under house arrest.
 
"I was told that I was under house arrest - I was forbidden to leave home - for reasons unknown to me," the man, who was lying on a hospital bed with his wounded legs under a sheet. His identity was hidden for obvious security reasons.
 
He said that despite that fact he went outside "but stayed close to home. I didn't go far away."
 
"All of a sudden, a car with three men stopped. They got out and told us to stay where we were," he recalled. "They asked me my name, and I told them, and then all three of them opened fire at me."
 
His story matches dozens of other accounts by Fatah members who say Hamas used the fog of war to settle political scores with its rivals.
 
Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas has spoken out against the attacks on several occasions, most recently in an interview last week. But Tirawi was distinctly less diplomatic.
 
"I do not believe that we can keep quiet about what was done to our people in Gaza," he said, blasting Hamas for what he later described as the "nightmarish" way it was treating members of its supposed "unity government" partner, Fatah.
 
"National unity is not just an agreement that you sign," he fired.
 
"That agreement was a mistake, a mistake, a mistake. It was dictated from above. A bulls*** agreement with no details and no mechanism for implementation," such as who would actually run Gaza and its numerous "security agencies".
 
Tirawi also accused Hamas of undermining efforts to fight against Israel.
 
"If we want to wage war we must be united and prepared. How can we possibly be prepared, when Fatah members in (Gaza) are forbidden to bear arms and fight?"
 
He claimed that several of the more than two dozen men summarily executed by Hamas during Operation Protective Edge were "officers in the security agencies."
 
"Hamas says they are spies. Did they place them on trial? Did they interrogate them? Where are the confessions?" he demanded.
 
"According to what laws did they execute these people? What is the difference between (Hamas) and Al-Zarqawi, not to mention ISIS?" he continued. Abu Mousab Al-Zarqawi was the infamous and brutal founder and head of ISIS's predecessor, the Islamic State of Iraq.
 
"I don't want to mention ISIS, which beheads people," he went on, but then asked: "What is the difference between beheading people and executing them by gunfire? Aren't they both killers, regardless of the execution method, which we all denounce?"
 
Hamas proudly and openly broadcast news of the executions, including photos of menacing-looking masked gunmen lining up the victims for execution, in an attempt to project strength in the aftermath of a series of Israeli airstrikes targeting key Hamas leaders.
 
But the images - as well as the very use of summary, public executions without trial - caused many people to compare Hamas to the Islamic State, which broadcast footage of the brutal beheading of US journalist James Foley at around the same time.
 
The comments surface after tensions between Hamas and the PA have begun to boil over, with Hamas ordering its members in Judea and Samaria to resist summonses for investigation by PA forces earlier this month; recently Hamas staged a failed coup attempt on Abbas in Judea and Samaria.

Fatah Official: What's the Difference Between Hamas and ISIS?

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 20 September 2014 10:05
Member of IsisA leading Fatah party member has compared Hamas's methods of executing and brutalizing its political opponents in Gaza to the gruesome executions carried out by the "Islamic State" terrorist group, or ISIS.
 
In an interview with the Palestinian Authority's official TV station, Fatah Central Committee member Tawfiq Tirawi expressed his anger over a string of executions and shootings of Fatah members in Gaza during Operation Protective Edge, and said the "unity deal" between Hamas and the Fatah-run Palestinian Authority was "a mistake."
 
{youtube}ATu_xquX0HM{/youtube}
 
Prior to his interview, which was translated by MEMRI (Middle East Media Research Institute), Al-Awda TV aired footage from an interview with a Fatah member from Gaza who said he was maimed by Hamas gunmen for leaving his home after being put under house arrest.
 
"I was told that I was under house arrest - I was forbidden to leave home - for reasons unknown to me," the man, who was lying on a hospital bed with his wounded legs under a sheet. His identity was hidden for obvious security reasons.
 
He said that despite that fact he went outside "but stayed close to home. I didn't go far away."
 
"All of a sudden, a car with three men stopped. They got out and told us to stay where we were," he recalled. "They asked me my name, and I told them, and then all three of them opened fire at me."
 
His story matches dozens of other accounts by Fatah members who say Hamas used the fog of war to settle political scores with its rivals.
 
Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas has spoken out against the attacks on several occasions, most recently in an interview last week. But Tirawi was distinctly less diplomatic.
 
"I do not believe that we can keep quiet about what was done to our people in Gaza," he said, blasting Hamas for what he later described as the "nightmarish" way it was treating members of its supposed "unity government" partner, Fatah.
 
"National unity is not just an agreement that you sign," he fired.
 
"That agreement was a mistake, a mistake, a mistake. It was dictated from above. A bulls*** agreement with no details and no mechanism for implementation," such as who would actually run Gaza and its numerous "security agencies".
 
Tirawi also accused Hamas of undermining efforts to fight against Israel.
 
"If we want to wage war we must be united and prepared. How can we possibly be prepared, when Fatah members in (Gaza) are forbidden to bear arms and fight?"
 
He claimed that several of the more than two dozen men summarily executed by Hamas during Operation Protective Edge were "officers in the security agencies."
 
"Hamas says they are spies. Did they place them on trial? Did they interrogate them? Where are the confessions?" he demanded.
 
"According to what laws did they execute these people? What is the difference between (Hamas) and Al-Zarqawi, not to mention ISIS?" he continued. Abu Mousab Al-Zarqawi was the infamous and brutal founder and head of ISIS's predecessor, the Islamic State of Iraq.
 
"I don't want to mention ISIS, which beheads people," he went on, but then asked: "What is the difference between beheading people and executing them by gunfire? Aren't they both killers, regardless of the execution method, which we all denounce?"
 
Hamas proudly and openly broadcast news of the executions, including photos of menacing-looking masked gunmen lining up the victims for execution, in an attempt to project strength in the aftermath of a series of Israeli airstrikes targeting key Hamas leaders.
 
But the images - as well as the very use of summary, public executions without trial - caused many people to compare Hamas to the Islamic State, which broadcast footage of the brutal beheading of US journalist James Foley at around the same time.
 
The comments surface after tensions between Hamas and the PA have begun to boil over, with Hamas ordering its members in Judea and Samaria to resist summonses for investigation by PA forces earlier this month; recently Hamas staged a failed coup attempt on Abbas in Judea and Samaria.

Hamas: We'll Demilitarize if Israel Does

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 11 September 2014 21:29
Haniyeh celebrates Morsis victoryHamas is not willing to discuss the possibility of demilitarizing weapons from its "military wing," the Al-Qassam Brigades, or other Palestinian terrorist organizations operating in the Gaza, one of its leaders announced Friday. 
 
In his first Friday sermon after the war, Ismail Haniyeh, the deputy head of Hamas's political bureau, said that Hamas does not intend to cooperate with any regional or international decision which would see its arsenal 'against the resistance' harmed. 
 
"Weapons are the holy light of the sanctity of the struggle and the land issue, and if they want to demilitarize its weapons, we will only agree if the occupier is also demilitarized and its leaves our land," Haniyeh said, likely referring to the entire state of Israel. 
 
"As long as there is an occupation, there will be a struggle," he added. 
 
Haniyeh also vehemently denied claims that one condition of Israel's ceasefire with Gaza forged last month was demilitarization, saying that the Al-Qassam Brigades' "military victory" will be "taught in military academies." Just last week, Haniyeh, similarly, made the "victory" sign in highly publicized photos while standing on his ruined home in Gaza. 
 
Commenting on his proposed agenda at this stage, Haniyeh said that the focus will be on assisting the Palestinian people, rehabilitation, lifting blockades once and for all, and strengthening Palestinian unity. 
 
He called on the Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman, Mahmoud Abbas to join the Rome agreement to enable the Palestinian people to prosecute the "leaders of the occupation" for war crimes, mentioning that the Palestinian organizations signed a document that supports it.
 
The call surfaces less than one day after rights group Shurat HaDin announced that it had filed its own indictment for war crimes against Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal in the International Criminal Court (ICC), in response to the summary execution of 38 Palestinians in Gaza during the final days of Operation Protective Edge. 
 
Legal experts have noted that an indictment is likely to be filed against Hamas's leaders-in-exile over their conduct during the war as well, as they have facilitated, over and over again, the use of Gaza's civilians as human shields during the fifty-day long conflict, and then padded the "civilian" death count to include known terrorists killed in targeted airstrikes. 

Abbas Slams Mashaal for 'Smuggling Weapons Not Against Israel'

Category: News
Created on Friday, 05 September 2014 18:17
Abbas and MashaalA new report has exposed the details of a heated meeting held between Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas and Qatar-based Hamas politburo chief Khaled Mashaal on August 21 in Doha, in which Mashaal apparently submitted to a ceasefire with Israel.
 
The report was published Monday by the Lebanese Al Akbar news site, as cited by Walla!, and notes Abbas was told by Israel Security Agency (ISA) head Yoram Cohen two weeks before the meeting that his agency and IDF foiled an attempt by Hamas from its Turkey headquarters to stage a coup against Abbas's PA in Judea and Samaria.
 
Abbas's rage over the news reportedly boiled over in the Doha meeting, which was attended by Qatari emir Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, his foreign minister, senior members of Abbas's Fatah faction including Saeb Erekat and Azzam al-Ahmed, and Hamas deputy politburo chief Mousa Abu Marzouk.
 
"I don't want to return to the past," Abbas reportedly told Mashaal, noting on the April PA-Hamas unity deal. "I gave the Qatari emir all the details. We agreed on a unity government and elections."
 
However, Abbas threatened "that might not happen because you are smuggling weapons, explosives and money to the (West) Bank - and not to fight Israel, but to hold a coup against the (Palestinian) Authority."
 
Detailing his early August meeting with Cohen, Abbas told Mashaal he was informed about "a group that was arrested, which planned to carry out a coup. Why a coup? This needs to end."
 
Mashaal then complained to Erekat about the berating according to the report, saying "I don't know anything about the ISA's information, and no one updated me about it."
 
"We are partners with Abbas, we respect him, and his right to criticize is apparent, but from the start of the meeting he's been irritable. He relies on Israeli stories about a coup, and says he doesn't trust us - that's unacceptable!" said the exasperated leader of the terrorist group Hamas.
 
Mashaal then pressed his denial of the detailed ISA reports, saying "it's sad that you choose to believe Israeli sources. On the honor of Qatar and the emir, I say - this is 100% a lie."
 
Hamas independence "is unbearable"
 
Further tensions in the Hamas-PA unity government, which recently revealed it is completely bankrupt, were raised in the meeting over the Hamas abduction and murder of three Israeli teens on June 12.
 
Hamas leader Salah Al-Aruri in Turkey late last month finally admitted his group was behind the horrific murder, after Hamas leaders had long repeated their denial.
 
"You kidnapped three children. I asked you about it, and you didn't confirm or deny. Yesterday Al-Aruri said they were the ones who did it. Why? What's the goal of that? To destroy the (West) Bank?" asked Abbas of Mashaal.
 
The PA leader warned that things would be changing, saying "in (Operation) Pillar of Defense you did what wanted, and we weren't there. Now we are working with you, and the current situation is unbearable."
 
Abbas's plan to force an Israeli withdrawal
 
Abbas also presented his plan to demand the UN set a deadline for Israel to withdraw from the 1949 Armistice lines.
 
"After 20 years of failed negotiations, Israel and the US haven't brought us anything and the occupation continues," said Abbas. "We are setting a national strategy like this: Israel and the US will agree in writing to a Palestinian state on the '67 borders with eastern Jerusalem as it's capital and defined temporary borders."
 
"We'll start immediately with a border outline during a period that will be set in advance, and afterwards we will discuss the topics of a permanent agreement," said Abbas, detailing his plan to press Israel to leave its biblical heartland without any agreement in place.
 
If the US and Israel do not agree, and indeed both have already expressed opposition to the plan, Abbas noted he would stop the security arrangements and all cooperation with Israel, dismantle the PA - a threat made numerous times in the past - and give Israel control over Judea and Samaria.
 
"In this way Israel will take on itself responsibility as an occupying state," said Abbas, presenting a move that some estimate would leave Israel vulnerable to an international litigation.
 
It is worth noting that the 2012 Levy Report, which has yet to be adopted by the government, revealed that an Israeli presence in Judea and Samaria is not an "occupation" according to international law.

Hamas 'Victory Rally' in Abbas's Home Turf of Ramallah

Category: News
Created on Monday, 01 September 2014 18:09
Hamas rally in GazaAfter Arab citizens of Israel led by radical Arab MKs held a "Hamas victory rally" in the Galilee last Friday, Arab residents followed suit on Saturday in Ramallah, the Palestinian Authority (PA) stronghold in Samaria.
 
Thousands of local Arabs took part in the rally, which was organized by the Hamas movement in Ramallah in celebration of the hard-hit terrorist organization's supposed "victory" against Israel in Operation Protective Edge.
 
The rally, held in the Al-Bireh neighborhood of Ramallah, was entitled "The Pledge of Allegiance and Victory." Hamas leaders and parliamentarians in the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) from different parts of Judea and Samaria took part in the celebration, accompanied by leaders of other Palestinian Arab organizations.
 
Horse-mounted Hamas activists led the rally march, waving Hamas flags and singing the praise of Hamas's "military wing," the Ezzedine Al-Qassam Brigades.
 
Children also took part in the "festivities," parading models of the rockets fired in massive barrages by Hamas terrorists at Israeli civilian centers during the terror war, as well as pictures of senior Hamas leaders assassinated by the IDF in targeted airstrikes.
 
Khalil al-Haya, a senior Hamas leader in Gaza, gave a speech at the rally via telephone in which he emphasized the right to "resistance" against Israel.
 
The rally is particularly noteworthy because as mentioned above, it occurred in the heart of the PA governmental center of Ramallah.
 
The rivalry between Chairman Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah faction and the Islamist Hamas passed breaking point after the latter violently ousted Fatah from Gaza in 2007. Abbas signed a unity deal with Hamas in April, helping to torpedo peace talks with Israel, but tension and mutual recriminations have tested the durability of the deal.
 
During Operation Protective Edge Hamas on numerous occasions called for an escalation of terror attacks in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria, calls sounded as recently as last Monday by Hamas politburo chief Khaled Mashaal.
 
Hamas's position is seen as an attempt to gain support in the PA-ruled areas of Judea and Samaria and strengthen its position over its rival Fatah.
 
Just two weeks ago it was revealed that the Hamas headquarters in Turkey ordered a large-scale coup of Abbas's new PA unity government by destabilizing the political and security situation through a series of terror attacks on Israelis. Abbas later said the information could have lasting implications for the unity deal between his faction and Hamas.

Hamas: Attempts to Disarm Us Are 'Worthless'

Category: News
Created on Monday, 01 September 2014 11:35
Sami Abu Zuhri0Hamas on Saturday declared that any attempts to disarm the terrorist groups in Gaza are "worthless," the Ma’an news agency reported.
 
Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said in a statement quoted by the outlet that the demilitarization of the factions was "inconsistent with international law and our people will not allow it."
 
"It is not required to disarm the Palestinian people, but rather to disarm the (Israeli) occupation and to ban the American administration from providing it with the weapons that are used to kill children and women," Abu Zuhri declared, according to Ma’an.
 
The comments come several days after a long-term ceasefire agreement ended the latest round of violence in Gaza.
 
Further negotiations on a permanent ceasefire are ongoing, and one of Israel’s main demands has been a demilitarization of Gaza.
 
Hamas has been demanding, among other things, that a seaport and an airport be built in Gaza. On Friday, Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon clarified that there was “no chance” Israel would agree to this demand.
 
"Hamas in essence accepted the terms of the ceasefire as we wanted, without all the issues it tried to bring up - a seaport, airport and prisoners. In accepted a ceasefire as we wanted without conditions," Ya’alon said in a television interview, making clear that "there is no chance that Hamas will receive a seaport - it is not in Israel's interest, it is not an Egyptian interest, it's not even in the interest of the Palestinian Authority."
 
Hamas leaders have been trying to present the ceasefire as a victory for Hamas, even as videos disseminated on the internet show aerial views of the Shejaiya neighborhood of Gaza, which was reduced to rubble in the fighting between Hamas and the IDF.
 
Shortly after the truce took hold on Tuesday, several senior Hamas and Islamic Jihad leaders appeared in public for a victory celebration. They had been hiding underground during the course of the Israeli operation.
 
Among them was Mahmoud al-Zahar, a senior member of the Hamas political wing, and senior Islamic Jihad leader Mohammed al-Hindi who gave a rousing victory speech to thousands of people gathered in a square in Gaza City's Rimal neighborhood.
 
"We're going to build our port and our airport, and if they attack the port, they attack the port. But anyone who attacks the airport will have their airport attacked again," Zahar said.

PA Officials: Hamas Preventing Abbas from Governing in Gaza

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 31 August 2014 09:05
Hamas terrorists in GazaHamas and the Palestinian Authority (PA) are at odds again, Palestinian sources told Walla! News Friday - this time, over rebuilding Gaza.
 
Hamas stated repeatedly during Operation Protective Edge that it would allow PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas to supervise Gaza's reconstruction, following the IDF's revelation that much of the construction materials shipped to the local government, which is run by the terror organization, is used to construct terror tunnels and for arms imports. 
 
Now, however, "Hamas is preventing Palestinians from returning to work in Gaza," a senior PA source said to the news outlet. Before the operation, the source noted, the PA appointed leaders for five government districts there and were told to take office in Gaza; Hamas has stopped the leaders from returning. 
 
The announcement surfaces amid multiple reports over the past several months that the unity government itself has been slowly crumbling.
 
Differences of opinion have surfaced over several issues, including the war in Gaza, reactions to the abduction and murder of three Israeli teenagers, and the delayed payment of wages for government workers in Gaza in the weeks leading up to Operation Protective Edge. 
 
More recently, the IDF and the Israel Security Agency (ISA or Shin Bet) revealed that a large-scale coup had been planned by Hamas in Judea and Samaria to overthrow the PA and Abbas's Fatah party, in orders given from Hamas officials abroad. 
 
Shortly after the plot was revealed, Abbas said the information could have lasting implications for the Palestinian Arab people.
 
"This new information is a real danger to the unity of the Palestinian people and its future," Abbas stated, according to Channel 2 News. He stressed that the implications of the discovery "will be serious for the Palestinian and regional situation, especially after Israeli officials published a list and pictures of confiscated weapons."
 
Hamas has also executed dozens of Fatah members on charges of "collaboration with Israel" over the past two weeks, in widely publicized killings that have garnered international criticism and sown discord between the Palestinian Arab groups. 

Senior Fatah Source: Qatar Pushed Hamas Back to War

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 24 August 2014 11:35
Khaled Meshaal0A senior member of Palestnian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah faction said Wednesday Hamas's choice to forego the Egyptian truce proposal and return to its rocket war on Israel was due to Qatari pressure.
 
The Fatah source, quoted in the Arabic Al-Hayat as cited by Yedioth Aharonoth, said that during the Cairo truce talks Hamas had been pressing for Qatar to play an active role in the negotiations, and asked that a senior Qatar source be invited to the talks.
 
Egypt reportedly refused the proposal, stipulating that Qatar apologize for its policies towards the Nile State since Muslim Brotherhood member and former Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi was deposed last July 3, indicating the tension between Eygpt and Qatar. Qatar is the leading sponsor of the Muslim Brotherhood, of which Hamas is the Palestinian branch.
 
The Fatah source added that Qatar threatened to expel Qatar-based Hamas politburo chief Khaled Mashaal, saying it would "force him to leave," if Hamas agreed to the Egyptian truce proposal in its current structure.
 
Indeed Hamas rejected the proposal last week, with Mashaal saying "we want serious negotiations that lead to an end of the aggression on Gaza and granting the Palestinian demands."
 
The new revelation would appear to lend credence to reports Tuesday that the breach of the ceasefire was in fact orchestrated by none other than Mashaal.
 
An unnamed security source told Walla! the initial rocket salvo on Be'er Sheva was ordered directly by Mashaal, who reportedly bypassed Hamas's "military wing", the Al-Qassam Brigades, and ordered a specially-assigned unit of Hamas operatives answerable directly to him to launch the attack.
 
The source claimed Mashaal was aiming to sabotage negotiations for a long-term truce in Cairo, which were not going his way.
 
A senior Hamas source last week urged a different nation to replace Egypt as intermediary in the talks, labeling Egypt "the basic delaying source preventing an agreement."
 
Hamas may have envisioned Qatar as the replacement, given that the source called for a new third-party that would help achieve the terror group's demands, including terrorists releases and a Gaza sea and airport.
 
It is worth noting that three Arab-nationalist Balad MKs recently traveled to Qatar, where they reportedly met the traitor ex-MK Azmi Bishara, who founded their party before fleeing Israel after passing information to direct Hezbollah rockets on Israeli citizens.
 
Qatar just a week ago reportedly increased its emergency aid to the Hamas enclave of Gaza by $13 million, bringing it to a total of $23 million.

New York Times Misleads over 'Righteous Gentile' Gaza Anger

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 24 August 2014 10:38
Operation Protective EdgeA front-page story in Friday's New York Times reported that an Israeli-honored Righteous Gentile had returned his award because of an Israeli airstrike that "flattened a house in the Gaza Strip, killing six of [his] relatives by marriage."
 
The Times quoted a surviving relative saying that "none of his family members were militants." The tone of the report was that though Israel "says" it takes precautions to avoid killing civilians, "it has offered no information on [justification for the] strike that killed six civilians."
 
However, research by blogger Elder of Ziyon suggests that the newspaper could have, it if wished to, found out that in fact, one of the people killed in the attack was a full-fledged Hamas terrorist – a valid military target by all accounts.
 
In its review of the July 20th strike, B'tselem reported that one of the victims  - Muhammad Mahmoud al-Maqadma, 30 - was none other than a “military branch operative.” In fact, he was a member of the Al Qassam Brigades of Hamas.
 
Various explanations for his presence could be presented: The house could have been built atop a weapons cache, bunker, or other military target… He could have been using the family as human shields… The family might have been protecting him of their own volition…
 
The point is, however, as Elder of Ziyon concludes, "this information [as to the presence of a terrorist] is available. The New York Times first discussed the bombing of that same house on August 4, and by then the identity of the “guest” was known to NGOs… The same research that people can do on the Internet is available – along with much more  - to the staffs of major media outlets like the NYTimes… The information that contradicts [the claim that there were no military targets in the house] is out there - if they would bother to look for it. They don’t."

Hamas Threatens 'No Third Ceasefire Extension'

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 23 August 2014 21:40
hamas membersThe truce talks have "returned to the starting point," a Hamas leader said Sunday night ahead of the current ceasefire ending Monday at midnight - a ceasefire he threatened would not be extended again.
 
Hamas Deputy Leader Moussa Abu-Marzouk, part of the delegation in the Cairo truce talks, claimed Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu rejected the Egyptian truce proposal and submitted Israeli amendments that returned talks to the starting point, reports Channel 10.
 
Amendments submitted by the Hamas, Palestinian Authority (PA) and Islamic Jihad delegation were revealed on Monday. They include important changes on several major issues that were slipped in, such as the release of terrorists.
 
"Netanyahu is captive to internal contradictions. He went to war and lost, and didn't achieve the goals he set for himself. There are 24 hours left in the ceasefire agreed upon, and it will not be renewed for a third time. The Palestinian delegation will not give up on any of the rights of our people," said Abu-Marzouk.
 
While Israel has called for a disarmament of the terrorists in Gaza, truce proposals have not addressed that demand, leaving it to be discussed in talks a month after a truce deal when Hamas demands such as a sea and airport are to be discussed as well.
 
Apparently this point of disarmament is what Abu-Marzouk referred to in terms of the goals that haven't been achieved. The Israeli public has overwhelmingly been calling for the government to finish the job in Gaza, as seen in a 10,000-strong rally in Tel Aviv last Thursday.
 
A member of the Palestinian Arab delegation to Cairo told AP that the gaps between the sides remain significant, and that it is unclear if an agreement will be signed before the ceasefire ends.
 
"We are even less optimistic than in the past," said the official.

Amended Ceasefire Proposal Includes Terrorist Releases

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 23 August 2014 17:12
Mahmoud Abbas0The amendments to the Egyptian 11-point truce proposal submitted by the Palestinian Arab delegation in Cairo was revealed on Monday morning, hours ahead of the end of the current ceasefire at midnight.
 
The response to the Egyptian proposal submitted by the delegation, which includes Hamas, the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Islamic Jihad, was published in the Palestinian Arab Sawa news agency and revealed by Walla!.
 
Comparing the document with the original 11-point proposal, the first clause calling for an immediate cessation of IDF action and strikes in Gaza remains untouched.
 
The second clause promising an end to attacks from Gaza on Israel remains as well - although the promise to stop the construction of terror tunnels is notably absent.
 
The third clause goes beyond the Egyptian proposal of Gaza Crossings being opened and specifically says "the blockade on Gaza will end." It also specifically calls for open trade between PA-controlled areas of Judea and Samaria with Gaza to include building materials, despite the use of cement to build terror tunnels.
 
It is worth noting that Hamas has clarified that any truce deal would be seen only as an opportunity to plan the next terror war on Israel.
 
The fourth clause adds to the call to have Israel coordinate with the PA about matters of finances and reconstruction of Gaza with matters of "the transfer of funds to different echelons," apparently in a return to the controversial proposal to have Israel pay the salaries of Hamas officials.
 
The fifth clause's call to eliminate the buffer zone on the Gaza side of the border is still present, but it no longer specifies that PA security forces will be deployed to secure the area starting January 1, 2015 as the Egyptian proposal stated. The buffer zone was meant to prevent terrorist infiltration into Israel.
 
The sixth clause still calls to expand the Gaza fishing zone to 12 nautical miles. Israel on Sunday lifted the ban of Gaza fishing to three nautical miles in a "goodwill" gesture, although the maximum zone in times of calm has been six nautical miles.
 
No notable change is discernible in the seventh clause, calling for Israel to assist in rebuilding Gaza's infrastructure and providing medical assistance.
 
Instead of calling for the PA, Israel and international organizations to provide basic products to rehabilitate Gaza and return displaced persons, the eighth clause now calls for the entry of building materials to Gaza to be eased according to a temporary defined schedule, still so as to return displaced persons. The change appears to remove some oversight in the process.
 
The ninth clause still has Egypt providing humanitarian aid and transferring funds to rebuild Gaza in a defined schedule, apparently referring to internationally donated funds gathered by Egypt and Norway.
 
The amendments drop the bombshell in an additional clause before the former tenth clause.
 
In the new tenth clause, the delegation calls for a "cancellation of the regulations that Israel fixed in the West Bank after June 12, 2014 (when the three Israeli teens were abducted and murdered), (including) the release of prisoners (arrested in Operation Brother's Keeper), particularly (Hamas) members of the (PA) parliament, and the release of the fourth batch of prisoners."
 
The last piece is a reference to the terrorist prisoner release "gestures" during the Israel-PA peace talks, which broke down in April before the last batch of terrorists was released, but after 78 terrorists had already gone free.
 
Clause eleven corresponds to the old tenth clause, saying talks will be completed in Cairo a month after the truce deal.
 
However, an important caveat was slipped into the clause, saying "afterwards the process of exchanging the prisoners and returning the two bodies (of Second Lt.Hadar Goldin and First Sgt. Oron Shaul hy''d) will be completed between the sides."
 
While AFP noted on Sunday that the return of the two bodies was being pushed off for the talks a month after the truce deal, it did not specify that the return of the bodies for a proper burial was being used as a trump card in pressing Israel to free terrorists.
 
The twelfth clause remains as the previous eleventh clause, saying discussions over establishing a sea and airport in Gaza will be held in the talks a month after a truce.
 
A final thirteenth clause is added in, saying "Egypt calls on both sides to uphold the understandings from 12:01 a.m. of August 14, 2014," a reference to the previous ceasefire extension in calling to maintain the lull in fighting.

Hamas Threatens Terror in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 23 August 2014 10:57
Gaza Hamas terroristsThe Hamas terrorist organization in Gaza on Sunday called for an escalation of terror attacks on Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria as an "expression of support" for the war on Israel being waged from Gaza.
 
Hamas spokesperson Fawzi Barhoum told the Palestinian Arab Safa news agency that such terror attacks serve to wear down the "occupation" and press Israel to end the "aggression" in Gaza, by forcing it to open the blockade and submit to Hamas's demands.
 
According to the Hamas representative, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's "insistence" not to accept Hamas's demands, which include a sea and airport in Gaza, are "an additional new act of foolishness and gambling that will bring more disasters on him and the Israelis, beyond the decision for aggression and a ground war against Gaza."
 
While Netanyahu last Tuesday reportedly was "softening" ministers up to Israeli concessions in truce talks with Hamas in Cairo, on Sunday he vowed not to give Hamas a "political achievement."
 
However, the Egyptian truce proposal, which Hamas has apparently rejected, reportedly would have Israel ease the blockade on Gaza and allow construction materials in despite the use of cement to build terror tunnels. It further would cancel the perimeter no-entry zone on the Gaza side of the border, meant to deter terrorist infiltration, and have Israel help rebuild Gaza.
 
Larger issues such as the disarmament of Gaza and the Hamas demand for a sea and airport would be postponed to talks held within a month after the truce takes effect.
 
Barhoum's call for terror in Jerusalem and the region comes two weeks after he praised an Arab terrorist in Jerusalem who killed an Israeli and wounded four others in Jerusalem with a tractor.
 
"The action in Jerusalem was very brave, a natural response to the occupation," said Barhoum. "We call on those living in the West Bank and Jerusalem to continue fighting, no one needs to command them what to do."
 
The call also mirrors recent statements by Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah faction, which has vowed a return to terror against Israel in Judea and Samaria, as well as Gaza.

Hamas Showcases Terror Tunnels, Rockets on Lebanese TV

Category: News
Created on Friday, 22 August 2014 05:53
Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade terroristsIn an exclusive interview with Lebanon's Al Mayadeen TV, terrorists from Hamas's "military wing", the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, showcased one of its many terror tunnels, and explained how the group has been preparing for the next round of fighting with Israel.
 
Islamist terrorists showcased rockets and multiple rocket-launchers in the footage, which aired on Friday.
 
{youtube}OI_152KTHW4{/youtube}
 
It comes as senior Hamas officials have rejected any compromise over its demands for an end to fighting with Israel, and threatened a "long war" if its conditions were not met.
 
Fatah's Al Aqsa Martyr's Brigades has also vowed to step up attacks against Israel when the current temporary ceasefire ends on Monday night.
 
Talks are continuing in Cairo between Israeli and Palestinian diplomatic teams, but an Israeli official said that the chances of a long-term truce are very slim.

Huffington Post pimps for Islamic State and Hamas, defames their victims

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 20 August 2014 08:00
photo-9This sums up what we’re up against. It best illustrates the war in the information battlespace. Who is the Huffington Post working for — the Islamic State? Clearly, they’d like to see my severed head on a pole.
 
Look at this report. Where is the coverage of the Yazidi speaker? The Kurd leader? The Hindu activist? Thousands are being slaughtered, and this troll is making fun of the international human rights hero, Simon Deng, a former Sudanese slave? Imagine recording three hours just to try and capture a wrong word or a flubbed line or a forgotten name. What’s funny is that Simon had rattled off a cascade of complicated names of numerous Islamic terrorist organizations, but that didn’t matter. When he momentarily forgot the Islamic State, Paul Vale pounced, like the vulture he is. And I love how he put “minorities persecuted under Islamic rule” in quotation marks, as if I made up the fact that there are religious minorities in Muslim countries, and that they’re being violently persecuted. Shame on them.
 
The whole point of the Huffington Post covering this rally was to mock, smear, and destroy anyone associated with this issue. This is not coverage, this is Islamic propaganda.
 
Their article is particularly targeting young people. What young person would want to be associated with this kind of coverage? It included nothing about the testimony from these unsung heroes. And the number of attendees is, typically, drastically low. They did the same thing with our Ground Zero Mosque rally as well — we had 30,000, and Keith Olbermann said we had 500. So if Paul Vale says we had 150 yesterday, which is refuted by the pictures I posted here, then you can be sure we had 5,000.
 
Notice also how he makes no mention of the sponsoring organization, the American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI) — instead, it’s “banned Geller,” “anti-Muslim Geller.” So opposing the oppression and genocide against the Yazidis and others is “anti-Muslim”? And apparently Paul Vale and the Huffington Post are on the side of the slaughterers.
 
As for the headline, pointing out that I am banned in the UK, that is a moment of shame not for me, but for Britain. Any liberal, thinking, freedom-loving human being knows how wrong it is to ban a human rights activist who stands for freedom and individual rights against oppression and subjugation. Instead of blaring it in a headline, they should be hanging their heads in shame. That’s a black mark against them, not me.
 
Videos of this historic event are being uploaded to YouTube today. Watch it and decide for yourself.
 
Getting your news from vicious trolls like Paul Vale is hazardous to your freedom.
 
Imagine: this is a big story on Huffington Post UK. They came across the world to mock and ridicule those who stood for freedom. And the American press wouldn’t even cover it. Which is worse? Who is more culpable?

Hamas Admits Harassing, Deporting Journalists Who Filmed Rockets

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 17 August 2014 08:57
Hamas Harassing Deporting JournalistsIn a remarkably candid interview on Lebanese TV, the head of foreign relations at Hamas's Information Ministry in Gaza explained how harassment, interrogations and deportations were used to ensure that journalists reporting from Gaza during Operation Protective Edge stuck to Hamas's official line and did not report "the Israeli narrative".
 
{youtube}mVjDiI1xm4U{/youtube}
 
Speaking to Mayadeen TV, Isra al-Mudallal decried how some foreign reporters had reported on Hamas rocket fire against Israeli civilians, and claimed that their interest was due to the fact that "the journalists who entered Gaza were fixated on the notion of peace, and on the Israeli narrative."
 
The interview was translated by MEMRI, the Middle East Media Research Institute.
 
Foreign journalists have regularly complained of being harassed by Hamas authorities in Gaza, directly leading to biased coverage in favor of Islamist terrorists and against Israel. 
 
Allegations of intimidation, beatings, imprisonment and deportations of journalists who dared to question Hamas's official line culminated in a strong protest by the Foreign Press Association earlier this week.

Hamas Detonates IDF Dud, Kills Italian AP Reporter

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 17 August 2014 03:42
Unexploded IDF missile in Gaza fileHamas sources in Gaza report that a dud IDF missile exploded on Wednesday, killing five including an Italian journalist, after Hamas terrorists clumsily tried to dismantle the missile.
 
Hamas emergency services spokesperson Ashraf al-Qudra stated that in addition to the five dead, there are several more who are seriously wounded.
 
"A number of explosives experts were killed while dismantling a missile in Beit Lahiya. Among them was a foreign journalist," Hamas Interior Ministry spokesperson Iyad al-Buzam told AFP.
 
The Italian government shortly thereafter named the dead journalist as Simone Camilli, a cameraman for Associated Press. AP confirmed the 35-year-old Italian had worked with them since 2005, and that AP photographer Hatem Moussa was also badly wounded in the explosion.
 
"Simone Camilli's death is a tragedy for his family and for the country. Once more a reporter pays the price for a war that has lasted too many years," said Italian Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini.
 
Muayin al-Masri, a spokesperson for Kamal Adwan hospital, stated earlier that the five dead included four Gaza residents and a foreign national. He added that five others were wounded, three of them in critical condition.
 
Camilli was reporting on the dismantling from the scene; his fixer was likewise killed, and another local journalist working with him, apparently Moussa, was badly wounded in the blast, according to an AFP correspondent in Gaza.
 
The IDF has not struck the Hamas terror enclave of Gaza since the current 72-hour ceasefire went into effect on Sunday at midnight, meaning the missile would have been sitting in Gaza at least two days.
 
The Italian journalist's death hints at a wanton disregard for human life by the terrorist organization, given that in dismantling the missile casualties among those not involved in the actual dismantling, such as journalists, could have been avoided by distancing the public from the missile.
 
This fact may be unsurprising to many, given Hamas's extensive and well-documented usage of human shields, and abuse of foreign journalists.
 
Illustrating the danger Hamas places foreign journalists in, an Indian TV crew last week captured footage of how Hamas planted a rocket launchpad adjacent to their hotel, "bang in the middle of what is a residential area full of hotels and apartment buildings."
 
The rockets were timed to be launched hours later, after the terrorists had left the area, in a clear strategy to tempt the IDF to conduct an airstrike response to take out the launcher and in the process kill civilians, even foreign journalists, so as to inflate casualty figures.

Hamas Declares the Current Ceasefire is 'Last Chance for Talks'

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 16 August 2014 20:30
Fatahs Al-Aqsa Martyrs BrigadeA senior Hamas leader declared ahead of the end of the current 72-hour ceasefire, which will come at midnight on Wednesday, that the current lull in fighting is the last chance for Israel to negotiate with his terrorist organization.
 
Ismail Radwan, the Hamas leader, warned Wednesday "these three days are the last opportunity as far as we are concerned," reports Channel 10.
 
"If there won't be advancement towards the demands of the Palestinian people, I anticipate the delegation will leave Cairo," added Radwan, referencing the ongoing truce talks being intermediated by Egypt.
 
Hamas, which along with Islamic Jihad have broken no fewer than six "humanitarian ceasefires" in the course of Operation Protective Edge, bragged last week that it is holding Israel "at gunpoint" in the negotiations, either to get its demands or "shoot you in the chest."
 
The terrorist organization also clarified that if a truce is indeed achieved in Cairo, the truce would only be so as to plan the next terror war on the Jewish state.
 
Hamas's lavish demands in the talks include serious threats on Israel's security, such as the release of terrorists, the opening of borders, as well as the establishment of a sea port and airport in Gaza.
 
According to Palestinian Authority (PA) officials, Egypt on Tuesday submitted a proposal, which would reject Israel's demands for a disarmament of Gaza as well as Hamas demands for a sea and airport, putting off such issues for future talks. The Egyptian proposal would include the easing of the blockade on the Hamas terror enclave.
 
It appears the talks have not reached a breakthrough, even as reports Tuesday indicated Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu met with party head coalition members privately in what one minister termed "softening talks" to gain support for Israeli concessions to Hamas.

Saudi FM Slams Israel, Pledges $500 Million to Gaza

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 16 August 2014 17:56
Saudi Foreign Minister Saud Al-FaisalOn the heels of reports that Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) promised funds to Hamas in order to procure the current 72-hour ceasefire, Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal openly pledged $500 million to "rebuild" Gaza.
 
Speaking at an Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) meeting in Jeddah on Tuesday, al-Faisal accused Israel of trying "to wipe off Palestinian existence," and blamed the world for supporting "Israel's savagery against the people of Gaza."
 
Calling for Arab unity at a time when internecine bloodbaths are raging throughout the Middle East, al-Faisal urged the Arab nations to stand together on "one line" to oppose Israel.
 
"Divisions among Islamic nations are causing civil strife, leading Israel to repeat its crimes," said al-Faisal, recommending Arab countries "support all Egyptian efforts to stop the aggression."
 
"The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia considers the Palestinian cause its primary cause," boasted the Saudi foreign minister, announcing that his country would provide $500 million in funding to "rebuild" Gaza.
 
While reports of Saudi funding to promote the ceasefire noted the money was conditional on usage for civilian projects and not the rebuilding of terror tunnels, no system of checks and balances has been presented. Additionally, Hamas routinely uses civilian buildings, schools and hospitals as weapons caches, booby-traps and rocket launch sites.
 
Further, the Palestinian Arab Sawa news agency revealed Sunday that Hamas paid two-months of salary in full that morning to its terrorist "military wing," the Al-Qassam Brigades. It is suspected the sudden unexpected infusion of cash was likely given by Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
 
"Peace" - or no survival
 
Taking a slightly more threatening tone in his rhetoric, al-Faisal continued saying "Israel must understand that the only solution for its survival is peace with the Palestinians."
 
"Israel isn't embarrassed to conduct terror on every level in order to achieve its goals, while ignoring laws, religious commandments and humanitarian considerations," charged the Saudi foreign minister.
 
It should be noted that Israel launched Operation Protective Edge in response to a rapid escalation in Hamas rocket fire on its civilian centers, and has agreed to numerous humanitarian ceasefires while taking pains to warn civilians before conducting airstrikes.
 
Concerning al-Faisal's comment on religious commandments, Chairman of the Bnei Akiva Yeshivas and head of Yeshivat Or Etzion, Rabbi Haim Druckman, stated last month that the operation falls under the category of milchemet mitzvah (war of commandment), given that it is a war to defend Israel from attack.
 
"This is a holy war by all accounts, a war of salvation and for the existence of Israel in its homeland," clarified Rabbi Druckman.

Hamas' 'Civilian Casualties': A Game of Numbers

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 13 August 2014 07:00
Gaza casualties: civilians or terrorists?A staggering amount of so-called "civilian casualties" in Gaza were probably Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists, the New York Times admits for the first time this week, challenging the routine acceptance of casualty figures provided by the Hamas-run health ministry.
 
The report critically examines the data from the Palestinian Health Ministry, the official data center at Shifa Hospital that releases the names and statistics for casualties in Gaza - and is run by a known Hamas terrorist, Dr. Ashraf Al-Qurda. 
 
The PHM lists 1,865 “martyrs” from “Israeli aggression” since July 6 - two days before Operation Protective Edge officially began; of those, 429 were allegedly under age 18, 79 over 60, and 243 were women. 
 
Notably, the PHM does not differentiate between terrorists and civilians, but several "Palestinian rights groups" - including one UN-based group - do, and have estimated the civilian casualty rate at between 72-82%.
 
Israel, however, counters that some 900 of those killed, or 47%, were terrorists. Such a ratio of combatant to non-combatant casualties - roughly 1:1 - would be almost unprecedented in the history of urban warfare.
 
'Policy of deception'
 
However, even the Times admits that the PR war on Israel is a matter of numbers - and that the Palestinian arithmetic does not add up.
 
The Times notes that Israeli organizations have a well-documented - though only partial - list of casualties that is supported by a wellspring of documentation. 
 
According to the Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center, data from the first 300 casualties in Gaza indicates that some 142 Gazans listed as "civilian casualties" were terrorists - some 49% - whereas just 147 (51%) were actual civilians.
 
In addition, it said, 18 bodies have yet to be identified as belonging to either category - and could potentially swing the statistics either way. 
 
Meanwhile, the Times admitted that of the PHM information, "the population most likely to be militants, men ages 20-29, is also the most overrepresented in death toll: they are 9% of Gaza's 1.7 million residents, but 34% of those killed whose ages are provided." 
 
Hamas has a "policy of deception," according to the ITIC, noting that hundreds of terrorists have not been listed under PHM records at all. ITIC also noted the many incidents reported to be Hamas purposely skewing the numbers in live media coverage as part of the "media war" against Israel. 
 
Proof has surfaced that Hamas has repeated names more than once in the casualty count it gives major media outlets, such as Al-Jazeera. 
 
A report by pro-Israel blogger Israellycool suggested two weeks into the month-long offensive that Hamas was ballooning its numbers even then - and has provided a list marking where repeated names appear to have been snuck into the body count. 
 
To top it off, the IDF's own reports on the 3,360 rockets fired on Israeli citizens have proven, over and over again, that a significant number of rockets have misfired and hit areas within Gaza itself - including the Shati refugee camp.
 
As of August 7, 3,360 rockets were confirmed fired on Israel in a 30-day period - and as many as 475 fell inside Gaza.
 
It is unknown whether Hamas has included casualties from these events - which are always blamed on Israeli airstrikes - as part of its "civilian casualties" in Gaza. 
 
It is also unclear whether some 30 Gazans murdered by Hamas gunmen as "collaborators" during the conflict were also inserted into the list.
 
A glimpse into 'Gazawood'
 
A footnote in the ITIC report notes that the body count is even faked for the cameras; a France 24 broadcast blurred out the military paraphernalia among casualties shown on air, and that in at least one instance, a Palestinian took one rifle out of the scene, handed it to a fellow terrorist, and told him to hide it. 
 
Hamas fighters often do not wear military fatigues in combat, so once they ditch their weapons they are indistinguishable from the civilian population.
 
Photos have also been doctored throughout the conflict, as numerous photos circling social media have been proven - even by BBC, which itself is often accused of having an anti-Israel slant - to be recycled photos from war-torn Syria and even scenes from horror films or other staged events. 
 
Destroyed buildings also have conspicuous and out-of-place elements among the rubble; often, photos will show entire buildings demolished and concrete beams in piles of rubble, yet a plastic doll or cheap stroller remains, somehow, mysteriously whole, intact, and prominent for the cameras. 

PLO: US Backs Hamas in Ceasefire Talks

Category: News
Created on Monday, 04 August 2014 07:37
John-Kerry-a Muslim Brotherhood in EgyptSenior Palestinian Authority officials have accused US Secretary of State John Kerry of favoring Hamas, according to a report by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), insisting that Kerry had presented his own proposal to cater to Hamas-backed Qatar and Turkey. 
 
Speaking anonymously, a senior Palestinian official told the London-based Saudi daily Al-Sharq Al-Awsat last week that Kerry had tried "to destroy the Egyptian initiative and the Palestinian comments on it (the 'Abbas Plan) and present a substitute for our initiative... Kerry wanted to create an framework that would be an alternative to the Egyptian initiative and to our concept regarding it, in order to please Qatar and Turkey."
 
Kerry's involvement was not simply the product of US naivete, according to the official, but a calculated attempt to strengthen the Muslim Brotherhood's influence in Egypt. 
 
"Kerry proposed his initiative after we were very close to a comprehensive agreement guaranteeing the lifting of the siege on Gaza and obtaining all the Palestinian demands," the official insisted. "If the issue was lifting the siege, abolishing the buffer zones, opening the crossings, and expanding the fishing zones, we could have obtained this on Wednesday [July 23]. An announcement of [this achievement] was ready for publication – but (Hamas political bureau head Khaled) Mash'al called a press conference and destroyed the ['Abbas] initiative."
 
"Then [Kerry] presented a new initiative," he continued. "Kerry wanted to take advantage of the war in order to again strengthen the Muslim Brotherhood's regional influence, because the Americans think – and will be proven wrong – that that moderate political Islam represented by the Muslim Brotherhood can combat radical Islam." 
 
The official added that Mahmoud Abbas was "very angry" about Kerry's proposed Paris talks over a Gaza ceasefire, noting that Turkey and Qatar were invited - but Egypt was not. Abbas allegedly expressed his views on the conference to French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius. 
 
Fatah and PLO representatives later stated that Turkey, Qatar, and Hamas "do not represent the Palestinian people," and that the only "valid" representative for international talks is the PLO itself.
 
Furthermore, several former ministers and politicians in the PA government, including Hassan 'Asfour and 'Omar Al-Ghoul, proposed in Op/Ed articles in Arabic language magazines that Kerry's initiative served not only to re-institute the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, but also to "get rid of the PLO." 
 
The accusations surface despite the formation of a Hamas-Fatah unity government in June, which is slowly crumbling after differences of opinion have surfaced over several issues, including the war in Gaza, reactions to the abduction and murder of three Israeli teenagers, and the delayed payment of wages for government workers in Gaza in the weeks leading up to the current conflict. 

Hamas Calls on Hezbollah to Join 'Resistance' Against Israel

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 03 August 2014 12:34
HezbollahHamas has urged Hezbollah to join the fight against Israel, according to multiple sources, after Israel's self-defense operation against the terror organization in Gaza has expanded further. 
 
“We hope the Lebanese front will open and together we will fight against this formation [Israel],” deputy head of Hamas’ political bureau Mousa Abu Marzouk told Russian news agency RIA Novosti.
 
“There’s no arguing that Lebanese resistance could mean a lot,” Abu Marzouk stressed.
 
The remarks surface just minutes after Hamas rejected yet another humanitarian ceasefire from Israel, which had expanded its operation in Gaza earlier Wednesday. 
 
Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah has expressed support for Hamas's fight against the Jewish state on multiple occasions, including in an extended series of comments last week calling Hezbollah Hamas's "true partners." 
 
“We, in Hezbollah, stand beside the Palestinian people and the Palestinian resistance without an exception. We will not spare any means of support that we can and are able to provide,” Nasrallah said, according to The Daily Star. “We feel that we are true partners with the Palestinian resistance. ... Your victory is our own."
 
Nasrallah said that Hezbollah was closely following up political and field developments in Gaza.
 
“To the Zionist I say: In Gaza, you are moving in a circle of failure and do not go to the circle of suicide or a total collapse,” he declared.

Hamas Arch-Terrorist: No Ceasefire Until Siege Ends

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 02 August 2014 16:37
Operation Protective EdgeIn a rare audio message, the head of Hamas’s “military wing” declared on Tuesday that the only way to reach a ceasefire in Gaza is for Israel to end its “siege” on the coastal territory.
 
The message by Mohammed Deif, head of the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, was broadcast on Hamas’s television network, and is the first official statement by Deif since Operation Pillar of Defense in 2012.
 
In the message, the arch-terrorist repeated Hamas’s conditions for a ceasefire, saying, "The firing will stop only if the [Israeli] aggression ends only if and the blockade is lifted. The Zionist entity will not enjoy security if our people cannot live in freedom and dignity."
 
Deif referred to Israel’s operation in Gaza as a "barbaric attack" which includes killing children.
 
"The enemy is destroying our homes. The steadfastness of the Palestinian people is what brought victory in battle,” he stated.
 
Deif is considered the official who determines the agenda of the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades and is regarded as the “brain” behind Hamas.
 
He is likely hiding underground somewhere inside Gaza, fearing the IDF will try to eliminate him.
 
Reports last week said that an Israeli airstrike in Gaza had targeted Deif’s home.

Hamas Spells it Out: Our Aim is the Extermination of the Jews

Category: Media
Created on Friday, 01 August 2014 10:56
Islamic breacherAs the 22nd day of the IDF's Operation Protective Edge in Gaza draws to a close, MEMRI (the Middle East Media Research Institute) has published a video in which a Hamas cleric lays out the organization's "doctrine" in its fight against Israel: genocide.
{youtube}R7WAoczRV_k&list=UUpBvIBfZ-foo5ZbLH5O0N4g%3Fautohide%3D1{/youtube}
 
Speaking in a televised address from Deir al-Balah in the central Gaza Strip, the preacher said that Hamas's aim was to "totally exterminate" the Jews living in Israel, because "wherever the Jews lived they spread corruption".

Mashaal: We Fight the Occupiers, Not the Jews

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 30 July 2014 19:34
Khaled MashaalHamas is willing to live together with Jews but not with “the occupiers”, its leader Khaled Mashaal said Sunday.
 
Speaking with Charlie Rose of CBS News, Mashaal said, “We are not fanatics. We are not fundamentalists. We do not actually fight the Jews because they are Jews, per se. We do not fight any other races. We fight the occupiers.”
 
“On the contrary, we actually respect the religious people,” he continued. “We ask for tolerance, for coexistence. The Buddhists, the Jews, the Christians and the Muslims, as you know, God created us as nations. We are different. And the Koran says that in order for the nations to live together and coexist......without occupation and without any blockade.”
 
Rose asked Mashaal “what does Hamas want?” to which the leader said, “The war in Gaza sends two messages, to the world. The first message, it is high time to lift the siege on Gaza.”
 
“Since 2006, when the world refused the outcomes of the elections, our people actually lived under the siege of eight years. It is -- this is a collective punishment. We need to lift the siege. We have to have a port. We have to have an airport,” he continued.
 
“This is the first message. The second message, in order to stop the bloodletting, we need to look at the underlying causes. We need to look at the occupation. We need to stop the occupation. [Prime Minister Binyamin] Netanyahu doesn't take heed of our rights,” claimed Mashaal.
 
“[U.S. Secretary of State] Kerry months ago tried to find a window through the negotiations in order to meet our target, to live without occupation, to reach our state. Netanyahu has killed our hope or killed our dream. And he killed the American initiative,” he charged.
 
Asked if he believes coexistence of between Palestinian Arabs and Israelis in the Middle East was possible, Mashaal replied, “I can't coexist with occupation.”
 
“I'm ready to coexist with the Jews, with the Christians and with the Arabs and non-Arabs and with those who agree with my ideas and those who disagree with them,” he added. “However, I do not coexist with the occupiers, with the settlers
 
Mashaal said recently that Israel's ground operation in Gaza was destined to fail.
 
"What the occupier Israel failed to achieve through its air and sea raids, it will not be able to achieve with a ground offensive. It is bound to fail," he declared.
 
He further said Hamas has "clear demands", including an end to "the aggression and collective punishment against our people...as well as the lifting of the Gaza siege."
 
Last week, Mashaal stated that Israel must accept his list of unprecedented conditions for a ceasefire in order for any truce to be implemented. Many of the demands include, effectively, lifting all travel and import restrictions in Gaza and re-releasing arrested terrorists. 

Israeli Aircraft Hit Home of Hamas Leader Haniyeh

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 30 July 2014 19:09
Ismail Haniyeh0Israeli aircraft hit the home of Hamas's top leader in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh, inside the Shati region of Gaza on Monday night, his son said.
 
"The Israeli enemy struck our house twice," Abed Salam Haniyeh said in a statement quoted by AFP.
 
The Reuters news agency quoted Gaza’s interior ministry as having said that the airstrike caused damage but no casualties.
 
An IDF spokeswoman had no information on the report but was checking for details.
 
Haniyeh served as the prime minister of Hamas’s government in Gaza, but stepped down when Hamas and Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah movement reached a deal on a unity government.
 
The Telegraph recently revealed that three of Haniyeh’s sisters are living as full Israeli citizens.
 
The three, according to the report, married Bedouin and became full citizens 30 years ago. The three now hide in the anonymity of the Israeli desert.
 
Several of Haniyeh’s relatives have received medical treatment in Israel - including his mother in-law and granddaughter - despite the fact that he has pledged its utter destruction. 

Egyptian Army Destroys 13 Hamas Terror Tunnels

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 29 July 2014 22:05
tunnels-being-destroyedEgypt's army said Sunday it has destroyed 13 more tunnels connecting the Sinai Peninsula to Gaza, taking to 1,639 the overall number it has laid waste to, according to AFP.
 
In April, an Egyptian court outlawed Hamas, much like it banned the Muslim Brotherhood earlier this year, and ordered all of its assets seized.
 
As part of these operations, the army has also been shutting down the smuggling tunnels, which are used to transfer goods, weapons and even terrorists between the Sinai and Gaza.
 
The UN announced last year that Egypt had destroyed as much as 80% of terror tunnels leading from Egyptian soil to Hamas in Gaza, as part of its crackdown on Hamas and Muslim Brotherhood terrorism. 
 
Egypt, meanwhile, has been surprisingly vocal during Israel's own operation to destroy Hamas terror tunnels. 
 
Since Operation Protective Edge began on July 8, Cairo has condemned Israel's ground offensive but it also lashed out at Hamas, saying the Islamist movement could have saved dozens of lives had it accepted Cairo's proposal for a cease-fire early on in the operation.

Hamas Losing Palestinian Arab Support in Gaza

Category: Reports
Created on Tuesday, 29 July 2014 21:22
Hamas Losing Palestinian Support in GazaHamas's war against Israel is not only losing militarily, but losing popular support for the Islamist group in Gaza as well, according to a study released last week. 
 
A Washington Institute study published during the first week of the operation polled 450 Gazans between June 15-17 - before Operation Protective Edge in Gaza, but after Hamas began firing more rockets on Israel. 
 
The study, which claims to be "the only credible Palestinian poll" since Israeli teens Naftali Frenkel (16), Gilad Sha'ar (16), and Eyal Yifrah (19), hy"d, were abducted and murdered last month, reveals that 70% of Gazans believe that Hamas "should maintain a ceasefire with Israel in both Gaza and the West Bank [Judea-Samaria - ed.]." 
 
In addition, 57% of respondents supported "unity government" chairman and Fatah leader Mahmoud Abbas's position that the new government should "renounce violence against Israel." 
 
Gazans are also unhappy with Hamas's handle on security - or lack thereof. Seventy-one (71%) of Gazans considered crime in Gaza to be "a significant problem"; 66.6% consider Hamas to be guilty of corruption; and 78% criticize the use of terror groups, and not a "formal security structure," to enforce law and order. 
 
Hamas was elected to power in 2007, after Israel withdrew from Gaza during the 2005 Disengagement. 
 
But most Gazans believed - even before the military operation - that the Palestinian Authority (PA)'s Fatah should be given power in Gaza, with 88% of respondents agreeing to the statement "the PA should send officials and security officers to Gaza to take over administration there." Of those, 67% who agreed "strongly agreed" to that sentiment. By contrast, the combined support for both Hamas leaders Khaled Meshaal and Ismail Haniyeh topped barely 15%. 
 
'Most Gazans hate Hamas with a passion'
 
Since the launch of Operation Protective Edge, experts - and civilians - say that feeling has intensified. 
 
“You need to understand that Palestinian blood has been shed by Hamas itself," a 28-year old journalist, an editor at a Gaza media outlet who asked to be kept anonymous, told Fox News on Saturday. "Living under Hamas is a tragedy." 
 
“Nobody can forgive Hamas for what they’re doing," the journalist continued. "No one can forgive Hamas for butchering Palestinians to get power. Most Gazans hate Hamas with a passion." 
 
“The only reason Hamas rules Gaza is because of its ruthless iron fist and military dictatorship," he added. "We would love to have an independence from both Fatah and Hamas, who are profiting off the Palestinian people. We need to rule ourselves.”
 
Hamas has openly boasted about the "success" of its strategy of using civilians as human shields during Operation Protective Edge, which is now ending its tenth day, and the IDF has published extensive evidence of the practice.
 
Hamas has in the past urged Gazans to ignore warnings from the IDF about upcoming strikes, in remarks caught both on Hamas-sponsored television and on the radar of international media outlets.
 
But most civilians are reluctant to accept this, the study's conductors insist. 
 
“The study is quite telling," the Institute's David Pollack, who conducted the survey, told Fox. "The Gazans want jobs and practical things. They don’t want war and don’t support Hamas ideology."
 
“And with so many Palestinians actually saying they want peace and support an immediate cease fire, it means Hamas is imposing this war against Israel on its own people,” Pollack added. 
 
The study, as well as the Fox report, may be skewed somewhat by the small sample size, as well as the inherently anti-Hamas nature of the interviewees.
 
One of the politicians interviewed includes Jordanian-Palestinian Mudhar Zahran, for example, who has been a staunch advocate of a Palestinian state in Jordan and has written against such pro-Hamas fronts as the UNRWA, the United Nations organization which recently returned two rocket arsenals to Hamas.
 
While Zahran's work has been hailed as an objective look at Palestinian Arab views and leadership in a sea of subjectivism, it is still unclear whether his views are shared by most Palestinian Arab politicians. 
 
However, reported unrest over wage disputes in Gaza during the same period prompted analysts in Israeli media, as well, to note that most Gazans are unhappy with the current state of affairs in the Hamas-run territory - although it is yet unclear to what extent. 
 
Sarah Leah Lawent contributed to this report.

Iran: We Provided Hamas with Rocket Technology

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 26 July 2014 05:30
Ali Larijani Speaker of the Iranian Parliament - ReutersIran provided the Hamas terrorist group with the technology it has used to rain down rockets on Israel from Gaza, its parliament speaker boasted on Thursday.
 
Tehran frequently boasts of the financial and material support it gives to Hamas and Islamic Jihad but more rarely talks of its military assistance, noted AFP.
 
"Today, the fighters in Gaza have good capabilities and can meet their own needs for weapons," speaker Ali Larijani was quoted as having told the Arabic service of state television.
 
"But once upon a time, they needed the arms manufacture know-how and we gave it to them," he said.
 
During the last major conflict in and around Gaza in November 2012, Larijani said Iran was "proud" to have provided "both financial and military support" to Hamas.
 
Israel accused Iran of supplying Gaza militants with its Fajr-5 missile, which has a range of 75 kilometers (45 miles), for use during that conflict.
 
Hamas fired several such missiles at Tel Aviv and even Jerusalem in 2012, all of which exploded in open areas and did not cause any physical injuries or damages.
 
The commander of Iran's Revolutionary Guards, General Mohammad Ali Jafari, claimed at the time that it was not the missiles that had been supplied but their technology.
 
Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei called on the Palestinian Arabs on Wednesday to keep fighting Israel and to expand their resistance from Gaza to Judea and Samaria.

Kuwaiti Cleric to Hamas: No Ceasefire Until They Bow Before Us

Category: Islam
Created on Friday, 25 July 2014 06:14
Tareq Al-SuwaidanA Kuwaiti cleric recently called on Hamas not to give up on its fight against Israel, and not agree to a ceasefire until Israel is erased.
 
The comments by Tareq Al-Suwaidan were posted to the internet on July 14 and translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).
 
{youtube}zbCMZv-fHSQ{/youtube}
 
“We are in a conflict over our very existence with the sons of Zion,” he said, adding, “In geography as well as in history, the state of Israel is a deviant country. It is destined to be eradicated in its entirety.”
 
Al-Suwaidan continued, “Gone are the days when we would demand a ceasefire. I find it strange that some people are demanding a ceasefire. Absolutely not. The shooting and the launching of rockets continue. If you should be suffering - they are suffering as you are suffering.”
 
He went on to say that the rocket attacks on Israel have “paralyzed” it completely and that Israelis “all went trembling into their holes”.

President Sisi Defends Egypt's Role in Israel-Gaza Conflict

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 23 July 2014 11:28
Abdel Fattah al-Sisi -ReutersEgyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi on Wednesday defended his country's role in trying to broker a Gaza truce between Israel and Hamas, which accuses him of proposing a ceasefire favorable to Israel.  
 
Unlike his Islamist predecessor Mohammed Morsi whom he toppled and detained last year, ex-army chief Sisi has sought to isolate the Muslim Brotherhood-aligned terrorist movement in the neighboring Gaza Strip.  
 
The Cairo government worked to contain the crisis even before it escalated into a full-blown conflict on July 8, after Israel launched Operation Protective Edge to end rocket fire on its cities, Sisi said.
 
"Egypt has sacrificed, for the Palestinian cause and the Palestinians, 100,000 martyrs," he said in a televised address, referring to casualties in Egypt's wars with Israel between 1948 and 1973, before Cairo signed a 1979 peace treaty.  
 
"So it is difficult for anyone to engage in one-upmanship, not just regarding (our role) with the Palestinian brothers but also the Arab region," he said in a speech to mark the 1952 military overthrow of the monarchy in Egypt.
 
Since Morsi's overthrow in July 2013, Egypt has been at odds with Turkey and Qatar, both Islamist-run governments which back his Muslim Brotherhood and have been critical of Sisi's stand on the Gaza conflict.  
 
Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has called Sisi a "tyrant" who could not be trusted to mediate a truce, while Hamas demands a role for Ankara and Doha, which hosts its political leadership, in any truce negotiations.
 
Morsi mediated a truce to end an eight-day conflict with Israel in 2012 that Hamas was able to represent as a "victory".  
 
Sisi said his truce proposal would give Hamas its key demand of an end to the eight-year blockade of Gaza once calm is restored.
 
"What we want is that simple citizens in the Gaza Strip not be subjected to what they are going through now," he said of the proposal, which demands a ceasefire before talks. 
 
Hamas, however, insists on a comprehensive agreement before it agrees to a ceasefire.
 
It also demands Egypt open its Rafah border crossing with Gaza, the only passage to the coastal enclave not controlled by Israel, and has leveled a score of more outlandish demands, including large-scale releases of terrorists jailed in Israel, the establishment of an airport in Gaza and more.
 
Hamas argues that Egypt's proposal, which is backed by the United States, United Nations and Arab League, would allow Israel to dictate if and when to ease its blockade on Gaza.

A blow to Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood as Israel crushes Hamas

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Tuesday, 22 July 2014 09:39
IDFA few weeks ago shocking news arrived from Israel regarding the kidnapping of three young men. As news first circulated around the world, Israelis braced for the worst and prayed prayers for the safe delivery of the Israeli captives. How would this menacing action unfold for the victims and the country? Finally, we learned of their murders and the arrest of two Arab-Muslim suspects with links to Hamas. This horrific act of aggression against three Jews was committed in the first days of the Islamic month known as “blessed” Ramadan when fighting is forbidden. 
 
The ninth month of the Islamic Hegira calendar is set aside for believers to honor the revelation received by the 7th century prophet. Muslims must be dedicated to fasting, prayer, and charity to the poor. Most importantly, aggression by and against Muslims must cease. Disturbances by outsiders during this calendar month trigger Muslim sensitivities and heighten intolerance. Making this calculation, Hamas attacked Israel in this timeframe knowing it would enhance sentiment. Israel’s retaliation would always be viewed as sacrilegious securing world opinion in favor of Gaza terrorists where empathy is already heavily weighted. Hamas and Gazans remain in the more positive light despite their instigating acts provoking war in the month of Ramadan. 
 
About a week after the kidnappings, Kalid Mashaal, head of Hamas’ political bureau, boasted and blessed the kidnappers publicly with a bold announcement on Al Jazeera TV denying the involvement of Hamas.  Another Hamas leader, Ismail Haniyeh, already anticipating Israel’s counter-attack for the murders that had not yet been discovered (and Hamas rocket fire) appealed to the sympathy of the Egyptian people regarding Hamas’ “victimization,” stressing the importance of the remaining open tunnels between Egypt’s Sinai and the Gaza Strip -- ones that Al-Sisi has yet to dynamite shut in his commitment to destroy all illegal passages. Food and weaponry was now in demand by Gazans who needed Egypt to smuggle such provisions through the tunnels, indicated Haniyeh.   
 
Experts in Middle East conflict expected to see a demand on Israel to liberate particular terrorists as a ransom for the kidnapped boys. Such exchanges have been typical of the past. But why not this time? The answer: Hamas wanted to entice Egypt into warfare with Israel in order to help the Muslim Brotherhood regain power in Egypt. Hamas had a broader agenda for the kidnappings, murders, and rocket fire into Israel. Its aggression stirred up pro-Palestinian, pro-Hamas opinion by Egypt’s politicians, journalists and media in order to put pressure on Al-Sisi’s new government to help the “oppressed” Gazans. But Al-Sisi ignored the call to militarily aid Hamas deciding not to break Egypt’s peace treaty with Israel. 
Hamas intended Egypt to comply with its request. It was meant to be a distraction for Al-Sisi to interrupt his strenuous battle against the Muslim Brotherhood – the beginning of the long-awaited reversal of the damage being done to organized terror inside Egypt. Hamas’ ploy aimed to release Egypt’s MB of Al-Sisi’s grip availing it the time and space necessary to reenergize and regain power. But not only have the hopes of Hamas been dashed regarding its capacity to bait the religious issue and persuade Egypt’s Islamic leaders, but it wrongly predicted Egyptian sentiment mounting negative toward the existence of Hamas’ and its motives. The majority of the Egyptian public is attentive to Israel’s counter-attacks on Gaza with an unprecedented enthusiasm to see Hamas and its terror obliterated. 
 
Meanwhile, the Egyptian military will likely provide humanitarian assistance directly to Gazan civilians. This will bypass the finger pointing and embarrassment certain to come Al-Sisi’s way from the Egyptian Arab-Muslim community and the broader Islamic spectrum if Egypt were to take no action at all. Hamas presents a dilemma for Al-Sisi. Hamas’ terrorism against Israel carries with it the obligation for Muslim entities anywhere in the world to reach out on behalf of Hamas for the sake of Islamic doctrinal hate against Jews, a bond often underestimated by the West.  
 
Another motive of Hamas regards the U.S. and its allies. The White House will discern from Hamas violence and war on Israel, embarrassing as it is to the “peace process” conducted by the U.S. administration, that it is a direct consequence of Egypt’s MB collapse. No setback for the MB will be tolerated. After all, when Morsi was top dog, there was even talk of giving Hamas the northern third of Sinai to call its own. Back in the day, not that long ago, Hamas was of the ruling power and benefits were accruing -- some even say with the blessing of the White House. The game has changed in Egypt, and Hamas attacks Israel driving home this point.       
 
Across the Middle East, a dethroned MB struggles to recapture its glory in places like Iraq, Syria, and Libya. The people of these lands are fed-up with the results of the Arab Spring revolts that delivered MB rule to replace horrible dictatorships. Proxies for the MB (Al Qaeda, ISIS, Hamas, Ansar el Islam, et al), militant anti-occupation factions in Gaza forging “victimhood” stories for the world through their aggression towards Israel, fashion and enflame a crisis to bargain for a toppled MB. 
 
When all other direct means to rescue the Egyptian MB to date has been unsuccessful, their message is as if to say, “We will keep the heat turned up for Israel until the road is paved in Egypt to secure the return of power to the MB.” But Egypt, the birthplace of world terror, is steeled in battle to restrain and dissolve the MB -- Hamas’ latest aggression a test of Egypt’s resolve. Meanwhile, Israel demonstrates that Hamas will no longer play their game of extortion with the world at Israel’s expense.

Egyptian Cleric: Hamas Conspiring Against the Palestinian People

Category: News
Created on Monday, 21 July 2014 18:09
Hamas terrorists parade rocketA prominent Salafi Islamist cleric in Egypt has called on Egyptians not to support Hamas in its war against Israel, accusing the Muslim Brotherhood-aligned terrorist group of being part of a joint Shia-communist plot to harm the "Palestinian people".
 
While reminding viewers that "driving the Jews out of Palestine is, indeed, a duty", cleric Talaat Zahran said that Egyptians should not mobilize to support Hamas as most Gazans were "Shias and communists", and because Hamas's rocket attacks were in fact part of a plan to provoke Egypt and Israel into a war which would only serve the interests of Shia powers (referring to Iran), at the expense of Egypt's national interest.
 
{youtube}3yu1wk7H5Yg{/youtube}
 
In the televised address, translated by MEMRI (the Middle East Media Research Institute), he also condemned the use of human shields by Hamas's leadership, accusing them of working with Israel to "pulverize" the Gaza's civilian population.
 
Despite anti-Israel and anti-Semitic sentiment being widespread throughout Egypt, for opponents of the Muslim Brotherhood - including secularist and Salafi-Islamist supporters of the Sisi government - that sentiment is eclipsed by their antipathy towards the Brotherhood and its Palestinian branch, Hamas, which they accuse of being part of a conspiracy to take over Egypt.
 
Many prominent Egyptian pundits and commentators have also urged Egyptians not to support Hamas, with one going so far as to say that Egypt should be helping to fight them.

Mashaal: Israeli Operation Doomed to Fail

Category: News
Created on Friday, 18 July 2014 09:59
Khaled Mashaal in Gaza fileHamas chief Khaled Mashaal said on Thursday night that Israel's ground operation in Gaza was destined to fail, in remarks to AFP in the Qatari capital.
 
"What the occupier Israel failed to achieve through its air and sea raids, it will not be able to achieve with a ground offensive. It is bound to fail," Mashaal declared from his exile in Doha.
 
He further said Hamas has "clear demands", including an end to "the aggression and collective punishment against our people...as well as the lifting of the Gaza siege."
 
Mashaal insisted that the "source of the problem lies with the Israeli occupation and the construction of settlements" which he said the Palestinian Arab people are "determined to get rid of sooner or later".
 
The Hamas leader also called on the international community to "assume its responsibility and put an end to Israeli terrorism..
 
A Hamas spokesman in Gaza said earlier that "Israel will pay a high price" for launching the ground operation and that Hamas "is ready for the confrontation."
 
"With this action the Israeli government seeks to restore the morale of its soldiers and the morale of its army leadership - a leadership that is collapsing because of the qualitative blows of the resistance,” the spokesman, Fawzi Barhoum, claimed.
 
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said earlier Thursday that the ground assault on Gaza was meant to hit the terrorist tunnels leading from Gaza into Israeli territory, and noted that the operation was a direct result of Hamas’s refusal to accept Egypt’s proposal for a ceasefire.
 
Barhoum’s threats came several hours after Osama Hamdan, who is in charge of foreign affairs in Hamas, threatened that Hamas has additional “surprises” in store for Israel.
 
"In the next campaign,” he promised, “we plan to manufacture larger missiles, and we will plan the liberation of the land (inside Israel) and its annexation to the liberated territory (in Gaza) and we will attack them by land.”
 
Meanwhile, Egypt has blamed Hamas for the current escalation in Gaza, though it also pointed a finger at Israel for launching a ground attack.
 
According to Kol Yisrael radio, the Egyptian government said it was placing the responsibility on Hamas for “the possible deaths of Palestinian civilians”, citing Hamas’s refusal to accept Egypt’s proposal for a ceasefire.
 
The report quoted Egypt’s Foreign Minister, Sameh Shoukry, as having said that had Hamas accepted the ceasefire proposal, it would have saved the lives of at least 40 Gazans who were killed in Israeli airstrikes.
 
In a statement quoted by AFP, however, Egypt's foreign ministry also denounced Israel's "escalation" in Gaza and again demanded both sides accept a Cairo proposed truce.
 
"Egypt condemns the Israeli escalation in Gaza and calls for self-control as its air strikes and ground operation only aggravate the situation and do not help preserve Israel's security," the foreign ministry said.
 
It said both Israel and Hamas must "immediately and unconditionally accept the Egyptian (ceasefire) proposal as it offers protection to the Palestinian people. It is the only way to halt the aggression and preserve the blood of our brotherly Palestinian people."
 
 Egypt’s envoy to Ramallah, Wael Nasr Eldine Attiya, urged Egyptians in Gaza to be "extra cautious and avoid places that could be targeted" by Israeli forces.
 
He also urged Egyptians "willing to leave Gaza to head to Rafah crossing...so they can enter Egypt," the official news agency MENA quoted him as saying.

Iranian Leader Encourages Hamas in 'Struggle Against Occupation'

Category: News
Created on Friday, 18 July 2014 09:35
Hamass Chief of StaffHamas continues to receive military and political support from Iran, it was revealed Friday.
 
Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal spoke to Iranian Parliament chairman Ali Larijani Thursday night, shortly after the Israeli government announced it would launch a ground offensive into Gaza.
 
Mashaal reportedly said that Hamas could deal with every possible scenario, boasting that their main goal is to "break the Occupation and remove the siege on Gaza."
 
Mashaal also called on Iran and other Arab nations to rally around the "Palestinian cause," and praised Iran's support for the terror organization over the past several years.
 
Larijani responded that the ground offensive is the result of "miscalculation" on Israel's part and that Iran was "proud" of Hamas's "struggle against the Occupation" and was sure it would bring results.
 
Mashaal has been in close contact with Iran for years, and called on Iranian President Hassan Rouhani to join Hamas's fight against Israel during last month's Operation Brother's Keeper. 
 
Iran was the primary sponsor of Hamas until being replaced in that position by Turkey in 2012.
 
Iran has provided Hamas and Islamic Jihad with long-range missiles such as the Fajr-5 and M302 - the latter of which is believed to have been used in the Hadera attack. Earlier this year Israeli naval commandos seized the Klos C ship, and discovered weapons including long-range rockets destined for terrorist groups in Gaza.
 
Despite its active role in providing the rockets raining down on Israeli population centers, Iran condemned the IDF operation aiming to stop the rockets as "savage aggression" earlier this month.

Egypt Blames Hamas for Escalation in Gaza

Category: News
Created on Friday, 18 July 2014 08:58
Israel -Gaza Ground AssaultAs Israel launched a ground operation in Gaza on Thursday, Egypt blamed Hamas - but also Israel - for the latest escalation and for the deaths of civilians.
 
According to Kol Yisrael radio, the Egyptian government said it was placing the responsibility on Hamas for “the possible deaths of Palestinian civilians”, citing Hamas’s refusal to accept Egypt’s proposal for a ceasefire.
 
The report quoted Egypt’s Foreign Minister, Sameh Shoukry, as having said that had Hamas accepted the ceasefire proposal, it would have saved the lives of at least 40 Gazans who were killed in Israeli airstrikes.
 
Shoukry further said that Hamas was cooperating with Qatar and Turkey to harm Egypt’s status in the region.
 
In a statement quoted by the AFP news agency, however, Egypt's foreign ministry also denounced Israel's "escalation" in Gaza and again demanded both sides accept a Cairo proposed truce.
 
"Egypt condemns the Israeli escalation in Gaza and calls for self-control as its air strikes and ground operation only aggravate the situation and do not help preserve Israel's security," the foreign ministry said.
 
It said both Israel and Hamas must "immediately and unconditionally accept the Egyptian (ceasefire) proposal as it offers protection to the Palestinian people. It is the only way to halt the aggression and preserve the blood of our brotherly Palestinian people."
 
Shoukry’s comments on Hamas echo those made earlier by Egypt’s former Foreign Minister, Mohammed Al-Arabi, who said that Hamas was not serious about a ceasefire – and that the terror group was deliberately trying to embarrass Egypt.
 
Speaking in an interview in an Egyptian newspaper, Al-Arabi blamed Hamas for not only failing to come to a ceasefire, but for “shedding the blood of innocent Palestinians” by continuing to attack Israel.
 
Israel launched a ground attack on Gaza Thursday night, as large forces from the IDF's infantry, armor, artillery, engineering and intelligence corps began operating in several zones within Gaza.
 
The zones are in Gaza's northern, central and southern sections. The Diplomacy and Security Cabinet has authorized the IDF to widen the operation further at its discretion.

Hamas Government Praises, Encourages Human Shields

Category: News
Created on Friday, 18 July 2014 01:27
Human ShieldsThe Palestinian Authority (PA) and Hamas are urging residents not to respond to the IDF's warnings to evacuate towns in Gaza close to the Israeli border on Thursday, as the IDF gears up for a possible ground offensive. 
 
Hamas's "Public Security Ministry" in Gaza issued a statement praising "martyrs" who have become human shields on Thursday, as part of the ongoing Hamas campaign to undo Israel's humanitarian efforts to save civilian lives.
 
"Our mighty people presented a unique example of steadfastness and perseverance, and are not affected or fearful from the psychological warfare from the Occupation," Hamas boasted. "They did not respond to calls from the Occupation to leave their homes - they stayed there and did not abandon them." 
 
"We applaud, in particular, the strength of our residents in border areas, and their refusal to leave their homes and their land," they continued. "They converge around our heroes in the Palestinian struggle." 
 
Hamas has encouraged civilians over and over again to become human shields as an "effective strategy" in the PR war against Israel. 
 
By contrast, the IDF has dropped leaflets, sent phone messages, and issued general warnings to all civilians within range of upcoming airstrikes to prevent further harm. 
 
In addition, several of the rockets fired from Gaza have never made it on to Israeli soil, and may be partially responsible for Palestinian Arab deaths from within Gaza itself.
 
According to the IDF Spokesperson's Office, over 100 rockets fired at Israel have fallen short of their targets, causing an unknown number of deaths. 

IDF Spokesman: We're Dealing Hamas a Powerful Blow

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 17 July 2014 18:57
IDF spokesman Brigadier General Moti AlmozIDF spokesman Brigadier General Moti Almoz said on Thursday night that the IDF was dealing the terrorists in Gaza a powerful blow.
 
Addressing the media as the IDF launched a ground operation in Gaza, Almoz called on the residents of Gaza to stay away from areas in which Israeli troops are operating.
 
"We are entering the second part of the operation after the very significant achievements we accomplished in the first part,” he said. “We severely harmed Hamas, its infrastructure and its activists, and will continue to harm them also in the second part of the operation.”
 
Almoz added that ground forces, assisted by the Air Force and the Navy, were taking over targets in Gaza.
 
"Our troops over the past several days were engaged in promoting preparedness for this part [of the operation],” he said. “All the commanders, from the battalion commanders to the Chief of Staff, approved the plans and were engaged in many details in order prepare the troops.”
 
"Our forces are determined and full of motivation,” said Almoz, adding, “I ask the residents of Gaza to evacuate the areas in which the army is operating.”
 
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said earlier Thursday that that the ground operation in Gaza was meant to hit the terrorist tunnels leading from Gaza into Israeli territory, adding that the operation was a direct result of Hamas’s refusal to accept Egypt’s proposal for a ceasefire.
 
Hamas, meanwhile, responded to Israel’s actions by threatening that it will pay a "high price" for launching a ground assault on Gaza.

After Another Rocket Salvo, Hamas Agrees to UN Ceasefire

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 17 July 2014 07:32
Hamas spokesman Sami Abu ZuhriHamas agreed on Wednesday night to a temporary humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza, but not before firing another salvo of rockets towards Israel.
 
"The group agrees to a ceasefire for five hours," starting from 10:00 a.m. local time Thursday, Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said in a statement quoted by the AFP news agency.
 
"The Palestinian factions agreed to accept the offer from the United Nations for a cooling-down on the ground for five hours starting from 10 in the morning," he told the news agency.
 
Shortly before 2:00 a.m. Thursday morning, however, sirens were heard in the Eshkol region, Hof Ashkelon region, Ashdod, Kiryat Gat and Kiryat Malachi.
 
Sirens were also heard in the Mateh Yehuda Regional Council, near Jerusalem. Three rockets exploded in open regions in the region, causing no physical injuries or damages.
 
Several rockets from Gaza exploded in open areas in the Hof Ashkelon and Eshkol regions, causing no physical injuries or damages.
 
The Iron Dome anti-missile system intercepted one rocket over Kiryat Gat and one rocket over Kiryat Malachi. A third rocket exploded in an open region in Kiryat Malachi.
 
Israel earlier on Wednesday accepted a request by UN envoy Robert Serry to enact a "humanitarian ceasefire" for several hours starting Thursday morning.
 
The IDF Spokesman said the ceasefire will be a “window of opportunity” for Palestinian Arabs in Gaza to get supplies and evacuate.
 
Meanwhile, Egyptian efforts to mediate a ceasefire continue, and an Israeli delegation will be in Cairo on Thursday for talks on the issue.

Erdogan Accuses Israel of 'State Terrorism'

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 16 July 2014 07:59
07-05-10Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan fired more accusations at Israel on Tuesday, even after Israel accepted a cease-fire agreement that saw Hamas rain tens of missiles on innocent Israeli civilians in its wake. 
 
"Israel is continuing to carry out state terrorism in the region. Nobody, except us, tells it to stop," Erdogan told members of his ruling party in parliament, accusing Israel of perpetrating a "massacre" of Palestinians.
 
"To what extent will the world remain silent to this state terrorism?" he asked. "What's the difference between this mentality and that of Hitler?" 
 
Meanwhile, over 30 rockets have rained on Israel in three hours on Tuesday, after Israel accepted a cease-fire proposal from Egypt and agreed to halt its self-defense operation, Operation Protective Edge
 
Hamas spokesperson Sami Abu Zahri reiterated shortly after the truce announcement that it is uninterested in attacking the Israeli civilian population - despite the fact that all of Hamas's rockets have been aimed at civilian population centers. The group's propaganda has also openly threatened Israeli civilians.
 
"The idea of disarmament is not subject to discussion," he said, adding that "the Palestinians are on occupied land, so it has a legitimate right to resist." 
 
In a statement issued around the same time, Hamas said it did not consider itself obliged by the Egyptian proposal.
 
"Because we were excluded from the consultations for this (truce) initiative, we are not obliged to abide by it," it said.
 
Erdogan has become increasingly more vocal over the operation, and threatened to end the normalization process with Israel.
 
Erdogan also accused Israel of "lies" because "not enough" Israeli Jews have died in the conflict
 
"They say (Hamas) is firing rockets. But is there anybody who died?" he asked. "The number of Palestinians that you (Israel) killed is now 100. Their (Israel's) life is based on lies." 
 
"You will first stop this oppression. If not, it is not possible to realize normalization between Turkey and Israel," Erdogan said, on a separate occasion. 
 
As of Tuesday night, no contacts have been made with Israel so far, a Turkish official told AFP.
 
"Concrete steps can only be taken after Israel stops its assault on Gaza," the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
 
Erdogan himself has also had a long public record of anti-Semitic statements, including several recently despite efforts to normalize relations.
 
Several months ago, Erdogan kicked and beat a protestor who approached the premier over the May 2014 Soma mine disaster. 
 
"Why are you running away from me - Israeli sperm!" he shrieked, slapping the protester, in video footage uploaded to Sozcu TV. The word "sperm" is seen as a particularly offensive insult in Turkish. The footage later shows security forces beating the man.
 
In 1998, prior to his stint as PM, Erdogan - then mayor of Istanbul - infamously declared that "the Jews have begun to crush the Muslims in Palestine, in the name of Zionism. Today, the image of the Jews is no different than that of the Nazis."
 
More recently, Erdogan accused Israel of being behind the ouster of Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohammed Morsi. 

Bennett Calls on Hamas 'Cowards' to Stop Using Human Shields

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 15 July 2014 14:33
Naftali Bennett fileEconomics Minister Naftali Bennett rejected criticism from leftist NGOs over Israel's military operation against terrorist rocket fire from Gaza, and said the moment Hamas decided to invest in improving the lives of the people of Gaza instead of attacking Israel, the Jewish state would be first in line to help.
 
In an interview with the BBC's Gaza correspondent, Bennett was asked "what it would take" for Israel to end Operation Protective Edge. His answer was simple, and echoed statements by other senior officials, including Prime Minister Netanyahu: "for Hamas to stop shooting rockets and missiles at Israel... they just need to stop... and this whole thing will go away."
 
"Hamas has decided to export misery and terror on its own citizens and it's shooting rockets across Israel," he continued, noting that his own infant children were currently being forced to run to bomb shelters in central Israel. "If they decide to stop and disarm the whole thing will stop within one second."
 
Responding to criticism over the civilian death toll in Gaza as a result of IDF strikes, the Jewish Home party leader said that Hamas was responsible for those deaths given its use of human shields in violation of international law.
 
"Hamas is killing its own children and women" by "placing missile launchers within schools, within hospitals and within homes," he said.
 
"It's putting its own women and children as human shields and by doing that it's killing its own people."
 
He called on the Islamist group to "stop that cowardly and cynical action of hiding missile launchers within women and children and shooting at my home."
 
Bennett also dismissed criticism from leftist "human rights" groups, retorting that "those human rights groups criticize Israel whatever we do -even if we hand out chocolate they'll criticize us. They're irrelevant."
 
What was relevant, he continued, was the fact that after Israel left Gaza completely in 2005 amid promises that the Palestinian Authority would take the opportunity to build a peaceful, stable "Singapore of the Middle East", it instead witnessed a rapid takeover by Hamas and the establishment of "a fortress of terror."
 
"If at any moment Hamas decides that they want to invest their money in building their economy... in creating a prosperous country down there we'll give them all the backing. They have to decide... do you want to fight or create peace?"
 
{youtube}5GCjFwa91xI{/youtube}
 
Hamas rejected a ceasefire proposal brokered by Egypt Tuesday morning, choosing instead to fire more than 80 rockets into southern and central Israel and provoking international condemnation. After several hours of restraint, the IDF resumed its airstrikes on Gaza Tuesday afternoon.
 
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu pointed out earlier in the day that a Hamas rejection of the ceasefire would leave Israel with no choice but to continue and expand its military operation. He called on "responsible members of the international community" to offer Israel their "full support" as it exercised its "right to self-defense."

Egyptian TV Hosts 'Sick and Tired' of Hamas

Category: Media
Created on Tuesday, 15 July 2014 09:16
Hamas fighters hold picture of Mohammed MorsiIt is no secret that the Egyptian government has been taking some pleasure in watching events unfold in the Gaza Strip.
 
After the ouster of Muslim Brotherhood president Mohammed Morsi, and the subsequent insurgency campaign by his Islamist supporters, the Brotherhood was declared public enemy number one and blacklisted as a terrorist group amid a bloody crackdown. It's "Palestinian branch", Hamas, was accused of cooperating with insurgents and terrorist groups in the Sinai Peninsula, and first the interim military administration, and then the government of President Sisi, tightened the screws on Hamas specifically. Cairo imposed a blockade even more rigorous than that imposed by Israel, and destroyed many of the smuggling tunnels between Gaza and Egypt, which were a vital source of weapons and finance for Hamas.
 
In doing so, the Egyptian military was reflecting the views of many Egyptians who, while still hostile towards Israel, saw in the rise of Islamism a mortal enemy far more dangerous than the dreaded "Zionists".
 
But while Sisi's administration has remained notably silent during Operation Protective Edge, limiting itself to bland statements calling on "both sides" to show "restraint", that enmity has bubbled to the surface of Egyptian TV - which, it should be noted, is state-controlled.
 
And in a collage of segments from Egyptian television translated by MEMRI (the Middle East Media Research Institute), a variety of animated anchors share some choice words about Hamas with their viewers.
 
{youtube}7VtENBF_yjo{/youtube}
 
Perhaps the most prominent theme is summed up by talk show host Mazhar Shahin, who begins his anti-Hamas tirade by drawing a line between supporting "the Palestinians" and supporting Hamas.
 
"Just like we died in the past in defense of the Palestinian cause, we are ready to die today in defense of the Palestinian cause - but we are not ready to die in defense of Hamas," he declared, going on to say that the Egyptian people "are not prepared to sacrifice even a single hair from the eyebrow" for the Islamist group.
 
Other hosts echoed those sentiments, and goaded Hamas and other Palestinian Islamist leaders who encourage young Arabs to die for the sake of "jihad", but who themselves live in luxury away from the front lines.
 
Mohamed Moustafa Sherdi took the opportunity to attack Hamas for its smuggling tunnel network, which he said was built to "smuggle all of Egypt's wealth" into Gaza.
 
Talk show host Ahmad Mousa took an even more openly mocking tone, pointing out that despite its bravado Hamas had not managed to inflict major losses on Israel, and making fun of the lifestyle and expanding waistline of Hamas "prime minister" Ismail Haniye.
 
He also joined other Arab commentators in questioning Hamas's use of human shields.
 
"Why do you, the Al Qassam Brigades [Hamas's military wing - ed.], hide among civilians?" Mousa asked.
 
"Why do you use people's homes? You should keep your hideouts away from people's homes. you know full well that when you launch a missile from a home, a [Israeli] missile will land on that home within one minute. 

Haniyeh: The Zionist Enemy Started the War

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 15 July 2014 08:49
Ismail HaniyehHamas will not agree to any ceasefire that does not “meet the demands of the Palestinian people”, the group’s leader, Ismail Haniyeh, said on Monday night.
 
In a televised address in which he responded to reports that Egypt had proposed a ceasefire that will go into effect at 9:00 a.m. Tuesday morning, Haniyeh said, "We will not agree to any ceasefire that does not cater to the demands of the Palestinian people and brings honor to its victims."
 
“Today we are facing an important stage in the conflict with the Israeli occupation. Years of a blockade did not prevent our resistance from taking all possible measures to protect the Palestinian people,” he added.
 
“The Zionist enemy forced the war on us and planned it. Today we are fulfilling our duty to protect our people and our honor," declared Haniyeh.
 
Haniyeh’s comments echo those of a Hamas official who reiterated earlier Monday that the group would not accept any deal without Israel meeting several harsh conditions for a truce, including releasing terrorists and stopping a blockade. 
 
Israeli media reported on Monday night that the proposed ceasefire by Egypt does not include a removal of weaponry from Gaza but is expected to result in a weakened Hamas.
 
The Cabinet is expected to meet early Tuesday morning, discuss the proposal and vote on it. Jewish Home Chairman Naftali Bennett is expected to vote against it, as is Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman, head of Yisrael Beytenu.
 
Israel reportedly offered Hamas a 40-hour cease-fire last week, sources said Sunday afternoon, which Hamas immediately rejected.
 
Nationalist MKs expressed outrage over the proposed ceasefire on Monday night, warning that a ceasefire at this time will only make Hamas stronger.

Hamas Spokesman Rejects Ceasefire Proposal

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 15 July 2014 08:31
Hamas test of courageHamas rejected Egypt’s proposed ceasefire in Gaza on Monday night, as Arab foreign ministers in Cairo called on "all parties" to accept the proposal.
 
Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum said the group would not accept a truce without a fully-fledged deal to end hostilities, according to AFP.
 
"A ceasefire without reaching an agreement is rejected. In times of war, you don't cease fire and then negotiate," he told the news agency.
 
Barhoum added Hamas had not received any official proposal and that "the weapons of the resistance are a red line."
 
Earlier Monday night, Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh said the group would not agree to any ceasefire that does not “meet the demands of the Palestinian people.”
 
“Today we are facing an important stage in the conflict with the Israeli occupation. Years of a blockade did not prevent our resistance from taking all possible measures to protect the Palestinian people,” he added.
 
“The Zionist enemy forced the war on us and planned it. Today we are fulfilling our duty to protect our people and our honor," declared Haniyeh.
 
Meanwhile, the Arab foreign ministers said in a statement they "demand all parties concerned accept the Egyptian initiative" and commit to its terms.
 
The Cabinet is to vote about the Egyptian proposal early Tuesday morning, and diplomatic officials said that the proposal would return the situation on the ground to the state it was before Operation Protective Edge, but with a Hamas that is much weaker than before.
 
Nationalist Knesset Members expressed outrage over the ceasefire, including Housing Minister Uri Ariel (Jewish Home), who said the proposal is “a disaster.”
 
Minister Ariel stressed that the ceasefire would endanger Israeli citizens. "It won’t be long before Hamas will grow stronger, smuggle more elaborate rockets and open fire again,” he warned.
 
Asked how he believes Israel should act now, he responded that the operation must continue, “including ground entry. We need to finish the job. Doing half a job is worse than doing nothing.”

ISIS Spokesman Explains Why 'Islamic State' Not Supporting Hamas

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 13 July 2014 21:21
ISIS Spokesman -Not Supporting HamasThe Islamic State, or ISIS, has responded to critics who have questioned why its leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is not actively supporting Hamas in fighting Israel.
 
After capturing vast swathes of Iraq and Syria, ISIS declared the regions under its control as a "Caliphate", or Islamic state, and appointed Baghdadi as "leader of the Muslims". While many jihadists celebrated the announcement, others - including Al Qaeda, which ISIS broke off from last year - have criticized the move for a variety of reasons.
 
Since the recent escalation between Israel and Islamist terrorists in Gaza, some of those critics have questioned why a self-declared "Caliphate" is not rushing to the aid of Muslims in the Hamas-controlled territory. 
 
In a statement a spokesperson for the group, Nidal Nuseiri reaffirmed that conquering "Bayt el-Maqdis" (Jerusalem) and destroying the State of Israel is central to the group's "jihad", or holy war.
 
However, he pointed out that ISIS has been taking a systematic approach in its campaign, and outlined six specific stages it said needed to be fulfilled before taking on Israel.
 
Some of those "stages" - building a firm base for an Islamic state in Iraq, and using it as a springboard to wage war in Syria and Lebanon - have already been achieved. But he said a number of other criteria still needed to be fulfilled before challenging Israel directly.
 
Among them, Nuseiri said that the US - seen as Israel's greatest ally - needed to be weakened politically and economically via attacks on the American mainland, as well as US interests in Muslim countries. Additionally, the existing "Islamic State" needed to expand its borders to cover all of "Greater Syria" (which would include Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and possibly Gaza); such a state, he said, would then be in a position for a direct confrontation with Israel.

Hamas Spokesman Encourages Using Civilians as Shields

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 13 July 2014 20:57
Sami Abu ZuhriThe IDF Spokesperson’s Unit continues to expose Hamas’s use of civilians as human shields.
 
Hours after it published photographic evidence of this, it published another video, this time of Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri admitting that the group uses civilians as human shields and encouraging Gazans to continue to do this.
 
{youtube}eQ6S0-o3uFI{/youtube}
 
Abu Zuhri’s comments were made on Hamas’s Al-Aqsa TV. He referred to the night of June 8, when the IDF avoided civilian casualties by aborting an air strike. He then encouraged Palestinian Arabs in Gaza to continue the practice in order to deter IDF strikes.

Egyptian Broadcaster: We Should Help Fight Hamas

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 13 July 2014 18:41

Morsi shakes hands with Haniyeh  RutersThere's no love lost between the new government of Egypt and Hamas, with the former rejecting the latter over Hamas' support of the Muslim Brotherhood, the arch-enemy of newly-elected Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the ex-army chief who toppled the Brotherhood's Mohammed Morsi last year. So far, Egypt has largely stayed out of the conflict between Israel and Hamas, offering little more than platitudes on the importance of calm, and half-heartedly suggesting itself as a broker for a cease-fire.

But if the Egyptian government is willing to go through the motions, many Egyptians are not. Angry over the Islamic repression the Brotherhood tried to impose on the secular middle class, and furious over the deaths of Egyptian soldiers and police at the hands of Brotherhood terrorists who flocked to Sinai last year, Hamas has faced a major backlash in public opinion, to the extent that many Egyptians are "rooting" for Israel to finish off Hamas.

Among those siding with Israel is the hostess of one of Egypt's most popular television programs, "Egypt Today." On Sunday, Hiya Aldardiri said that "the Egyptian people understand very well who is set against them, and they understand that Egypt has no choice but to set its forces against the terrorists in Gaza."

Aldardiri listed a number of terror attacks conducted by Hamas and its Brotherhood affiliates against Egyptians. In 2013, the Egyptian government designated the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization, one day after a deadly attack on a security building in the city of Mansoura killed 14 people and wounded more than 100 others.

"As Egyptians, we will never forget the day Hamas hurt the honor of Egypt when it sent its militias to take over the Mansoura building and killed Egyptians," Aldardiri said. "They also killed Egyptians in Tahrir Square" when the Egyptian Army attempted to stem the Muslim Brotherhood's excesses.

"We blame Hamas for everything that happened in the Muslim Brotherhood revolution, whose purpose was to cause the fall of Egypt," she added.

Hamas Warns Israel: You Will Pay a Heavy Price

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 12 July 2014 16:55
Hamas spokesman Sami Abu ZuhriHamas has no intention of caving in to Israel and allowing the Jewish state to “impose conditions on the Palestinian people”, its spokesman said on Monday evening.
 
Directly addressing Israeli citizens, the spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said, “Our people will not give in to your crimes. You will pay a heavy and painful price.”
 
He continued by saying that the rocket attacks from Gaza on southern Israel were a natural response to the “Israeli aggression.”
 
"Your threats do not frighten us and we will respond to all the crimes you have committed if you do not stop your actions," said Abu Zuhri, who added, "Israel must understand that message and internalize it."
 
The comments come in the wake of yet another escalation in the rocket fire from Gaza. As of 10:30 p.m., the number of rockets that were fired towards Israel stood at over 80, including over 30 rockets that were fired in a ten-minute period between 8:00 p.m. and 8:10 p.m.
 
Shortly before midnight, the Iron Dome anti-missile system intercepted a rocket that had been fired towards the city of Sderot.
 
The barrage follows the Security Cabinet decision to prepare for escalation in the South, including a possible military campaign. 
 
At least 1,500 reserve soldiers had been called up for preparatory training for a possible operation, security officials stated earlier Monday. Hours earlier, photos surfaced showing tanks and IDF forces gathering close to the Gaza border. 

Hamas Threatens Israel After its Members Killed in Airstrike

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 12 July 2014 11:42
Jihad terrorists in GazaHamas said on Sunday night that six of its members were killed in an Israeli airstrike on Gaza, and its spokesman threatened to make Israel pay.
 
The Israeli Air Force (IAF) confirmed it had launched airstrikes against nine terror targets in Gaza, including concealed rocket launchers and terrorist centers in central Gaza.
 
Witnesses told AFP that the Hamas members were killed when a tunnel collapsed on them following the Israeli strike.
 
Gaza health services spokesman Ashraf al-Qudra told the news agency that two Palestinian Arabs were killed and two others wounded in the attack east of Rafiah, but could not confirm Hamas’s statement that its members were killed.
 
Nevertheless, Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri took to Facebook to threaten Israel over the deaths.
 
"This is a serious escalation and the enemy will pay the price," he wrote.
 
The airstrikes that killed the Hamas members came several hours after an Israeli airstrike killed two terrorists from the Islamic Jihad group.
 
The two were identified by the Ma’an news agency as Mazen al-Hadba and Marwan Salim.
 
The airstrikes are an Israeli response to the endless rocket fire from Gaza. The Home Front Command and IDF announced earlier on Sunday that a total of 110 rockets have hit Israel over the past five days.
 
Another 40 rockets were fired from Gaza on Sunday, according to the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit.
 
Several ministers and MKs have called for Israel to retake or attack Gaza and institute a "zero tolerance" policy against terrorism over the weekend.
 
Deputy Education Minister Avi Wortzman (Jewish Home) dismissed the notion that “restraint is power” and called on Israel to issue a harsh response to the rocket fire.
 
"One million citizens have become hostages of Hamas and the government responds weakly. What is happening here is unacceptable. Hamas must understand that it will not pay off for it to continue firing rockets,” he told Arutz Sheva on Sunday.
 
"The role of the state is to protect its citizens and at the moment it is doing so feebly,” he continued. “People are not willing to accept this reality. Our children’s routines are interrupted, they live in fear. Children are not our soldiers.”
 
"They say that restraint is power. That’s not true,” said Wortzman. "Restraint is a scandal and a disregard for citizens. It's that simple.”

Veiled Admission? Hamas Says Kidnapping Was 'Failed Activity'

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 05 July 2014 20:19
Hamas terroristsA Hamas spokesperson on Tuesday released a statement just after the funeral of Eyal Yifrah (19), Naftali Frenkel (16) and Gilad Sha'ar (16), who were kidnapped and murdered by Hamas terrorists.
 
Mushir al-Masri, the spokesperson, labeled the abduction as "an activity that failed," reports Channel 10.
 
While the statement sounds like an admission, al-Masri did not take responsibility for the murder.
 
All the same, he did emphasize that in the future, Hamas will take further steps against Israel to "balance" the crackdown the IDF has been conducting on Hamas's terror infrastructure in Judea and Samaria.
 
Israeli security forces have already identified the two main Hamas terrorists behind the abduction and murder as Marwan Kawasmeh and Amar Abu-Eisha, and is currently hunting to track them down.
 
As far as the abduction "failing," reports coming after the bodies of the three teens were found on Monday indicate they were murdered shortly after the kidnapping.
 
In the chilling recording of Sha'ar's frantic last call to the police emergency 100 hotline, which was released on Tuesday, the terrorist kidnappers can be heard noticing that Sha'ar had called the police, after which shots ring out amid an apparent struggle as the boys cry out in pain.
 
The evidence would seem to suggest the kidnappers realized the police had been contacted and decided to murder the teenagers on the spot. It is not yet known whether they had initially meant to keep them alive in the hope of bartering them in exchange for jailed terrorists, However, many analysts estimate the terrorists always planned to murder the youths - particularly since it would have been near impossible for two people to control and hide three young captives for a prolonged period of time - but were simply forced to act sooner after the call to police was made.
 
Blood and spent bullet casings were discovered in the burned-out car they used, which was found shortly after the kidnapping.
 
As for the "additional steps" against Israel, there has already been a dramatic upsurge in rocket fire from the Hamas-enclave of Gaza since the kidnapping, which has notably peaked this week.
 
After 15 rockets were fired over Sunday night and Monday morning from Gaza, Israeli security forces announced Hamas was directly behind the rocket fire, reportedly marking a first since the end of the counter-terror Operation Pillar of Defense in November 2012. Hamas has not taken responsibility for the rocket fire officially.
 
While there has been a steady stream of rocket fire even since the Operation Pillar of Defense "ceasefire" that was brokered by Egypt, the Gaza-based Islamic Jihad terror group and terrorist factions other than Hamas have largely claimed the attacks, with Hamas simply turning a blind eye.

Hamas Calls on Iran to Join the 'Struggle' Against Israel

Category: News
Created on Friday, 04 July 2014 20:48
Khaled Mashaal in Gaza fileHamas's political bureau leader Khaled Mashaal, currently living in Qatar, sent a letter to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Thursday, calling on him to join the "struggle" against Israel in light of Operation Brother's Keeper.
 
The operation has seen IDF forces crack down on Hamas's terror infrastructure in Judea and Samaria in an effort to rescue three teens abducted by Hamas terrorists. The identities of two of the Hamas kidnappers were revealed by the IDF on Thursday.
 
Mashaal complained to Rouhani about "the continuing collective punishment that the Palestinian nation in the West Bank and Gaza Strip suffer from," reports Walla!.
 
The Hamas leader went on, calling on Iran to aid the struggle of the "Palestinian nation" against Israel so as "to end the aggression."
 
Iran, the key sponsor of the Hamas terrorist group until being replaced in that position by Turkey in 2012, is currently in the processes of negotiating a deal on its nuclear program with world powers.
 
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Thursday warned against the impending deal, which Israel estimates would allow Iran to retain 2,000 to 4,000 centrifuges, leaving it a nuclear threshold state with breakout capability to produce a nuclear bomb in a matter of weeks.
 
Hamas and Iran experienced something of a falling out over the Syrian war, with Iran siding with Syrian President Bashar Assad and Hamas initially siding with the rebel forces.
 
Mashaal has been leading rapprochement between the two sides, meeting Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian last month and expressing a conciliatory stance vis-a-vis Assad.
 
On Monday, Mashaal said "blessed be the kidnappers, since it is a Palestinian obligation to release prisoners and make the occupation pay the price of the Palestinian suffering."

Third Hamas Kidnapping Suspect Identified

Category: News
Created on Friday, 04 July 2014 10:02
Third Suspect IdentifiedIn addition to the two Hamas terrorists identified by the IDF as being behind the murder of Naftali Frenkel, Eyal Yifrah and Gilad Sha'ar on June 12, another Hamas terrorist has been missing since the night of the abduction, Arab sources reported Friday. 
 
Sources in Hevron told Walla! that the third Hamas terrorist, Hussam Dufash of central Hevron, has been missing since the night of June 12 as well - implicating him in the teens' murder. 
 
According to the reports Dufash has a long record of terrorism too, having been jailed by Israel and being part of a family strongly identified with Hamas.
 
IDF forces have searched Dufash's home several times since the abduction, telling his family that he is wanted for investigation.
 
At least two of Dufash's family members have been involved in terror attacks and attempts in the past, the Arab sources told Walla!. In 2003 one of his family members, Jihad Dufash, was killed in a "work accident" at a Hamas explosives laboratory in the Hevron area. 
 
In the same explosion, another Hamas terrorist was killed: Hatam Kawasmeh - a close family member of Marwan Kawasmeh, one of the two Hamas terrorists who abducted and murdered the three teens.
 
Kawasmeh, who has been arrested at least five times and admitted to working for Hamas and has helped the terror group recruit new members, was identified along with Amar Abu-Eisha, who was arrested twice.
 
Parts of the homes of Kawasmeh and Abu-Eisha were demolished on Monday; the two terrorists remain at large.
 
Abu-Eisha's father Omar acknowledged that on the night of the abduction, he went with Amar to a cousin's wedding at 8 p.m, and around 10 p.m. he found Amar had disappeared, and has been missing since. The abduction occurred just after 10 p.m.
 
The mother of Abu-Eisha said denied her sons involvement, even while saying "if he truly did it - I'll be proud of him till my final day."
 
She added "I raised my children on the knees of the (Islamic) religion, they are religious guys, honest and clean-handed, and their goal is to bring the victory of Islam." Omar has been arrested numerous times for security offenses according to the IDF, and Amar's brother was killed while committing a terror attack in 2005 against an IDF patrol.

Hamas: Israel Trying to Cover Up its Own Failures

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 02 July 2014 10:56
Marwan Kawasmeh L Amar Abu-EishaThe Hamas terrorist group on Thursday night downplayed Israel’s publication of the names of two members of the group, who are behind the abduction of three Israeli teens two weeks ago.
 
"The declaration of the occupation, in which the names from Hevron are presented, is the continuation of its confusion and disgraceful failure in achieving its goals,” declared Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri.
 
He said that Israel’s disclosure of the names of the two is meant to cover up its own failure in finding the kidnapped teens.
 
The two terrorists, as identified by the IDF earlier Thursday, are Marwan Kawasmeh (29) and Amar Abu-Eisha (33), both of whom have been arrested numerous times and are well known Hamas terrorists in the Hevron area. They are being tracked down by the IDF.
 
Earlier this week, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said that Israel had “unequivocal proof that the organization responsible for the abduction is Hamas.”
 
Netanyahu said "we are transferring these proofs to a number of countries around the world. Soon the information will be made public.”
 
The father of one of the two terrorists denied later on Thursday his son's involvement in the kidnapping.
 
Omar Abu-Eisha, the father of Amar, claimed that he had seen no trace of Amar since the night of June 12, when the boys were abducted.

Fatah Spokesman: Hamas Behaves Like Criminals and Thugs

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 29 June 2014 19:46
Hamas supportrsA spokesman for Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah movement launched a verbal attack on Hamas in a recent television interview.
 
The spokesman, Ahmad Assaf, said members of the movement behave “like criminals and thugs”. The interview, which aired on Palestinian Authority TV on June 11, was translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).
 
{youtube}tssXnzdHwRc{/youtube}
 
“The Hamas government, or the Hamas leaders in Gaza, think that the government of Dr. Rami Hamdallah operates like they do. Dr. Hamdallah was a university president. He respects the law. He has gained the trust of President Abbas, of Fatah, and of the Palestinians,” said Assaf.
 
Hamdallah, he continued, “does not obey the orders of your local mosque sheik, who issues a fatwa-on-demand legitimizing killing Fatah members, another fatwa justifying your coup, yet another, supporting reconciliation, a fatwa in support of the elections, and another banning the elections… Dr. Hamdallah doesn't work that way.”
 
“Hamas's gang of riff-raff, thugs, and delinquents, who call themselves ‘police,’ bust into banks, prevent people from collecting their salaries, and they impede people from earning their daily bread,” he charged. “They do this following the orders of the Hamas leaders. This is not how responsible people who care about the Palestinian's interest behave.”
 
“[Money] is the only thing they hold sacred, and that's why they demand to [unite] the finance ministries. But they expect the interior ministry to continue to obey the orders of the robe-wearing sheik at their local mosque,” continued Assaf. “But this money came as a result of the Oslo Accords. This is the same money we got from America and Europe. We ‘sold out’ Palestine for this money, didn't we? You condemn us 24/7 for accepting this aid for the Palestinians, but all of a sudden this money has become the most holy thing around.”
 
“We know that Iran pays you on a monthly basis. The international organization of the Muslim Brotherhood invests in you. You are its spearhead. That's how you gained access to all the Arab countries,” charged Assaf, adding, “Hamas has collected billions of dollars. On your collection box at the mosque it says ‘Jerusalem,’ but Jerusalem has nothing to do with you. You have used the Palestinian people to collect dollars by the hundreds of millions. You were the milk cow of the Muslim Brotherhood, but where is it now?”
 
The comments seem surprising considering that Hamas and Fatah signed a reconciliation pact and formed a unity government.
 
Even after the formation of the unity government, however, there has been tension between the sides.
 
The PA has threatened to end its unity deal with Hamas over the kidnapping of three Israeli teenagers, even though it celebrated the kidnapping.
 
Hamas, in return, condemned Abbas’s statement on the kidnapping. The group’s spokesperson Sami Abu Zuhri said the comments “are unjustified, harmful to Palestinian reconciliation...and a psychological blow to the thousands of Palestinian prisoners suffering a slow death in the occupation's jails.”

Hamas Leader: We Can Bomb Any City in Israel

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 28 June 2014 14:41
Mahmoud al-Zahar -ReutersSenior Hamas leader Mahmoud Al-Zahar on Tuesday issued a direct threat against Israel.
 
Al-Zahar, who spoke at a memorial ceremony for terrorists who died in a “work accident”, declared that Hamas has rockets that can hit any city in Israel.
 
He further said that during Operation Pillar of Defense in 2012, Hamas held a “dry run” in attacking Israeli cities such as Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. Hamas is known to have test-fired long-range M-175 rockets that can reach Tel Aviv and even beyond that when fired from Gaza.
 
Another senior Hamas official, Salah Bardawil, backed Al-Zahar by trivializing the IDF’s Operation Brother’s Keeper, which was launched following the kidnapping of three Israeli teenagers.
 
Bardawil said that the IDF operation will actually strengthen Hamas, similar to the way that "Operation Defensive Shield", led by Prime Minister Ariel Sharon during the period of the Second Intifada, which helped Hamas emerge victorious in parliamentary elections.
 
Like Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal did on Monday, Bardawil denied that Hamas had any connection to the kidnapping of the three teenagers and even suggested that Israel had made up the abduction.
 
"Until now, the only version that exists regarding this action is the version of the occupation, and the only source of information on this story is the occupation,” he said. “No Palestinian official has claimed responsibility for this act, yet the (Zionist) entity chooses to ignore that and attack Hamas and the resistance.”

Hamas Leader: Bless Whoever Kidnapped the Youths

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 26 June 2014 22:54
Khaled Meshaal0Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal on Monday denied that his group had any connection to the kidnapping of three Israeli teenagers, but said he welcomed the abduction.
 
Speaking with the Al Jazeera network, Mashaal claimed that Hamas had no information regarding the three, but said that if it turns out they were indeed kidnapped, "then blessed be the kidnappers, since it is a Palestinian obligation to release prisoners and make the occupation pay the price of the Palestinian suffering."
 
In a direct appeal to the families of the three teenagers, Mashaal accused Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was responsible for the kidnapping, claiming his “disregard for Palestinian suffering” is the reason for the abduction.
 
"If Netanyahu had listened to the suffering of the (hunger) striking prisoners and had not opposed the national reconciliation agreement, the situation in the Palestinian arena would not have been so serious,” he claimed.
 
Mashaal noted that the reconciliation agreement between Fatah and Hamas emphasizes taking action for the release of prisoners as a sacred national duty and devotion to using any means to realize this goal.
 
In addition, he said, the agreement calls for the establishment of a unified leadership in the struggle against the "occupation", the establishment of a new political authority and the end of the security coordination with Israel.
 
The comments come hours after Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh stated that a third intifada (terror war against Israel) had started, citing ongoing unrest in the Palestinian Authority (PA) as the IDF cracks down on Hamas in Judea and Samaria.
 
Despite Mashaal’s denial that Hamas is involved in the kidnapping, both Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and other security officials have confirmed again and again that the terror organization is behind the abduction. 
 
Operation Brothers' Keeper to find the boys, as well as to subdue Hamas in the PA over the abduction, is well into its tenth day. At least 360 Hamas terrorists have been arrested and 1400 sites scoured in the search. On Sunday, an underground terror tunnel system was uncovered in Hevron. 

UN Chief 'Concerned' Over Israeli Arrests of Terrorists

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 26 June 2014 22:07
Ban Ki-moon UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Sunday expressed “solidarity” with the families of the three kidnapped Israeli teenagers, but also hit out at Israel for arresting Hamas terrorists as part of its operation to locate the three teens.
 
In a statement outlining Ban’s conversation with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu the day before, the UN chief stressed “the need to avoid an escalation of tensions in the wake of the recent abduction of three Israeli teenagers and the increased violence and mass arrests in the West Bank.”
 
According to the statement, in Saturday’s phone call with Netanyahu, Ban “conveyed his sympathy for the abducted teenagers and deep solidarity with their families” but also “voiced concern over the increased violence, mass arrests, and restrictions on movement in the West Bank.”
 
It was imperative, Ban reportedly told Netanyahu, “not to give in to provocations in a way that seems likely to escalate tensions further.”
 
Ban called both sides to “show restraint and to observe human rights standards and international law.”
 
Netanyahu had told Ban on Saturday that the information in Israel's hands unequivocally indicates that Hamas is responsible for the abduction of the three teenagers, adding that this needs to be expressed in actions on the ground.
 
Netanyahu stressed that the goal of the Israeli security operation in Judea and Samaria is to discover the location of the three abducted youths and that, therefore, it is focusing on Hamas.
 
The conversation between Ban and Netanyahu comes several days after a spokesperson for Ban claimed that the UN has no "concrete evidence" that Eyal Yifrah, 19, Naftali Frenkel, 16, and Gilad Sha'ar, 16, were "actually" kidnapped by Hamas terrorists.
 
The comments came after Ban had already condemned the kidnapping, noting particularly that two of the kidnapped Israeli students are minors.
 
Netanyahu’s remarks in the conversation with Ban also come in the wake of a statement by the UN’s Middle East envoy, Robert Serry, who spoke out on Friday against Israel’s operation in Judea and Samaria to locate the three teenagers.
 
While Serry called for the release of the three, he expressed “deep concern” over Israel’s arrest of wanted terrorists.

Dissatisfaction, Fear Grow in Gaza as IDF Crackdown Continues

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 22 June 2014 19:23
Teach Hamas a LessonPalestinian Arabs have made a show of celebrating the kidnapping of three missing yeshiva students, taking to social media and handing out sweets in public places.
 
However, most Gazans are actually very concerned at the thought of Israel launching a full-scale invasion in Gaza, sources told Walla! News on Wednesday, causing rising dissent against the Hamas government there amidst an unemployment crisis and bad management. 
 
Residents said Wednesday that they were hoarding gas and food ahead of a possible assault, saying they were also mindful of the kidnapping's timing - just two weeks before the month-long fast of Ramadan. 
 
Meanwhile, tensions are rising over Gaza's 44% unemployment rate, they added, as 40,000 Hamas government workers begin to grumble at not being paid their salaries for months. 
 
Analysts say the atmosphere could potentially lead to an uprising, citing previous attempts to overthrow the Islamists, which fell flat. Meanwhile, the unity government has already begun to crumble from within in the kidnapping's wake, with Hamas and Fatah firing blame at each other over the incident. 
 
"[Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud] Abbas's statements on security coordination with Israel are unjustified, harmful to Palestinian reconciliation," Hamas representative Sami Abu Zuhri said Wednesday to AFP. 
 
Meanwhile, Abbas has publicly distanced himself from Hamas over the kidnapping, which IDF officials say was conducted by Hamas terrorists operating in Judea and Samaria - potentially without the aid of Hamas in Gaza.
 
Abbas upped the ante Wednesday by threatening to end its unity deal with Hamas over the kidnapping according to unconfirmed reports.

Hamas Official Heaps Praise on 'Heroic' Kidnap Operation

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 22 June 2014 14:52
Heroic kidnappingAlthough Hamas has still not officially taken responsibility for the kidnapping of three Israeli teenagers nearly a week ago, the Islamist group has repeatedly lauded their abduction, arranging public celebrations in Gaza, encouraging Palestinians in the Hevron region to disrupt the IDF's search operation, and even lashing out at Palestinian Authority head Mahmoud Abbas for condemning the kidnapping.
 
And on Wednesday, the IDF Spokesperson's Unit released a video in which a top Hamas official hails the kidnapping of the three Israeli students as "heroic".
 
Speaking during an interview on Hamas's official Al Quds TV station, Muhammad Nazal - a member of the group's "political wing" - hailed "the heroic capture operation".
 
During the interview, which took place on Monday, Nazal claims the abduction "marked a milestone in the history of... the Palestinian struggle - a struggle that is filled with such heroic [sic] operations", as it "hunted, all at once, three from among the settlers' herd and Israeli soldiers".
 
{youtube}tf3Pwac8yXs{/youtube}
 
Israeli officials say they have solid intelligence that a Hamas cell operating in the Judea region south of Jerusalem was responsible for the teens' disappearance, although it is possible the cell acted independently of the group's central leadership in Gaza.

Abbas Attacks Kidnappers - for Harming the Palestinian Authority

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 22 June 2014 14:25
Abbas and MashaalAuthority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas played the victim on Wednesday, accusing the terrorists who kidnapped three Israeli teens last Thursday of trying to "destroy us," meaning the PA.
 
"Those who kidnapped the three teenagers want to destroy us. We will hold them accountable," Abbas said at an Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) meeting in the Saudi Arabian city of Jeddah, reports AFP.
 
The PA has threatened to end its unity deal with Hamas over the kidnapping according to unconfirmed reports, even as it celebrates the kidnapping.
 
Abbas also defended the cooperation between PA security forces and the IDF in the operation, saying "the kidnapped are human beings like us." 
 
"It is in our interest to have security coordination with Israel because that would help protect us," Abbas said, claiming "I say it frankly, we will never have another Intifada - that would destroy us."
 
Hamas and Islamic Jihad in Gaza on Monday condemned Abbas over the cooperation, saying instead he should declare “jihad” against the “Zionists.”
 
That same Monday Abbas condemned the kidnapping, four days after it occurred, but in the same statement condemned the IDF Operation Brother's Keeper aimed at rescuing the youths and cleaning out the Hamas terror infrastructure in Judea and Samaria.
 
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu telephoned Abbas shortly after the statement was released, in the first telephone conversation between the two in months, saying "I expect you to help in the return of the kidnapped youths and the capture of the kidnappers."
 
However, the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigade, the terror wing of Abbas' Fatah faction, released a joint statement with Hamas and other terrorist organizations in Gaza on Tuesday, threatening they would use "force" against Israel if the operation continues.

Hamas and Fatah Threaten Israel With 'Force'

Category: News
Created on Friday, 20 June 2014 19:43
Fatahs Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade fileTerrorist organizations in Gaza, including Hamas and Fatah's Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigade faction, threatened on Tuesday that they would take action if Israel continues its crackdown on the Hamas terror infrastructure in Judea and Samaria.
 
Commenting on the IDF operation seeking to rescue the three Israeli teens kidnapped by Hamas terrorists last Thursday, the terrorist groups declared that the IDF would "fail" to break the will power of the "Palestinian resistance."
 
In a joint statement read at a press conference in Gaza, the terrorists said, "We support the sons of our nation in the West Bank given the terror attack," referring to the IDF counter-terror operations targeting Hamas.
 
"The resistance will not stand helpless against the policy steps of the occupation; we are one nation, our suffering is one, our fate is one and our struggle is one," added the joint statement.
 
Despite the words of unity, the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Hamas have had a sort of falling out over the kidnapping, with the PA celebrating it even while distancing itself from Hamas and threatening to break the unity pact over the Hamas abduction in unconfirmed reports. Hamas for its part has condemned the PA for allegedly cooperating with Israel in the search.
 
The terror groups also stated their support for the hunger-striking jailed terrorists, praising their "heroism" against the "racist occupier that only understands the language of force."
 
80 jailed Arab terrorists have been hospitalized after refusing to eat for nearly two months; in response the Knesset has presented a controversial bill to force-feed them.
 
Signed onto the statement were: Al-Qassam Brigades of Hamas, Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades of PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah faction, Al-Nasser Salah Al-Din Brigades of the Popular Resistance Committees (PRC), Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), National Resistance Brigades of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP), Al-Aqsa Defenders' Brigades and Saif al-Islam.

Hamas Defiant over Israeli Crackdown

Category: News
Created on Friday, 20 June 2014 18:56
Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade terroristsMere hours after the Knesset Security Cabinet decided to give the internal security minister a freer hand to harshen conditions for jailed Hamas terrorists, the Gaza-based terrorist organization released an official statement in response.
 
"We've experienced attacks like this from Israel in the past, but we stood through them. The Hamas movement is not a movement of dozens, hundreds or thousands, but instead is a full stream. Arresting hundreds of our sons won't stop us, won't change our path and won't separate us from our obligations to our Palestinian people," Hamas wrote in the statement.
 
Hamas has been charged with Israel as being responsible for the kidnapping of three teenage students last Thursday; IDF and security forces continue the intensive search to bring the youths home. Over 200 Hamas terrorists have been arrested so far, in an effort to crackdown on the terror group's infrastructure in Judea and Samaria.
 
"The (Hamas) movement called on the Palestinian public in Hevron and in general to continue supporting the administrative prisoners hunger-striking in the prisons of the occupation, and not to let the occupation hide the topic," wrote Hamas.
 
The statement refers to 80 Arab terrorists who were hospitalized after refusing to eat for nearly two months. Israel has presented a controversial bill to force-feed them.
 
Likewise, Hamas called on the Palestinian Authority (PA) to free all Hamas prisoners, saying "we call for the unification of all the parties to stand against the Zionist attack and to defend the unity."
 
The PA and Hamas have had a sort of falling out over the kidnapping, with the PA celebrating it even while distancing itself from Hamas and reportedly threatening to break the unity pact over the Hamas abduction. Hamas for its part has condemned the PA for allegedly cooperating with Israel in the search.
 
The statement was signed with the following words: "freedom to the prisoners, jihad to us - victory or a martyr's death. Hamas movement, Hevron region."
 
IDF efforts have largely focused on the Hevron region in their search, given that a cell phone signal of one of the abducted teens was located from the Hevron region last Friday right after the kidnapping.

Hamas Reveals: Abbas Told Us He is 'Tricking the Americans'

Category: News
Created on Monday, 09 June 2014 22:03
John Kerry meets Mahmoud Abbas in RamallahA former Hamas government spokesman revealed on Sunday that Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas has said in private meetings he is lying in public statements to "trick the Americans."
 
The spokesman, Ihab al-Ghussein, wrote on Facebook that "behind closed doors," Abbas had said "when I go out and say that the government is my government and it recognizes 'Israel' and so on, fine - these words are meant to trick the Americans." Palestinian Media Watch (PMW) translated the Facebook post.
 
"Guys, let me (continue) saying what I say to the media. Those words are meant for the Americans and the occupation (i.e., Israel), not for you. What's important is what we agree on among ourselves. ...Don't harp on everything I tell the media, forget about the statements in the media," Abbas told Hamas, according to Ihab al-Ghussein.
 
PMW exposed that Al-Ghussein then laughs at Abbas in the post, adding "I really do want real reconciliation, meaning partnership and achieving unity, but not reconciliation as Abbas means it."
 
Al-Ghussein held his position as Hamas government spokesman until the new unity government between Hamas and Fatah was sworn in last Monday.
 
Abbas has insisted to the US that the new unity government would be controlled by him, and be based on what he called "the four Palestinian principles": recognizing Israel, recognizing the terms of international agreements, and the explicit rejection of violence and terrorism.
 
Apparently his statements worked: the American administration said last Monday that it would "work with" the new unity government, claiming it did not include Hamas members.
 
Despite the claim, three Hamas-backed ministers were sworn in to the unity government from Gaza via video feed. Further, Hamas continues to be adamant over its full control of the government, and said it would be subject to their approval before being established.
 
That approval power was proven when Hamas nearly scuppered the government the day of its swearing-in over a disagreement on the Ministry of Prisoners, which was resolved in a last second deal.
 
Hamas stated since the unity government was sworn in that it remains committed to its goals of terrorism and the annihilation of Israel, in contrast to Abbas's "four Palestinian principles."
 
Casting a shadow of doubt over how much the American administration is being "tricked" by Abbas are reports last Thursday from Buzzfeed, claiming that the US has been negotiating with Hamas for months, despite it's official policy against the terrorist organization. US officials denied the reports.

Hamas: the 'Majority' of Palestinian Arabs Support Terrorism

Category: News
Created on Friday, 06 June 2014 18:43
Terrorists brandish RPG in GazaLeftist MKs, the EU, and the US have encouraged Israel to work with the new Palestinian Authority (PA) "unity" government, claiming cooperation is the "only way" to end the Israeli-Arab conflict.
 
Husam Badran, a senior Hamas official, disproved this on Thursday, stating that the "Palestinian people" still openly support terrorism.
 
The official explained in an interview with the Gaza-based Al-Quds Press that the PA unity government has no political platform, and has set specific goals regarding domestic policy, such as the release of terrorists, removing the "siege" from Gaza and improving the economic condition of the "Palestinian people."
 
Badran also stressed that Hamas has not changed its position on the conflict with Israel conflict, which still relies on an "armed struggle."
 
"We believe that the majority of the Palestinian people still believe that the way to freedom is to fight," Badran said. 
 
The US and EU have largely predicated its willingness to "work with" the new unity government on the misnomer that the government does not actually include Hamas politicians. 
 
Despite this, Hamas announced that any "unity" government would be unequivocally subject to their approval before being established - and analysts say that both Hamas "ministers" and Islamic Jihad terrorists are expected to join the government soon. Indeed, three Hamas-backed ministers were sworn in to the new government from Gaza via video feed.
 
Hamas's charter calls for the destruction of Israel, and at least one top official has ruled out the possibility that Hamas will recognize “the Zionist entity,” even after the unity pact with Fatah.
 
Another official, Salah Bardawil, stated clearly several weeks ago that Hamas's policies obviously support terrorism - despite the supposedly peaceful facade of a "unity" pact with Fatah.
 
"Hamas's platform is known to everyone and is not unambiguous," Bardawil said. "Any referral to handling the Palestinian issue through peaceful means implies the cleansing of Palestine from foreigners who entered in 1948, before and after this time." 
 
"All those (foreigners who came to Palestine) must return to where they came from, and then we will extend our peace," he continued. "We are not hostile, only who attacked us and stole our land. So we understand the meaning of the word 'peace." 

What 'Unity'? Violent Hamas-PA Clashes in Gaza

Category: News
Created on Friday, 06 June 2014 18:09
Violent Hamas-PA Clashes in GazaThe unity government founded between the Palestinian Authority (PA) and terrorist group Hamas on Monday is hitting early snags, as brawls broke out in Gaza on Thursday over the payment of employees of the two groups, leading to the closure of banks.
 
Hamas violently took control of Gaza in 2007, and began cracking down on Fatah officials living in the territory. Since then the PA has continued paying roughly 70,000 employees in Gaza.
 
Thousands of Hamas employees, who have not been paid for the last several weeks, lined up at bank ATMs in Gaza on Thursday, hoping to now withdraw their back-logged salaries thanks to the unity government, reports Reuters.
 
While PA employees were able to withdraw their salaries, the Hamas workers remained without payment. Fistfights broke out between the two groups of employees, with Hamas riot police breaking them up and closing the banks, reportedly to prevent more violence.
 
"You call this a reconciliation? We should all eat or no one does," a Hamas employee reportedly shouted, as a PA worker responded "why is it our fault? Go and ask your Hamas leaders who signed the deal - why prevent us from feeding our families?"
 
Negative influences on "unity" from gunshots and violence
 
The tension between Hamas and Fatah was highlighted in the remarks of PA security forces spokesman Adnan Dmeiri.
 
"Thugs and gangsters of Hamas are preventing civil servants from withdrawing their salaries. They are firing gunshots, beating citizens and smashing ATM machines," Dmeiri told the Arab Ma'an News Agency, noting that banks were closed Thursday.
 
The incident could have negative consequences on the unity agreement with Fatah according to Dmeiri, who said he was waiting for Hamas leadership to denounce the scuffles.
 
One PA employee in Gaza told the Arab news agency that he was waiting at an Arab Bank ATM when Hamas police arrived in jeeps and started threatening PA workers. One Hamas officer told him that "no one can receive a salary before we receive our salaries."
 
Bankrolling the terrorist organization
 
A spokesman for the unity government said the Hamas workers needed to be vetted by a committee before being added to the payroll. "Be patient and give the unity government a chance to work," said spokesman, Ehab Bessaiso.
 
Israel has already warned that international funds transferred to the PA will end up paying Hamas and funding terror, a point of contention with the US which has said it will "work with" the unity government.
 
The US has claimed Hamas is not part of the government, even though three Hamas-backed ministers were sworn in via video feed from Gaza on Monday, and the group has announced that any "unity" government would be unequivocally subject to their approval before being established. 

Abbas Names Unity Government Prime Minister

Category: News
Created on Friday, 30 May 2014 19:54
Rami HamdallahPalestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday chose Rami Hamdallah, currently the prime minister of the PA government, to be the prime minister and head of the unity government with Hamas.
 
Hamdallah has been seen by experts as being largely under Abbas's thumb. However, precisely the post of foreign minister in the unity government appears to be holding back the government's formation.
 
"The government is ready, but there is only one problem, and that is that Fatah and Hamas reject Riyad al-Malki as foreign minister, something Abbas is insisting on," a PA official told AFP.
 
Al-Malki is the current foreign minister of the PA government, an office he has held since 2007. In January he stated that "the Arab states will never recognize a Jewish state."
 
A source close to Hamas has reported that the terrorist organization wants Ziyad Abu Amer, one of two deputy premiers now serving under Hamdallah, to get the post of foreign minister.
 
Following the reconciliation deal signed between Abbas's Fatah faction and Hamas last month, which torpedoed peace talks, the two sides have been working to form an "independent government" of technocrats ahead of elections. Reportedly the government will include 15 ministers.
 
"If this issue is resolved today and Abbas agrees not to appoint Malki, then the government will be announced in the next few hours," the Hamas-linked official said.
 
The unity government in its inclusion of Hamas and Islamic Jihad constitutes a change in the framework of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), the group recognized internationally as representing the "Palestinian people," but which has never rejected terrorism.
 
There has been friction surrounding the forming of the unity government, given that Abbas has said Hamas won't be part of the "independent government," even as Hamas continues to be adamant over its full control of a "unity" government.

Egyptian Official Denies Saying Hamas Should Recognize Israel

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 21 May 2014 08:46
Amr MoussaEgypt’s former foreign minister, Amr Moussa, denied on Monday that he had said that Hamas must recognize Israel, Al Ahram reported.
 
AFP several weeks ago quoted Moussa as having said that Hamas must recognize the existence of Israel in order to make it possible to move forward with a Palestinian state.
 
"It is normal for the Palestinians to reconcile," the quote attributed to Moussa said, referring to the unity deal struck between Hamas and its longtime rival Fatah, headed by Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas.
 
However, he added, “I believe that Hamas should declare its acceptance of the Arab initiative of 2002, which is the map of normalization and recognition of the state of Israel together with the establishing of the Palestinian state and the withdrawal of the occupied territory.”
 
On Monday, Moussa’s spokesman clarified that some of the signatories to the 2002 initiative do not recognize Israel and that there's no association between the two.
 
The spokesman also stated that Moussa reiterates his calls for Hamas to accept the 2002 Arab initiative, as Arab states and institutions have done.
 
The Arab Peace Initiative of 2002 demands that Israel withdraw completely from Judea and Samaria, at which point the 22 Arab countries would supposedly normalize relations with Israel.
 
There have been called on Hamas to recognize Israel, particularly since it signed the unity deal with Fatah, which stipulates that two sides would work together to form an "independent government" of technocrats, to be headed by Abbas, that would pave the way for long-delayed elections.
 
Susan Rice, U.S. President Barack Obama’s National Security Adviser, recently told Abbas that “any Palestinian government must unambiguously and explicitly commit to nonviolence, recognition of the State of Israel, and acceptance of previous agreements and obligations between the parties.”
 
Hamas’s charter calls for the destruction of Israel, and its deputy leader Moussa Abu Marzouk has ruled out the possibility that Hamas will recognize “the Zionist entity,” even after the unity pact with Fatah.

Egypt Wants to Revoke Hamas Leader's Citizenship

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 20 May 2014 22:08
Mahmoud al-Zahar -ReutersEgypt is working to revoke the citizenship of Hamas leader Mahmoud al-Zahar, a senior official told Al Arabiya on Monday.
 
According to Major General Hussein Ridi, Assistant Interior Minister for Passports and Citizenship, a proposal to revoke the citizenship of al-Zahar and 11 members of his family has been submitted to the Cabinet for approval.
 
The reason for the request, he told Al Arabiya, is proof that al-Zahar and his family are members of an organization that has been working “to undermine Egypt’s economic and social system.”
 
Al-Zahar is one of 8,000 Palestinian Arabs who were given Egyptian citizenship during the reign of ousted former president, Mohammed Morsi. Hamas is an offshoot of Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood.
 
Ridi added that security committees have been set up to examine the files of all Palestinian Arabs who have obtained citizenship and the extent of their commitment to the laws and the safety and security of Egypt, stressing that anyone found to have joined a terrorist organization or to be working for a government hostile to Egypt will have his citizenship revoked.
 
The announcement comes after an Egyptian court decided in March to declare Hamas a terrorist organization and to seize the group's assets and funds in Egypt.
 
Following that ruling, Egyptian security forces were reportedly planning to take away the citizen status of 13,757 Palestinian Arabs because of their support for Hamas.
 
Hamas has been the target of a crackdown by Egypt’s military-led government, after it enjoyed close relations with the Islamist Morsi’s government.
 
In addition to closing the Rafiah border crossing and essentially imposing a siege on Gaza, Egypt has also sealed most of the smuggling tunnels that are used to transport fuel and goods from Sinai, but also weapons and terrorists.
 
Egypt has accused Hamas of being responsible for several terror attacks that have hit the country since Morsi’s ouster, but Hamas has denied the Egyptian government’s allegations.

Abbas: Hamas Doesn't Need to Recognize Israel

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 13 May 2014 19:36
Abbas and MashaalPalestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas thinks that Hamas, with whom he recently signed a reconciliation pact, does not need to recognize Israel.
 
A senior PA official on Sunday told the London-based Al-Hayat newspaper that Abbas insists that Hamas does not need to recognize Israel or renounce terrorism, even after the unity pact with his Fatah movement.
 
The unnamed official told the newspaper about Abbas’s conversation with U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice, who visited the region last week.
 
During the conversation, Abbas reportedly told Rice that Hamas will not be a part of the new unity government, nor will that government include representatives of other Palestinian Arab organizations. Rather, the official said, it will be made up of independent professionals who are politically unaffiliated.
 
Abbas also reportedly told Rice that he will head the new unity government and that this government will adopt his political platform which renounces violence.
 
Hamas part continues to be adamant over its control of a "unity" government, expressing over and over again that it would remain in control of both Gaza and the PA-held areas after elections, and insisting that Ismail Haniyeh would rule the government. 
 
Rice told Abbas during their meeting last Thursday that “any Palestinian government must unambiguously and explicitly commit to nonviolence, recognition of the State of Israel, and acceptance of previous agreements and obligations between the parties.”
 
Egypt’s former foreign minister, Amr Moussa, also said last week that Hamas must recognize the existence of Israel in order to make it possible to move forward with a Palestinian state.
 
The PA’s chief negotiator, Saeb Erekat, claimed last week that Hamas is a legitimate organization and does not carry out terrorist attacks.
 
Erekat’s comments were made the same day that a video was released from a children’s program on Hamas's official TV channel in which viewers were encouraged to "kill the Jews".

Hamas Must Recognize Israel, Says Egyptian Official

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 08 May 2014 08:08
Amr MoussaEgypt’s former foreign minister said on Wednesday that Hamas must recognize the existence of Israel in order to make it possible to move forward with a Palestinian state, AFP reported.
 
"It is normal for the Palestinians to reconcile," said Amr Moussa, referring to the unity deal struck between Hamas and its longtime rival Fatah, headed by Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas.
 
However, he added, “I believe that Hamas should declare its acceptance of the Arab initiative of 2002, which is the map of normalization and recognition of the state of Israel together with the establishing of the Palestinian state and the withdrawal of the occupied territory.”
 
"If Hamas does do this, it would be a major step in the direction of formulating a favorable all-Palestinian policy towards the Palestinian-Israeli conflict," Moussa said, according to AFP, referring to the Arab Peace Initiative of 2002, which demands that Israel withdraw completely from Judea and Samaria, at which point the 22 Arab countries would supposedly normalize relations with Israel.
 
Under the terms of the Hamas-Fatah unity deal, signed on April 23, the two sides would work together to form an "independent government" of technocrats, to be headed by Abbas, that would pave the way for long-delayed elections.
 
The deal aims to end a longtime rivalry which started back in 2007, when Hamas took control of Gaza in a bloody coup and started cracking down on Fatah officials living in the territory.
 
The unity deal angered Israel, which in response suspended its participation in peace talks with the PA, saying it cannot be expected to negotiate with a government which includes members of a party dedicated to its destruction.
 
Egypt, which was once close to Hamas, has grown increasingly hostile to the group after the Egyptian military ousted Islamist president Mohammed Morsi. Hamas is an offshoot of Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood.
 
Last month, an Egyptian court outlawed Hamas, much like it banned the Muslim Brotherhood earlier this year, and ordered all of its assets seized.
 
Moussa, who was Egypt's top diplomat from 1991 to 2001 before becoming secretary general of the Arab League until 2011, is close to former military chief Abdel Fattah al-Sissi, who is tipped to win next month's elections in Egypt.
 
Earlier this week, Hamas’s deputy leader Moussa Abu Marzouk ruled out the possibility that Hamas will recognize Israel and declared that the group “will not recognize the Zionist entity.”

Haniyeh Urges Abbas Not to Bow to 'External Pressure'

Category: News
Created on Friday, 02 May 2014 08:35
Ismail Haniyeh - ReutersHamas’s Gaza Prime Minister, Ismail Haniyeh, on Friday evening telephoned Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas.
 
According to the Ma’an news agency, it was the first time the two had spoken directly since the reconciliation pact between Hamas and Fatah was announced earlier this week.
 
During the phone call, Haniyeh stressed the need to start implementing the reconciliation agreement in accordance with the agreed upon timetable, the report said.
 
The Hamas leader also called on Abbas to make an effort to provide a political and financial safety net and take steps to enhance mutual confidence between the PA-assigned areas of Judea and Samaria and Gaza.
 
Haniyeh also called on Abbas not to bow to “external pressure”, according to Ma’an.
 
The unity pact reached between the sides on Wednesday calls for the formation of a government of independent technocrats within five weeks and holding elections six months later.
 
Israel responded to the pact by suspending peace talks with the PA and imposing new sanctions on it.
 
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said on Thursday that Abbas could "have peace with Israel or a pact with Hamas but he can't have both."
 
He said his country could not negotiate with an administration that embraces a terrorist group sworn to Israel's destruction.
 
"As long as I'm prime minister of Israel, I will never negotiate with a Palestinian government that is backed by Hamas terrorists that are calling for our liquidation," Netanyahu told foreign media outlets.
 
Meanwhile, Abbas said on Thursday evening that there was no need for Israel to halt talks and impose sanctions on the PA, because the deal with Hamas does not contradict any previous agreements with Israel, nor does it obviate the basic principles of negotiations.

'Abbas Can Have Peace with Israel or Hamas - Not Both'

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 29 April 2014 08:39
Binyamin NetanyahuPrime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu addressed flailing attempts to rekindle peace talks with the Palestinian Authority (PA) Wednesday, during a meeting with Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz.
 
"You're coming at an important time," he told Kurz. "We're trying to re-launch the negotiations with the Palestinians."
 
"Every time we get to that point, [PA Chairman Mahmoud] Abbas stacks on an additional condition which he knows that Israel cannot give," he explained. "So instead of moving toward peace with Israel, he's moving toward peace with Hamas."
 
"He has to choose," Netanyahu mused. "Does he want peace with Hamas or peace with Israel? You can have one but not the other. I hope he chooses peace, [but] so far he hasn't done so."
 
After torpedoing peace talks by applying to 15 international conventions, threatening to disband the PA, and approaching Hamas for a unity pact, Abbas reiterated more demands to Israel on Tuesday - this time insisting on a three-month construction freeze in Judea and Samaria prior to renewing peace talks.
 
The move sparked outrage among several ministers, including Deputy Minister Ofir Akunis, who declared "Abbas is (former PA Chairman Yasser) Arafat in disguise."
 
"The Palestinian leadership under Abbas just changed its tone and not its essence," he argued. "Under the honey-coated words and diplomacy is hiding an extremist leadership which is not interested in peace or an agreement, but rather in endless extortion of terrorist releases, concessions and withdrawals by Israel - just as a condition to have peace talks."

Hamas 'Policemen' Train to Attack IDF Positions

Category: News
Created on Friday, 25 April 2014 18:48
Hamas officers in GazaHamas' police force in the Gaza Strip chose a rather strange way of exhibiting its skills at "keeping the peace" earlier this week, as policemen in military fatigues took part in a public drill simulating the seizure and destruction of an IDF lookout tower.
 
Tens of armed fighters wielding assault weapons took part in the drill, which also included RPG fire in support of the attack force.
 
{youtube}MlANM_bf_YE{/youtube}
 
Upon reaching the "outpost", the Hamas gunmen stormed it using live-fire from two positions, after which the force planted and detonated a series of explosive devices, destroying the site.
 
A message at the end of the video explained that the simulation was the conclusion of the training course for the "Battalion of Freedom for the Prisoners" - a somewhat unusual title for a police unit.
 
The simulation was the latest example of Hamas' desire to kidnap Israeli soldiers, alive or dead, to barter for the release of imprisoned terrorists - particularly following the Schalit deal in 2011, which saw over 1,000 terrorists released in exchange for IDF soldier Gilad Schalit and whetted the Islamist group's appetite for similar operations.
 
Since then Israeli security forces have thwarted dozen of attempts to kidnap IDF soldiers by Gaza-based terrorist groups, particularly Hamas and Islamic Jihad.
 
Gaza's "police force" is part of a network of internal security forces run by Hamas' Interior Ministry. It is notable that it is paid out of the coffers of the Palestinian Authority, with around 48% of the PA's budget - almost all of which comes from foreign aid - being transferred to pay employees of the Islamist regime in Gaza. 

Hamas: Unleash the Resistance

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 23 April 2014 14:51
Hamas terroristsHamas responded on Wednesday to Israel’s sanctions on the Palestinian Authority (PA) by calling on Palestinian Arabs in Judea and Samaria to "give full rein" to “resistance against the Israeli occupation”, the Ma’an news agency reported.
 
The terror group which controls Gaza also called on the PA to end its security cooperation with Israel.
 
The call came hours after Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu ordered government officials to stop cooperation with PA officials as part of a round of sanctions on the PA, after it breached the conditions of the peace talks by unilaterally going to the United Nations.
 
Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoun said that PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas should take advantage of Netanyahu's decision and end all aspects of security coordination with Israel.
 
Abbas should let “resistance deter the Israeli occupation and defend our people, our land, and our holy places," Barhoun said in a statement quoted by Ma’an.
 
He said that Abbas should end negotiations and “recruit regional and international opposition to the occupation.”
 
The failure of the peace talks so far proves that Hamas was correct in its view that negotiations with Israel only have a negative impact on the Palestinian people, the statement said.
 
Barhoun also urged Arab countries to support regional and international divestment from Israel.
 
Last Thursday, Israel informed the PA of a series of punitive measures against it, following the PA’s request to join 15 international conventions.
 
The Arab League on Wednesday blamed Israel for the impasse in the peace talks, but called on the United States to keep up efforts to salvage the talks.
 
On Tuesday, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, who urged the sides to resume talks last July, blamed Israel for the breakdown of peace talks last week.
 
"Israel didn't release the Palestinian prisoners on the day they were supposed to be freed, and another day passed, and another day, and then another 700 settlement units were announced in Jerusalem, and 'poof'...that was sort of the moment," remarked Kerry before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee
 
Shortly after Kerry’s testimony was made public, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki tried to do some damage control, and quickly stated Kerry did not intend to point the finger at the Jewish state.
 
Kerry on Wednesday met with Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman and reiterated that he had not blamed Israel for the failure of peace talks. Kerry claimed instead that he merely "described the sequence of events" and the "natural difficulties of discussing such a complex and difficult issue."

'The Temple Mount Has Been Occupied By Hamas'

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 16 April 2014 21:18
Visiting the Temple MountMK Moshe Feiglin (Likud) slammed the latest rioting incident on the Temple Mount Wednesday, calling Israel's control over Judaism's holiest site a "failure." 
 
"Over the last five days, the Temple Mount has not been occupied by the Jordanian army, but by a division of Hamas," Feiglin said.
 
"The failure of the police to control events the Temple Mount is, in fact, the failure of political leadership in keeping the heart of Jerusalem [intact]."
 
"Continuing to drag our feet [on the issue] will result in history remembering the Israeli government and its leader as having abandoned the Temple Mount to the Hamas regime," he added.
 
Moshe FeiglinAccording to Feiglin, placing a special unit of Israeli police at the site to specifically prevent riots is the "response is required to maintain our sovereignty over the Temple Mount and Land of Israel as a whole." 
 
Dozens of Palestinian Arab terrorists rioted against police at the Temple Mount on Wednesday, after Jews were allowed to visit Judaism's holiest site in light of the Passover holiday. 
 
On Monday, just hours before Passover began, Hamas Islamists rioted on the Mount, waving Hamas flags and "not allowing Jews and tourists into the Mount," according to activists.
 
“Hundreds of Jews who came to the Temple Mount for Pesach were astonished to find a police representative standing at the entrance gate and announcing that the Mount had been closed off to Jews after Hamas had taken over the Mount and threatened violence against any Jews who enter,” the Temple organizations reported in a news communique Monday.
 
On Sunday, over 20 Hamas men stayed overnight on the compound, sparking calls for the police commissioner to resign after it was revealed that police forces had allowed them to do so. 
 
Feiglin's words echo statements by Temple Institute International Director Rabbi Chaim Richman, who told Arutz Sheva that recent events show Israel's policies regarding the Mount are a "national catastrophe." 
 
"In the middle of Jerusalem there is a city-state with diplomatic immunity where the enemy flag is unfurled and where plans are being made to attack Jews... that is absolutely unspeakable," Richman said Wednesday. 
 
"They keep parroting this meaningless mantra that 'the Temple Mount is in our hands', when everyone knows Jordan is sovereign there," he added, referring to the Waqf Islamic trust which administers the site and is run by the Jordanian government.

In France, Muslims are Freedom Fighters, Jews are Nazis

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Saturday, 29 March 2014 18:50
Muslims are Freedom FightersThis is how history is skewed and the present is falsified.
 
In 1943, the French-Nazi forces arrested a French Resistance group called the “Manouchian Group”. Half of its members were Jewish and they were executed on Feb. 21, 1944. Seventy years ago.
 
Benoît Rayski, a French historian, recently went to speak to students at a vocational high school in Mantes-la-Jolie (north-central France) about that famous anti-Nazi group.
 
Before the historian entered the class, the schools’ officials asked him to refrain from mentioning that they were Jewish. It would be preferable if they were described as “immigrants” and “foreigners”.
 
Why such self censorship? Because 
French officials don’t want Muslim students in France to know that Jews died fighting the Nazis.
They prefer that they think those Resistance fighters were immigrants, just like the Muslims are.
 
“You know, with Palestine and all that ... “, said the teacher. So in France, Jewish heroes who were called “terrorists” by the Nazis cannot be mentioned today, while the Islamic terrorists who are fighting the Israeli heirs of those eleven Jews are labelled resistance fighters.
 
The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the “Palestinian territories”, the self-hating Jew Richard Falk, compared Hamas terrorists to French resistance fighters during World War II: “Imagine the situation being reversed as it was during the Nazi occupation of France or the Netherlands during World War II”, Falk said. “Then Resistance fighters were uniformly perceived in the liberal West as unconditional heroes, and no critical attention was given as to whether the tactics used unduly imperiled innocent civilian lives. Those who lost their lives in such a resistance were honored as martyrs. Mashaal and other Hamas leaders have made similar arguments on several occasions, in effect asking what are Palestinians supposed to do in the exercise of resistance given their circumstances, which have persisted for so long, given the failures of traditional diplomacy and the UN to secure their rights under international law”.
 
Back in the early 1980s,  French president Francois Mitterrand was accusing Israel of using Nazi methods. And let us not forget to mention two famous French personalities: Stephane Hessel, a member of the French Resistance, who presented Gaza as the epicenter of global injustice and Hamas as a pacifist charity, while Jacques Vergès, who was one of France’s best known lawyers and a  former French resistance fighter, defended Palestinian terrorists.
 
A few months ago, the famous, government-subsidized Jeu de Paume contemporary art museum in Paris featured 68 photos of Palestinian suicide bombers. And in the museum’s accompanying brochure, the curators of the shameful event compared the Palestinian Arab terrorists with the French resistance which fought the Nazis.
 
In 1969, a newspaper of World War II French veterans of the resistance movement condemned Arab terrorist activities which it charged were “Nazi-Inspired”. “La Voix Internationale De La Resistance” published the text of a statement adopted by the Action Committee of the Resistance, a body representing four French resistance groups, and condemning “the Nazi inspiration of the Arab extremists". The group challenged the likening of the “terrorist and racist action of the Palestinian commandos to the French resistance”.
 
But since then, lies have become mainstream. This is how it goes in today's anti-Semitic France: the Palestinian terrorists who slit the throats of the Fogels are hailed as “resistance fighters” and “liberators”, while the Jews are demonized as “occupiers” and “Nazis”.  
 
Giulio MeottiGiulio Meotti
The writer, an Italian journalist with Il Foglio, writes a twice-weekly column for Arutz Sheva. He is the author of the book "A New Shoah", that researched the personal stories of Israel's terror victims, published by Encounter. His writing has appeared in publications, such as the Wall Street Journal, Frontpage and Commentary. He has just prblished a book about the Vatican and Israel titled "J'Accuse: the Vatican Against Israel" published by Mantua Books.

Coming Soon to Gaza: Lashes in Criminal Code

Category: Islam
Created on Wednesday, 26 March 2014 17:35
Lashes in Criminal CodeHamas is taking another step towards the full implementation of strict Islamic Sharia law in Gaza, and is planning to introduce a penalty of lashes for certain criminal offenses.
 
Nafez Al-Madhoun, the secretary of Hamas’s parliament in Gaza, said on Tuesday that the government is working on passing a new law pertaining to lashes. Speaking in an interview with a local newspaper, Madhoun said that the provisions of the new law will include a range of between 80 lashes for major offenses to 20 lashes for minor crimes.
 
Madhoun further explained that a change in the Penal Code to include lashes is required, in light of the reality where the current law does not deter criminals, who view the Gaza prisons as a place for a vacation.
 
He also noted that the lashes can accumulate depending on the number of offenses of which the defendant was convicted in court. If the convicted criminal’s life may be in danger due to the lashes, they may be done in several batches.
 
Hamas has enforced a stringent interpretation of Islamic law in Gaza since violently taking power there in 2007.
 
The group has banned women and teenagers from smoking hookahs in public, ordered that women's clothing stores are not allowed to have dressing rooms, men cannot have hairdressing salons for women and that mannequins shaped like women must be dressed in modest clothing.
 
The group also introduced a strict dress code for female university students, demanding that they wear “modest clothing”.
 
Last year the Hamas government banned residents of Gaza from participating in the national reality singing show “New Star”, which follows the same format as popular U.S. shows “American Idol” and “The X-Factor.”
 
Hamas claimed the program was “indecent,” adding it contradicts the customs and traditions of the Gaza community.
 
Despite Hamas’s moves, the extremist Salafists in Gaza say that Hamas is not strict enough for their liking. The Salafists hope to wrest control of Gaza from Hamas and install a Sharia-bound regime instead.

'There Are 1,700 Hamas Millionaires in Gaza'

Category: News
Created on Friday, 21 March 2014 08:18
Ismail Haniyeh R with Hamas chief Khaled Mashaal - ReutersPalestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah faction went on the offensive Thursday, claiming that Hamas in Gaza is corrupt and "doesn't represent the Palestinian people."
 
Fatah Spokesman Ahmad Assaf told Erem News that Hamas's attempts to influence Egypt's inner workings are "unacceptable," noting the ties between Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood, both of which have been outlawed in the Nile state for their part in terror attacks.
 
Egypt has done more for the Palestinian Arabs than Hamas or the Muslim Brotherhood, who merely spew empty slogans and sell religion according to Assaf. Hamas on Tuesday criticized Egypt for closing the Gaza border with Sinai, calling it a "crime against humanity." The siege has led to power outages.
 
The Fatah spokesman claimed that while Gaza is one of the poorest places in the world, there are 1,700 millionaires among Hamas members, hinting that the terror group imposes steep taxes on its citizens for goods entering from Egypt and Israel, and that this money finds its way into Hamas officials' pockets.
 
Assaf finished by praising Abbas, the "Palestinian President," for standing behind his principles and treating any concessions in peace talks as red lines. The spokesman stated Hamas had returned the situation to the way it was before 1967, a somewhat confusing remark, given that it was in 1967 that the Jordanian occupation of Judea and Samaria came to an end, in the Six Day War.
 
Widening cracks in Fatah-Hamas relations
 
The Fatah criticism comes after Middle East expert Prof. Rafi Yisraeli assessed that Abbas's life is in imminent danger from Hamas, which may try to supplant him. In doing so, the group would be aided by the fact that Abbas's term of office ended in January 2009, giving Hamas claims of legitimacy.
 
Tensions between Fatah and Hamas have been high, with Hamas police in Gaza cracking down on demonstrators supporting Abbas on Sunday, with 13 demonstrators arrested and many reportedly beaten.
 
Those tensions have also been expressed in Hamas's energy crisis. Hamas refuses to pay the exorbitant fuel taxes imposed by PA on fuel bought for the Gaza government from Israel, a key factor in the Hamas-enclave's repeating fuel shortages.
 
On Sunday, Gaza was left without power for another day following an outage starting the day before, after the PA transferred only 100,000 liters of the 500,000 liters of fuel it had agreed to sell to Hamas.

Hamas Slams Egypt's Siege of Gaza

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 19 March 2014 08:38
Rafiah border closedGaza's Hamas terrorist rulers on Tuesday sharply criticized Egypt's closure of the Rafiah border crossing, saying Cairo's tightening of restrictions on Gaza was a "crime against humanity," AFP reported.
 
"The Egyptian authorities' insistence on closing the Rafiah crossing and tightening the Gaza blockade... is a crime against humanity by all standards and a crime against the Palestinian people," Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum said in a statement quoted by the news agency.
 
He condemned "the continuation of this blockade and closing the crossing, all whilst Israel escalates and (increases) aggression."
 
"We hold all parties to the blockade of Gaza completely responsible for the consequences of this crime," charged Barhoum.
 
The government of former Islamist president Mohammed Morsi was friendly with Hamas, but the military-led government that ousted him has cracked down on Hamas, which it accuses of a December attack on Egyptian police headquarters, and of planning church bombings in Sinai last Christmas.
 
Hamas has denied the Egyptian government’s allegations, claiming they were an “attempt to demonize Hamas”.
 
In addition to closing the Rafiah border crossing and essentially imposing a siege on Gaza, Egypt has also sealed most of the smuggling tunnels that are used to transport fuel and goods from Sinai, but also weapons and terrorists.
 
The Hamas interior ministry said that Rafiah, for many Gazans the only passage in and out of the Strip and a crucial crossing for supplies, has now been closed for 39 straight days.
 
The UN, reported AFP, slammed closures to Gaza's border crossings by both Egypt and Israel, expressing concern for Gazans in need of medical treatment.
 
"Extremely limited movement in and out of Gaza from (Israeli-controlled) Erez and Rafiah crossings continues to afflict the civilian population, including patients awaiting medical treatment," UN under-secretary general for political affairs Jeffrey Feltman said in a Tuesday briefing to the Security Council.
 
"Recurrent drug and medical equipment shortages are affecting the Gaza medical system, further increasing the number of patients seeking referral outside for medical conditions that could have been treated inside Gaza, were supplies available," he added.
 
Earlier this week, dozens of sick and disabled residents of Gaza protested the Egyptian siege, demanding passage to Egypt for ongoing medical treatment in the Nile state and other countries.
 
Roughly 1,500 sick and injured people in Gaza are waiting for the reopening of the border crossing.

Mashaal: Suicide is our 'Life'

Category: News
Created on Monday, 17 March 2014 17:48
Suicide BombHamas head Khaled Mashaal said on Saturday that there is no solution to the Palestinian problem, except through renewal of the spirit of jihad and self-sacrifice for Allah. He stressed that this would happen “soon.”
 
Mashaal spoke at an event in Qatar, dedicated to the memory of Palestinians who were killed in terror attacks against Israel, whose remains were recently transferred by Israel to the Palestinian Authority (PA).
 
Mashaal noted that the residents of Gaza, the “West Bank,” the “1948 areas,” Jerusalem and the diaspora are one nation with a single common strategy, which is jihad and struggle. Hamas and the rest of the organizations are preparing to renew the jihad, he said, because the Palestinian people has not gotten tired and has not abandoned the path of jihad and struggle in the liberation of all of “Palestine,” from the Jordan river to the Mediterranean sea.
 
Mashaal emphasized the importance of instilling the value of dying for Allah, in children from infancy. From the first moment after a son is born, he said, the Palestinian fathers say “This son of mine is a sacrifice for Palestine,” and they wish for him to become a shaeed, and that Allah will bless him with a martyr's death.
 
Mashaal added that when a Palestinian joins the Al-Kassam Brigades “we are very happy”; when he carriesut a [terror] attack “we are overjoyed” and when e is killed “we praise Allah.”
 
“Jihad in the path of Allah is the pinnacle of our aspirations,” he said, “and its our life.”

Gazan Sick Protest Egyptian Siege

Category: News
Created on Monday, 17 March 2014 17:19
Gazan Protest Egyptian SiegeDozens of sick and disabled residents of Gaza protested the Egyptian siege on Saturday, demonstrating across from Egypt's Rafah Crossing leading to Sinai. Their demand -- passage to Egypt for ongoing medical treatment in the Nile state and other countries.
 
Roughly 1,500 sick and injured people in Gaza are waiting for the reopening of the Rafah Crossing, which has been closed for 36 days, reports a spokesperson for the protest group.
 
The spokesperson revealed the information to journalists in front of the Egyptian embassy in Gaza, representing the protest that was organized by the terror group Hamas, which rules Gaza.
 
The spokesperson blamed Egypt for, in his words, aiding the "enemy," namely Israel, by besieging the Hamas-enclave even as it is "struck" by Israel. The man further called on the international community to pressure Israel and Egypt to open the crossings.
 
Gaza's protest came the same Saturday that the terror-stronghold's lone power plant was turned off due to a fuel shortage.
 
Aside from the Egyptian siege, which has cut off smuggling tunnels from Sinai to Gaza, the blackout was caused by rivalry between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority (PA). Hamas refuses to pay exorbitant fuel taxes to the PA on fuel coming through Israel.
 
After Gazan terrorists rained nearly 100 rockets on Israel starting last Wednesday, the Kerem Shalom Crossing was closed last Thursday, leading Hamas to quickly blame Israel for the power outage.
 
However, Israel noted the crossing is normally closed on Friday and Saturday, meaning it was only closed for one day in response to the unprecedented upsurge in attacks. The crossing reopened on Sunday to alleviate the terror-enclave's energy crisis.
 
The protest highlights Egypt's role behind Gaza's situation, despite the consistent blaming of Israel. Just two weeks ago an Egyptian court banned Hamas for its alleged role in terror attacks in the chaotic Sinai Peninsula.

Egypt Promises 'Decisive Action' After Gunmen Kill 6 Soldiers

Category: News
Created on Monday, 17 March 2014 16:25
Egypt  Decisive Action against terroristsEgypt has declared "decisive action" against Islamists on Sunday, 24 hours after six soldiers were killed by unidentified gunmen at a checkpoint in a Cairo suburb, according to Al-Jazeera. Two bombs were also left at the checkpoint and defused by explosives experts, 
 
In response, the Egyptian cabinet decided to "decisively confront whoever attacks citizens and civilian and government installations," it said in a statement. It added that attacks on military personnel would be dealt with in the military court system, in accordance with the constitution approved via a January referendum. 
 
{youtube}4Oei58RwM0k{/youtube}
 
No one has claimed responsibility for the attacks yet, according to Xinhua, but analysts at several agencies have named likely candidates as the Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas, and the Al Qaeda-inspired Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis terror organization. 
 
Several months ago, Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis denounced the Egyptian army as “an enemy of Allah” because of its crackdown on Sinai terrorists and called for “jihad” against it.
 
Egypt’s interim government says there is a direct link between the Muslim Brotherhood and Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, and on this basis blacklisted the Brotherhood as a terror organization.
 
The Sinai-based Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis has already claimed a series of terrorist attacks in Egypt, including the assassination of a top Egyptian police general, who was gunned down as he left his home in a west Cairo neighborhood.
 
The army has also already been cracking down on Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood’s offshoot which controls Gaza and is seen by Egypt as a threat to its security. Egypt has been shutting down Hamas tunnels which lead from the Sinai into Gaza. Hamas uses these tunnels to transfer goods, weapons and even terrorists.
 
Egypt has also blamed Hamas of being involved in teaching Islamists in Egypt how to carry out attacks. Hamas has denied the allegations.

Days After Rocket Barrage Gaza Left Powerless

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 16 March 2014 21:55
Gaza Left PowerlessGaza's lone power plant shut down on Saturday due to a lack of fuel. An Israeli official stated the fuel shortage was caused by infighting between Hamas, ruling Gaza, and the Palestinian Authority (PA) in Judea and Samaria, likely over fuel taxes.
 
The Hamas-run enclave has been dealing with rolling power outages since last November. An Egyptian siege cutting smuggling tunnels transporting fuel from Sinai, coupled with high PA taxes that Hamas refuses to pay on fuel coming through Israel, has led Gaza to shut down the plant frequently.
 
Gaza's terrorist rulers were quick to blame Israel for the power outage, reports AFP. They pointed the finger at Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon's order to close the Kerem Shalom crossing and Erez pedestrian crossing Thursday, "until further security assessments."
 
The closure followed a barrage of roughly 100 rockets since last Wednesday. The deluge of rockets was the largest-scale attack since the 2012 Operation Pillar of Defense.
 
However, an Israeli official cut through the accusation, noting "Kerem Shalom is always closed on Fridays and Saturdays, so it was only closed for an entire day on Thursday."
 
The official argued that the shortage in fact occurred as "the result of an internal conflict between the Hamas government and the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah."
 
While Israel's one day of closure may not have cut power to Gaza, MK Shuli Muallem (Jewish Home) last Wednesday called on Israel to do just that, and leave Gaza in darkness in response to the unprecedented attacks.
 
"I call on the Israeli government to adopt a resolution - for every rocket fired towards southern Israel, Gaza will receive an hour of darkness," declared Muallem.
 
Aside from the animosity with the PA, Hamas has run afoul of the Egyptian government as well, being banned by the Nile state two weeks ago.
 
The tension was illustrated last week when Hamas was left fuming after Egypt contacted the terror group Islamic Jihad directly to try and broker a ceasefire with Israel, while intentionally ignoring Hamas.
 
The "ceasefire" was quickly broken at least six times by the Gaza terrorists between last Thursday and Friday.

'There Are Thousands of Al-Qaeda Terrorists in Gaza'

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 13 March 2014 12:37
al Qaeda flagThe head of a Gaza-based jihadist group warned on Sunday that there are several thousand Al-Qaeda-inspired terrorists in Gaza.
 
Speaking to The Associated Press (AP), the terror leader, Abu Bakir al-Ansari, said that these terrorists pose a formidable threat to both Israel and Gaza’s Hamas rulers.
 
Al-Ansari described a movement that is larger and better organized than is generally believed, with dozens of fighters now in Syria, and claimed his group killed an Italian activist three years ago. He added that Gaza's Salafis have agreed with Hamas to observe a truce with Israel for the time being, but that they are ready to fight at any time.
 
"We have a deal with Hamas to abide by the truce as long as Israel abides," Abu Bakir told AP. "But once it violates the truce, we fire our rockets without any consultation with Hamas."
 
Abu Bakir, who refused to be identified by his real name, claimed he has survived three Israeli assassination attempts. He told AP he was a former member of Hamas, but broke away after the group agreed to participate in parliamentary elections in 2006. He was later arrested by Hamas for allegedly forming "terrorist groups" and "harming national interests" for firing rockets into Israel during a time of truce, and for attacking hair salons and other shops.
 
Abu Bakir told the news agency he spent three years behind bars and was beat and kept in solitary confinement by Hamas.
 
He also revealed that since late 2012, Salafi groups have formed a loose alliance.
 
"We are six groups and we have thousands of fighters, maybe 4,000," he told AP.
 
Under the truce agreement, he revealed, the Salafis have halted attacks on shops, hair salons and coffee shops after Hamas provided assurances there would be no drinking of alcohol, racy movies or mixing of the sexes in these places.
 
"If Hamas stops preventing the bad things in these places, we will return," he declared.
 
Abu Bakir said the group has halted attacks on Christians, as long as they "abide by the rules." That means no public displays of crosses, and consumption of pork and alcohol  must take place in private. He further claimed that 100 Gazans have gone to Syria to battle the regime of President Bashar Al-Assad, and 10 have been killed so far.
 
Although Hamas, like its parent group the Muslim Brotherhood, is more observant of Islam than the secular Fatah faction, Salafi groups hold the ruling faction in contempt and hope to instead wrest control of Gaza from Hamas and install a Sharia-bound regime instead.
 
Hamas has cracked down on the Salafists, who have claimed responsibility for some of the rocket attacks on Israel, and has been arresting them for several years.
 
In December, an Al-Qaeda-inspired group said it had infiltrated Judea and Samaria as part of its war against “the Jews,” Christians, infidels and the Palestinian Authority.
 
That claim came after Israeli security forces killed three Salafi terrorists in Hevron, foiling a huge terror attack.
 
Salafists have also been a problem for Egypt, carrying out terrorist attacks in the Sinai Peninsula and firing rockets from there at the southern Israeli city of Eilat.

Egypt Deports Women Activists who Tried to Enter Gaza

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 13 March 2014 11:26
An Egyptian army check point is seen in El-Arish city in North Sinai ReutersEgypt on Friday deported dozens of women activists who had flown in to Cairo but been barred from entering the country in their bid to reach neighboring Gaza, an airport official told AFP.
 
About 100 women, most of them from Europe and the United States, had hoped to enter the Palestinian enclave through Egypt's Rafiah border crossing to celebrate International Women's Day on Saturday.
 
Eleven women were sent back to Istanbul, another 22 to Paris and six to Frankfurt, the official said, according to AFP.
 
They were among 65 activists deported over the past 24 hours, some from the United States, France, Belgium and Switzerland, the official added.
 
Two members of the delegation, Northern Irish Nobel Laureate Mairead Maguire and American anti-war activist Medea Benjamin, were deported earlier this week.
 
Egypt controls the Rafiah border crossing into Gaza, the only one that bypasses Israel, and is accused of colluding with the Jewish state in blockading the territory, ruled by the Hamas terrorist organization.
 
Authorities have urged the delegation to abandon the trip over safety concerns, foreign ministry spokesman Badr Abdelatty said in a statement Thursday.
 
"Given the current extraordinary security conditions in northern Sinai and the difficulty of ensuring the security" of the activists until they reach Rafah, the timing is "not appropriate," the statement, quoted by AFP, said.
 
Ann Wright, an American organizer of the delegation, told AFP that eight American women were in Cairo and that some of them will wait to see if they can go ahead with the trip.
 
"Some of the delegates will probably go home in the next couple of days," Wright told the news agency.
 
"But some others will stay to see if the government will allow us to go (to Rafiah) at the last minute", she added.
 
Another organizer, from France, told AFP that "requests to pass through the Rafiah crossing for a dozen French women will be sent to Egyptian authorities by the French embassy."
 
While the government of former Islamist president Mohammed Morsi was friendly with Hamas, the military-led government that ousted him has cracked down on the group, which it accuses of a December attack on Egyptian police headquarters, and of planning church bombings in Sinai last Christmas.
 
Hamas has denied the Egyptian government’s allegations, claiming they were an “attempt to demonize Hamas”.
 
On Tuesday, in the latest step in Egypt’s crackdown on Hamas, a court outlawed the terror group and ordered all of its assets seized.

Egypt Blocks 100 Female Activists On Way to Gaza

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 12 March 2014 23:31
Egyptian militaryA group of 100 European and American activist women were stopped by Egypt on Thursday, as they attempted to cross Sinai to spend International Women's Day on Saturday in Gaza.
 
Egyptian authorities stopped the women at the Cairo airport. Among the group, Northern Irish Nobel Laureate and anti-Israel activist Mairead Maguire was already deported on Wednesday; the same happened to American activist Medea Benjamin on Tuesday.
 
Another wave of 45 women, most hailing from France, were prevented from entering the country on Thursday, reports AFP. Authorities proposed that 27 of the activists be deported, a proposal which was refused as the women apparently wished to stick together. Thirty of the women have been let into Egypt, where they are still negotiating passage to Gaza with authorities.
 
Apparently the women have begun a sit-in protest at the airport, and are demanding a refund on the cost of their tickets and visas from Egypt, reports Ahram Online.
 
Before they departed for Egypt, the Nile state attempted to dissuade the women from their plans to enter Gaza through the Egyptian Rafah crossing, according to Egyptian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Badr Abdelatty.
 
The group was told "the timing was not appropriate... given the current extraordinary security conditions in northern Sinai and the difficulty of ensuring the security of the activist group until they reached the Rafah crossing," remarked Abdelatty.
 
The steps taken to isolate Gaza are seen as an extenuation of Egypt's ruling Tuesday to ban Hamas, the terror group governing Gaza. All Egyptian assets of the group were ordered seized.
 
Following the ruling, a decision was announced to strip 13,757 Palestinians of their Egyptian citizenship. The citizenship had been granted under President Mohammed Morsi's rule, given the close ties between Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas. However, Morsi was ousted last July by army chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, who has hinted he will run for president.
 
Clashes between Muslim Brotherhood and the military have left Sinai in a state of instability, with numerous terror attacks rocking the region.
 
Egypt has been cracking down on Gaza; last November the area suffered intense power shortages after an Egyptian siege destroyed the illegal fuel smuggling through tunnels from Egypt.

Egypt to Strip 13,800 Palestinians of Citizenship

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 12 March 2014 23:04
Egyptian newspaper Alyoum Alsaba has reported that Egyptian security forces intend to take away the citizen status of 13,757 Palestinians because of their support for Hamas. The report is quoted by Israeli daily Maariv.
 
Gaza Arab TerroristsThe Palestinians affected by the move received citizenship during the year in which Islamist Mohammed Morsi was in power. It comes after an Egyptian court decided Tuesday to declare Hamas a terrorist organization and to seize the group's assets and funds in Egypt.
 
The Cairo court banned Hamas's activity. It ordered the organization's institutions in Egypt shut down immediately and their assets seized. The decision followed reports of Hamas's involvement in the wave of terrorism that has plagued the country since the Muslim Brotherhood government headed by Morsi was ousted from power.
 
The court decision requires government approval, but Egyptian media said that it had been made at the request of temporary president Adli Mansour, as well as the prime minister and minister of the interior.
 
Hamas denied the accusations against it and the court verdict. “This is a dangerous precedent that will have negative implications,” said a member of the group's political leadership, Izet Alrashek. “This will give legitimacy to the continuation of the unjustified siege of the Gaza Strip and encourage the Zionost enemy to carry out further attacks in Gaza,” he said, adding that it “grants support to the enemies of the Palestinian people and to its right of resistance.”

Egyptian Court Bans Hamas

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 04 March 2014 08:43
Hamas militantsAn Egyptian court outlawed the terror group Hamas on Tuesday, much like it banned the Muslim Brotherhood earlier this year, and ordered all of its assets seized. 
 
The judge explained that the decision stems from the risks Hamas poses to Egyptian security. He accused the organization of terrorist activities in cooperation with the Islamist group called Al Qaeda in the Sinai Peninsula.
 
The court ruling is a blow to the economic power of Hamas rulership in Gaza, which had previously cooperated with Egypt in facilitating trade and smuggling activities; in addition, Hamas offices will be shuttered all over Egypt. 
 
Hamas officials slammed the decision as a political tactic. "Any decision such as this is an attempt to besiege the Resistance, and serves the Israeli occupation," Bassem Naim, a senior official in Hamas, told AFP Tuesday. 
 
While the government of former Islamist president Mohammed Morsi was friendly with Hamas, the military-led government that ousted him has cracked down on the group, which it accuses of a December attack on Egyptian police headquarters, and of planning church bombings in Sinai last Christmas.
 
Hamas has denied the Egyptian government’s allegations, claiming they were an “attempt to demonize Hamas”.
 
Egypt has been clamping down on the smuggling tunnels which are used to smuggle goods, but also arms and terrorists, between Gaza and the Sinai.
 
Sources in Egypt recently hinted that now that the Egyptian military has taken care of Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood, its offshoot Hamas was next to face the music. 
 
"We cannot be liberated from the terrorism of the Brotherhood in Egypt without ending it in Gaza, which lies on our borders," an Egyptian security official told Reuters in January.  

Top Fatah Official Supports Hamas Kidnapping Israeli Soldiers

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 23 February 2014 14:59
Hamas terroristsJibril Rajoub, one of the top officials in the Palestinian Authority's (PA) ruling Fatah party, openly supports Hamas's efforts to kidnap Israeli soldiers, Palestinian Media Watch reported Thursday. 
 
"If Hamas wants to kidnap Israeli soldiers, they should go ahead and kidnap Israeli soldiers," Rajoub stated earlier this month in a live PA television broadcast. "They should kidnap them if [the Israelis] refuse to release more prisoners, if they want to keep them imprisoned forever - only releasing them as ghosts or skeletons." 
 
"The Israelis need to understand," Rajoub declared. "It is obvious that kidnapping is a language they understand." 
 
"If anything, we encourage Hamas to kidnap Israeli soldiers," he continued. "When they kidnapped [Gilad] Shalit, we welcomed it. When they performed the Shalit [prisoner exchange] deal, we had some reservations about it, but we welcomed it too." 
 
Shalit was imprisoned for five years in Gaza, then freed in October 2011 in exchange for more than 1,000 Palestinian Arab prisoners. The move was hailed as a huge success for coercing Israel to capitulate to Palestinian Arab demands - so much so that Hamas produced a film about the kidnapping in September. 
 
PA leaders’ approach of ostensibly supporting talks with Israel while threatening another terror war has led some Israeli leaders, notable among them Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon, to accuse the PA of remaining openly hostile despite negotiations.
 
This is not the first time Rajoub has encouraged open warfare against Israel. Earlier this month, the official promoted armed conflict against Israel in the event that talks fail in a broadcast on Iranian television. 
 
“If the talks fail, armed struggle against [Israel] could be a strategic solution for the Palestinian people,” Rajoub said, emphasizing that Palestinian Arab terrorist groups “never abandoned the solution of an armed uprising.”
 
His words echoed sentiments made last month by a senior member of Abbas' Fatah party, Abbas Zaki, who told Syrian state TV that any concessions the PA gained from US-brokered talks would simply be the "first step" towards the destruction of Israel.

Hamas: US Framework a 'Conspiracy' Against Palestinian Arabs

Category: News
Created on Friday, 21 February 2014 16:46
Hamas terrorists in GazaHamas's propaganda campaign against ongoing peace talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA) continued Thursday, after the government insisted that the talks are a "conspiracy" against the Palestinian Arab people. 
 
Taher Al-Nunu, Hamas's PR consultant, stated vehemently Thursday that the US's framework for an agreement between the two sides in talks "would not pass" and claimed that "the plot to destroy the 'Palestinian problem' would not succeed."
 
"Palestinian land is not something privately owned, to be given away anytime they feel like it," he added. 
 
The PR spokesman also slammed PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas over statements the latter made at the meeting with Israeli students in Ramallah earlier this week. At the meeting, Abbas claimed that the PA has no intention of flooding Israel with refugees and that "creative solutions" will have to be found to the "refugee problem." 
 
"The refugees' right to return is set in stone; no one person has the authority to give them up, hurt them, or negotiate the matter," Al-Nunu fired. "It is a private and collective right." He added that Hamas calls for an immediate end to negotiations and that the entire peace process is a "historical disgrace." 
 
Hamas continues to slam Abbas over the meeting, which apparently evoked a more moderate image of Palestinian Arabs than the terror group expected. On Monday, the Hamas government issued sharp criticism to the PA over the meeting, calling it "a sign of normalization of ties with Israel" that "only seeks to improve their image with the world." 
 
Earlier in the process, Hamas also slammed Abbas personally for his involvement in talks, calling the PA Chairman "illegitimate" and claiming that he does not truly represent the Palestinian Arab people. 
 
Hamas and Fatah have been at loggerheads since 2007, when Hamas violently seized control of Gaza, setting up a government that is independent of Abbas’s Ramallah-based government and cracking down on Fatah officials residing in Gaza.
 
Fatah and Hamas signed a reconciliation deal in Cairo in 2011, pledging to set up an interim consensus government of independents that would pave the way for legislative and presidential elections within 12 months. That deal has yet to be implemented.

Egypt Kills 16 Terrorists Near Gaza

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 09 February 2014 13:44
Egyptian helicopter over the SinaiEgypt's army reported on Saturday that it killed 16 Islamist terrorists in Sinai near the border with Gaza the day before. The liquidation of the 16 terrorists was conducted by an Egyptian airstrike in an area south of Sheikh Zuweid on Friday evening, according to the army's statement.
 
The region has seen heightened violence; Hamas has been accused of a December attack on Egyptian police headquarters, and planning church bombings in Sinai last Christmas.
 
Egyptian reports have indicated Hamas will become an increasing danger in 2014, and analysts comment that the Nile state will have to take out Hamas if it hopes to secure itself.
 
The country has been in an incredibly violent and unstable period since the 'Arab spring' led to the toppling of former President Hosni Mubarak in 2011. The anniversary of Mubarak's ousting on January 25 this year sparked clashes that left over 29 dead.
 
Former President Mohammed Morsi replaced Mubarak, and was similarly ousted by the military last July. His Muslim Brotherhood has been outlawed and has repeatedly clashed with the army since then.
 
Egypt's military leader Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has indicated that he will run for president, an election bid which is widely expected to be a sure success.
 
Last November, Egypt signed a $4 billion arms deal with Russia that is designed to specifically enable Egypt to at least achieve parity with the IDF.

Hamas to Egypt: Stop the Lies

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 28 January 2014 18:25
Explosion Rocks Egyptian Police CampThe Hamas terrorist group, which controls Gaza, on Monday condemned Egyptian statements linking the group to the ongoing crisis in Egypt, the Ma’an news agency reported.
 
Hamas denied any connection to a Sinai-based terrorist group and called upon authorities in Cairo to stop the "lies," the report said.
 
Hamas spokesman Abu Zuhri said in a statement quoted by Ma’an that Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, the Sinai-based group that has claimed a string of terrorist attacks targeting civilians and Egyptian officers, has no connections “to Gaza nor to Palestine”.
 
Abu Zuhri added that alleging that the movement is from Gaza is an attempt by authorities to export the Egyptian crisis to Gaza, and called for a end to all the "lies, which only serve the Israeli occupation."
 
Since the July 3 ouster of Islamist president Mohammed Morsi, who hails from Hamas’s parent movement the Muslim Brotherhood, army-led government has been cracking down on Hamas, shutting down its tunnels which lead from the Sinai into Gaza. Hamas uses these tunnels to transfer goods, weapons and even terrorists.
 
The crackdown on Hamas is part of an Egyptian operation against the many terrorist cells in the Sinai Peninsula. Egypt has blamed Hamas of being involved in teaching Islamists in Egypt how to carry out attacks. Hamas has denied the allegations.
 
Recently, sources in Egypt indicated that now that the Egyptian military has taken care of the Brotherhood by declaring it a terrorist organization, Hamas was next.
 
Abu Zuhri also denied claims made by former Egyptian general Sameh Seif el-Yazal that Sam-7 rockets are being smuggled from Gaza to Sinai. Abu Zuhri highlighted that the weapon is not made in Gaza but in Russia, and is readily available on the black market.
 
An Egyptian journalist recently said that his country should “learn from Israel” and teach Hamas a lesson so that its members “learn what Egypt is worth.”
 
The comments by journalist Muhammad Hassan Al-Alfi were made in an interview on Faraeen TV and were translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).

Hamas Leader: Third Intifada 'a Matter of Time'

Category: News
Created on Monday, 27 January 2014 08:44
Riot in ShuafatJust one week after he was released from an Israeli prison, Hamas leader Hassan Yousef said on Sunday that a third Arab armed uprising - or intifada - is just a matter of time.
 
Speaking to Channel 2 News, Yousef said that Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas does not represent anyone other than himself.
 
"All the organizations of the Palestine Liberation Organization, as well as Hamas and the Islamic Jihad, are opposed to negotiations with Israel," he declared.
 
“The intifada will not wait for anyone,” warned Yousef. “If it doesn’t happen today then it will happen tomorrow, if not this month then next month. Eventually - just as the First Intifada and the Al-Aqsa Intifada broke out - another one could break out.”
 
Yousef also warned Israel against starting a war in Gaza in response to the increased rocket fire at southern Israel in recent weeks.
 
"It would be madness if Israel launches a war with Gaza,” he said, adding that “media reports in Israel that Hamas is upgrading its military abilities and experimenting with missiles in the sea will make some of the Israeli people go underground.”
 
Yousef’s son is Mossab Yousef, who admitted spying for Israel between 1997 and 2007.
 
Mossab relocated to the United States, changed his name to Joseph and converted to Christianity. He wrote about his experiences in a book, Son of Hamas, and addressed the Knesset last June.
 
Hassan Yousef disowned his son in a letter sent during a previous term in an Israeli prison.
 
His remarks come hours after an official with Hamas’s longtime rival Fatah, headed by Abbas, called to renew terrorist attacks on Israel.
 
Fatah Central Committee member Tawfik Tirawi reportedly told the Lebanese Al-Mayadeen network, which is affiliated with Hezbollah, that there will be no new Arab state in Judea, Samaria and Gaza in the near future, and not even in 20 years. For that reason, he said, Fatah must resume the “violent uprising” against Israel – meaning terrorism.
 
“That’s the only way things will change,” he argued.
 
Fatah must “join all of the organizations, both those operating under the Palestinian Authority, and those outside it,” he added, in an apparent reference to Hamas and Islamic Jihad.

Egyptian Journalist: We Should Teach Hamas a Lesson

Category: News
Created on Friday, 24 January 2014 11:02
Teach Hamas a LessonEgypt should take a page from Israel’s book and “teach Hamas a lesson,” an Egyptian journalist recently said.
 
The comments by journalist Muhammad Hassan Al-Alfi were made in a January 9 interview on Faraeen TV. The comments were translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).
 
Al-Alfi said in the interview that Egypt “should discipline [Hamas] just as Israel did... We must strike them so they learn to respect the Egyptian shoe."
 
"Only then will they kiss that shoe and learn what Egypt is worth," he declared.
 
{youtube}I6UM9TAOLB0{/youtube}
 
“Our sons were killed and our economy was ruined in wars fought for their sake. We fought for their sake, and now, they are fighting against us, kidnapping our sons [in Sinai] and killing them,” said Al-Alfi.
 
“The terrorist camps in Gaza must be attacked,” he continued. “The Al-Qassam Brigades, which train them and send them over here, must be attacked. We should discipline them just as Israel did. We should not just retaliate. When you are weak, you get hit. We must strike them so they learn to respect the Egyptian shoe.”
 
Unlike the previous Egyptian government led by Hamas’s parent movement the Muslim Brotherhood, the current army-led government has been cracking down on Hamas, shutting down its tunnels which lead from the Sinai into Gaza. Hamas uses these tunnels to transfer goods, weapons and even terrorists.
 
The crackdown on Hamas is part of an Egyptian operation against the many terrorist cells in the Sinai Peninsula.  Egypt has blamed Hamas of being involved in teaching Islamists in Egypt how to carry out attacks. Hamas has denied the allegations.
 
The interim government in Cairo recently declared the Muslim Brotherhood a terror organization and renewed its wide-ranging crackdown on Brotherhood members and supporters. Sources in Egypt indicated last week that now that the Egyptian military has taken care of the Brotherhood, its offshoot Hamas was next.

Egypt Tells Hamas to Stop Attacks

Category: Reports
Created on Tuesday, 21 January 2014 12:01
Buses preparing to carry terrorist prisonersEgypt has reportedly been talking to Hamas and Islamic Jihad in Gaza in recent days, in an attempt to get them to stop attacking Israeli civilians with rockets.
 
A senior Islamic Jihad source, quoted by Voice of Israel public radio, said Tuesday that his group, like Hamas, does not seek an escalation of the conflict with Israel. He told Al Hayyat that senior-level Egyptians had been communicating with senior members of Hamas and Islamic Jihad, in an attempt to “stabilize the calm.”
 
The source added that Israel ad transmitted a warning to the terrorists in Gaza, that if rocket fire from Gaza does not stop, there will be an immediate and harsh escalation.
 
He explained that Egypt has a particular interest in Gaza because events there directly influence the situation in Egypt. Voice of Israel said that Hamas has deployed its forces along the border with Israel and in possible launching zones throughout Gaza, to try and prevent rocket fire at the Jewish state.

Cyber Victory: Hamas Twitter Accounts Suspended

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 19 January 2014 15:42
Twitter icon - AFPHamas's military wing faced a front of another kind last week: a cyber war. 
 
Several of the terror organization's twitter accounts have been suspended since January 9 without prior notice, according to various news outlets - and Hamas is not happy about it. 
 
The accounts: @AlqassamBrigade, @qassambrigades, @qassambrigade, and @qasambrigade - all twitter handles for the media machine behind Hamas's military wing, the Al-Qassam Brigades. 
 
Blaming the development on "Christians" and "Zionists," Hamas's page supervisor described Twitter’s policy as “unprofessional,” blaming the social networking platform for allowing the IDF twitter account to remain online, “despite the terrorism practiced by the [Israeli] occupation against the Palestinian people from siege and killing," according to a translation by Al-Arabiya English. 
 
The group's official website also lashed out at Israel and the US. 
 
"The Qassam Brigades confirmed that they did not violate Twitter's terms of service ever, asserting that reason behind the suspension is Twitter subordination to U.S. government and 'Israel' as usual," the terror group's statement said. "The Qassam Brigades strongly condemn the act and assert on right to freedom of speech and expression and media."
 
In the meantime, Yisrael HaYom reported that the development was less of a pro-Israel effort, and more the result of numerous user complaints. Twitter's policies allow users to suggest suspension of accounts with offensive posts, and the Israeli daily theorizes that the culmination of user complaints over time led to the accounts' suspension. 
 
The IDF's official blog noted Tuesday that the terror group explicitly violates Twitter's terms of service, which state, "you may use the Services only if you … are not a person barred from receiving services under the laws of the United States.” The blog notes that Hamas has been designated as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) under US law - thus effectively "barring it from receiving services" from the US. 
 
Twitter's ban on Hamas has been a long time coming, after lawmakers called on the social media service to suspend the terror organization's accounts as far back as November 2012, during Operation Pillar of Defense. A campaign to have the terror organization's handles removed was launched both by US lawmakers and the group Christians United for Israel (CUFI) - who also cited Hamas as violating Twitter's terms of service in the campaign. 

Hamas: 'Israel Has Eight Years Left'

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 18 January 2014 15:42
Hamas terrorists in Gaza CityIsrael will be gone in eight years, according to one Hamas official. 
 
Fathi Hamad, Hamas's Interior Minister, claimed in a speech honoring the anniversary of Operation Cast Lead that "Palestine" would replace the Jewish State by 2022. 
 
Hamad noted in his speech that the Palestinian Arabs, according to Islamic prophecies, will enter the Al Aqsa Mosque "in jubilation and victory like they entered it the first time". He said that Israel has failed in previous wars waged against the Palestinians, while the Palestinians are progressing nationally towards the stage where they are capable of conquering Jerusalem. 
 
After the "liberation" of Al-Aqsa Mosque, said Hamad, the "Hittin" system will prevail. That statement refers to he means by which Saladin conquered the Land of Israel against the Crusaders, in particular during the Battle of Hittin/Hattin; namely, by slaughtering or enslaving the non-Muslim forces arrayed against him.
 
"We'll destroy the enemy," Hamad assured his audience, noting that achieving that goal would take "eight years."  Hamad also claimed that the Palestinians are at the stage of readiness for "jihad and martyrdom in the way of Allah".
 
{youtube}rZ2vZA3xN0E{/youtube}
 
Hamas has threatened Israel's existence constantly, reiterating in November its oft-stated threats of genocide.  
 
"[You] Zionists, you have no place on the land of Palestine ... we shall expel you from our land and we will fight against you on it [on the land], we will kill you or expel you from it when you are submissive," Hamas parliamentarian Khalil Al-Hayya stated. "The jihad and the martyrdom in the way of Allah are our road and our track which are meant to fulfill our triumphs and fulfill and protect our [Muslim] nation." 

Hamas Terrorists Showcase 'Bravery' - by Playing Chicken

Category: News
Created on Friday, 17 January 2014 16:41
Hamas test of courageThe Hamas terrorist organization is holding a string of events in Gaza to commemorate Operation Cast Lead, the counter-terror operation held December 2008 to January 2009. The terror group, which recently restated its genocidal threats against Israel, is celebrating its "victory" during the fighting, which ended in an uneasy cease fire.
 
The operation, which Hamas calls the "War of Clay Stone," ended in a brokered cease fire monitored by Egypt, which recently has called to list Hamas as a terrorist group given several attacks and attempted attacks by Hamas-backed insurgents on Egyptian police headquarters and churches on Christmas.
 
A military exercise of Al Qassam Brigades, Hamas's military branch, was among the ongoing ceremonies and events. Video from the exercise shows a "test of courage" as terrorists "played chicken" with an oncoming military truck, ducking underneath it at the last moment:
{youtube}e6FqzDkRhvE{/youtube}
 
At the conclusion of the test, an announcer can be heard declaring "these are the heroes, these are the heroes."
 
Reports from Egypt and the Palestinian Authority (PA) indicate that Hamas will attempt to extend its influence into Judea and Samaria in 2014, becoming more of a security threat to Israel. Hamas also announced its intentions for reconciliation with rival Fatah, PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas's faction, this year. it remains to be seen what will come of that declaration, however, given that past statements announcing reconciliation have fallen flat.
 
In an ominous sign, Hamas has apparently been gathering long-range rockets as of late, and Gaza terrorists two weeks ago test fired a new long-range M-175 missile capable of striking north of Tel Aviv.

Egypt's Only Option: Eradicate Hamas

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Thursday, 16 January 2014 17:47
Hamas terrorists in GazaTo the West, and most particularly to President Obama, the newly elected smiling and turbaned Dr. Hassan Rouhani has been on a "smile" offensive.  But to his Muslim brothers, specifically to his Sunni Moslem brothers, with whom Dr. Rouhani "shares" the special affinity of belief in “Allah”, Iranian president Rouhani has been on a different type of offensive.  With his Egyptian Muslim co-religionists, he's been on a murderous genocidal war-crimes offensive. 
 
In Syria, Rouhani's puppet Assad has invented a new form of urban warfare: indiscriminately dropping barrel-bombs which blow up schools with dozens of innocent Muslim children at a time.  But for Egypt, Iran has been busy training Muslim brotherhood terrorists in Gaza-proper to blow up the country. In the recent Muslim Brotherhood explosion of the Egyptian police headquarters in Mansoura, 14 Egyptians were murdered and over 200 were injured by Iranian-trained Muslim brotherhood terrorists.
 
 Egypt's Al Ahram, just reported that:
 
"Egypt's Interior Ministry said on Sunday police have detained a Muslim Brotherhood member accused of attacking an opponent of the group in the Nile Delta city of Mansoura, adding that the suspect confessed to being part of a terrorist cell.
 
The ministry said in a statement that the suspect, Amer Mosaad Abdel-Hamid, confessed to having received – along with other Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood members – military training in Gaza as well as instructions on how to ‘target state facilities, wreak chaos across the country and disturb public peace and security.’"
 
And let's listen to what a Gazan tunnel worker has to say to a TIME reporter about Egypt's closure of the Hamas smuggling tunnels into Egypt (world.time.com/2013/11/21/hamas-is-in-trouble-in-gaza-and-looking-to-iran-for-help/#ixzz2oMb8ioi5):
 
“‘They [the Egyptians] are entitled to do this,’ says tunnel worker Ahmed Salem, 25, referring to the Egyptians. ‘They are entitled to defend their country [Egypt].  Hamas is the one who is responsible for this.’
 
"'For what?' [the reporter asked] 'Weapons,' Salem says. 'And the people who go through the tunnels to Egypt and kill their soldiers. Yes, it happens'.”
 
A late September 2013 report in the Lebanese newspaper As-Safir, said that in light of the Muslim Brotherhood's ouster from Egypt - Hamas, Hezbollah and the Iranian leadership agreed to form a stronger pact and to fortify the "axis of resistance."  Then, the Iranian-loving Hamas official Mahmoud al-Zahar declared that his movement had formed a joint command with Islamic Jihad, a more radical Islamist movement in Gaza and a close ally of the Iranian regime.  All were blessed by the newly installed Iranian president Dr. Rouhani on his Inauguration Day.
 
The bottom line is that nothing moves in the Gaza Strip without Iran's say-so and hence Iran clearly directly sanctioned the Mansoura bombing.  In fact, that's why it happened.
 
Turkey's Islamist Prime Minister Erdogan was also in favor of the training of Egyptian Muslim Brothers to massacre Egyptians.  But it all leads back to Gaza.  And as Detective Anthony Vincenzo "Tony" Baretta used to say, "Don't do the crime if you can't do the time, don't do it."  But Gaza's Hamas did do the crime and the Egyptians know Gaza's Hamas did the crime.  So Egypt had better dispense "the time."
 
After Mansoura, the Egyptians have only one immediate course of action: Obliterate Hamas.  Iran and Turkey are too far away to hurt.  Anyway, the best spot to harm the chain is at its weakest link and at present, Assad and Hamas are the weakest links.  Egypt can save the payback due Iran and Erdogan's Turkey for another day.  Today, Egypt should strike what it can, especially since Egypt can strike Hamas without the international law constraints Israel had to endure and can wipe Hamas off the planet.
 
If Egypt allows Mansoura to go un-revenged and unanswered, then the Egyptian Generals will be correctly seen as feckless by the Muslim brotherhood and Iran. Egypt will be seen as incapable of defending themselves against a clear external and weak enemy.  Such weakness by Egypt's generals against an easy target will inspire Egypt's internal, more difficult enemies to believe Egypt's generals are dead men walking who will ultimately fail to defend themselves.
 
When Egyptian bombs start razing the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood seaside hotels and Hamas headquarters, the Iranians will feel the earth shake under their feet in Tehran.  When the Egyptian Arab Sunni bombs wipe out Iran's Hamas puppet Assad, the Iranians will truly have something very real to fear:  an "Arab Awakening" to their Persian Hegemonic games.
 
 For more information, please visit www.marklangfan.com
 
mark langfanMark Langfan
The writer, who writes on security issues, has created an original educational 3d Topographic Map System of Israel to facilitate clear understanding of the dangers facing Israel and its water supply. It has been studied by US lawmakers and can be seen at www.marklangfan.com

Palestinians Celebrate Death of Former PM Sharon

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 15 January 2014 23:53
Ariel SharonAs Israelis mourn the passing of former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, Palestinian leaders from both the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority and the Islamist Hamas movement celebrated his death, with a senior official labelling him a "criminal" and accusing him of being responsible for the death in 2004 of former PA Chairman Yasser Arafat.
 
"Sharon was a criminal, responsible for the assassination of  Arafat, and we would have hoped to see him appear before the International Criminal Court as a war criminal," said Jibril Rajub, a senior official of the Fatah party.    
 
Arafat died in France in November on November 11, 2004, while Sharon, who died on Saturday had been in coma since 2006. Although numerous scientific investigations have revealed that Arafat died of natural causes, Arab media and politicians still regularly embrace conspiracy theories claiming that his death was an Israeli "assassination".
 
During the 2000-2005 Second Intifada, when Arab terrorists regularly targeted Israeli civilians in deadly terrorist attacks, then-PM Sharon undertook an intensive counterterrorism campaign in Judea, Samaria and Gaza. The campaign - including Operation Defensive Shield in 2002 - was largely successful in crippling the terrorist infrastructure in Judea and Samaria, giving Israelis some respite but cementing his status as a nemesis of Palestinian terrorist groups.
 
Sharon also spearheaded a campaign of targeted assassinations of terrorist leaders. Among those killed was Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, who was the founder and spiritual leader of Hamas, the Islamist terrorist group which calls for the destruction of Israel and the genocide of the Jewish people.palestinian-hand-out-sweets-celebrating-the-death-of-ariel-sharon
 
Hamas, which now controls the Gaza Strip in the aftermath of Israel's 2005 "Disengagement", also under Sharon's leadership, hailed Sharon's death as a "historic moment," marking the "disappearance of a criminal whose hands were covered with Palestinian blood."    
 
"We have become more confident in victory with the departure of this tyrant," said Sami Abu Zurhi, a spokesman for the terrorist group. "Our people today feel extreme happiness at the death and departure of this criminal whose hands were smeared with the blood of our people and the blood of our leaders here and in exile."
 
Left-wing groups also joined in the fray, lamenting that the former general had not been prosecuted over the 1982 Sabra and Shatila massacre.
 
"It's a shame that Sharon has gone to his grave without facing justice for his role in Sabra and Shatila and other abuses," said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch.  
 
The attack on a Palestinian Arab refugee camp in Lebanon was carried out by Lebanese Christian militiamen, known as "Phalangists", in revenge for the assassination of their leader. Sharon was "indirectly blamed" for not preventing the attack and eventually was forced to resign from his position as Defense Minister.

Gaza's 'Parting Gift' to Sharon: A Rocket Attack

Category: News
Created on Monday, 13 January 2014 14:10
Terrorists brandish RPG in GazaGazan Arab terrorists "saluted" Ariel Sharon on the occasion of his funeral Monday by firing two rockets at the Negev Monday afternoon. The rockets hit an area north of Sderot at about 4 p.m., several hours after Sharon's funeral concluded. There were no injuries and no damage reported.
 
"Two projectiles landed in an open area in the Shaar HaNegev region," an IDF spokeswoman told AFP, referring to the area around the northern border with Gaza, without specifying exactly where they struck. Sderot, which lies very close to the Gaza border, is located just four kilometres (2.5 miles) west of Sycamore Ranch.
 
Earlier in the day, Gaza Arab terrorists fired several rockets. However, the IDF said that those rockets were aimed at the sea, and were apparently "test shots".
 
Attending the funeral were officials from the Britain, Russia, the U.S., and 15 other countries, with Vice-President Biden representing the United States. Security for the funeral was among the tightest for any in Israel's history. Hundreds of soldiers and police were on hand, and helicopters, light planes, and drones flew above the funeral procession as it works its way south from Jerusalem to Sharon's Negev ranch.
 
The Iron Dome system was also on alert. The IDF issued a warning to Hamas, threatening to take immediate and strong action against the terror group if Gaza Arab terrorists attacked Israel during the funeral.
 
The unprecedented security, said MK Moti Yogev (Jewish Home) on Monday, just how much of a mistake the 2005 disengagement was. "The drones, the Iron Dome, the planes, the soldiers – all the security – would not be necessary if Israel was still in control of Gaza, instead of Hamas."

Egyptian Lawsuit: Declare Hamas a Terror Group

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 05 January 2014 18:51
Hamass Chief of StaffAn Egyptian lawyer, Samir Sabri, has filed a lawsuit against Egypt's president, prime minister and minister of interior, demanding that they declare Hamas a terror organization.
 
The newspaper Al-Wafd reported that Sabri's suit says Hamas has become a terror group and that it has maintained tight ties with the organization that spawned it, “the terrorist Muslim Brotherhood.”
 
Sabri listed the terrorist actions that Hamas has carried out against Egypt, including breaking down the barrier between Egypt and Gaza in 2008, breaking into Egyptian jails in 2011 and releasing Hamas aterrorist prisoners, involvement in blowing up the gas pipeline in Sinai, the capture of Hamas man Hamed Mahmoud Salameh with a firebomb at Tahrir Square, and Hamas's involvement in attacking military targets in Sinai.
 
Sabri added that Hamas members are concentrated in the northern provinces of Sinai because of the group's close ties with local tribes and clans, and that the largest funders of Sinai terror actions are connected with Hamas's leadership.
 
The lawyer charged that Muslim Brotherhood leader Mahmoud Ezzat coordinates terror attacks against the Egyptian army from Hamas bases, and that Egyptian intelligence has found that Ezzat transferred a million dollars that he received from the Muslim Brotherhood's international organization to jihadist groups in Sinai and to senior members of the Brotherhood, to be used for striking at police and military forces.

Egypt Accuses Hamas of Attack that Killed 16

Category: News
Created on Friday, 03 January 2014 15:28
Hamas terroristsMohamed Ibrahim, Egypt's Interior Minister, on Thursday accused Hamas of being involved in the bombing of police headquarters in Mansoura last Monday that killed 16.
 
Ibrahim announced that seven suspects have been apprehended, including Muslim Brotherhood members. The minister further said the bombers received logistical support from Hamas, detailing Muslim Brotherhood connections with the Gazan terror group, reports Al-Ahram.
 
Several of the arrested Muslim Brotherhood members entered Gaza through tunnels, according to Ibrahim, and there received training.
 
On Wednesday, analyst Mark Langfan noted Hamas's involvement in the Mansoura attack, arguing that Egypt needs to fight against Hamas in order to secure itself.
 
Egypt's interim Prime Minister Hazem El-Beblawi previously declared the Mansoura attack an act of terrorism, pledging that "the state will do its utmost to pursue the criminals who executed, planned and supported that attack."
 
Ousted President Mohammed Morsi has been charged with involvement in Hamas terror attacks. Ibrahim asserted that the "Brotherhood allied with the extremist groups during Morsi's one-year-rule."
 
For its part, Hamas has denied involvement in any attacks in Egypt, with spokesman Sami Abu-Zuhri saying "the accusations of involvement in the Mansoura bombing are an attempt to export the internal Egyptian crisis."
 
However, reports recently revealed that Hamas planned attacks on Egyptian Christians in Sinai, timed to occur on Christmas.
 
A referendum on Egypt's constitution is set to be held in mid January, as tension is mounting along the divide between the military and Muslim Brotherhood.

Hamas Planned Church Bombings on Christmas

Category: Reports
Created on Thursday, 02 January 2014 22:32
Savages in action in EgyptHamas and the Muslim Brotherhood planned a series of bombings at Egyptian churches, according to a report in the Kuwaiti paper Al-Watan, according to Channel 10 news.
 
According to the report, the attacks were to take place on Christmas. Terrorists in Sinai had succeeded in gathering explosives for the planned attack.
 
Egyptian intelligence reportedly foiled the plot after discovering communications between the two groups. Intelligence agents also listened in on calls between the Muslim Brotherhood and other Gaza-based terrorist groups.
 
The calls revealed plans to transfer weapons to armed groups in the Sinai Peninsula via smuggling tunnels between Gaza and Egypt.
 
Egyptian authorities have accused the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas of working hand-in-hand on several past occasions as well. Former Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi is awaiting trial for charges relating to alleged cooperation with Hamas in an attack on Egyptian soldiers.
 
Terrorists in Gaza have been known to be working with armed rebels in the Sinai region since the beginning of a major terrorist insurgency in the region several months ago. Local Islamist leaders have declared the Egyptian army “an enemy of Allah.”
 
While rebels in Sinai have primarily targeted the Egyptian army, attacks on Christians in the country are nothing new. Coptic Christians in Egypt have repeatedly been victimized in violence between Muslim Brotherhood supporters and state troops.
 
Although Christians in Egypt have apparently been spared a deadly attack by Islamists, some 35 people were killed in a bombing attack against a church in Iraq on Christmas day. The Middle East's Christian population - which has existed since before the founding of Islam - has been steadily declining in the past few years, in great part due to a rise in radical Islam. Israel is the only country in the region with a growing Christian population.

Hamas PM: No One Can Call Us a Terror Organization

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 02 January 2014 08:41
Hamas Haniyeh l Islamic Jihads Al-HindiHamas’s Gaza Prime Minister condemned on Tuesday Egypt's designation of the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist group last week.
 
Ismail Haniyeh also said that no one could label Hamas as a terrorist organization and snubbed calls by some rival factions for Hamas to sever connections with the Brotherhood.
 
"We reject such a classification for the Muslim Brotherhood group. No one, regardless of its influence, can push Hamas or any of the Palestinian resistance factions to abandon their ideology, abandon their history," Haniyeh was quoted by Reuters as having told reporters.
 
Hamas, founded in 1987 as an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood, has been seen as a major loser from the July 3 ouster Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi, who belonged to the Brotherhood.
 
Since Morsi’s ouster, Egypt has been clamping down on the smuggling tunnels which are used to smuggle goods but also arms and terrorists between Gaza and the Sinai.
 
Egypt has also accused Hamas of being involved in terror attacks in the Sinai Peninsula and of teaching Islamists in Egypt how to carry out attacks. Hamas has denied the allegations, and Haniyeh repeated that denial on Tuesday.
 
"We seek to reaffirm that we do not intervene in Egyptian internal affairs. Egypt cannot do without us and we cannot do with Egypt. These historical, geographic and security links can never be severed," Haniyeh said, according to Reuters.
 
“Hamas rejects any attempt by Egypt or any other Arab country to declare Hamas a terrorist organization," he was quoted by NRG/Maariv as saying.

Egypt: We Thwarted a Hamas Attack

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 26 December 2013 08:04
Mohammed BrayhaThe Egyptian Army announced Wednesday that it had apprehended a Hamas terrorist in the northern Sinai Desert, Al-Arabiya reports. 
 
The terrorist was named as Jumaa Khamis Mohammed Brayha, who claimed to stem from a powerful family in Hamas's ranks. 
 
During interrogation, according to the Egyptian army, the young man admitted that he was intending to blow up a Mercedes parked near a crucial security target.
 
Hamas has denied that the detainee was among its ranks and says his name is not even included in the register of residents of the Gaza Strip.
 
Relations between Egypt and Hamas have deteriorated, after the ouster of terrorist faction Muslim Brotherhood from power via a military coup in July 2013. 
 
The Egyptian government officially designated the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization earlier Wednesday, after Tuesday's deadly attack on a security building in the city of Mansoura killed 14 people and wounded more than 100 others.
 
The decision is bound to enrage Hamas officials, as reports indicate close ties between the two groups.
 
Recently, Egypt accused the terror organization of being involved in inciting terror on their soil via the Brotherhood; Hamas has denied the allegations. 
 
Hamas has also been reeling from a months-long siege on Gaza - not from Israel, as it has insisted to the media, but from Egypt. Egypt has been cracking down on terror tunnels and supply lines to the territory, according to reports. The siege has led to shortages in electricity, food, and other resources. 

Hamas Minister: First Israel, then the World

Category: Islam
Created on Wednesday, 25 December 2013 13:58
Hamas supporters hold copies of the Koran during demonstration in Khan Yunis GazaThe ultimate goal of the Hamas movement is to establish Islam worldwide, Hamas minister Fathi Hammad declared during a recent public address in Gaza.
 
“We shall liberate our land, Allah willing. We shall liberate our Al-Aqsa Mosque, and our cities and villages, as a prelude to the establishment of the future Islamic Caliphate. Therefore, brothers and sisters, we are at the threshold of a global Islamic civilization era,” Hammad proclaimed.
 
“The fuel and spearhead of this era will be Gaza, and its mujahideen and leaders will be from Gaza, Allah willing,” he added.
 
Hammad’s speech was translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).
 
He then appealed to Fatah, which heads the Palestinian Authority in Judea and Samaria, to stop negotiating with Israel.
 
“We just sit and talk to the Jews. Enough with that! Come join us, the legions of the believers, which have translated the Koran into victory, the law of the Prophet's ancestors into glory, and Jihad into liberation,” he urged.
 
“We shall be coming with a third Intifada, an armed revolution, a Jihadi revolution, Allah willing," Hammad continued, adding that "Gaza and the West Bank will fuse together, along with our brothers within the 1948 borders, in a second Battle of Hattin, in order to uproot the Jews,” referencing the defeat of Christian Crusader forces by Saladin's Muslim army in 1187.
 
Other sources quoted Hammad as warning that Hamas will fire any member of its armed forces, including the Gaza police, who does not take part in morning prayers.
 
Hammad, Hamas’ Minister of the Interior, is known to support the institution of Islamic law (Sharia) in Gaza.

Hamas Kassam Rocket Lands in Egyptian Territory

Category: News
Created on Monday, 23 December 2013 07:46
PA TerroristsA Kassam rocket fired from Gaza landed in Egyptian regional waters Sunday, an Egyptian military official told the Bethlehem-based Ma'an news agency.
 
The official said the rocket landed 300 meters off the coast of Egypt's Rafiah and exploded in the water.
 
There were no injuries reported, Ma’an said.
 
Hamas told Egyptian intelligence that the rocket was fired during a military training exercise performed in the Tal al-Sultan area of Gaza, the official said.
 
The rocket reached Egypt by mistake, he noted.
 
Gaza terrorists have fired an endless number of rockets at southern Israel, with most attacks originating from Gaza itself.
 
On a few occasions, however, the attacks were perpetrated from the restive Sinai Peninsula. These attacks, which have usually been directed at the southern Israeli city of Eilat, have not been claimed by Hamas but rather by a Sinai-based jihadist group.
 
The relations between the Hamas government in Gaza and the interim Egyptian government have been tense.
 
Since the Egyptian military overthrew Islamist President Mohammed Morsi, whose Muslim Brotherhood movement is Hamas’s parent movement, the Egyptian army has been shutting down the tunnels leading from the Sinai into Gaza. Hamas uses these tunnels to transfer goods, weapons and even terrorists.
 
Egypt has blamed Hamas of being involved in teaching Islamists in Egypt how to carry out attacks. Hamas has denied the allegations.
 
Recent reports indicated that Gaza has been under an Egyptian siege and not an Israeli one as Hamas constantly claims.
 
Israel, in fact, allowed a diesel delivery into Gaza last week, in order to help the region recover from massive flooding caused by winter storm.

Rivals Abbas and Mashaal Hold Rare Telephone Call

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 17 December 2013 14:09
Mahmoud Abbas and Khaled Mashaal archiveHamas's leader-in-exile Khaled Mashaal telephoned Palestinian Authority Chairman and Fatah head Mahmoud Abbas this past weekend, in a rare telephone call between leaders of the rival parties, the official news agency Wafa said.
 
"Mashaal telephoned president Abbas to thank him for his efforts at different levels, particularly sending aid to the Gaza Strip," Wafa reported, referring to the support sent by the PA to Gaza as it recovers following the major winter storm in recent days.
 
On Sunday, Gaza received a long-awaited diesel delivery. The diesel, which came through the Israeli Kerem Shalom crossing, was purchased by the PA for Gaza using funds donated by Qatar.
 
PA sources told the Ma'an news agency on Monday that Abbas and Mashaal had a "warm" phone call which lasted more than ten minutes.
 
The sources confirmed that Mashaal thanked Abbas for his efforts and added that the two also talked about other issues.
 
Abbas reportedly confirmed to Mashaal that he already planned "what he should say and what he should do" if the ongoing peace negotiations fail to meet the PA’s demands by the scheduled time limit.
 
He also confirmed to Mashaal that the "sacred and inalienable rights of the Palestinian people" are a state on the indefensible pre-1967 borders with eastern Jerusalem as its capital, the so-called “right of return” and the release of all terrorist prisoners being held in Israeli prisons.
 
The comments are in line with previous comments made by Abbas and other PA officials, according to which there will not be peace with Israel unless all the Arab demands are met.
 
Abbas also asserted that any agreement reached with Israel should be approved by the PA public through a referendum, reported Ma’an.
 
"Whatever agreement is reached, it will be put to referendum as nothing can be passed without the consent of the Palestinian people. If we don't obtain all our rights without abandoning a single right, we will have things to say and to do," Abbas was quoted as having told Mashaal.
 
Mashaal, for his part, confirmed to Abbas that "I have no fears … as I am confident you will defy all pressures and will never give up on any of the inalienable rights of our people. I respect and appreciate your firmness and be sure that I will back you."
 
In October, Abbas spoke to another Hamas leader, Gaza prime minister Ismail Haniyeh, and the two men exchanged greetings for Eid al-Adha.
 
Hamas and Fatah have been at odds since 2007, when Hamas violently took control of Gaza, setting up its own government there and cracking down on Fatah officials who reside in the territory.
 
Fatah and Hamas signed a reconciliation deal in Cairo in 2011, pledging to set up an interim consensus government of independents that would pave the way for legislative and presidential elections within 12 months.
 
The deal has yet to be implemented as the parties have argued over the make-up of the interim government.
 
The tensions between the sides flared up again in recent months, as Fatah accused Hamas of being responsible for Egypt closing the Rafiah border crossing with Gaza. Fatah claimed that Egypt decided to close the crossing because Hamas had intervened in Egypt's internal affairs when it backed ousted President Mohammed Morsi, a member of Hamas’s parent movement the Muslim Brotherhood.
 
Hamas has rejected Abbas’s talks with Israel and has called on Abbas to work for national unity instead.

Canada: Palestinian Refugees - Fleeing Hamas

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 12 December 2013 06:33
TerroristsThree Palestinian residents of Ramallah, Mohammad Adawi and his two sons Naser and Nasim, arrived in Canada in 2010 requesting refugee status. According to Adawi, he was forced to flee Samaria following death threats from armed members of Hamas and Islamic Jihad.
 
The three recently applied for a judicial review of a 2012 decision that refused them refugee status and claimed their story was likely fabricated, reports Shalom Toronto. The federal courts involved in the review cancelled the earlier decision and opened a new hearing of their case.
 
Adawi reports that his eldest son refused to help Hamas and Islamic Jihad, and as a result rumors were spread that his family collaborates with Israel. On May 31, 2010, one of his sons was beaten by two Hamas-affiliated students, with another son getting involved to help protect his brother. That night the two sons, Naser and Nasim, went to stay at their uncle's house in Lod.
 
The same night, a group of masked men came looking for the boys at the family home, threatening the father that if he didn't turn them over in two days all three of them would be dead. The incident sent Adawi's wife into shock, leading her to have a miscarriage later that night.
 
Adawi only returned to his house in Ramallah twice, to pick up passports and clothes, and to meet a real estate agent of potential buyers for the house. He reports that both times masked men shot at him.
 
In early July the son and his fathers left through Jordan, arriving in Canada later in the month. It is unclear from court documents what happened to the mother.
 
Their request for refugee status was checked by Canadian authorities, who informed them a year later that they don't meet the criterion of refugees. In the decision, authorities cited inconsistencies between versions of the story told by the father and sons, unlikely claims and missing information.
 
In particular, the authorities reasoned that it is unlikely Adawi would have returned to his house in Ramallah only two days after receiving the ultimatum from Hamas, and that if the organizations were serious in their threats he probably wouldn't have been able to retrieve his belongings so easily.

Hamas Announces Renewed Ties with Iran

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 10 December 2013 12:09
Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh with Ayatollah Ali Khamenei illustration - ReutersHamas has "resumed" relations with Iran after a temporary falling out over the Syrian conflict, according to AFP.
 
"Relations between Hamas and Iran have resumed," senior official Mahmud al-Zahar told reporters at a Monday news conference in Gaza. 
 
Ties had been "affected by the Syria situation, and Hamas has withdrawn from Syria so that it can't be identified with this or that side," he said. "We've confirmed we are not interfering in the Syrian case, or in any other Arab country."
 
Shia Iran had long supported the Sunni Hamas against Israel, which is viewed as a common enemy. But exiled Hamas chief Khaled Meshaal left his base in Damascus after the Syrian civil war broke out in 2011, criticizing President Bashar al-Assad, a key ally of Iran, and moving to the Sunni Gulf state of Qatar.
 
But the Hamas leader made remarks in October of this year supporting the Assad regime and calling for an end in sectarian fighting at a Jerusalem conference. The move was subsequently slammed by powerful rebel group Army of Islam, who denounced Hamas's ties with the Assad ally and claimed that they were trying to restore funding to Gaza by exploiting their position on the conflict. 
 
Media reports indicate that the constant switching of sides has led to a huge decrease in Hamas's funding - especially from Iran. 
 
But Zahar denied there had been a complete severing of ties. "Our relations with Iran were not cut, and we don't wish to cut ties with any Arab countries either, even those that are fighting against us," he said. The latter reference was to Egypt, which has taken a hard line against the Islamist group since the military overthrow of president Mohammed Morsi in July.
 
Hamas is an affiliate of Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood, which has been the target of a massive crackdown in Egypt in recent months that has seen hundreds of Morsi supporters killed and more than 2,000 arrested.
 
Zahar said there was still cooperation with Egypt on getting supplies, including fuel, into the Gaza Strip, but "there is no political contact, because the current (Egyptian) regime is against it."
 
Since July, Egypt's military has destroyed hundreds of tunnels used to bring crucial supplies, including fuel, into the blockaded Strip. It has also launched efforts to stop terror tunnels into Egypt and Israel and battled terror factions in the Sinai desert, angering Gaza officials. 
 
Having initially spoken out against Egypt's new military regime, Hamas has sought to avoid a further deterioration in relations with Cairo.

Hamas: Students with Mock Guns? That was Chivalry Class

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 04 December 2013 10:51
Child in Islamic Jihad summer camp in GazaHamas is defending its practice of forcing teenage boys in Gaza to undergo paramilitary training. A story run by Lebanon’s Al-Jadid television, and translated to English by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), quoted principals and Hamas officials defending the training as “chivalry” class and “sports training.”
 
Principal Khaled Hashish admitted that the class, in which high school students march with fake guns and practice martial arts and military formations, “resembles the military training of soldiers.”
 
However, he argued, the training is part of “sports training” and its goal is to teach youth to “develop physical strength, chivalry, seriousness, and to be active.”
 
The “sports training” is taught by a man in military fatigues, who can be seen shouting orders at the young students as they stand in formation. The training is mandatory for high school boys, and takes place every day.
 
The father of one of the students praised the class as well. “When you raise a young boy on sound values, they stay with him as he grows up. This kind of knowledge is never forgotten,” he said.
 
Hamas spokesmen argued that the program allowed youth to “release negative energy.” The program was not a Hamas initiative, they claimed, but rather, was the brainchild of deceased Fatah head and Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat.
 
Arafat was afraid to implement the program due to concern over Israel’s response, they said.
 
The initiative, which is in its second year, is just one of many Hamas programs that openly aim to encourage children to adopt its aims and embrace terrorism. Hamas has previously released a cartoon honoring its “military wing,” and this year began a program to teach “resistance” to Israel in Gaza’s public school system.
 
The Hamas-affiliated student union, which operates in Gaza high schools, published a cartoon in May that urged students to “keep the world clean” – with the accompanying image showing a figure in the colors of the PLO flag throwing a Star of David in the garbage.

Gaza Division Commander: Hamas, IDF Cooperate

Category: News
Created on Monday, 02 December 2013 17:19
Gen. Mickey Edelstein FileBrigadier General Mickey Edelstein, head of the IDF's Gaza Division, admitted to Channel 10 to a certain degree of cooperation between the IDF and Hamas.
 
"Hamas is in trouble and now it finds itself isolated," said Edelstein, in conversation with the Gaza residents released Monday on the television network.
 
He stressed that "Leaders of Hamas, both the political and military branches, do everything to maintain restraint." He also claimed that "Hamas soldiers have been prevented from shooting at or mounting charges at the IDF." 
 
"Hamas neutralizes any terrorist attacks against Israel", said the commander of the Gaza Division, "Hamas has become Gaza's cop, but this does not guarantee it will continue to work over time."
 
Edelstein also stated that there is a section of about 100 yards of "no man's land" where the IDF launches its operations, and that the IDF routinely tells Hamas where it is hitting next and requests them to keep the area quiet. Edelstein reports that Hamas complies with those requests. 
 
Edelstein still emphasized, however, that Hamas is a terror organization. "Under the surface, Hamas is still preparing for the next conflict with Israel," he concluded. 
 
Hamas has been facing severe economic shortages since Egypt's pro-Hamas Muslim Brotherhood government toppled earlier this year.
 
The result may have temporarily led to practical cooperation with Israel on some levels - including buying electricity from Israel via the Palestinian Authority and Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh sending his granddaughter to Israel for medical care.
 
Despite this, Hamas continues to launch threats against Israel in public, including recent calls for genocide against Israel.  

What's With the Nazi Fascination?

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 28 November 2013 12:13
Palestinian Arabs hold Nazi flag at Netzarim Junction - ReutersJust over a week since an American university severed ties with the Hamas-linked Al-Quds University in Jerusalem, after pictures emerged showing a Nazi-style on-campus rally by Islamic Jihad in November, further evidence of fascist-style events at the flagship Palestinian Arab institution has emerged.
 
Video footage, posted by MEMRI (the Middle East Media Research Institute), shows clips from two separate rallies at Al-Quds University, in which Islamic Jihad members, cheered on by other students, take part in a live performance at which they brandish imitation assault rifles and black Islamist flags, and give Nazi salutes.
 
The live "show" features terrorists killing Israeli soldiers and executing a "collaborator", who is denounced as a "traitor" and a "spy", and suggests that the initial pictures, which were first released by British journalist Tom Gross, were not from a one-off incident but evidence of a much wider phenomenon.
 
Speaking to Arutz Sheva, Tom Gross said that the footage proved that attempts by Al-Quds to excuse the November 5th rally as an isolated event were disingenuous:
 
"The emergence of a video showing another Fascistic-style, militaristic Islamic Jihad rally, on what appears to be the main campus of Al-Quds University this past May - together with Palestinian students at Al-Quds who have informed me that the student factions of both Hamas and the PFLP held similar rallies at Al-Quds University this semester a few weeks ago - calls into question the claims by the Al-Quds university authorities that the November 5 rally was a one-off event, which they claim they didn't know about until they saw the photos of it."Islamic Jihad rally at Al-Quds University November 5 2013 -Tom Gross Media
 
Many Israelis point to the lionization of Nazi and other anti-Semitic figures as a reason to doubt the sincerity of the Palestinian Authority's commitment to any future peace agreement.
 
The use of Nazi symbols is worryingly common, although tends to go unnoticed by many mainstream media outlets.
 
Just this past October, for example, Jewish motorists were horrified to see a Nazi flag flying over a major thoroughfair near the Arab town of Beit Umar. The flag had apparently been placed there by residents of the town, located near Hevron.
 
That incident was in fact the second occasion in which Beit Umar residents had flown a Nazi flag over the same highway, in an apparent "gesture" to their Jewish neighbors.
 
Later that same month, a youth magazine linked to the Palestinian Authority published a list of "famous quotes" from none other than Adolf Hitler, aimed at glorifying the Nazi leader.
 
Link between "Palestinian nationalism", Nazism?
 
Apart from the frequency with which such instances occur, some have pointed to the role of prominent Palestinian Arab and Muslim leaders promoting anti-Semitism and encouraging the use of Nazi symbols specifically to goad Jews.
 
For example, during a 2009 interview with a London-based Arabic language TV station, the head of the Islamic Movement in Israel, Sheikh Ra'ed Salah, remenisced fondly about how his class once drew a swastika on the classroom blackboard to provoke their Jewish teacher.
 
More famous is the case of the infamously anti-Semitic Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin Al-Husseini.
 
In October, reacting to ongoing incidents of incitement and anti-Semitism by the Palestinian Authority, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu used a keynote speech at Bar Ilan University to point to a deep link between the Palestinian national movement and Germany's Nazi regime.
 
Netanyahu noted that Haj Amin Al-Husseini, the founder of "Palestinian nationalism", was an admirer and supporter of Adolf Hitler, had met the Nazi Fuhrer on numerous occasions and was actively involved in encouraging Hitler and his henchmen in their project of annihilating the Jewish people.
 
Far from playing a "minor role" in the Holocaust, as some have claimed, the Mufti played an "important" part in ordering the extermination of Jews and "was directly involved in The Final Solution", Netanyahu said.
 
Back in January, Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas - whose organization is currently involved in US-brokered "peace talks" with Israel - hailed the Muft as a "hero", whose ways should be emulated. The transcript of that speech - made at a Fatah party rally - was also translated by MEMRI though it garnered very little mention from the majority of international media outlets.
 
Zero-sum politics
 
But according to Middle East expert Dr. Mordechai Kedar, the issue extends further still. Speaking to Arutz Sheva, Kedar asserts that adopting of the trappings of the ultimate enemy of the Jewish people - Nazism - is simply a manifestation of a zero-sum way in which politics and conflict is pursued in the Middle East at large.
 
"Unfortunately there are people in the United States of America and elsewhere, Jews and non-Jews alike - usually liberal, open-minded people - who think that the Middle East acts according to American rules, and that views and approaches which can work in America can work in the Middle East.
 
"These people fail to understand that the Middle East works according to totally different rules, because the mindset of people in this region is different.
 
"In America people think that every struggle, every dispute, has some kind of solution. In the Middle East, what prevails is the belief that a struggle finishes when one of the sides ceases to exist. This is the end of a conflict," he explained.
 
For him, framing the saga over the use of fascist or other anti-Semitic symbolism as a "Palestinian" issue misses the point.
 
"Palestinians are no different from any Arab group which lives in this region," he continued. "Whatever they do, whether peacefully or not, is meant to undermine the existence of the State of Israel...through undermining the legitimacy of the State of Israel, through vilifying it and demonizing [it]. Of course this also extends to non-violent methods, like media clips, demonstrations, etc.
 
"Everything revolves arond one purpose, which is to get rid of Israel altogether from the map of the Middle East."
 
"Religious struggle"
 
The fact that it is often senior religious figures - as well as political ones - who so often lead such efforts is indicative of the fundamentally religious aspect of the Arab-Israel conflict, says Kedar.
 
"Even universities like Al-Quds university are established especially in Jerusalem, in order to show that Arabs and Muslims are the masters of this place and not the Jews, because in their view, if Judaism will control Jerusalem it will mean that Judaism came back to life after Islam came to replace it.
 
"This is why the basis of the struggle over Jerusalem and over the whole land of Israel is a religious struggle - not between Israel and the Arabs but between Judaism and Islam. This is the essence of th struggle, and everything stems from this archimedic point of the struggle."
 
His view offers a unique glimpse into the conflicting ways in which the conflict is seen from inside and outside the region.
 
Dr. Kedar insists that the much of the difference in the way things are perceived in the western world stems primarily from ignorance. For him, the Brandeis-Al-Quds saga represents a unique shattering of an illusory discourse. 
 
"Unfortunately there are people who don't believe that this is true, and tend to accept all kind of Arab and Islamic standpoints and institutions as if they are meant to live side-by-side with Israel.
 
"I believe that recognizing Al-Quds university by Brandeis University came from this point: that Jews - or those that run Brandeis University - would like to see a situation where everybody in the Middle East sits by one fire and sings kumbaya together."
 
Pursuit of genuine coexistence isn't the problem, however. Rather, it is a lack of willingness to learn "about the realities of the Middle East" - a result, he says, of institutionalized academic bias.
 
"Those teachers and those books which tell the truth about the Middle East usually don't see any attention in universities in the US. School curricula in America usually are politicized, therefore the texts which students are exposed to are based on the political views and approaches of the teachers - who in too many cases have very little understanding of the nature of the Middle East."
 
However, "there is a limit," and incidents such as that which occured at Al-Quds are too blatant to ignore.
 
"When the Islamic Jihad group, which lives under the wings of Al-Quds University - comes out with a very problematic clip, even bleeding-hearts in Brandeis University cannot take it any more.
 
"This is the minute when they start to understand the nature of the struggle - not betwen Israel and the Arabs, but between Islam and Judaism."
 
Yet regardless of the cognizance of others, Kedar insists that "we Jews cannot have the luxury of not believing our own enemies."
 
"Some 80 years ago we didn't believe; unfortunately, some people failed to learn the lessons from those days and to start believing our enemies."

Gaza: Terrorist Killed, 4 Injured in 'Work Accident'

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 21 November 2013 07:22
Gaza terrorists manufacturing rockets IllustrationOne Gaza terrorist has been killed, and 4 others wounded, in an accidental blast in the Tal al-Hawa neighborhood of Gaza City, according to Ma'an news agency. 
 
Gaza medical sources confirmed to Ma'an that 35-year old Muhammad al-Bahloul died shortly after he was evacuated to Shifa Hospital in Gaza City. Medics added that four other terrorists sustained minor to moderate injuries.
 
Ma'an also noted hat the explosion was accidental - not the result of an Israeli strike - according to Gaza security forces. 
 
While Ma'an does not provide details about the nature of the explosion, Hamas's website claims that the incident was the result of Jihadist preparations for more terror attacks. 
 
The site stated that al-Bahloul “was martyred after a long bright path of Jihad, hard work, struggle and sacrifice." Hamas also reportedly “reaffirms its commitment and determination to continue the resistance against the belligerent occupation forces.”
 
Hamas recently made public statements vowing to continue building terror tunnels, and claiming that the relative calm is the "best time" to continue preparing to launch a terror war against Israel. 

Hamas Tells Fatah to 'Prepare for War'

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 16 November 2013 17:10
Terrorists brandish RPG in GazaDuring an Al-Qassam Brigade military parade Hamas officials called on Fatah to prepare for war with Israel, and threatened to declare war if Jews are allowed to pray at the Temple Mount.
 
At the parade by Hamas' "military wing", which marks a year since the IDF Pillar of Defense counter-terror operation in Gaza, Raeed Sa'ad, a high-ranking commander of Al-Qassam, called on Fatah and its military branch in Judea and Samaria to prepare for the next clash with Israel.
 
Sa'ad added that "jihad and struggle" were the only way to confront Israel, saying "don't be mistaken by the peace talks that won't bring anything but additional concessions."
 
The call comes right after Palestinian Authority (PA) negotiators quit recent peace talks. Hamas called on the PA to end the talks altogether just Thursday.
 
Hamas spokesperson Mahmoud Al-Zahar spoke at the same event, opining that the balance of forces is swinging in favor of the Palestinians, and saying that in the next conflict "we will invade them and they won't invade us."
 
Additionally Sa'ad threatened Israel, warning that Al-Qassam Brigades will declare war if plans to allow Jews to pray at the holiest site in Judaism in a rotating time table between Jews and Muslims is carried out.
 
Meanwhile Yehudah Glick, Chairman of the Temple Mount Heritage Fund, ended a 12 day hunger strike Thursday after Jerusalem District Police Chief Yossi Pariente gave him permission to return to the Temple Mount. Glick began the hunger strike after police barred him from the Temple Mount with no reason cited.

Hamas to PA: Stop Peace Talks, They're US Dictates

Category: News
Created on Friday, 15 November 2013 11:06
Ismail Haniyeh0Hamas called on the Palestinian Authority (PA) Thursday to end peace talks with Israel, claiming the talks constitute a surrender to the dictates of the American government, which Hamas claims provides cover for the "Judaization" of holy sites.
 
Hamas' statement went on to criticize the security arrangements between the PA and Israel as well, calling on the PA to immediately end both the talks and security arrangements. The statement added that "the Palestinian people will not agree to a concession on any rights to the land."
 
PA negotiators threatened Wednesday to pull out of the peace talks, citing increased building in Judea and Samaria as a primary reason.
 
The negotiators' reported frustration over building comes despite Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's call to cancel building orders Tuesday on 24,000 new homes in the region, the same evening tenders on 20,000 homes were announced, in acquiescence to PA and American pressure.
 
There were reports last week indicating that the US intends to force a peace agreement on Israel and the PA if the talks fail.
 
The Hamas announcement, timed to commemorate a year since the IDF Pillar of Defense counter-terror operation in Gaza, further emphasized that armed struggle is the strategic path to "free the land."
 
Hamas has turned up its rhetoric lately, saying Thursday that it's prepared for the next battle with Israel. On the same day, clashes broke out in Gaza, as terrorists opened rocket and mortar fire on Israel and the IAF took out two missile launchers in an airstrike.

Hamas Vows To Continue Building Terror Tunnels

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 10 November 2013 06:11
A smuggling tunnel on the Gaza-Egypt border.A spokesman of the Al-Qassam Brigade military branch of Hamas recently expressed the organization's intentions to continue attacking Israel, promising that the Hamas terrorists will continue working in secret to dig new terror tunnels and continue fighting against the "occupation."
 
Just last Thursday 5 IDF soldiers were wounded in a clash with Hamas while demolishing a terror tunnel. The IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz promised continued action against the tunnels, calling them a serious threat.
 
The comments came at a conference attended by Ismael Haniyeh, head of the Hamas government, as well as Hamas ministers and parliament members, and followed calls by a Hamas official Thursday to kill or expel all Jews from Israel.
 
On Thursday a spokesman of the Al-Qassam Brigade said his terrorists are watching the borders with their fingers on the trigger and their rockets ready for the "great liberation," presumably of "Palestine."
 
He added that "the coming days will bring tidings of victory with Allah's help."
 
In a message to the Israeli public, a spokesman said "O' frightened Zionists, know that our struggle with you has not yet begun," adding that the recent clashes are merely a "preparation for our path to liberate the Al-Aqsa Mosque."
 
Since US Secretary of State John Kerry's threats of a third intifada this Thursday Israel has witnessed a string of attacks in Judea and Samaria, leaving many concerned over the possibility of a "Kerry intifada" that Hamas might escalate.

Hamas is Brainwashing Youngsters - It's in the NY Times

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Thursday, 07 November 2013 09:31
palestinian-boy-holds-gunFor the first time ever, the New York Times had a front page story about how Hamas is brainwashing its high school students into hating Israel by having them read textbooks with false, defamatory, and one-sided narratives.
 
According to Fares Akram and Jodi Rudoren, “The books used by 55,000 (Palestinian) children in eighth to tenth grade do not recognize modern Israel or mention the Oslo Peace Accords.”
 
There is absolutely no hope for peace under such conditions.
 
Similarly, this past week, the first-ever international Arab Book Fair: Sharjah, took place and I am glad that it did. However, I am not thrilled by the inevitable “The Palestine Festival of Literature” program which was featured without, as they say, the “balancing” corrective of an “Israeli Festival of Literature.”
 
If you think about it, Israeli literature, both in terms of quantity, quality, and self-criticism, towers above “Palestinian” literature. Its’ absence is a political statement. Invariably, over the last decade, when literary festivals were held in North America, “Palestinian” and Arab literature in general—and Muslim voices-- have been featured.  I welcome this—but not when Israeli literature has been banished, not when the only token Israeli voices allowed are left-wing anti-Israel voices.
 
While there are blessed exceptions, in general, the Arabs and Palestinians are not routinely condemning their own nations and ethnicities; this means they are supporting apartheid regimes that censor, torture, indoctrinate, persecute religious minorities and send their women to the back of the bus in burqas.
 
I know this because I receive the program literature and invitations and, aside from how expensive tickets are, I rarely attend since Israel is not in attendance but is, rather, under siege.
 
I was going to review a certain book which I will not name. Written by authors who challenge Islamist misogyny, I was almost immediately outraged and disheartened by how often the authors felt they had to repeat their mantra: they support Palestine, they are disgusted by alleged Israeli atrocities--as if this mantra will function as a magic amulet to keep them safe since they are critiquing Muslim leaders and Sharia law.
 
Therefore, I especially enjoyed a novel that is not yet out by Nora Gold. “Fields of Exile.” to be published by Dundurn Press. It is a gripping tale of one Canadian-Israeli woman’s encounter in Canada with the politically correct pro-Palestinian Hate Fests that are so endemic on Canadian campuses. I will be endorsing this novel of ideas,  also filled with real characters, a literary sensibility, a powerful example of the near-fatal consequences of female-female indirect aggression—and more, much more.
 
Phyllis Chesler01Prof. Phyllis Chesler
The writer is the author of fourteen books, including Women and Madness, Woman's Inhumanity to Woman, and The New Anti-Semitism. She has published three studies about honor killing and is work on a fourth. Her new book, An American Bride in Kabul, (Palgrave Macmillan) will be out in the fall. Professor Chesler may be reached at her website www.phyllis-chesler.com

Power outage across Gaza as fuel runs out, says Hamas

Category: News
Created on Friday, 01 November 2013 20:09
Power outage across GazaA shortage of fuel halted the production of electricity across the Gaza Strip on Friday, said the energy authority of the Islamist movement Hamas, which controls the Palestinian enclave.
 
“We have completely stopped the operation of [Gaza’s sole] power plant this morning at 6:00 am [4:00 GMT] because we don’t have a single liters of fuel,” Fathi el-Sheikh Khalil, the authority’s deputy chairman, told AFP.
 
An AFP correspondent in the Gaza Strip said the electricity supply had been cut off across most of the territory on Friday morning.
 
Khalil blamed the power outage on Israel’s destruction of tunnels used for bringing fuel to Gaza and accused the Western-backed Palestinian Authority of charging Hamas too much for its fuel.
 
“Less than 50 percent of the needs of the Gaza Strip are currently covered by electricity from Israel [and] we can no longer get Egyptian fuel due to the destruction of tunnels from Egypt,” he said.
 
“We tried to get fuel from Israel via the Palestinian Authority, but it has imposed prohibitive taxes.”
 
The Gaza plant supplies about a third of the territory’s electricity needs.
 
“The plant will remain shut until fuel supplies resume from Egypt through the tunnels or the Rafah border crossing, or from Israel if the Palestinian Authority agrees not to impose the heavy taxes,” said Khalil.
 
In September, the Gaza energy authority warned of an impending shortage of fuel and called on Egypt to resume deliveries to the strip.
 
Relations between Cairo and Hamas have deteriorated since the Egyptian army ousted Islamist president Mohamed Mursi in July.

Hamas Orders: Shoot Protesters 'In the Head'

Category: News
Created on Monday, 28 October 2013 07:18
Hamas officers in GazaHamas has reportedly issued orders to shoot any opposition protesters in the head.
 
Sources in the Palestinian Authority told the Palestine Press news agency on Saturday that the Interior Minister in Hamas’s government in Gaza, Fathi Hamad, has instructed security forces to be tough on any anti-Hamas demonstrator who will take part in a campaign by the opposition scheduled to begin on November 11.
 
According to the report, these instructions to the security forces were given out during a meeting between Hamad and the security forces. The meeting was attended by senior Hamas leader Mahmoud Al-Zahar, and dealt with ways of dealing with the planned mass protests against the Hamas government.
 
During the meeting, Hamad reportedly said, "I want you to shoot in the head any person who comes out against our government. I do not want anyone injured.”
 
According to the sources, it was Al-Zahar, usually known for his extremist views, who explained that Hamad did not mean for security forces to shoot protesters in the head, but rather to act to prevent chaos on the streets of Gaza.
 
The "Tamarod" youth movement in Gaza has called for mass-demonstrations against Hamas on November 11th, on the anniversary of the death of PLO leader Yasser Arafat.
 
"Tamarod" (or "Rebel") is the name of the popular anti-Islamist youth movement which led popular protests against Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi in the run up to his removal by the military.
 
Tamarod  calls Hamas a “gang,” slamming it as morally and financially corrupt, and blames the Islamist movement for the imposition of Islamic law on many aspects of Gazan life, corruption, killing innocent people, demolishing mosques, and oppressing the population of Gaza in the name of religion. 
 
In recent months, Hamas security agencies have detained dozens of Fatah-affiliated political activists, accusing them of belonging to Tamarod.

Hamas Cartoon Lauds its 'Military Wing'

Category: Islam
Created on Saturday, 19 October 2013 06:56
Hamas officers in GazaHamas is apparently trying to reach out to children, by airing a cartoon promoting its “military wing”, the Izz Al-Din Al-Qassam Brigades.
 
The cartoon aired on Hamas’s Al-Aqsa TV on October 11 and was translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute.
 
The Izz Al-Din Al-Qassam Brigades is responsible for some of the deadliest terror attacks that have killed hundreds of Israelis.
 
“As I have told you, there were times when the Al-Qassam Brigades had to work hard to obtain the means to oppose the occupation and inflict heavy losses upon it. There were only a few Al-Qassam cells, and their weapons were primitive and sparse. They even had to move some weapons between areas because there were so few,” says the narrator in the cartoon.
{youtube}rj0eO5Xw5BY{/youtube}
“Today, things have changed – the Hamas of yesterday is not the Hamas of today, and the Hamas of tomorrow will be even stronger militarily,” he continues.
 
“The well-organized Al-Qassam army is mightier and more effective. [Hamas used to have] stones, slingshots, knives, and very few pistols, but today, the Al-Qassam Brigades possess missiles, which undermine the Zionist security theory. Their capabilities transcend geographical borders.
 
“Today, the Zionist occupation knows who the Izz Al-Din Al-Qaam Brigades are, and it knows that thousands of young fighters are prepared to be martyred for the sake of Allah, until this land is liberated,” says the narrator.
 
“The Al-Qassam army is well-organized, new young recruits join and weapons are developed. The battle of the minds shows that Al-Qassam is a powerful tenacious rival, whose men are heroes, educated in the mosques and possessing the spirit of Jihad.”
 
Incitement against Israel in Palestinian Authority-based is nothing new and, while it is widely expected coming from Hamas, it is also found in media that is controlled by PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, who is touted as Israel’s “peace partner”.
 
Even as peace talks between Israel and the PA have restarted, there have been many incidents of incitement on PA TV, as reported by Arutz Sheva.
 
One such incident was when PA TV broadcast a crudely anti-Semitic program legitimizing violence against Jews in Judea and Samaria - who were stereotyped as violent thieves. The end of the program glorified the humiliation of a religious Jew by cutting off his peyote side-curls, in a scene chillingly reminiscent of Nazi anti-Jewish propaganda.
 
Other broadcasts included airing a music video encouraging violence against Israelis, and the glorification of the murderer of 61 Israeli civilians on the official Facebook page of Abbas' Fatah party.
 
Abbas himself recently said that there would not be a single Israeli (i.e., Jew) living within a future PA state.
 
Israeli officials, including Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, have said that ending the incitement against Israel is a key factor in achieving peace.

'Terror Tunnel' Discovered - This Time in Damascus

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 15 October 2013 08:30
Syrian rebels of shoulder-launched missile systems including the U.S.-made Stingers. AFP
 
Syrian regime forces operating in the suburbs of the capital Damascus on Monday made a startling discovery: a "terror tunnel" along the lines of the one recently discovered by Israeli security forces along the perimeter with Hamas-controlled Gaza, leading all the way to neighboring Deraa.
 
Rebel forces had apparently been using the tunnel to shuttle men and equipment between the southeastern suburb of Damascus to the flashpoint city of Deraa, which has strategic significance due to its close proximity to the Al-Mazza military airport.
 
The tunnel was approximately 10 meters deep, 250-300 meters long and was equipped with lighting and openings for ventilation.
 
The discovery of the tunnel comes just days after a similar, though somewhat more sophisticated tunnel was discovered by Israeli security forces leading from the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip towards neighboring Israeli communities. Security sources have speculated that the tunnel could have been used to carry out attacks against Israeli soldiers or civilians.
 
Since the start of the uprising against Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, the Hamas movement - once close to Damascus - quickly shifted its allegiance to back the rebels, prompting the Syrian government to expel the movement from its Damascus headquarters.
 
Hamas has since attempted to keep a low profile on the conflict, seeking to avoid clashing with either of its major patrons - Qatar, which supports the rebels, and Iran, which supports the regime. However, reports soon surfaced of Hamas fighters training rebel fighters in urban warfare, including the use of tunnels to launch attacks and move equipment, a tactic which the group has carefully honed over years of conflict with Israel.
 
Though the use of tunnels in asymmetrical warfare is nothing new, in light of the above - as well as the fact that the skills necessary for such an operation would require significant training from somewhere - means that the similarities between the two cases may be more than a coincidence.
 
The fact that Hamas' own tactics - once sponsored by the Assad regime as a means to murder Israeli civilians - are now being utilized in the battle to oust its former ally, bears testament to the unpredictable nature of the Middle East's patchwork of competing and ever-changing alliances.  
 
Though the use of tunnels in asymmetrical warfare is nothing new, the similarities between the two cases may be more than a coincidence.

Hamas: Israel Trying to 'Justify the Blockade'

Category: News
Created on Monday, 14 October 2013 11:35
Gaza smuggling tunnel Hamas accused Israel on Sunday of "exaggerating things", after it was made public that IDF soldiers recently discovered a tunnel, built by Gaza terrorists, that led from Gaza to a nearby Israeli community. The 20-meter deep tunnel was lined with the concrete slabs that Israel, giving in to international pressure, had allowed  into Gaza to enable the building of schools and other civilian structures.
 
By talking about the discovery of a tunnel, Israel was "trying to justify the blockade and the continuous aggression on the Gaza Strip," Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said, according to the BBC.
 
A spokesman for the military wing of Hamas, al-Qassam Brigades, was quoted by the BBC as having said on Twitter that "the minds which manage to dig the tunnel can dig dozens more."
 
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu commended security forces for discovering the tunnel.
{youtube}4rsx4veK7HQ{/youtube}
"I want to commend the IDF for uncovering this tunnel. This is our policy - an aggressive policy against acts of terror, as well as to thwart (attempts), using intelligence operations, pro-active and reactive measures, and of course, Operation Pillar of Defense," he said during Sunday’s weekly cabinet meeting.
 
Abu Zuhri also responded to Israel’s decision to temporarily suspend shipments of construction supplies to Gaza through Israeli territory, saying the decision was further proof that the actions taken by the Egyptian military to shut down the smuggling tunnels to Gaza were wrong.
 
Egypt is currently conducting a large-scale campaign to retake control of the Sinai region which has become a hotbed for terrorism. As part of the campaign, the army has taken several steps that have put pressure on Hamas, including destroying many of the smuggling tunnels between Gaza and Egypt and shutting down the border.
 
Egypt is accusing Hamas of being involved in teaching Islamists in Egypt how to carry out attacks. Hamas has denied the allegations.

Hamas to PA: Stop Talking to Israel

Category: News
Created on Monday, 07 October 2013 16:33
Hamas militantsHamas on Sunday called on the Palestinian Authority, headed by Mahmoud Abbas, to stop peace talks with Israel. Instead, said Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri, the PA should work for national unity.
 
Abu Zuhri said that the remarks made by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu during his speech at the Bar-Ilan University, according to which negotiations with the PA are fruitless so long as the PA refuses to recognize Israel as a Jewish state, require the PA to renounce the dialogue with Israel, implement the terms of the reconciliation plan between Hamas and Fatah and formulate a strategy agreed to deal with the “Zionist stubbornness and crimes,” as he put it.
 
Hamas and Fatah, which is headed by Abbas, have been at odds with one another since 2007, when Hamas violently took control of Gaza, setting up its own government there and cracking down on Fatah officials who reside in the territory.
 
Fatah and Hamas signed a reconciliation deal in Cairo in 2011, pledging to set up an interim consensus government of independents that would pave the way for legislative and presidential elections within 12 months.
 
Implementation of the accord stalled over the make-up of the interim government, and a February 2012 deal signed by Abbas and Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal in Doha intended to overcome outstanding differences was opposed by Hamas members in Gaza.
 
Meanwhile, Taher Al-Nunu, the public relations consultant for Hamas’s Gaza prime minister, denied on Sunday media reports that "President" Abbas plans to visit Gaza with the approval of Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh.
 
Hamas’s denial came following a report in a newspaper which stated that Haniyeh had told reporters that there was a possibility that Abbas would visit Gaza soon.

Hamas: We're Avoiding Confrontation With Israel, But...

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 05 October 2013 13:22
Hamas terroristAbu Ubaida, the spokesman for Hamas’s military wing the Al-Qassam Brigades, said on Thursday that the terror organization is trying to avoid going to battle with Israel in order to avoid the consequences for Gaza residents.
 
At the same time, he said in a recorded message that the 'Hamas resistance' to Israel was in a better condition than ever before in Gaza, and that the group was ready for a confrontation if one is needed.
 
He added that the Al-Qassam Brigades were working in full cooperation with other Palestinian Authority Arab organizations, and that they were being guided by the principle of the "struggle", since one can change history only by using force.
 
Abu Ubaida said that the eyes of the people were on the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem and on various spots where prisoners from the Palestinian Authority are held by Israel. He expressed the confidence of Hamas forces to deal with the Egyptian army's destruction of the smuggling tunnels in the Rafiah area.
 
The Egyptian army, in addition to cracking down on terrorists in the restive Sinai Peninsula, has also been applying pressure on Hamas, which is blamed by Egypt for being involved in teaching Islamists in Egypt how to carry out attacks. Hamas has denied the allegations.
 
Abu Ubaida’s message, coupled with a show of force, were not only intended for Israel but for rebels who are trying to bring the Hamas government down.

CAIR’s Islamophobia Meltdown

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Monday, 30 September 2013 16:33
Cair statmentTwo days after the release of a CAIR report claiming to expose the network financing “Islamophobia”, Charles C. Johnson ran his own report documenting CAIR’s convoluted financing schemes.
 
While the CAIR report attempted to stigmatize terrorism research by reporting on the straightforward funding of organizations and individuals such as Robert Spencer; the Johnson report showed that CAIR, described by the Justice Department as an unindicted co-conspirator in financing terrorism, had engaged in convoluted methods to conceal its financing sources while laundering money from abroad.
 
Unlike the groups it is targeting, whose language and ideas it criticizes, CAIR went well beyond words, doing everything from helping fund terrorists to obstructing government investigations of terrorism.
 
Despite its theatrics, CAIR’s Islamophobia report showed nothing except that American organizations researching Islamic terrorism were funded by other Americans. The Johnson report however showed that CAIR had received millions from foreign governments, including Qatar which is notorious for funding terrorist groups like Hamas, and used a shell game to hide the foreign sources of its financing.
 
CAIR’s attempt to smear terrorism researchers, many of whom have paid a great deal of attention to its terrorist ties, has an obvious motive. It is not reporting on bigotry as a national phenomenon. Instead its report is a clumsy attempt at silencing its critics by denouncing them as bigots.
 
The targets of the CAIR Islamophobia report include not only terrorism researchers, but also Muslim groups like the American Islamic Forum for Democracy that have been critical of CAIR and its Saudi backers in the past, as well as Voice of the Copts, an organization advocating for the rights of Coptic Christians persecuted by the Muslim Brotherhood.
 
CAIR, like Hamas, was created by the Muslim Brotherhood. Its attempt to silence liberal Muslim critics and the Coptic Christians whose churches it is burning down as “Islamophobes” is self-serving cynicism.
 
But the dishonesty doesn’t end there. CAIR’s critics, including Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a feminist and ex-Muslim, are smeared with out of context quotes.
 
CAIR’s Islamophobia report claims that Ayaan Hirsi Ali “asserted that Breivik ‘had no other choice but to use violence’ because his ‘views were censored.’” The very Think Progress source that CAIR footnotes the quote with however shows her saying, “He says, he had no other choice but to use violence.”
 
The omission is important. Ayaan Hirsi Ali isn’t giving her own view; she’s quoting Breivik while calling him abhorrent, but warning that silencing people is not the answer.
 
David Yerushalmi gets the same treatment with CAIR’s report claiming that “Yerushalmi also says he finds truth in the view that Jews destroy their host nations like a fatal parasite.” The full quote has Yerushalmi speaking of the anti-Semite who “simply professes to uncover the many and varied ways Jews destroy their host nations like a fatal parasite.”
 
The only possible defense for such a brand of malicious quote mangling is sheer incompetence. And the CAIR Islamophobia report is so sloppily put together, its 136 pages packed with so many errors, that it’s clear that the millions of dollars from Qatar, Saudi Arabia and other Gulf oil terror sponsors did not go to fund its research department.
 
For example, CAIR attacks Dr. Zuhdi Jasser’s Third Jihad film by claiming that “Police Commissioner Ray Kelly called it ‘wacky’”. In fact it was Deputy Commissioner Paul Browne who said that. The report mentions him later, but manages to misspell his name as “Brown”. CAIR has spent a great deal of time attacking the NYPD, but can’t even be bothered to check its own claims against its own footnotes.
 
CAIR lazily revives the Breivik smear charging that “Breivik repeatedly quotes Robert Spencer, Walid Shoebat, Pamela Geller, the ‘Gates of Vienna’ blog and Daniel Pipes.” In fact, Breivik often pasted massive documents into his 1,500 page manifesto without regard for individual quotes. Most of the Spencer quotes came from a single pasted document that also quoted Tony Blair and Condoleezza Rice.
 
CAIR acts as if its report should be treated as a fact-based analysis and an urgent call to action by elected officials, when it is little more than a collection of dishonest attacks against its critics that relies on secondhand smears  assembled by those incapable of taking the time to get even the most basic facts right.
 
That’s not surprising because CAIR is clearly not in the fact business. Challenging a report on mosque radicalization from the American Freedom Law Center, it responds by quoting a Southern Poverty Law Center blog post that mocks the organization. This Mean Girls style of journalism recurs throughout the report as CAIR smears its critics with petty attacks from allied organizations instead of countering them with fact-based rebuttals.
 
It’s obvious why CAIR wants to silence its critics; because it is incapable of debating them.
 
Despite CAIR’s efforts, its latest report has been largely ignored even by the media. The Sacramento Bee ran two press releases, likely paid, from CAIR. Aside from Middle Tennessee Public Radio, the Detroit News, the Religion News Service and the Oklahoma Gazette, its report went mostly unnoticed.
 
It may have been a matter of bad timing.
 
CAIR’s report was not only released a few days before the far more damning Johnson report, but also released two days after a Justice Department report criticizing the FBI for not maintaining proper distance from CAIR “to ensure that the FBI is not supporting individuals who support extremist or terrorist ideologies.”
 
There’s nothing that deflates an organization’s claim that its critics are Islamophobes like a Justice Department report telling the FBI that it needs to curtail non-investigative interactions with CAIR.
 
And the bad timing didn’t end there. The CAIR report slammed Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann’s criticism of Mohamed Elibiary. Then Elibiary took to Twitter to blame Coptic Christians for promoting Islamophobia after changing his Twitter picture to include the R4BIA symbol of the Muslim Brotherhoodthugs who were murdering Coptic Christians in Egypt.
 
CAIR’s report attempts to silence the critics calling attention to such atrocities and to their root causes in the Islamic Supremacism of the Muslim Brotherhood.
 
After the Muslim Brotherhood’s carnage, some of its former members and leaders have broken with the organization. Unfortunately CAIR insists on sticking to the same ideological commitments that originally landed it a spot as an unindicted co-conspirator in the funding of a Muslim Brotherhood terrorist group.
 
Instead of breaking with the Muslim Brotherhood, CAIR has redoubled its efforts to smear terrorism researchers, Muslim liberals and Coptic Christians as Islamophobes. Even as its money laundering is exposed, as the FBI is rebuked for including it in its outreach efforts, it retreats behind the walls of a fortress of “Islamophobia” accusations.
 
CAIR might do well to consider the fate of its Muslim Brotherhood parent organization. All the Muslim Brotherhood’s lies couldn’t keep the Egyptian people from waking to what it truly stood for. Does CAIR really believe that what didn’t even work in Egypt will somehow work in America?
 
 
Daniel GreenfieldDaniel Greenfield is a columnist writing on terrorism, socialism and all things politically incorrect. He is a Shillman Journalism Fellow and lives in New York City.

Egyptian Government Issues Stern Warning to Hamas

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 26 September 2013 10:53
Nabil Fahmy
 
Egypt's foreign minister yesterday issued a warning to Hamas,  in yet another sign of hostility towards the Muslim Brotherhood-linked Islamist movement which rules Gaza.
 
In an interview with the pan-Arab Al Hayat newspaper Nabil Fahmy said that his government would react harshly "if we feel that elements within Hamas or other parties are trying to attack Egyptian national security." 
 
He insisted, however that such a response would include "military and security choices and not options that would cause Palestinian citizens to suffer."
 
His comments were made as he attended the UN General Assembly meeting in New York.
 
Tensions between Egypt and Hamas seriously deteriorated since the ouster of Muslim Brotherhood president Mohammed Morsi. Hamas - an offshoot of the brotherhood - is viewed with suspicion at best and outright hostility at worse by the Brotherhood's opponents, including the current interim government.
 
Officials have openly accused Hamas of contributing to the unrest in their country, claiming that the group has colluded with local Islamist terrorist cells to carry out attacks on Egyptian security forces, a claim Hamas strongly denies. Despite that denial, Egyptian forces claim to have killed a number of "Hamas fighters" in the restive Sinai Peninsula, and have been cracking down hard on the smuggling tunnel industry between Sinai and the Gaza Strip which fuels much of Hamas' economy.
 
Also during the interview, Fahmi said that US-Egyptian relations were "troubled," and that he had made it clear to US Secretary of State John Kerry that threats of suspending US aid to Egypt will have no "influence" on the new army-installed authorities.
 
During his prolonged UNGA address last night, US President Barack Obama said that his administration had "purposely avoided choosing sides" after Morsi was overthrown, but warned that "our support will depend upon Egypt's progress in pursuing a democratic path."
 
That noncommittal approach to Morsi's ouster - refusing to label it a "coup" and cut off aid to the army on the one hand, but criticizing the crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood on the other - has earned the Obama administration enemies on both sides of the conflict there.

Egypt Finds Evidence of Hamas Involvement in Sinai Terror

Category: News
Created on Monday, 16 September 2013 12:34
Hamas terrorists in GazaEgypt's armed forces have seized a stockpile of anti-aircraft missiles in the Sinai, military spokesman Ahmed Ali said in a press conference on Sunday.
 
The spokesman also said the army will continue operations in Sinai until “terrorism” is defeated, according to a report in Al Arabiya.
 
“Egypt’s national security has been under a threat because of the situation in Sinai,” Ali declared, adding that security will be restored under a development plan in the region.
 
The Egyptian armed forces have launched large scale military operations against terrorists in Sinai in an attempt to suppress the insurgency which erupted in the peninsula after the army overthrew Egypt’s Islamist President Mohammed Morsi on July 3.
 
The military spokesman said the armed forces seized a stock of weapons in Sinai and arrested 309 people involved in recent violence. Two explosive devices under a control tower on the border with Gaza were also found, he said, according to Al Arabiya.
 
“We also seized military uniforms which were used by Hamas,” Ali said, adding that the army recently destroyed more than 154 tunnels on the border with Gaza.
 
He added that the military confiscated a number of munitions, including hand grenades bearing the stamp of the Ezzeddin Al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas’s military arm.
 
He noted there was “cooperation between armed and terrorist organizations and their counterpart in the Gaza Strip.”
 
In addition to cracking down on Sinai terrorism, the interim Egyptian government has also been applying pressure on Gaza’s Hamas rulers. The Egyptian army has bombed smuggling tunnels between Egypt and Gaza, has created a buffer zone, and has battled terrorist “fishermen” who try to leave Gaza waters.
 
Egypt accuses Hamas, which enjoyed close relations with Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood of which it is an offshoot, of being involved in teaching Islamists in Egypt how to carry out attacks. Hamas has denied the allegations.
 
Hamas also denied Sunday’s accusations made by the Egyptian army's spokesman.
 
In a statement published on the information office website of the movement, the group described the claims as “lies and fabrications.”

Hamas: We Didn't Train Egyptian Islamists

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 15 September 2013 08:46
Hamas militantsHamas rejected on Thursday a report that aired on Egyptian state television and which said that the Gaza-based terror group has been involved in teaching Islamists in Egypt how to plant bombs in cars and that it had given them landmines.
 
“This is completely incorrect,” Fawzi Barhoum, spokesman for Hamas which controls Gaza, said, according to Reuters.
 
Barhoum claimed that the report was an “attempt to demonize Hamas”.
 
Hamas is an offshoot of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood. It enjoyed close ties to Islamist President Mohammed Morsi and has been “feeling the heat” from Egypt's new army-backed leadership, which deposed Morsi in July.
 
The Sinai has become increasingly lawless since the fall of former president Hosni Mubarak in February 2011, and the terror attacks have only increased since Morsi’s removal.
 
Egypt’s army has been engaging in a military offensive against Sinai terrorists and, last weekend at least 10 Islamist terrorists were killed as the army launched an air and ground assault in the Sinai.
 
Twin car bomb blasts on Wednesday targeting Egypt's army killed at least six soldiers in Rafah on the border with Gaza.
 
Egypt has been clamping down on the smuggling tunnels which are used to smuggle goods but also arms and terrorists between Gaza and the Sinai.
 
On Thursday, as it continues to crack down on terrorists, it was reported that two Egyptian army tanks have crossed an initial border fence leading to Gaza for the first time on.
 
The Hamas administration in Gaza neither confirmed nor denied the incursion, only commenting that no Egyptian tanks had actually entered the Gaza Strip itself.

Thwarted Attempts by Hamas to Hit Security Sites in Sinai

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 25 August 2013 21:51
Aftermath of terrorist attack in SinaiSinai security sources said that Hamas’ military wing intended on attacking security sites and troops stationed in the Sinai Peninsula, but were blocked by Egyptian security forces.
 
According to a report by Kuwaiti newspaper, Alrai, the Hamas squad entered into Egypt with 15 terrorists through one of the smuggling tunnels and transferred weapons in order to harm the selected targets of the attack.
 
Israel Radio reported that Hamas planned on smuggling leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood prisoners out of jail.
 
Meanwhile, reports this morning from the New York Times newspaper claims that the significant changes made in the Middle East have dramatically affected the Hamas movement, who had severed ties with Syria and Iran for various reasons, and now with Egypt following the military coup.
 
Furthermore, the fall of the Muslim Brotherhood has severely impacted the economic situation in Gaza, leaving the leaders of Hamas without backup.
 
The leadership of the Hamas movement even considered granting the Palestinian Authority forces to enter Gaza and open the border with Egypt, however, that idea was quickly rejected.

PA Forces Arrest Hamas Member Over Morsi Perfume

Category: News
Created on Friday, 23 August 2013 19:32
Morsi PerfumeA member of Hamas was arrested by the Palestinian Authority security services for selling a perfume named in honor of Egypt's ousted president Mohammed Morsi, family members told AFP on Thursday.
 
36-year-old Islambuli Badir was arrested during a raid on his perfume shop in the town of Tulkarem, his brother Abdel Fattah Badir told the news agency.
 
"Men from the security services on Tuesday raided my brother's shop and confiscated all the perfume bottles that were labelled 'Morsi,' then arrested Islambuli and also seized his laptop," said Abdel Fattah.
 
"The day after the arrest, my younger brother Qassam, 24, put a sign up on the shop door saying: An apology to customers -- our Mohammed Morsi perfume has been seized by the authorities," he told AFP.
 
Abdel Fattah said his family learned of the raid and arrest from neighbors and witnesses.
 
"No one... contacted us to inform us of the arrest, my brother's place of detention or the charges against him," he charged.
 
He added, however, that given the items confiscated, it was presumably because of the name of his Morsi perfume.
 
The Badirs are known Islamist sympathizers, noted AFP, but Abdel Fattah insisted that the Morsi perfume was simply a business venture that had attracted a lot of customers.
 
The Hamas government in Gaza enjoyed strong ties with Morsi, who is a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas’s parent movement. Since Morsi’s ouster by the Egyptian military, Hamas has been “feeling the heat”, as Cairo accused Hamas of interfering in Egyptian affairs and encouraging the terrorist activity in the lawless Sinai.
 
The ouster of Morsi, who appeared to shun PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah faction in favor of Hamas, has also brought the longstanding rivalry between Fatah and Hamas back to life.
 
A Fatah spokesman recently accused Hamas of being responsible for Egypt closing the Rafiah border crossing with Gaza. Egypt decided to close the crossing, he claimed, because Hamas had intervened in Egypt's internal affairs in favor of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Egypt a Battleground for Hamas, Fatah Feuding

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 08 August 2013 19:00
Islamist militants stepping up attacks on security forces and the Israeli border. APEgypt has emerged as a battlefield between the Hamas and Fatah terror groups in their ongoing struggle for control of the Palestinian Authority, according to a top Palestinian Authority academic.
 
Adnan Abu Amer, writing on the web site AlMonitor, addressed accusations by Hamas that top PA officials collaborated to blacken Hamas' reputation among Egypt's military leaders, saying that such reports were at least partially confirmed by documents seized by Hamas from a Fatah operative.
 
According to Abu Amer, the documents show that Fatah officials had a plan to incite Egyptian authorities against Hamas, which had been trying to keep its distance from the Muslim Brotherhood and ex-Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi as military leaders began to press him to resign before deposing him.
 
The Hamas accusation follows claims by Fatah against the Gaza terror group, alleging that it used its media outlets – television, radio, and newspapers – to encourage Egyptians to support Morsi, even as the army was trying to force him out.
 
According to Hamas, a committee of Fatah officials in the PA embassy in Egypt were involved in various projects aimed at turning Egypt's military leaders against Hamas. One document quoted by Abu-Amer that Hamas said it had confiscated from the computer of a Fatah operative said that the committee sought “to accuse the [Izz ad-Din] al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas’s military wing, of protecting the Muslim Brotherhood’s Supreme Guide, Dr. Mohammed Badie, during his first [post-coup] appearance, which happened on the stage in Rabia al-Adawiyya Square.”
 
Another document, according to Hamas, shows that the committee fabricated news stories for broadcast on Egyptian television, aimed at embarrassing Hamas. In one story, Hamas was accused of planning to kidnap and kill Egyptian soldiers in Sinai, as part of a Hamas plan “to drag the Egyptian army into an escalation with Israel.”
 
In addition, Hamas claims that Fatah engaged in violence in Egypt and tried to blame it on Hamas. One of the documents says that the committee “has obtained four bombs with 'Qassam Brigades' printed on them from a relative of his working with the brigades in Gaza.” It is not clear if those bombs were ever used, however.
 
Fatah has denied Hamas' claims, with a Fatah spokesperson saying that Hamas was making up the stories as part of the organization's panic at having lost its Egyptian patron.
 
Hamas has called for PA chief Mahmoud Abbas to set up a committee to investigate the matter.

Hamas: No Negotiating with the 'Occupation'

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 21 July 2013 09:29
Terrorists brandish RPG in GazaThe Hamas terrorist group which controls Gaza was quick to pour cold water on U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s announcement that peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority would resume.
 
"Hamas rejects Kerry's announcement of a return to talks and considers the Palestinian Authority's return to negotiations with the occupation to be at odds with the national consensus," Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri told AFP on Friday, after Kerry announced at a press conference in Amman that negotiators from both sides will be meeting in Washington next week.
 
Abu Zuhri said that PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, who heads Hamas’s longtime rival faction Fatah, had no legitimate right to negotiate on behalf of “the Palestinian people.”
 
Ihab al-Ghassin, spokesman for the Hamas government, also told AFP that "whoever negotiates on the part of the people who is not chosen by them, represents only himself. The Palestinian people will not accept this."
 
Earlier, Abbas’s office hailed the Chairman’s meetings with Kerry on Friday, saying they achieved "progress" towards resuming peace talks with Israel.
 
"Abbas's meeting with Kerry in his headquarters in Ramallah on Friday evening achieved progress, and will facilitate an agreement on the basis of a resumption of talks," Abbas’s spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeina said in a statement quoted by AFP.
 
But he stressed there were still "specific details that need to be resolved," without saying what these were.
 
"Kerry will send an invitation to [chief negotiator Saeb] Erekat and a representative of the Israeli side to meet him in Washington for initial talks in the next few days," he added.
 
According to Kerry’s announcement in Amman, Erekat and Israeli negotiator Justice Minister Tzipi Livni would meet him in Washington "to begin initial talks within the next week or so."
 
Kerry had spent four hours earlier on the phone talking to both sides before making the decision to dash to Ramallah to meet Abbas for the third time this week.
 
The whirlwind diplomacy came after the PA leadership rejected Kerry's proposals for a framework to guide the relaunch of peace talks with the Israelis stalled for nearly three years.
 
Meanwhile, a PA leader told the Associated Press on Friday that Kerry’s plan to get Israel and the PA talking again involves getting Israel to release hundreds of terrorist prisoners.
 
Ahmed Majdalani said that Kerry has assured PA leaders that Israel would gradually free some 350 terrorists in the coming months. The prisoners would include some 100 men that were arrested over terrorist attacks carried out before the 1993 Oslo Accords. Israel has refused to free these terrorists in the past because many of them carried out some of the deadliest attacks against Israelis.
 
According to Majdalani, Kerry would endorse the pre-1967 borders as the starting point of negotiations. The plan does not include a freeze on Jewish construction in Judea and Samaria.

Did Obama Administration Meet With Hamas Officials?

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 13 July 2013 20:03
Barack Hussein Obama  The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) has expressed alarm at reports that U.S. officials have conducted "direct meetings" with Hamas leaders and has called upon the Obama Administration to deny these reports if they are untrue.
 
The United States, Europe and Israel all classify the Hamas movement, which has ruled the Gaza Strip since June 2007, as a terrorist organization.
 
According to a Palestinian news outlet, the Hamas deputy foreign minister, Ghazi Hamad, said that senior American representatives, together with European ambassadors, held meetings with Hamas about two weeks ago in which they discussed removing Hamas from the list of designated terrorist organizations, but that "these contacts have not yet reached the level of decision-makers."
 
Hamad claimed, "These meetings which included U.S. officials close to the White House, were held away from the mass media and aimed at removing Hamas from the list of terrorist organizations."
 
"If these reports are true, than the Obama Administration has dishonored its commitment to maintain no contacts with Hamas and to adhere to the Quartet conditions that there can be no recognition of Hamas until and unless it renounces violence, recognizes Israel and abides by and implements all previous Israeli/Palestinian agreements,” said ZOA National President Morton A. Klein.
 
"The idea that the U.S. should deal with Hamas if it meets the three conditions is based on the extraordinarily naïve or malign idea that a bloodthirsty group of terrorists can become responsible and acceptable peace partners provided that they utter the right words on a few occasions when the cameras are rolling.
 
"Does the Obama Administration not recall that we went through the same charade with Yasser Arafat years ago? Arafat did verbally renounce terrorism, accept Israel's right to exist and even signed several agreements to that effect, yet he immediately continued terrorism, repeatedly called for Israel's destruction in Arabic and continued incitement,” Klein affirmed.
 
"Words and signatures mean nothing when they come from murderers,” he said. “Surely if such people are capable of murdering they are capable of lying.”
 
"The Obama Administration should be insisting at the very minimum on the rescission of the Hamas Charter; the dismantling of its terror squads and bomb-making factories; the complete overhaul of its education system and media broadcasting to remove all incitement to hatred and murder against Jews, Judaism and Israel; and strict adherence to such changes for at least one year before granting it any form of recognition,” he said.
 
"Talking to Hamas before it has done anything to satisfy even the flawed and meager conditions we have demanded of it will only result in putting off the day when Palestinians genuinely reform their society to purge it of jihadist and violent, rejectionist elements.
 
"If these reports are untrue, President Obama should say so without delay,” Klein concluded.

Egypt 'Set to Launch Major Sinai Operation'

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 13 July 2013 08:38
sinaiEgypt is planning a large scale offensive against Sinai terrorists, where it has already killed scores of Islamist fighters - including 32 Hamas men - in recent days, according to reports.
 
Egyptian forces also arrested several others over the past few days in the Sinai Peninsula, an Egyptian military source told the London-based Arabic-language al-Hayat newspaper Thursday morning.
 
According to the newspaper, the Egyptian army's military operations in Sinai killed 32 Hamas militants and arrested 45 of the group's members, as well as about 200 other gunmen.
 
The Egyptian military source said Hamas terrorists cooperate with jihadist elements in Sinai. They enter Sinai through the tunnels that connect Gaza with Sinai, he said, carry out attacks and then escape through the tunnels. "They take advantage of the terrain and hide in the mountains," the source added.
 
Another report claims that the military leadership in Cairo is planning a wider offensive in Sinai. The London Times said that Egypt will ask Israel to allow it to send a sizeable military force into Sinai for a limited period of time. 
 
"Jihadist groups have sought to exploit the political crisis in Cairo by launching attacks against Egyptian and Israeli targets in Sinai over recent days," noted the Times.
 
Current treaties between the two countries prohibit large-scale military mobilisations in the Sinai Peninsula, but Israel is unlikely to oppose such an operation, intended to clear Sinai from extremist terror groups that have gained a foothold there since the fall of the Mubarak regime in 2011, and who pose a serious threat to Israel's southern regions.
 
The operation is scheduled to begin in a few days' time, the report added.
 
Hamas is the Palestinian offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood, whose supporters have recently called for an "uprising" following the removal of President Mohammed Morsi by the Egyptian military.
 
Hamas has in the past been accused by the Egyptian military establishment of working with other Islamist terrorist groups to destabilise the country.

Fatah: Hamas Stirring Up Trouble in Egypt

Category: News
Created on Monday, 08 July 2013 14:54
Hamass Chief of StaffPalestinian Authority factions Hamas and Fatah are at it again.
 
Fatah spokesman Ahmed Assaf on Sunday accused Hamas of being responsible for Egypt closing the Rafiah border crossing with Gaza. Egypt decided to close the crossing, he claimed, because Hamas had intervened in Egypt's internal affairs in favor of its parent movement the Muslim Brotherhood.
 
Assaf said that Hamas's position does not represent the “Palestinian people” and, in fact, causes damage to their interests. As well, he claimed, Hamas hurts the efforts "to end the occupation, establish a Palestinian state whose capital is Jerusalem and the bring about the return of the refugees."
 
Rather than spending millions of dollars on television and radio channels which fully support the Muslim Brotherhood against the will of the Egyptian people, said Assaf, Hamas should have made use of these channels to serve the “Palestinian cause” and avoid stirring up internal conflict in Egypt.
 
He also claimed that Hamas intervenes in the internal affairs of other countries such as Lebanon and Syria according to the guidelines of the Muslim Brotherhood, while ignoring the will and interests of the Palestinian Authority Arabs. Hamas leaders live in ivory towers, charged Assaf, while Gaza residents are paying the price of their policy.
 
Ousted Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi is a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas’s parent movement which in recent months has been helping Hamas in its attempts to be removed from the U.S. and European countries’ lists of terrorism organizations.
 
Hamas and Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah have been at odds since Hamas violently seized control of Gaza in 2007.
 
Washington has stood fast in its support of Abbas's Palestinian Authority as the legitimate representative of PA Arabs.
 
Fatah and Hamas signed a reconciliation deal in Cairo in 2011, pledging to set up an interim consensus government of independents that would pave the way for legislative and presidential elections within 12 months.
 
Implementation of the accord stalled over the make-up of the interim government, and a February 2012 deal signed by Abbas and Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal in Doha intended to overcome outstanding differences was opposed by Hamas members in Gaza.

Min. Aharonovich: Morsi's Fall a Blow to Hamas

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 07 July 2013 08:41
 mohammed-morsi-parliamentPublic Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovich said on Saturday that the fall of Mohamed Morsi is a blow to Hamas, the islamist terror movement that rules Gaza. He noted, however, that Israel's security arms had good relations with Morsi.
 
"We had good relations on the security and intelligence levels with Morsi, as well," Aharonovich said. "It was important to us to maintain ties with the former government.
 
"The coup is an internal Egyptian matter," he added. "We are following it: we are concerned and we are looking at them. We are listening to the reports from Egypt and the situation there is very sensitive. We see that there are casualties there all of the time."
 
"It is really important to us that this country should remain a friend of the state of Israel," the minister said. "This is a country with which it is very important to maintain ties."
 
"The security branches – the IDF and intelligence elements – were on good terms with them – with Morsi, too, and these things need to be said honestly." He added. "The developments in Operation Pillar of Defense also contributed to this. The fact that President Morsi did not maintain formal relations with Israel and had no direct talks with us – this was something we missed. I expect and hope that whoever is elected there, Israel will have direct communication with him."

Islamic Jihad Cuts Off Ties with Hamas

Category: News
Created on Monday, 24 June 2013 07:04
Hamas terrorists in GazaThe Islamic Jihad terrorist group in Gaza announced on Sunday that it was temporarily suspending ties with Hamas, which rules the region, accusing Gaza authorities of being responsible for the death of one of the group's members.
 
According to the Ma’an news agency, Raed Qassim Jundeyeih, a member of Islamic Jihad's Al-Quds Brigades, died on Sunday after being shot a day earlier by Hamas police officers.
 
Police had gone to an address in Gaza City on Saturday to deliver summons orders to a member of the Jundeyeih family, reported Ma’an. Upon approaching the home, members of the family opened fire at the officers and Jundeyeih was wounded in the ensuing gunfight.
 
He died from his injuries on Sunday.
 
Islamic Jihad told Ma'an that members affiliated with Hamas were responsible for the death, describing Jundeyeih's death as a "favor" for Israel, whether intentional or not.
 
Tensions further increased after a member of Islamic Jihad was hit by a jeep driven by a Hamas member during the funeral procession of Jundeyeih, reported the news agency.
 
Islamic Jihad said that Jundeyeih was wanted by Israeli authorities for being the head of a rocket-firing unit.
 
"Despite losing this great martyr, our only option remains to resist our common enemy which is the Zionist enemy and the powers of injustice that support it," the group added, according to Ma’an.
 
Hamas rules Gaza with an iron fist but often gets into rows with some of the other groups in the region, most notably the radical Salafists, who have challenged the movement both over confrontations with Israel and the practice of Islamic rule, prompting it to crack down on them.

Hamas and Hizbullah Helped Egypt's Morsi Escape from Prison

Category: News
Created on Monday, 24 June 2013 06:53
Mohamed Mursi, is he going back to jial? - Reuters
An Egyptian court said on Sunday that the Hamas rulers of Gaza and Lebanon’s Hizbullah terrorist group helped prisoners, including current President Mohammed Morsi, escape during the 2011 uprising.
 
AFP reported that the head of the court in the Suez Canal city of Ismailiya asked the state prosecutor to investigate the circumstances of the January 2011 breakout from the Wadi Natrun prison, northwest of the capital.
 
He said that the Muslim Brotherhood, the Islamist group from which Morsi hails, had organized the escape with members of Hamas and Hizbullah, according to AFP.
 
The court also called on the state prosecutor to ask Interpol to circulate an arrest warrant for Sami Shihab, a Hizbullah official who had been convicted of plotting attacks in Egypt and who was serving a prison sentence at Wadi Natrun before escaping, along with members of Hamas.
 
Morsi said at the time that there had been no need for he and 33 other members of the Brotherhood to escape as the people "opened the doors" for them, noted the report.
 
The Muslim Brotherhood is Hamas’s parent movement. According to some reports, the Brotherhood-led Egyptian government mediated secret talks between Israel and Hamas after the end of the counterterrorism Operation Pillar of Defense.
 
There have been some recent tensions between Hamas the government in Cairo, as Egypt began a crackdown on Gaza's underground tunnel system, which is used to smuggle goods – but also weapons and terrorists – into Gaza.
 
Hamas demanded that if Egypt was going to shut down the tunnels, it should open a commercial border crossing to Gaza on a permanent basis instead.
 
As for Hizbullah, Morsi last week called on the group to leave Syria, where it has been fighting alongside troops loyal to President Bashar Al-Assad.
 
Morsi made the comments as he announced that Egypt has cut diplomatic ties with Damascus and has ordered the Syria's embassy in Cairo to be closed.

Hamas Bans Co-Ed Schools, Christians Concerned

Category: Islam
Created on Saturday, 22 June 2013 17:00
StudentsA new law passed by the Hamas government in Gaza banning co-ed schools has left many Christians fearful that their schools are in danger of closure, according to the Beirut-based Al-Akhbar daily.
 
The new law, which mandates gender segregation in all schools, also bans men from teaching at girls’ schools. The law will likely force Christian educational institutions to close their doors to Muslim and Christian students alike, reported the newspaper.
 
Samer Badra, financial director of the Patriarchate Schools in Gaza, told Al-Akhbar, “Implementing the new education law will force Gaza’s Christian institutions to build new facilities and hire new employees to comply with the articles. That is something that the modest budget of our church-affiliated non-profit educational institutions cannot afford.”
 
Badra stressed that the idea of gender segregation goes against the Patriarchate’s mission to teach students to co-exist and respect the opposite sex.
 
Badra goes on to mention that the law will have dire consequences for freedom of belief, “straining the relationship between Muslims and Christians, which was not tarnished in any way after the Hamas takeover of the Gaza Strip.”
 
Senior Christian clergy are set to meet with Hamas’s Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh to reach a solution satisfactory to both parties, reported Al-Akhbar.
 
Mutassim Minawi, director of public relations at Gaza’s education ministry, told the newspaper that the ministry “did not intend to harm” Christian citizens of Gaza.
 
“We are only an administrative arm that has to abide by the law passed by the Legislative Council,” he said.
 
He pointed out that education minister Osama al-Muzaini “is not going to implement the law in one swoop and it will not be imposed by force.”
 
Minawi argued that “the Gaza Strip’s culture is conservative and does not favor gender mixing. The majority of Palestinians in Gaza praised the law and only leftist parties criticized it.”
 
Several months ago, Gaza’s Hamas terrorist rulers took another step towards the implementation of strict Islamic sharia law in the region by introducing a strict dress code for female students at the Al-Aqsa University.
 
A letter distributed to students in November stated that all students should wear “modest clothing” on campus.
 
Since violently taking over Gaza in 2007, Hamas has enforced a stringent interpretation of Islamic law in Gaza. The terror group has banned women and teenagers from smoking hookahs in public, ordered that women's clothing stores are not allowed to have dressing rooms, men cannot have hairdressing salons for women and that mannequins shaped like women must be dressed in modest clothing.
 
Last year the Hamas government banned residents of Gaza from participating in the national reality singing show “New Star”, which follows the same format as popular U.S. shows “American Idol” and “The X-Factor.”
 
Hamas claimed the program was “indecent,” adding it contradicts the customs and traditions of the Gaza community.

Hamas's Mashaal: Assad Refused to Accept Political Solution

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 04 June 2013 18:12
Khaled MeshaalThe Hamas terrorist group left Syria because President Bashar Al-Assad refused to consider a political solution to the conflict in the country, its leader Khaled Mashaal said.
 
In an interview with Britain’s Channel 4, which aired on Thursday, Mashaal said, “The military approach is wrong. It makes the crisis worse. It doesn’t solve anything, it only makes it more complicated. What we are witnessing today proves our advice was right.”
 
The interview came amid reports that the head of Hamas in Lebanon, Ali Barakha, was informed by Hizbullah that his people were no longer welcome in the country, and that Hamas members should evacuate the country immediately. The message raised the possibility that the two Islamist groups could end up fighting each other in Lebanon, as each vies for influence with opposing parties in Syria, analysts said.
 
Mashaal denied that his group was supporting the rebels fighting Assad, saying, “We do not interfere in Syrian internal affairs nor do we interfere in the Syrian crisis and this is our policy towards the Arab Spring and all other Arab and non-Arab countries in the world.
 
“Hamas policy is against any foreign intervention in our countries,” he added. “This is our general principle. But at the same time we support the rights of people to freedom, democracy and reform and we are against the use of force and violence, massacres, and military options against them. We support people to win their rights, but we are against foreign intervention.
 
“The international community has been talking about this for months and I think there is a kind of deception going on, and that there is a hidden agenda from many international parties to prolong the Syrian crisis and destroy Syria. These parties do not want to see recovery for Syria…they use positive slogans but in reality their attitude identifies with the Israeli agenda of destroying Syria, more death, and prolonging the Syrian crisis,” said the Hamas leader.
 
He denied that Hamas’s leaving Syria and moving its headquarters to Qatar was a message to Assad that he needs to go.
 
“This is not what we meant. We, as the leadership of Hamas, had to leave Damascus the moment we felt that our efforts to convince the Syrian leadership to choose a solution other than the military one failed,” said Mashaal. “On the other hand, the Syrian leadership was not happy with Hamas’ political stance and also, I felt they wanted to put pressure or demand on us to stand by the official Syrian position and support the leadership in their military solution to the Syrian issue … this is why we did not feel then I could stay, so we left – circumstances forced itself on us, but if Assad goes or stays, that’s up to the Syrian people not to us.”
 
In the first months of the uprising, Hamas’s leaders expressed support in principle for the struggle of the Syrian people while also highlighting the importance of the movement’s historical relationship with the Syrian regime.
 
However, as the rift deepened, reports surfaced that Hamas was moving its headquarters from Damascus and strengthening itself in the Sinai and in Qatar.
 
Some reports claimed that the Damascus-based Hamas leadership left Syria after the Syrian government asked the Hamas leaders to leave. In November, Syrian security forces shut down all the offices belonging to Hamas in the country.
 
In the interview with Channel 4, Mashaal also slammed Israel for its “assault against Gaza” and claimed that it is an “occupying force”. The remarks were made in response to a question by the interviewer, Alex Thomson, that Hamas and Israel were “close to being on the same side” because of the rift between Hamas and Assad.
 
“Israel looks after its own interest and has its own policy of assault no matter which country it’s assaulting, if it’s Lebanon or Syria or any other country in the world. Israel is our enemy,” Mashaal stated.
 
“I am surprised that the world keeps concentrating on the recognition of Israel and its right to exist, while it is an existing state on the ground, occupying the land and expelling its people while practicing all manner of killings, aggression and terror,” he added. “In all civil and religious laws in the world, there is no legitimacy to anyone who establishes themselves by means of violation and the seizure of land and the rights of others. Does the international community accept this equation?”
 
He stressed that PA Arabs “are the real owners of the land. We have the right to live freely without occupation, settlements, aggression, prisons and Jewishization of the land. The law I believe in, and I think it’s the same for every human being in the world, not only the Arabs and all Muslims, is that there is no legitimacy or future for occupation or aggression.”
 
Asked if there were any circumstances in which he could conceive shaking hands with the Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, Mashaal replied, “Although the question is legitimate, how can I have peace with a killer like Netanyahu. Think logically. I am the Palestinian victim, my land is occupied, and my people are displaced. Netanyahu is waging war against my own people, and denies my rights, so why would the world expect me to shake his hand in the future? There was a historical handshake between Rabin and Arafat, in the White House garden, but what was the result? This hand, Arafat’s, the hand that shook Rabin’s hand, was poisoned and killed by Rabin’s followers after that.”
 
Several months ago, Mashaal claimed in a CNN interview that Hamas would accept a Palestinian state along the indefensible pre-1967 borders but would refuse to recognize Israel’s right to exist.

Hizbullah Gives Hamas 'Eviction Papers' from Lebanon

Category: Reports
Created on Thursday, 30 May 2013 07:59
Village in southern LebanonThe head of Hamas in Lebanon, Ali Barakha, was informed by Hizbullah that his people were no longer welcome in the country, and that Hamas members should evacuate the country immediately, Israel Radio reported Thursday. The message raised the possibility that the two Islamist groups could end up fighting each other in Lebanon, as each vies for influence with opposing parties in Syria, analysts said.
 
Syrian rebels have been receiving assistance from the Sunni-oriented Hamas terror group, while the Shi'ite-affiliated Hizbullah terror group has been helping Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's forces in the ongoing civil war in Syria.
 
Hizbullah is aiding Assad as a proxy of Iran, the main backer of the Syrian despot, while Syrian rebels, seeking to unseat Assad, have turned to Sunni Muslim groups in the Middle East for help. Saudi Arabia is Sunni and fears Iran's increased domination.  Assad himself is a member of the Alawite cult, considered heretical by both Sunni and Shi'ite Muslims.
 
Recent reports said that hundreds of Hizbullah terrorists have died in fierce fighting on the Syria-Lebanon border, as units of the Syrian army and terrorists battled Syrian rebels for control of the area. Many of the deaths occurred in the Syria-Lebanon border town of Al-Qusayr, a city of over 40,000, which over the past two years has been turned into a war-torn danger zone. It is not known how many Hamas terrorists fought in those battles, but it is thought to be a substantial number by analysts, as both rebels and the Syria army placed a great deal of importance on the battle.
 
Reports of the Hamas “eviction” by Hizbullah appeared in the Arab press on Thursday, based on information supplied by Syrian rebels, Israel Radio reported, adding that there had been no independent confirmation of the story.
 
In a separate interview Thursday, Barakha denied the story, saying that Hamas and Hizbullah worked together for the benefit of Lebanon.

Gaza Students: Clean the World of Jews

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 22 May 2013 09:00
The Hamas-affiliated student union in Gaza published a cartoon Tuesday in which a person whose body is made of a Palestinian Authority flag is seen throwing a Star of David – one of the best-known Jewish symbols – into a garbage can.
 
Text under the picture says, “Keep the world clean.”
 
The cartoon uses a Star of David rather than an explicitly Israeli symbol, indicating that it is meant to refer to Judaism or the Jewish nation as a whole and not the state of Israel alone.
 
The student union in question is known as the Islamic Bloc – in Arabic, al-Kutla al-Islamiya. It operates in high schools, universities and other educational institutions in Gaza. Its primary purpose is to teach the next generation about the importance of, in Hamas’ words, freeing Palestine from the Israeli occupation.
 
Hamas views all of Israel as occupied territory and justifies attacks on Israeli civilians as “resistance.”
 
Many teenagers active in the Islamic Bloc are sent to join the al-Kassam Brigades – the Hamas cells responsible for rocket fire on Israel. Some teen boys are sent to join the cells before finishing high school.Hamas cartoon

How Shameful that Newseum Museum Honored Terrorists!

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Thursday, 16 May 2013 07:38
newseum-facadeA terrorist can sport an NBA Jersey and Nike Sneakers – but they won't make him a professional basketball player. Similarly, a terrorist can get in a car marked “TV” and print a press card – and that doesn’t make him a journalist.
 
The Newseum Journalists Memorial this week is honoring the 84 journalists who died covering the news in 2012. Shamefully, in the group are Hussam Salama and Mahmoud Al-Kumi, who worked for an organization called al-Aqsa Television, a designated terrorist organization according to the American government.
 
The men were killed by the Israel Defense Forces in Gaza while riding in a car marked “TV.”
 
No less than the secretary for the Office for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, a division of the U.S. Treasury (at the time), Stuart Levey said “Treasury will not distinguish between a business financed and controlled by a terrorist group, such as Al-Aqsa Television, and the terrorist group itself.”
 
As a state department press release said “… donors contributed half a million dollars for the channel, which was to be headed by members of Hamas, and shortly thereafter, Hamas leaders negotiated broadcasting arrangements with a satellite television provider.”
 
Indeed, Al-Aqsa TV airs programs devoted to teaching and urging kids to become suicide bombers. The station is the media outlet of Hamas.
 
Like many other terrorist organizations, Hamas understands the importance of propaganda and has media outlets in the region it controls. There are fighters and financiers, speechwriters and journalists who appear on the station– yet, they are all terrorists devoted to killing Americans, Westerners, Israelis and other innocents.
 
Indeed, a Palestinian web site of the “Palestine Information Center” says Salama and Al-Kumi are martyred jihadi fighters. Pictures can be viewed online of Ismail Haniyeh, the head of Hamas, meeting with al-Kumi’s family. One wonders - if a wanted al-Qaeda terrorist were to be a writer as well, would he be honored if killed?
 
In an era when terrorist masterminds like Osama Bin-Laden understand the importance of public relations, could they not simply blog and then claim to be journalists? How about all those charismatic Muslim imams who preach and encourage terrorism – are they, too, not using the media to spread their message and hence have turned into journalists?
 
By this logic, all terrorists have to do to get honored in the US is tape the word “TV” to their car.
 
Perhaps fittingly, the keynote speaker at the event will be Richard Engel, chief foreign correspondent for NBC News, and a longtime Israel basher. In the past, Engel described Muhammad al-Dura as "a symbol of injustice.” Of course, al-Dura was the 12-year-old boy whom the Palestinian Arabs falsely claimed was shot by the IDF and used as a symbol to justify Palestinian Arab violence. In reality, he was killed by Palestinian Arab terrorists.
 
Just this month, in an NBC segment, Engel described Israel as a paranoid fortress, saying, "Israel is becoming a fortress. Fences along the borders with Egypt, Lebanon, and Syria. More fences around the Gaza Strip, and a massive wall along the West Bank. A country the size of New Jersey with more than 500 miles of barricades. Israel is shutting out the Arab world and shutting itself in."
 
Oh really? With incidents like this, can anyone blame them if that description were true? Israel is forced to protect herself from dangerous Hamas terrorists, while Newseum Museum honors them when Israel succeeds in stopping them from the attempted killing of more women and children.
 
If these men were alive, they’d be arrested and jailed if they so much as stepped foot in America. 
 
Ronn TorossianRonn Torossian, CEO of 5WPR
The author is CEO of 5WPR, 1 of the 25 largest PR Agencies in the US.

Major Terror Ring Busted by Shabak, Just in Time

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 08 May 2013 08:10
Hamas militantsThe Shabak, along with the IDF, discovered and halted a major terrorist conspiracy that was being formed in the Binyamin region. The conspiracy was being organized from Gaza, via the Internet. Several members of the conspiracy, including two leaders, were arrested, preventing the group from carrying out its plans.
 
According to the Shabak, the group was preparing to carry out several types of attacks, including setting bombs, kidnapping soldiers or residents, and the manufacturing of rockets and missiles.
 
Among those detained in the case was 26 year old Ahmad Muhammad Ahmad Abu Fahida, a resident of the village of Ras Karkar in the Binyamin region. Fahida is a Hamas activist, arrested and jailed in the past for participating in Hamas terror activities. Also arrested was 27 year old Ahmad Yassin Abd alFatah Shabroui, a resident of the village of Silwad. He, too, is a Hamas terror activist, and has been jailed in the past for his activities on behalf of the organization.
 
According to the Shabak, both were recruited in the past months to Hamas, and were prompted to plan terror attacks. They were guided by a senior Hamas terrorist in Gaza via the Internet, and used disposable cellphones to cover their tracks. They recruited several workers to help them plan attacks, while the senior Hamas agent guided them in how to prepare bombs and rockets, and how to mark potential kidnap victims.
 
The Shabak added that the two had been in touch with their Gaza handler just days before the arrest, informing him that they were prepared to carry out their first attack, which was to take place within the week.
 
The two were indicted in March, the Shabak said. They are currently in jail, where they will remain untol the end of proceedings against them.

Hamas, Egypt Maintaining Gaza Quiet

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 04 May 2013 11:15
Hamas terrorists in GazaDespite occasional rocket attacks in recent weeks, signs point to Hamas seeking quiet in Gaza for the foreseeable future, according to Arutz Sheva analyst Kobi Finkler.
 
The latest evidence is the quiet that followed Israel’s assassination of a senior Gaza terrorist. The IAF killed terrorist weapons expert Haitham Ziyad al-Mishal in a rocket strike.
 
While previous such operations have been met with Hamas threats and instant rocket attacks, Mishal’s death passed in relative silence.
 
Another sign of Hamas’ plans is its transfer of many members of its armed forces from the front lines of anti-Israel terrorism to internal enforcement of Hamas rule. Hamas members are increasingly sent to shut down demonstrations in Gaza and enforce civil law.
 
Hamas has also taken an active role in preventing Gaza residents from entering the no-man’s zone near the Gaza security barrier, as per the understandings reached at the end of Operation Pillar of Defense.
 
Egypt has been investing in maintaining the peace as well. Egyptian soldiers have taken pains to prevent weapons and other unauthorized items from reaching Gaza, and even arrested a senior weapons dealer recently. The weapons dealer was released after Gaza terrorist leaders gave guarantees that he would abide by Egyptian regulations.
 
Egypt has also been cooperating with Israel, and two senior Egyptian military commanders recently visited southern Israel to speak to their IDF counterparts about the situation in the region.
 
Egypt has a strong interest in controlling terrorism in Gaza due to its desire to maintain quiet in the nearby Sinai. Gaza terrorists have previously launched attacks against Israel from Sinai, and some groups have launched attacks targeting Egyptian soldiers.

Hamas Training Syrian Rebels in Damascus

Category: Reports
Created on Sunday, 07 April 2013 09:08
Syria fightingHamas, a former ally of Syria's President Bashar al-Assad, is now training the rebel Free Syrian Army in eastern Damascus, according to a report Friday in the British Times.
 
Diplomatic sources told the newspaper that members of Hamas’s Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades were training FSA units in the rebel-held neighborhoods of Yalda, Jaramana and Babbila.
 
The development confirms that Hamas, the terror group that runs Gaza, has broken with its former Syrian host and fully embraced the patronage of Qatar, a major financial and logistical backer of some rebel factions.
 
"The Qassam Brigades have been training units very close to Damascus. These are specialists. They are really good," a Western diplomat with high-level contacts in the Assad regime and the Syrian opposition who visits Damascus regularly told the Times.
 
Other sources suggested to the newspaper that Hamas trainers were helping the FSA to dig tunnels beneath at least one contested area of Damascus. in preparation for a widely expected assault on the city center.
 
A source from the Ain al-Hilweh “Palestinian refugee” camp located in Lebanon told the Times it was common knowledge that a few hundred Hamas terrorists were fighting alongside the FSA in the Yarmouk and Neirab camps in Damascus and Aleppo.
 
Hamas, meanwhile, has vehemently denied any such link. Osama Hamdan, a leading Hamas official based in Lebanon, told the Times, "It's a false thing. There are no members of Ezzedine al-Qassam or any militant members of Hamas in Syria.
 
"We don't interfere in the internal problems of Syria,” he claimed. “Our members there are normal civilians, Syrian Palestinians, who live with their families there. From the beginning of what has happened in Syria, we rejected as a movement any involvement of any Palestinian in the current events in Syria."
 
In the first months of the uprising in Syria, Hamas’s leaders expressed support in principle for the struggle of the Syrian people while also highlighting the importance of the movement’s historical relationship with the Syrian regime.
 
However, as the rift deepened, reports surfaced that Hamas is moving its headquarters from Damascus to Egypt and the terror group is strengthening itself in the Sinai and in Qatar.
 
Some reports claimed that the Damascus-based Hamas leadership left Syria after the Syrian government asked the Hamas leaders to leave. In November, Syrian security forces shut down all the offices belonging to Hamas in the country.
 
The Assad regime has fiercely criticized Mashaal's decision to break with the regime, recalling Damascus's willingness to host the Hamas leader when other regional capitals refused to do so.
 
This week, a Syrian regime newspaper slammed Hamas and its leader, Khaled Mashaal, for breaking with Damascus, accusing them of giving up on resistance against Israel.
 
Hamas has shifted "the gun from the shoulder of resistance (against Israel) to the shoulder of compromise", the Al-Thawra daily said.
 
"Today, as Mashaal becomes the head of Hamas for the fifth time... the West Bank, Gaza and the whole of occupied Palestine have no reason to celebrate," wrote the newspaper.
 
Mashaal "cannot believe his luck. After an acclaimed history of struggle, he has returned to the safe Qatari embrace, wealthy and fattened in the age of the Arab Spring's storms," the newspaper added.

Hamas Leader Meshaal Re-Elected For New Term

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 03 April 2013 09:15
Khaled Meshaal0Veteran Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal was re-elected as head of the Islamic terrorist movement after a meeting in Cairo late on Monday.
 
There had been speculation that Meshaal, 56, who is based in exile, would be forced aside by the movement's leaders in the Gaza Strip, which it has controlled since 2007.
 
Meshaal himself had said last year that he would not seek a new term. While the Hamas leader was originally based in Damascus, he is now staying mainly in Doha, Qatar.
 
But a Hamas official said that the party's governing shura council re-elected him for another four years at a meeting in Cairo late on Monday.
 
"The leaders of Hamas chose Meshaal," the high-ranking official told the AFP news agency via telephone from the Egyptian capital, requesting anonymity.
 
"The elections take place in total secrecy, but it's widely known that Meshaal's term will be renewed," said another Hamas official, also speaking on condition of anonymity.
 
Hamas officials were in Cairo on Sunday and Monday for the vote, and to discuss with Egyptian leaders reconciliation with the rival Fatah faction of Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmud Abbas.
 
Meshaal will be aided by Gaza's Hamas prime minister Ismail Haniya, as well as the movement's number two Mussa Abu Marzuq, responsible for the exiled section of Hamas.
 
Haniya was also in Cairo for talks with Egyptian officials.
 
Ties between Hamas and Cairo have been tense after Egyptian forces closed down dozens of smuggling tunnels on the Gaza border.
 
Haniya was seeking to "clear the air" after Egyptian allegations of Hamas involvement in a deadly attack on Egyptian soldiers in the Sinai Peninsula last year, Hamas sources said.
 
Abu Marzuq would have been favored for leadership had Meshaal not run for another term.
 
Developments in the Middle East since the Arab Spring uprisings of 2011 "pushed Hamas to choose Meshaal... who has given the movement a national face... and has good relations in the Arab world," a third Hamas official said Monday.
 
Fatah and Hamas signed an Egypt-mediated reconciliation agreement on April 27, 2011 in Cairo.
 
But most of its clauses went unheeded and deadlines were constantly postponed.
 
The two sides responded positively to a proposal by Qatar at an Arab League summit late March for a summit aimed at reconciliation.

Haniyeh in Cairo to Bemoan 'Israeli Truce Violations'

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 31 March 2013 20:44
Haniyeh celebrates Morsis victoryHamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniya traveled to Cairo on Saturday to discuss complaints of the terrorist movement regarding Israel's compliance with the truce brokered by Egypt following November’s Operation Pillar of Defense.
 
Hamas spokesman Taher al-Nunu said Haniya would be discussing "Israeli violations of the truce," the AFP news agency reported.
 
Last week, Hamas complained to Egypt that Israel was not keeping its end of the bargain after a rocket attack from the Gaza Strip led to Israel suspending part of the truce agreement by cutting access to fishing waters of the Kerem Shalom commercial crossing.
 
Nunu also said that the Gaza premier would be discussing "the problem of (Palestinian) prisoners (held by Israel) and Hamas-Egypt relations,” according to AFP.
 
Ties between Hamas and Cairo have been tense after Egyptian forces closed down dozens of smuggling tunnels on the Gaza border.
 
Haniya will also seek to "clear the air" after Egyptian allegations of Hamas involvement in a deadly attack on Egyptian soldiers in the Sinai Peninsula last year, Hamas sources said.
 
Reconciliation efforts between Hamas and the Fatah faction of Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas are also expected to be on the agenda.
 
Israel launched Operation Pillar of Defense in an effort to root out the terrorist infrastructure in Gaza and bring about an end to the unremitting rocket attacks that have been launched against the Jewish state.
 
Israel carried out a series of targeted and highly surgical operations in order target the terrorists responsible for the attacks, all the while avoiding civilian casualties at all costs.

Hamas Gives 'Zionist Collaborators' Month to Repent

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 12 March 2013 17:00
Hamas militantsHamas rulers in Gaza launched a month-long campaign on Tuesday urging alleged Arab "collaborators" with Israel to turn themselves in as a means of being granted leniency.
 
"We announce the opening of the door to repentance for remaining collaborators and for all those who have fallen into the traps set by the enemy's intelligence services," interior ministry spokesman Islam Shahwan told reporters, according to the AFP news agency.
 
"We urge them to return to the bosom of their people and their families," he said, noting that the offer of clemency was open until April 11.
 
Under Palestinian law, collaboration with Israel is punishable by death.
 
All execution orders must be approved by the Palestinian Authority before they can be carried out, but Hamas no longer recognizes the legitimacy of incumbent PA Chairman Mahmud Abbas, whose four-year term ended in 2009.
 
Following the recent November conflict, Hamas announced the creation of a committee to examine the "unlawful executions" of Arabs accused of spying for Israel.
 
Seven people were gunned down after being accused of being collaborators.
 
The bodies of six of them were dragged behind vehicles through the streets of Gaza City.
 
The killings were claimed by Hamas terrorists from the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades and notes were pinned to the bodies reading: "Al-Qassam Brigades announces the execution of the traitors," according to AFP. 

Hamas: Obama Visit to Temple Mount - a Declaration of War

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 10 March 2013 16:43
Visiting the Temple MountThe Hamas and Islamic Jihad terror groups threatened on Friday that a visit by U.S. President Barack Obama to the Temple Mount during his upcoming visit to Israel will be a declaration of war on the Arab and the Islamic world.
 
A Hamas representative in the Al-Aqsa mosque, Mushir al-Masri, even called for a third intifada (uprising) and for Egyptian assistance in the "resistance" if Obama chooses to visit the Temple Mount.
 
According to the Bethlehem-based Ma’an news agency, the Gaza-based terrorist organizations made the threats during a protest march on Friday over the riots that broke out earlier in the day on the Temple Mount.
 
According to the report, Khalid al-Batash, a senior Islamic Jihad member, also called to prevent Obama from visiting the compound.
 
Obama will be arriving in the region later this month, and PA media has been widely speculating that he plans to visit the site of the Al-Aqsa mosque. However, Washington is not planning such a visit.
 
Political and religious leaders in the Palestinian Authority have stressed that Obama should not visit the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in a way that might compromise what they called its "Muslim sovereignty."
 
Sheikh Akrameh Sabri, head of the higher Islamic council and former Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, said that Obama must enter through a gate that was not under Israeli auspices.
 
"Any visitor is welcome to Al-Aqsa, but they should follow the regulations of the Waqf and enter through the Lions' Gate and not through Mughrabi Gate, to ensure Muslim sovereignty," he said.
 
Israel liberated the Temple Mount during the 1967 Six Day War, leaving the Waqf in charge of the compound.
 
The Waqf, in return, has removed every sign of ancient Jewish presence at the Jewish holy site and has consistently destroyed Jewish antiquities on the Temple Mount in a direct violation of a ruling by the Supreme Court.
 
Several Israeli police officers and Muslim worshippers were injured during the Temple Mount riots on Friday afternoon.
 
The riots began when the worshippers started throwing rocks at security forces.
 
Police stationed at the Mughrabi gate broke in and began to throw stun grenades to disperse the stone throwers. The rioters responded with firebombs.
 
According to the police, nine officers and five protesters were injured during the incident.

Hamas Official Calls for Third Intifada

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 27 February 2013 07:37
Hamas terrorists in GazaA day after a Hamas official called on terrorists to kidnap IDF soldiers in order to force Israel to release their fellow terrorists from Israeli prisons, another Hamas official called on PA Arabs on Tuesday to start an intifada (violent uprising).
 
The official, Izzat al-Rishq, said in a statement he released, “Our Palestinian people will not abandon the intifada and the resistance, and they live their lives in constant conflict with the Israeli enemy.”
 
He added that the Israeli "aggression" which, he claimed, consists of the ongoing violation of human rights of the “Palestinian people”, the “Judaization” of Jerusalem and “defilement” of the Al-Aqsa mosque brings PA Arabs to a state of daily confrontation with the Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria who, he claimed, are protected by the IDF.
 
Al-Rishq said the IDF's preparedness against the escalation of the ongoing riots by PA Arabs will only increase their determination to avenge the death of Arafat Jaradat, the prisoner who died while in Israeli custody.
 
An autopsy conducted Sunday on the body of Jaradat, who died at the Meggido Prison a day earlier, found that it is impossible to determine the exact cause of his death.
 
The PA’s minister of prisoners, Issa Qaraqaa, nevertheless took advantage of the non-conclusive report to blame Israel for torturing Jaradat to death, citing the preliminary findings of the joint autopsy which reported bruises on Jaradat's body, muscle damage and broken ribs. Those, however, can be caused by resuscitation attempts, according to the autopsy.
 
Thousands took part on Monday in Jaradat’s funeral. The funeral was held at his village, Sa'ir, near Hevron.
 
At nearby Beit Anun, hundreds of Arabs gathered and hurled rocks at security forces who were on high alert during the funeral. The security forces countered the rioting with riot dispersal gear.
 
Despite the ongoing riots, which have intensified as Arabs use Jaradat’s death as an excuse to riot, Israeli security officials said this week they believe that a third intifada is not in the works.
 
Senior IDF officials predicted that a third intifada is not a likely scenario because the Palestinian Authority is not interested in such a move at this time.

PA: Keep Jerusalem Runners Away from Mosque

Category: News
Created on Monday, 18 February 2013 11:17
jerusalem-marathonWith the Jerusalem Marathon set to take place March 1, the Palestinian Authority is warning Israel not to use the race to “Judaize” the city, presenting it as a “unified capital of Israel,” said the chairman of the PLO's action committee, Ahmed Qureia. Qureia is also the head of the “Al-Aqsa Department” in the PA, and on Sunday he warned Israel to ensure that marathoners stay away from the Temple Mount, where the mosque is located.
 
Runners from some 50 countries are expected at this year's marathon. Announcing the event, the Jerusalem Municipality announced that this year, the runners' route would take them past many historic sites in Jerusalem, both in the Old City and the New City.
 
Qureia said that, as it has in the past, Israel was “using” the event to promote an image of a unified, Jewish city. “This has been Israel's strategy since 1967, and it has resulted in land confiscations and expulsions of Palestinians,” he said. Qureia warned the Municipality and the Israeli government to ensure that the runners stay away from the Temple Mount, and preferably all Arab neighborhoods in Jerusalem. He did not say how Arabs would react if the routes were not adjusted to his instructions.
 
Meanwhile, a Hamas spokesperson, Tahar al-Nunu, on Sunday blamed Israel for “destroying many historical buildings in Jerusalem that show the Muslim and Arab connection to the city,” for expelling Muslim residents from their homes, and “ongoing defiling of the Al-Aqsa mosque.”
 
Nunu said that Israel's recent actions were a prelude to actual attempts to destroy the mosque, with the intent of “erecting the false Jewish Holy Temple.” Nunu said that Israel's actions would lead “to a major conflict, and not just in the media.”

Hamas Slams Bulgaria for Expelling its Delegation

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 16 February 2013 16:30
Prime Minister Boiko Borisov R and Bulgarian Interior Minister Tsvetan Tsvetanov LThe Hamas government in Gaza on Friday condemned Bulgaria's expulsion of a delegation on its behalf that was visiting the country, the Bethlehem-based Ma’an news agency reported.
 
The terror group reportedly blamed Israeli pressure for Bulgaria’s move.
 
Bulgarian security forces on Friday raided the hotel rooms of a visiting Hamas delegation, ordering them to leave the country, a party statement quoted by Ma’an said.
 
"We condemn this act, which reflects the scale of compliance with Zionist pressures," Hamas spokesman Taher al-Nunu said, according to Ma’an.
 
Hamas leader and MP Yahya al-Abadseh said the Bulgarian government's actions were contrary to all diplomatic norms.
 
Parliament chairman Ahmad Bahar called for Bulgaria to offer a formal apology, saying the visiting deputies were protected by parliamentary immunity.
 
On Wednesday Hamas said that its delegation arrived in Bulgaria to meet with political officials from the European country.
 
The visit was lauded by Hamas as a sign that the terror group was being increasingly welcomed across Europe.
 
However, the Bulgarian Foreign Ministry formally denied the news about the visit. A spokeswoman for the ministry that no Hamas visit had been planned and that no Bulgarian politicians and diplomats have been scheduled to meet Hamas officials.
 
Hamas is recognized as a terror organization by the European Union, of which Bulgaria is a member.
 
The PLO ambassador in Bulgaria, Ahmed Madbouh, told Ma'an on Friday he was informed by officials in the Bulgarian foreign ministry that they "regret" the presence of the Hamas delegation and took a decision to ask them to leave.

Gaza University to Implement 'Modest' Dress Code for Females

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 05 February 2013 17:32
Hijabs for saleGaza’s Hamas terrorist rulers have taken another step towards the implementation of strict Islamic sharia law in the region.
 
The latest step is introducing a strict dress code for female students at the Al-Aqsa University, Arab affairs expert Dalit Halevi reports.
 
A letter distributed to students in November stated that all students should wear “modest clothing” on campus.
 
Al-Aqsa University president Salam al-Agha told the Bethlehem-based Ma’an news agency last week that the code, which is set to be implemented when the new semester begins, does not require the jilbab (full-length coat) or niqab (face-veil), but rather what he described as dress befitting of the university.
 
He told Ma’an students would not be expelled for violations of the dress code.
 
Al-Agha said the code would be implemented by persuasion, and staff would give lectures on appropriate dress, including loose clothes, long jackets, and wide trousers.
 
He said that 97 percent of female students already dress appropriately, but the dress code was implemented to ensure all students dress properly to avoid attracting male desire.
 
Nevertheless, the decision has caused outrage among Palestinian Authority officials. Ali Jarbawi, PA Minister of Higher Education, issued an official response to the university's announcement, labeling the decision "illegal, and therefore null and unenforceable," according to Ma’an.
 
There is no system in place to define what constitutes "modest dress", Jarbawi said, adding that Article 11 of the Palestinian Basic Law specifically guarantees personal and public freedoms, which would overrule the decision by the Board of Al-Aqsa University.
 
Although the university enjoys financial, academic and administrative independence, it cannot implement policies which contradict the Basic Law, Jarbawi added.
 
One third-year student at the university told Ma'an, "If I had known before that the university would impose Islamic dress, I would not have registered here in the beginning."
 
The Cultural and Information Department of the Palestine Liberation Organization, headed by Hanan Ashrawi, slammed the university’s decision as being Taliban-like.
 
A statement from the department quoted by Al-Monitor said that the decision violates both human rights and Islamic teachings.
 
Since violently taking over Gaza in 2007, Hamas has enforced a stringent interpretation of Islamic law in Gaza. The terror group has banned women and teenagers from smoking hookahs in public, ordered that women's clothing stores are not allowed to have dressing rooms, men cannot have hairdressing salons for women and that mannequins shaped like women must be dressed in modest clothing.
 
Last year the Hamas government banned residents of Gaza from participating in the national reality singing show “New Star”, which follows the same format as popular U.S. shows “American Idol” and “The X-Factor.”
 
Hamas claimed the program was “indecent,” adding it contradicts the customs and traditions of the Gaza community.

Iranian Weapons Support for Hamas Shows No Signs of Slowing

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 13 January 2013 06:35
Irans Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei R meets Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal in Tehran Dec. 15 2009.It's no secret that Iran has been supplying Hamas with weapons and rockets to use against Israel, but a special report by the  Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center concluded just how deep the terror link between Iran and Hamas runs, and showed how Operation Pillar of Defense marked a major turning point in the relationship between the terrorist organization and the renegade state.
 
In Operation Pillar of Defense, the IDF struck hard at the military power of Hamas and the Islamic Jihad, mainly hitting their weapons stockpile, either supplied directly by iran or built in Gaza using Iranian technology. 
 
It has long been known that the major military capabilities of Hamas were the product of massive Iranian support. The medium-range Fajr-5 rockets (made in Iran) and M75s (manufactured in Gaza with technology from Iran) targeted Israeli civilian population centers, including Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.
 
The report noted that aid from Iran to Hamas was being sent over in massive numbers in the years leading up to the military operation. 
 
"The main route for smuggling arms was from Iran to Sudan and from Sudan to Egypt and into the Gaza Strip through the smuggling tunnels controlled by Hamas," said the report, adding that sea routes were also used to smuggle in weapons, as revealed on March 15, 2011 when the freighter Victoria was seized by the IDF. "The ship was carrying arms bound for the Gaza Strip by way of Egypt, whose arrival would upgrade military capabilities of the terrorist organizations. Among the weapons on board the Victoria were C704 anti-ship missiles, which could be used to attack not only military and civilian vessels but also strategic targets in the southern Israeli cities of Ashdod and Ashkelon," the report noted. 
 
The main turning point that came with Operation Pillar of Defense is that before the operation Iranian aid to Hamas and the smuggling of weapons was always kept secret and always denied by Iran. However, after the operation, Iran decided to reveal that it had been giving military aid to the terrorist organizations in Gaza.
 
"In our assessment, that was because of Iran's deep frustration with the way Egypt and other Muslim countries, such as Turkey and Qatar, had made political and propaganda capital from their support for Hamas during Operation Pillar of Defense," the report stated. "By exposing its military aid Iran hoped, in our assessment, to make political capital."
 
"Hamas' dependence on Iran for military support is still strong, and is, in our assessment, a necessary condition for rebuilding the military infrastructure damaged by Operation Pillar of Defense." 
 
Islamic Jihad leader Ramadan Shallah said in a recent speech that the arrival of weapons from Iran though Egypt would "continue in the future as well." In addition, a Hizbullah-affiliated Lebanese newspaper reported that Hassan Nasrallah, meeting with Hizbullah operatives, said that Iran, as it had in the past, would continue sending "large quantities of high-quality weapons" to Hamas.
 
Therefore, the report noted, Iran is fully expected to play a key role in rebuilding the weapons stockpile of Hamas and Islamic Jihad. "Special attention will be paid to medium-range rockets, whose existence in the Gaza Strip serves Iran's clear interest in creating a rocket threat to Israel from both the north (through Hizbullah) and the south (through Hamas and the Islamic Jihad)," the report stated. 

Wife of Hamas MP: Woman's Role Is to Instill Love of Jihad

Category: Islam
Created on Wednesday, 09 January 2013 17:20
women covering their facesHamas is continuing to incite and encourage Arab children to carry out acts of terrorism.
 
A video translated and released by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) shows the wife of a Hamas member of parliament saying that an Arab woman's role is "to instill love of jihad and martyrdom in her children."
 
The comments by Umm Osama, the wife of Hamas MP Khalil Al-Hayya, aired on the Hamas-affiliated Al-Aqsa TV on December 2, 2012.
 
"Women in Palestine play a great role in raising their children and in encouraging them to wage Jihad for the sake of Allah," she said. "This is absolutely the most glorious thing a woman can do. Women play their role and are not inferior to men. When a man goes to wage Jihad, his wife does not say 'Don't go' or try to stop him. She encourages and supports him. She is the one who prepares his equipment, bids him farewell, and welcomes [his Jihad].
{youtube}QYGASd6NFyo{/youtube}
 
"She instills in her children the love of Jihad and martyrdom for the sake of Allah," said Umm Osama. "If every mother were to prevent her son from waging Jihad for the sake of Allah, who would wage Jihad? Who would support Palestine? Palestine is dear to us, and its price is paid with our body remains and our lifeblood.
 
"Is not Allah's reward precious? Allah's reward is Paradise. Paradise requires from us our blood, our body remains, and our efforts for its sake.
 
She added, "I am constantly praying: 'Allah, make the end of our days be in martyrdom.' I pray for this even for my husband and my children. None of us want to die in our beds. We pray that Allah will grant us Paradise."

Hamas Budget Nears $1 Billion

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 02 January 2013 06:29
Hamas terrorists in GazaHamas will spend $897 million in Gaza in 2013 under a budget approved Monday. The Gaza parliament, dominated by Hamas, voted for the spending.
 
Gaza leaders estimate the income for the year at $243 million. The rest of the money is expected to come from international aid and donations.
 
Despite claims of a financial crisis, the Hamas budget has continued to grow from year to year. A large percent of this year's budget – $244 million – will go to the Interior Ministry, which funds "security forces" such as the al-Kassam Battalions, recognized internationally as a terrorist group.
 
Many donations are not included in the budget. Qatar has pledged to spend $400 million on construction in the area, money that is not part of the official budget because Qatar will be overseeing the projects directly.
 
Also excluded as direct aid was money spent by the United Nations' UNRWA agency, which assists PA resident Arabs and Arabs claiming descent from those who fled Israel during the War of Independence. The group is expected to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on programs in Gaza in 2013, including food distribution, summer camps, and schools.

Qatar May Be Buying Its Way into the PA to Isolate Iran

Category: Reports
Created on Friday, 28 December 2012 08:30
Abbas and Qatari Prime Minister - ReutersQatar’s emir, after having brought a $250 million check to Hamas in Gaza, plans to bail out Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas next week, possibly as part of a strategy to separate Iran from Hamas.
 
Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad Ibn Khalifa al-Thani said he will make good on his pledge to bail out the PA, according to the Bethlehem-based Ma'an news agency. Israel has announced that instead of turning over tax revenues it collects monthly for the PA to Ramallah, it will use the funds to pay off the Palestinian Authority’s massive debt to the Israel Electric Corp. for electricity supplied.
 
Behind the emir’s sudden interest in the PA could be Iran, which has an “evil axis” that runs from Syria, through Lebanon and Hizbullah and to Hamas in Gaza and the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.
 
Arutz Sheva reported last week that de facto Gaza Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh has told Hamas terrorist cells in Judea and Samaria to prepare for a new Intifada – this time against none other than Abbas, who heads the arch-rival Fatah movement.
 
The same report was cited as being one of the reasons Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu pulled off his gloves, speaking forcefully concerning Israel’s sovereignty over Jerusalem and the intentions to build more than 3,000 new homes for Jews in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria.
 
“The aim of the Qatari leader’s visit is part of a larger Qatari policy to reorient Iranian alliances in the Middle East and to win over Hamas to the side of the pro-Western countries like Egypt, Turkey and Saudi Arabia,” wrote Geopolitical Monitor.
 
By giving Hamas recognition through the emir’s visit, Qatar offers the terrorist organization an alternative to Iran for financial aid. If Qatar can pull off the trick of buying into Hamas and Fatah and placing them under its wing, the sound of money may quiet them down.
 
Without Hamas, Iran will have less capability of engineering a two-front proxy war against Israel through Lebanon and Gaza.
 
Qatar, like the five other Gulf States, has another objective – neutralizing Iran’s threat to manufacture a nuclear bomb as part of its announced strategy to establish a pan-Arab Islamic empire in the Middle East.
 
Qatar is a close ally with the United States, and by propping up Hamas, it gives the terrorist organization recognition it never enjoyed before, but also may draw Hamas away from the Axis of Evil.

Gaza Commits War Crimes

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 27 December 2012 20:21
Scene of bus attack in Tel AvivThe Human Rights Watch (HRW) issued a rare condemnation of Gaza terrorists on Monday for war crimes - without the usual “balancing act” of blaming Israel.
 
HRW did not go so far as to describe “Palestinian armed groups” as terrorists, but the categorical censure of rocket launchers marks a drastic change in the attitude towards Israel and Hamas.
 
The condemnation also comes at a critical time for Hamas, which claims it “won” the missile war by gaining implicit diplomatic recognition to a certain extent.
 
“Palestinian armed groups made clear in their statements that harming civilians was their aim last month,” wrote HRW’s Middle East director Sarah Leah Whitson. “There is simply no legal justification for launching rockets at populated areas.”
 
Between November 14 and 21, Gaza terrorists fired approximately 1,500 missiles at Israel, and more than half of them exploded in Israel, including 60 in populated areas. More than 40 people were either killed or wounded, not including two Gaza Arabs who were killed by their own misfired rockets, Human Rights Watch said.
 
Human Rights Watch interviewed witnesses, victims, and relatives of people killed and injured by rocket attacks in Israel, as well as Israeli officials from two communities struck by rockets, and a spokesperson for the Israeli emergency medical services.
 
It “found that armed groups repeatedly fired rockets from densely populated areas, near homes, businesses, and a hotel, unnecessarily placing civilians in the vicinity at grave risk from Israeli counter-fire.” 
 
HRW names the “armed groups" as Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and the Popular Resistance Committees’ terrorist branches.
 
The terrorist organizations publicly stated they targeted Israeli civilians as acts of “revenge.”
 
“The laws of war prohibit reprisal attacks against civilians, regardless of unlawful attacks by the other side,” Human Rights Watch said. “Statements by armed groups that they deliberately targeted an Israeli city or Israeli civilians are demonstrating their intent to commit war crimes.”
 
It called on Hamas, which took over authority in Gaza in a bloody terrorist militia war with the rival Fatah group five years ago, “to uphold the laws of war" and "...appropriately punish those responsible for serious violations.”
 
HRW also blamed Iran, based on an Iranian military official's statement Iran provided technical information to Gaza terrorists for building their own medium-range Fajr 5 missiles that were fired on Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. Iran denied having supplied the missiles to Gaza.
 
“Supplying weaponry to a party to a conflict knowing that it is likely to be used to commit war crimes constitutes the aiding and abetting of war crimes,“ Human Rights Watch said.
 
Magen David Adom told the rights group that their medics treated 38 civilians wounded by missiles, three of them severely.
 
A 50-year-old man in Ashkelon lost a foot that was “traumatically amputated by a rocket blast,” and a man in Ofakim was severely wounded when a rocket hit the car in which he was riding.
 
Human Rights Watch also blamed Gaza terrorists for firing rockets and missiles from densely populated areas.
 
After interviewing witnesses in Gaza, it confirmed Israeli military reports that terrorists fired rockets 300 feet from international media offices. “I saw it [the rocket] go up and heard it, and then smoke was in the office,” a witness said.
 
During the Pillar of Defense counterterrorist campaign, the IDF bombed the roof of the media center to knock out Hamas communications systems. Foreign media blamed Israel for attacking the media
 
“One man said he saw a rocket launched from the yard of a house near the Deira Hotel in central Gaza City,” HRW added.
 
“Under the laws of war, parties to an armed conflict are required to take all feasible precautions to protect civilians under their control from the effects of attacks and not to place military targets in or near densely populated areas. Human Rights Watch has not been able to identify any instances in November in which a Palestinian armed group warned civilians to evacuate an area before a rocket launch.”
 
It also stated, “The absence of Israeli military forces in the areas where rockets hit, as well as statements by leaders of Palestinian armed groups that population centers were being targeted, indicate that the armed groups deliberately attacked Israeli civilians and civilian objects.”
 
Although the terrorist groups' targetting of civilians was intended to cause major casualties, Israeli casualty figures were low in comparison to the number of missiles launched, due only to the efficacy of the Iron Dome and the construction of shelters throughout the country

Hamas Preparing for War against Abbas, Reports Sunday Times

Category: Reports
Created on Sunday, 23 December 2012 15:50
Hamas officers in GazaHamas is preparing to duplicate its 2007 civil war in Gaza and has instructed terror cells in Judea and Samaria to get ready for a military coup to oust Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, according to a London Sunday Times based on Israeli intelligence sources.
 
The orders reportedly came from Hamas’ supreme leader Khaled Mashaal, who recently visited Gaza to celebrate what the terrorist organization claimed was a victory over Israel in last month’s missile war.
 
Citing unnamed officials in the Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet), the London newspaper said that Iran is behind the plan for a coup. According to the Sunday Times, Iran wants to have an allied militia in Judea and Samaria, parallel to Hamas in Gaza and Hizbullah in Lebanon.
 
Tawfik Tirawi, a former PA intelligence director and now a senior member of Abbas’ Fatah party, told the newspaper, "Hamas wants intifada and will take over the West Bank.  
 
“We’re on the verge of catastrophe,” he said.
 
“Bibi [Netanyahu] understands the geopolitical changes in the Middle East. No way would [he] give up an inch of the West Bank - he is convinced that the intelligence assessment about a Muslim Brotherhood [Hamas] takeover is solid,” according to the London newspaper.
 
The report provides evidence that Prime Minister Netanyahu is making it clear that Israel is not to be shown as being weak. The intelligence information may have been one of the reasons, if not the major cause, for his recent and unusually solid nationalist statements for building new homes for Jews in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria.
 
It also contradicts mainstream media claims that Netanyahu's statements were part of an election campaign to attract nationalists away from the Jewish Home party.
 
The information published in London totally eliminates the idea promoted by leftist commentators that Netanyahu’s’ policies are designed to strengthen Hamas at the expense of Abbas, who has advertised himself as a “peace partner.” Abbas has won international support for demands that preclude negotiations on future borders while at the same time promoting unity with Hamas.

Israeli Security Tracks Down Tel Aviv Bus Bomber Terror Cell

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 19 December 2012 06:37
Scene of bus attack in Tel AvivA joint effort by the Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet), IDF and police has uncovered the terror cell that bombed a Tel Aviv bus in late November.
 
The cell is based in the area around the Palestinian Authority capital of Ramallah, in the Samaria (Shomron) region. Its members are affiliated with the Gaza-based Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorist organizations.
 
The attack in which 26 Israelis were wounded came on the final day of Operation Pillar of Defense, the counter terror offensive to silence rocket and mortar fire on southern Israel from Gaza.
 
The State Attorney's Office announced plans to to file an indictment Wednesday morning against an Israeli Arab man in connection with the attack.
 
The suspect, a resident of of the Israeli Arab city of Taibe was allegedly recruited by the terror cell. He is believed to have left several bombs on the bus and then detonated one of them using a cell phone.
 
Interior Minister Eli Yishai requested permission from Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein to begin the unusual procedure of revoking the citizenship of the suspect, anticipating the possibility that he may be convicted.
 
In a letter to the Attorney General, Yishai noted that the attack was an act of terror and thus qualified as grounds for revocation of the accused terrorist's Israeli citizenship under the Citizenship Law.
 
The suspect, a former resident of the Palestinian Authority, became a citizen of Israel through marriage via the Family Unification Law. 

Qatar's Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani Reuters

Category: News
Created on Monday, 17 December 2012 07:35
emir-of-qatar-sheik-hamad-bin-khalifa-al-thaniPalestinian Authority officials confirmed to AFP Sunday that Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani will visit Ramallah for his first ever trip to Judea and Samaria later this month.
 
"The visit of the emir of Qatar has been confirmed but the date of the visit hasn't been determined yet," Nabil Abu Rudeina, spokesman for PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, told AFP.
 
"The agreement on the visit came during a meeting with president Abbas in Doha last week," Abu Rudeina added.
 
The emir presumably will bring with him a fat check, similar to the $250 million gift he presented to de facto Gaza Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh last month, along with a promise for more.
 
The visit to Ramallah will be another diplomatic victory for Abbas, who eight years ago embarked on an almost non-stop worldwide circuit to drum up political support after he took over the Palestinian Authority following the death of Yasser Arafat.
 
Last week, Jordanian King Abdullah II met with Abbas in Ramallah, and a follow-up trip by the Qatari emir would go far to improve Abbas’ image among local Arabs who are tilting towards supporting Hamas.
 
Abbas and Haniyeh have declared unity between their Fatah and Hamas factions, a move that has allowed Hamas to publicly demonstrate in Judea and Samaria for the first time in years.
 
The Qatari’s visit will be a sign of support for the unity, which could spark more backing financial and political backing from the Arab world that for years has paid little more than lip service for supporting Abbas.
 
The Palestinian Authority chairman, for the time being at least, has succeeded in maintaining his image of a diplomat for the peace process while at the same time the PA promotes a “one-state“ solution of an Arab Palestine replacing all of the Land of Israel.

Islamic Jihad Pokes First Cracks in Ceasefire

Category: News
Created on Monday, 10 December 2012 08:17
Hamas Haniyeh l Islamic Jihads Al-HindiIslamic Jihad has placed Israel on warning it will break the ceasefire on missile attacks if its leader is banned from entering Gaza.
 
Israel has been spared rocket and missile attacks since the Egyptian-mediated ceasefire took effect on November 21 after the IDF’s Pillar of Defense campaign and the Iron Dome anti-missile defense system pushed the de facto Hamas regime into a position of having to back down or face a massive ground incursion.
 
Islamic Jihad, Hamas’ major rival terrorist organization, and other terrorist groups adhered to the truce. Islamic Jihad official Khalid al-Batsh said in Gaza Sunday, "We had hoped that Dr. Shalah could have visited Gaza accompanied by Hamas leader Mashaal, but the Israeli occupier had a different opinion.”
 
Sources quoted by Bethlehem-based Ma'an news agency said that Israel threatened to assassinate Islamic Jihad leader Ramadan Shalah if he enters Gaza, causing the party to reconsider a planned visit.
 
Egyptian authorities told Islamic Jihad that Israel rejected the visit and would target leader Ramadan Shalah and his deputy Ziad Nakhla if they went into Gaza, sources close to the discussions told Ma'an.
 
"We want Palestinian unity, national reconciliation and we want to see unity embodied when Shalah and the Palestinian Authority’s president Mahmoud Abbas visit the Gaza Strip along with all resistance factions. After that we will focus our efforts on our enemy,” al-Batsh said.
 
Abbas has not yet visited Gaza nor is he expected to do so in the foreseeable future, despite his announced unity with Hamas.
Hamas’ supreme leader Khaled Mashaal visited Gaza last Friday. Several Israeli leaders from both sides of the political fence said that Israel should have taken the opportunity to drop a missile on Mashaal.

Abbas’ Suit and Tie Has Same End as Arafat’s Pistol: Violence

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 09 December 2012 15:19
Mahmoud AbbasMahmoud Abbas’ embrace of the Hamas terrorist organization and his diplomatic talents of convincing the UN to applaud his violations of the Oslo Accord may already have spawned a new round of violence in Judea and Samaria, as predicted by Arutz Sheva for more than a year and as recently as last week.
 
A young woman was wounded by a rock that crashed thorough the windshield of the car which her husband was driving on Highway 60, between Jerusalem and Kiryat Arba-Hevron shortly before the beginning of the Sabbath Friday night. Instead of arriving at her parents' home in the southern Hevron Hills, she was rushed to a Jerusalem hospital and released shortly before the beginning the Sabbath.
 
Friday’s rock-throwing came a day after a troubling IDF retreat from an Arab mob, signs of what may be in store for residents of Judea and Samaria. More than three dozen Arabs bombarded solders with rocks and stones when the IDF tried to stop the attacks on motorists. At least three IDF soldiers and Border Policemen were wounded for their trouble.
 
The day before, an outnumbered IDF force hastily retreated after a mob attacked them as they tried to arrest a Palestinian Authority policeman for terror.
 
Rock and firebomb attacks on roads in Judea and Samaria have been increasingly frequent since the UN General Assembly overwhelmingly granted the Palestinian Authority Non-Member Observer status.
 
Hamas, after more than year of opposing Abbas' UN ploy, understood the strategy and reversed its stand several weeks ago while at the same time rejecting a “two-state” solution.
 
The new unity between the Fatah faction, headed by Abbas, and Hamas was a new call to arms, which Abbas has disguised under a call to Israel to “negotiate” while simply allowing his security forces to let Hamas terrorists operate without interference, the Maariv newspaper reported Sunday.
 
Abbas has cashed in the chips he has been stockpiling ever since he took over after Yasser Arafat died eight years ago last month. Replacing Arafat’s pistol on the hip and his black-and white checkered kefiyah with a suit and tie, he built up an image as a “peace partner,” convincing the United States to force the Sharon, Olmert and Netanyahu governments to make "good will concessions” towards a “final status” solution to PA demands.
 
The Oslo goal of reaching a negotiated agreement on borders and security for Israel evolved into an assumption by the international community and reported as fact by mainstream media that the goal of the “peace process” was to grant the Arab world’s territorial demands that Israel’s border be shrunk to those that existed with the Temporary Armistice Lines drawn by the UN and which ended with the Six-Day War in 1967.
 
Simultaneously, Abbas ostensibly eschewed violence while the PA education system and Muslim clerics openly preached violence and the establishment of a new Arab state of “Palestine” in place of Israel, from the Lebanese to the Egyptian border and from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea.

Hamas, Jihad in 'Mini-flipflop' Over Statehood Bid

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 01 December 2012 20:58
PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas - AFPPA terror groups in Gaza announced earlier this week that they supported the PA's statehood bid and were fully behind PA chief Mahmoud Abbas in his attempt to get the UN General Assembly to upgrade the PA's delegation to non-voting state observer status. But on Thursday, hours before the UN vote, spokespeople for both Hamas and Islamic Jihad indicated that their leadership might not be fully on board with Abbas' program.
 
According to Bethlehem-based news service Ma'an, Hamas top terrorist Ismail Haniyeh said that Hamas was in favor of the bid. “Nobody is against statehood, and (my government) supports any political movement to establish a Palestinian state on the occupied Palestinian territory,” Ma'an quoted Haniyeh as saying. “Our vision is to have a state based on inalienable Palestinian principles, and a state on the pre-1967 borders does not mean ceding the rest of Palestinian land.”
 
But on Thursday, Hamas spokesperson Mushri al-Masri added a note of dissonance to Haniyeh's comments. “The statehood bid has no meaning,” he said. “The PA did not ask the public what their opinion of this process was before going to the UN. A statehood bid must be based on a consensus of the Palestinians.” Al-Masri's comments, said Israeli analysts, indicated a level of discomfort in Hamas with the process, in line with Hamas' efforts to be seen as more “radical” than Abbas.
 
According to Ma'an, Islamic Jihad was supposed to be on board with the PA bid as well, but in a statement, top Jihad terrorist Abdullah Shami said that the group was actually opposed to it. “We will never support attempts by Mahmoud Abbas to get PA recognition at the UN,” he said. “Our goals and ideals are far greater than going to the UN General Assembly,” he added.
 
According to PA-watchers, there is a bare majority for the bid among Arabs living in PA-controlled areas of Judea and Samaria, but by no means a consensus. A Ramallah resident quoted by Yediot Aharonot said “I support this effort because we will get a lot of support from the international community.” However, another resident, echoing a common concern among PA Arabs, said that he was opposed to the plan, “because many countries will stop sending funds here.”
 
A Voice of Israel public radio reporter, who was present at what was supposed to be a major PA-sponsored "independence rally" in Ramallah, said that his impression was that there was "not a consensus among PA Arabs for this move. I have seen the square where these rallies are held far fuller on other occassions." The reporter said that it appeared that many of the attendees were actually government employees who had been let off work earlier in the day, as well as schoolchildren who had apparently been brought from class, With that, the reporter said, there were only about 1,000 people at the event. "The relatively empty square indicates that not all Palestinians are in favor of this move, it appears," the reporter said.

Hamas Cease-Fire Video: Death to Israel

Category: Media
Created on Tuesday, 27 November 2012 11:34
Terrorists brandish RPG in GazaHamas has removed any doubts of its cease-fire intentions with a post-truce music video urging “Death to Israel” with “blood and fire."
 
The video, translated and reported by Palestinian Media Watch (PMW), was aired on Al Aqsa TV the day after the cease-fire was announced, marking the end of Operation of Pillar of Defense.
 
The lyrics, as reported by PMW , follow: “Destroy the throne of Zion, the house of absolute evil
 
Raise the banner of victory
 
Be like the fire of a volcano
 
Repeat in the name of your Jihad: Death to Israel!
 
With blood and fire, resist until freedom
 
Defeat the soldiers of aggression the enemies of humanity."
{youtube}5Tg5DcKH7b0{/youtube}
 
Polls have shown that a majority of Israelis, as well as Gaza residents, opposed the cease-fire, with each side predicting it only is matter of time before violence breaks out again.
 
The only question is if Hamas’s attacks will reach deeper into Israel and cause more damage, as they have in previous escalations.
 
The constant message in media and in schools to kill Jews, both under Hamas in Gaza and under Fatah in the Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority led by Mahmoud Abbas, leaves little doubt that Hamas will not leave its weapons silent.
{youtube}RKpzc-T7Wu4{/youtube}
 
Any hopes for  a change in philosophy are dispelled by other videos that Hamas aired on its TV network during Operation Pillar of Defense aimed at stopping a massive missile and rocket barrage that reached as far north as metropolitan Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.
 
The day the cease-fire was announced, Hamas aired this video promoting the kidnapping of Israeli soldiers. The lyrics, in part, state, “We are the [Al-Qassam] Brigades;
 
Brigades - we kidnap soldiers; Brigades - we kill Jews."
 
{youtube}i9jGsrQI5dw{/youtube}

Egypt Pitches US ‘Strike 2’ on Arab Democracy

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 27 November 2012 07:38
clashes with police near Tahrir - ReutersThe U.S. State Dept is dancing on pins and needles in an attempt to avoid saying that “democracy” has failed in Egypt following Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi’s latest power grab, which bars the judiciary from challenging his decisions.
 
Morsi’s Islamic fundamentalist Muslim Brotherhood party, outlawed in the days of Hosni Mubarak, was elected in democratic elections encouraged by the United States after it helped usher Mubarak out of power last year.
 
Morsi indicated Monday he is willing to soften his decision to take almost absolute power, but a spokesman’s statement that only “acts of sovereignty’ would take precedence over judicial power is not likely to appease increasingly vocal opponents.
 
At least one person has died and nearly 1,000 have been injured in violent clashes between protesters and police.
 
U.S. State Department spokesman Olivia Nuland told reporters Monday, ,”We were concerned that there would be violence, that there were competing demonstrations, et cetera… Obviously we want to see this issue resolved in a way that meets the standards and principles that we’ve been supporting all the way through, since the Egyptian revolution began.”
 
However, when asked if Morsi’s power grab was non-democratic, Nuland treed to dodge the question, saying that “our statement speaks for our view on this and the various concerns that we had.”
 
The events in Egypt are “Strike Two” for American attempts at introducing democracy to Israel’s neighbors. Seven years ago, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, now considered as a possible replacement for Hillary Clifton, was exuberant over the first democratic elections in the Palestinian Authority.
 
“Strike One” came in the middle of the night, when a phone call woke her up and she was informed that Hamas had won.
 
Ironically, but perhaps not coincidentally, Strike Two involves the Muslim Brotherhood, which created Hamas.
 
Nevertheless, the Obama administration is forever hopeful. A reporter at Monday’s daily press meeting told Nuland that Morsi seems to be “basically saying, ‘Trust me; it’ll work out the good way.’ And this money and U.S. support would be contingent on that. At heart, do you trust him that it’ll come out the good way?”
 
Nuland repeated that his power grab raises “concerns” but the “very murky, uncertain period in terms of the legal and constitutional underpinnings… makes it all the more important that the process proceed on the basis of democratic dialogue and consultation.”
 
The dialogue so far is taking place through violence. Early Tuesday afternoon, protesters returned to Cairo’s Tahrir Square, the center of the demonstrations that led to the ouster of Mubarak.
 
Protesters clashed with police and threw Molotov cocktails and stones in anger against Morsi’s power grab.
 
His Muslim Brotherhood movement had planned to rally in Cairo on Tuesday in support of the president but later called off the event to avoid confrontation.

Muslim Cleric in Gaza: Sin to Violate Truce with Israel

Category: Islam
Created on Sunday, 25 November 2012 22:27
extremists-faith-schoolsAn Islamic cleric in Gaza has issued a religious edict declaring it a sin to violate the truce arranged last week between Israel and Hamas. The fatwa – a religious edict – was ruled by Imam Suleiman al-Daya late Saturday.
 
"Honoring the hudna (temporary ceasefire) which was arranged and sponsored by our Egyptian brethren is the duty of each and every one of us,” ruled the cleric. “Violating the agreement shall constitute a sin.”
 
The decision lends religious legitimacy to the ceasefire agreement and under Islamic law, could justify any action by Gaza's ruling Hamas terror organization to enforce it.
 
The agreement is fragile at best, in part because much of the language is vague. On the Israeli side, the clearest point is that relating to rocket, mortar and missile fire.
 
“Any fire emanating from Gaza will be considered a violation of the agreement,” Israeli government spokesman Mark Regev told Arutz Sheva on Sunday morning when asked whether the agreement applied to all terrorist groups in the region.
 
However, the import of weapons to the region has not stopped, nor has production, according to Hamas officials.
 
Speaking with reporters on Saturday, Hamas spokesman Mahmoud al-Zahar claimed, “We have no choice but to continue to bring in weapons by all possible means.” He added that Iran would “increase its military and financial support to Hamas,” and justified the relationship, saying, “We have a right to take money and weapons from Iran. They give to us for the sake of G-d, no conditions attached, and I am a witness to that.”
 
In fact, Iran indeed has loaded a ship with new missiles to replace those destroyed by Israel in its eight-day Pillar of Defense counter terror offensive, the London Sunday Times has reported. The ship was spotted by Israeli satellites.
 
There have already been numerous violations of the ceasefire declared last Wednesday, including at least 20 rocket attacks and a violent incident Friday night that ended with IDF soldiers firing into the air. Local Gaza sources later said that one local man was killed by the IDF fire and several others were wounded. The IDF Spokesperson noted the soldiers had been forced to fire in the air in response to the disturbance caused by Gazans along the security fence at the border with Israel.
 
Hamas has since temporarily deployed unarmed police along the Gaza side of the border to prevent further incidents that might imperil the truce, sources told AFP on Saturday.

Two Reasons Hamas Truce May Blow Up: Jihad and Salafists

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 25 November 2012 08:03
salafiTerrorist rivals challenging Hamas’ control of Gaza may blow up the ceasefire reached last week, Voice of America reports.
 
Hamas has agreed to an informal truce, negotiated by its Muslim Brotherhood ally that rules Egypt.
 
The two principal triggers that can put a violent end to the truce are the Islamic Jihad and the Salafists. The Islamic Jihad, founded by followers of the Muslim Brotherhood, has its own army of approximately 1,000 terrorists, according to VOA.
 
The Salafist groups are an even more likely threat because of their attempt to portray Hamas as “liberal” in terms of Islamic law and the Al Qaeda goal of a pan-Islamic caliphate, which is the stated goal of Iran.
 
Salafist terrorists have accused Hamas of not being aggressive enough in its war against Israel and often have launched rocket and missile attacks on Israel without coordination with Hamas.
 
They also have staged attacks on Internet cafes and Christian centers in Gaza.
 
The Jaish al-Islam cell of Salafists kidnapped BBC reporter Alan Johnston in 2007 in a failed bid to secure the release of an al-Qaeda cleric detained in Britain.   
 
“The leader of another group, Jund Ansar Allah, openly defied Hamas by declaring an Islamic emirate in Gaza in 2009,” VOA reported.  Hamas retaliated in a battle that killed at least 27 peole in the two terrorist organizations.
 
Hamas has an advantage over other terrorist groups by having created an army of an estimated 10,000 fighters, with other estimates reaching 20,000.
 
However, Hamas could be the victim of traitors and experience the same fate that it dealt to the rival Fatah terrorist group in 2007, when it ousted it from power in Gaza in a bloody militia war.

Hamas Declares Nov. 22 Gaza Public Holiday

Category: News
Created on Friday, 23 November 2012 05:45
Arab boy celebrates Gaza victory - ReutersThe Hamas terrorist organization has declared November 22, the day after its ceasefire was signed with Israel, as a public holiday in Gaza.
 
"The Palestinian government announces that Thursday 22nd November is a national holiday of victory and an official holiday,” read a statement issued by Hamas. Hamas invited “all citizens to celebrate this occasion and visit the families of the martyrs and the wounded and those affected by the violence and to affirm national solidarity.”
 
Gaza shops reopened Thursday, some for the first time in a week, since the assassination by Israel of Izz a-Din al-Qassam leader Ahmed Jabari, the head of the Hamas military wing.
 
The IAF air strike that killed the top Hamas commander launched the 'Pillar of Defense' counter terror offensive against the terrorist organizations that for months rained an endless barrage of rocket fire on southern Israel.
 
For hours after the ceasefire between Gaza and Israel went into effect, Wednesday at 9:00 p.m., terrorists continued to fire missiles at Israeli communities, including the city of Be'er Sheva as well as towns along the Gaza border.
 
But by morning the skies were quiet, with the exception of noise from the mosques of Gaza. The Palestine News Network (PNN) reported the  mosques in Gaza City blared through their loudspeakers: 'Allahu Akbar (G-d is great), dear people of Gaza, you won. You have broken the arrogance of the Jews.”

Ceasefire is a Huge Failure

Category: News
Created on Friday, 23 November 2012 04:54
Rabbi RonskyFormer Chief Military Rabbi Brig. Gen. Rabbi Avichai Ronsky called the ceasefire with Hamas "a huge failure."
 
Speaking with Arutz Sheva, he explained his feeling thus:
 
"You had tens of thousands of soldiers here, from the standing army and mostly the reserves, who left everything – the family, work – and came immediately, out of a strong desire to stop the immense chutzpah of the terror groups, which have started to get us used to having missiles fired at Jerusalem, Rishon Letzion and Tel Aviv.
 
"The ceasefire, in my eyes, is a great mistake and a disappointment to many."
 
The very negotiations with terror groups are strictly forbidden," he said, "even if they are carried out through interlocutors. In actuality, we granted legitimacy to the Hamas organization, which was considered a terror group in the eyes of many countries in the world. We spoke to them and turned them into a legitimate organization. This kind of thing must not happen. The Americans don't talk to Al Qaeda, either."
 
"The great IDF stood here facing a disgusting and vile terror organization and signed an agreement with them. This is a big, unfortunate farce. We have given them great strength now, look at the victory celebrations."
 
Rabbi Ronsky said that the IDF should have reconquered the Philadelphi Route – the corridor that runs along Gaza's border with Sinai – in order to stop weapons smuggling into Gaza. "It's true that diplomatically this is complicated, because it is the Egyptian border, but there is no choice. Our sovereignty has been violated."

War of Words over Ceasefire as War Continues

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 21 November 2012 18:44
War of Words over CeasefireEgypt and Israel are engaged in a war of words over a possible ceasefire as Hamas continues to attack Israeli civilians and Israel retaliates.
 
Hamas also is reportedly divided over terms of a truce, which its officials have insisted include Israel’s removing the maritime embargo, which is designed to prevent or at least limit the smuggling of advanced weapons into Gaza.
 
Behind the scenes is Egypt, trying to play the role of honest broker while at the same the Muslim Brotherhood regime blames Israel for “aggression.”
 
Hamas terrorists, still called “militants” by mainstream media, said they are waiting for Israel to respond to the Egyptian-Hamas ceasefire proposal. Its terms have not been disclosed.
 
Optimistic negotiators had initially said that a deal could be announced in Cairo later Tuesday following days of negotiations brokered by an Egyptian government that is keen to make sure the unrest does not spill over to its volatile Sinai territory, AFP reported.
 
Islamic Jihad boasted Tuesday that there would be “a joint press conference between Hamas and Islamic Jihad and the Egyptian mediators tonight to announce the truce,” but Hamas later said in a statement that Israel had still not responded to the Palestinian proposal.
 
Israel has made it clear that it will not repeat previous mistakes of agreeing to a ceasefire that does not hold. Tzipi Livni, when she was Foreign Minister in the Olmert government, agreed to end Operation Cast Lead in 2009 based on guarantees of a halt to smuggling, which not only continued afterwards but also increased.
 
Medium-range Fajr missiles, smuggled from Iran and Hizbullah, have enabled Hamas to reach deeper into Israel, striking as far north as Tel Aviv and the Jerusalem area.
 
Israeli television also cited local diplomatic sources as saying that a truce announcement would probably have to wait at least until Wednesday.
 
Hamas continued attacking Israel Wednesday morning, launching rockets at the Ashdod and Sderot areas. None of the rockets hit their targets, and the Iron Dome system intercepted at least two of them.
 
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and his key ministers decided in a closed-door meeting late Monday to place "a temporary hold on a ground incursion to give diplomacy a chance to succeed," a senior Israeli official told AFP.

Four More Top Terrorists Eliminated

Category: News
Created on Monday, 19 November 2012 17:36
hamas-leader-killed-airstrikesIDF planes on Monday targeted and eliminated another four senior Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists. The four were eliminated as part of the IDF's efforts to dismantle the Hamas terror infrastructure in Gaza, and to restore calm and quiet to southern Israel, the army said in a statement.
 
The four were eliminated in a joint operation of the IDF and the Shabak, the General Security Service, the report said.
 
They were in a multi-storied apartment building, but were killed in a pinpointed "surgical" attack that did not hit any of the international media representatives whose offices are in the builidng.
 
That the loss of the four was significant to Gaza Arab terrorists was evident from the fact that Hamas denied that the IDF had eliminated the four. In a statement, Hamas said that it could not confirm that the four had been killed by the IDF, and said that they were “out of communication range.”
 
Among the four was Abu al-Attah, a member of the Hamas senior military council. Al-Attah directed hundreds of rocket attacks against Israel, including long-range attacks. He was also a senior figure in the manufacture of rockets in Gaza. Although a Hamas member, he collaborated with Islamic Jihad on their rocket attacks on Israel. He was also involved in planning several terror attacks against Israel.
 
Also eliminated was Tisar Mahmoud Mahmad Jabbari, also a member of the council and a senior Hamas member, responsible for organizing numerous terror attacks against Israelis. The other two terrorists - Khalil Bahatini and Ramez Harb - were both senior members of Islamic Jihad who had themselves participated in numerous rocket and terror attacks against Israelis.

IDF Blows Up Hamas Soccer Field-Missile Site

Category: News
Created on Monday, 19 November 2012 08:32
Soccer field camouflaged missile siteThe IDF Sunday night bombed a Gaza City soccer field that camouflaged a Hamas underground missile launching site it used to attack Tel Aviv last Friday.
 
Use of the soccer field to attack Israel explains several Hamas claims in the past that Israel has attacked children playing soccer.
 
Covering an underground missile site with a soccer field is part of Hamas's strategy to use civilian sites for terrorist activities.
 
The strategy has been effective in causing deaths to civilians who live in homes that are used to house terrorists or serve as weapons depots.
 
Hamas has claimed that dozens of civilians have been killed in Operation Pillar of Defense, and mainstream media has repeated the claims without verification.
{youtube}bI1g3CExuCw{/youtube}
 
The IDF reiterated to Arutz Sheva on Monday that it knows of no injuries to journalists, as claimed by Hamas and repeated by foreign media after the Air Force bombed a Hamas communications antenna on Sunday.
 
The Air Force also eliminated two terrorists on a motorcycle Monday. Hamas initially told media the terrorists were journalists but later retracted the claim.

Israel Sends Hamas 36-Hour Ultimatum

Category: News
Created on Monday, 19 November 2012 08:15
preparing ground attack03Israel has delivered an ultimatum to Hamas through Egypt, according to which the IDF will widen its offensive in Gaza in 36 hours unless Hamas ceases firing rockets and smuggling arms into Gaza, IDF Radio reported Monday morning.
 
Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz told the station that the time left before Israel steps up its attack can be measured in "hours, not days."
 
"We are at a junction," he said. "Either we go toward a calm or toward a meaningful widening of the operation… including a possible move to achieve complete military decision."
 
There are ongoing contacts between Israel and Hamas through intermediaries, IDF Radio said, but the gaps between the sides are still very large. According to reports in Cairo, Hamas demands a complete removal of the blockade on Gaza, an IDF commitment to stop crossing the security fence into Gaza and a cessation of targeted killings.
 
Israel, for its part, demands that Hamas cease firing rockets into Israel for a period of "several years" and a cessation of arms smuggling into Gaza. Israel agrees to Hamas's demand that the Rafiah crossing into Egypt be opened, but refuses to open crossings into Israel.
 
Hamas official Moussa Abu Marzuk said that Hamas will not agree to Israel's demands for a "security belt" on Gaza's eastern side, and a cessation of smuggling through the tunnels.
 
Voice of Israel public radio quoted a senior source in Jerusalem as saying that the question of whether Egypt can broker a ceasefire will be resolved Monday. A senior minister said that Israel will have to agree to a certain relaxation of the blockade of Gaza in return for long-term quiet on the southern border.

Hamas: Ceasefire Talks have Failed

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 18 November 2012 16:49
Talks have FailedIsrael has sent a representative to Cairo for mediated talks with Hamas regarding the possibility of a ceasefire – but these talks have failed, according to a Hamas spokesman quoted by Channel 2's Ehud Yaari.
 
Yaari said that Hamas is broadcasting fantastic claims of its alleged military successes against Israel, including the supposed shutting down of Ben Gurion Airport.
 
The channel's diplomatic correspondent gave a hinted confirmation that an Israeli representative is indeed in Cairo for contacts regarding a possible ceasefire.
 
U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon has announced that he will be visiting the region on Tuesday, as diplomatic activity surrounding the Israel-Gaza conflict intensifies.
 
French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius arrived in Israel Sunday and met Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. Netanyahu told Fabius: "First of all, the fire [from Gaza] must stop, and only then will we be willing to talk about the rest. Half of Israel is under rocket attack and this situation cannot continue."
 
On Monday, German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle is due to visit. The United States is reportedly deeply involved in behind-the-scenes talks in the hope of reaching an agreement by the time Ban Ki-Moon arrives. 

IDF Eliminates Another Top Hamas Terrorist

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 18 November 2012 16:19
Burning car in Gaza after Israeli strike 2012In a precision strike Sunday afternoon, IDF aircraft eliminated another top Hamas terrorist – Yihya Abiya, responsible for managing and organizing Hamas' rocket terror campaign against Israel.
 
Gaza Arab sources said that IDF warplanes targeted a building in an area of Gaza City, where Abiya was in hiding. Along with Abiya, three human shield civilians that the terror chief was in the building with were killed as well.
 
At a press conference, IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz said that the IDF was continuing its attacks against Hamas military targets in Gaza, and was increasing its attacks on top Hamas terrorists. IDF planes bombarded several key Hamas facilities in Gaza, including a large Hamas training based in the center of Gaza.
 
Earlier Sunday, the IDF, using Israeli technology, took over broadcasts of Hamas radio and used the frequency to broadcast its own message, warning Gaza Arabs to stay away from Hamas rocket launching sites.
 
“The IDF is moving on to the next stage” of the fight against Hamas terrorists, the message said. “For your own safety you are asked to obey instructions and avoid the terror installations set up by Hamas,” the message by the IDF said.

PA Arab Demonstrators: Bomb Tel Aviv

Category: Islam
Created on Saturday, 17 November 2012 17:43
Protesters in HevronThousands of Palestinian Authority Arabs rallied across the PA-assigned areas of Judea and Samaria on Friday, urging Hamas to "bomb Tel Aviv", AFP reported.
 
More than 1,000 protesters gathered in central Ramallah, shouting slogans of support for Gaza's Hamas rulers, and waving the movement's green flag, the report said.
 
"Hamas, bomb Tel Aviv!" they chanted, a day after a rocket from Gaza struck the sea just offshore from the coastal city.
 
As they protested, sirens were heard in Tel Aviv and the area for the second day running. Hamas immediately took credit for the attack, claiming to have shot “an improved Qassam.”
 
Rockets were also fired towards Jerusalem, hitting Gush Etzion, just south of the city. There were no physical injuries or damages.
 
The Ramallah protesters also held up huge pictures of Hamas arch-terrorist Ahmed Jaabari, whose death in an Israeli air strike on Gaza City on Wednesday sparked the latest escalation.
 
Similar scenes took place in the northern city of Shechem (Nablus), reported AFP, where more than 3,000 people called on Hamas to "Bomb Tel Aviv.”
 
Hamas flags were everywhere and angry demonstrators burned an Israeli flag, chanting "Death to Israel," an AFP reporter said.
 
In eastern Jerusalem, another 200 protesters gathered at the Damascus Gate into the Old City, with police arresting five for "disturbing public order," police and an AFP correspondent said.

Lieberman to Hamas: Don't Test Us

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 17 November 2012 13:36
Avigdor LiebermanForeign Minister Avigdor Lieberman issued a direct threat to Hamas on Friday, warning the terror group which controls Gaza not to test Israel’s military capabilities.
 
“It is our duty to ensure peace and quiet to residents of the south,” Lieberman told Channel 2 News. “It cannot be that a million people won’t be allowed to lead a normal life, where children – instead of going to school – are in shelters and conduct their lives in accordance with the sirens. This cannot continue. Our goal is to restore calm.”
 
“The government of Israel is in favor of peace and security for southern Israel’s residents," added Lieberman, “and we’ll do everything it takes to ensure this.”
 
He said, “Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas deals with political terror and Hamas deals with traditional terror by firing on residents of Israel. It’s no coincidence that most of the rocket barrages are at eight in the morning, when kids are going to school and people are going to work.”
 
"We need to understand that Abbas is now running away from his own failings in the domestic arena,” said Lieberman. “He failed in everything pertaining to employment and financial management. His domestic failure brings an escalation in the political arena, that's exactly what he did.”
 
Abbas’s interview on Channel 2 News several weeks ago, said Lieberman, “was an attempt to provide ammunition for Arab parties and the Israeli left. Just two months earlier, Abbas spoke at the UN, where he accused Israel of ethnic cleansing, war crimes, theft of land, theft of natural resources. Suddenly, there he was, speaking about giving up the right of return, and of course the next day he denied it. Even Hamas was confident that because of the regime change in Egypt, because of the elections in Israel, we would not dare to respond the way we responded. I think both Hamas and Abbas are wrong, and we will certainly deal both with the political terror as well as the terrorism on the ground.”
 
He said that Operation Pillar of Defense will end “when we achieve the three goals: peace, deterrence and elimination of long term terrorist tools. Then we will definitely stop the operation. Every time Hamas fires rockets, our response will be more and more difficult. Hamas tested us again and again, broke all the rules again and again and tried to produce a new reality. This operation was undertaken because of a lack of choice. It is not an adventure.”
 
"I highly recommend that the Hamas leadership in Gaza not test us again,” warned the Foreign Minister. “Never think that Israel will not respond with greater force next time. If, G-d forbid, there is a next time, we will respond with much greater force. Nobody over there is safe, not Hamas Prime Minister Haniyeh and not others.”

Gaza Operation a 'Blatant Aggression'

Category: News
Created on Friday, 16 November 2012 14:07
Terrorists brandish RPG in GazaEgyptian President Mohammed Morsi on Friday Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense in Gaza in as a "blatant aggression against humanity," the official MENA news agency said.
 
"Egypt will not leave Gaza on its own, and what is happening is a blatant aggression against humanity," he said, as his prime minister, Hisham Qandil, visited Gaza vowing to boost efforts to secure a truce to end the bloodletting.
 
Earlier on Friday, Qandil told reporters in Gaza, "Egypt will not hesitate to intensify its efforts and make sacrifices to stop this aggression and achieve a lasting truce," according to AFP.
 
He spoke after visiting casualties in Gaza's Shifa Hospital from Israel's Pillar of Defense counter-terror campaign.
 
On Friday morning, there were reports that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu had agreed to halt the military operation on terror sites in Gaza during Qandil’s visit.
 
An official said that Egypt requested the ceasefire and that the visit is supposed to last three hours.
 
However, while Israel stopped firing during Qandil’s visit, Hamas terrorists continued to fire rockets at Israel.
 
Friday’s rocket barrages continued to hit southern Israel but also were directed at Tel Aviv, for the second time in two days, and also at Jerusalem.
 
Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense, which began with the targeted killing of top Hamas terrorist Ahmed Jaabari on Wednesday, sparked a furious response from Morsi, who promptly recalled Cairo's envoy to the Jewish state.

Don't Make Israelis Pay Gaza’s Electric Bill

Category: News
Created on Friday, 16 November 2012 07:40
electric-billThe Legal Forum for the Land of Israel has demanded that Israel stop transferring funds to the Palestinian Authority (PA) in order to put an end to the situation in which Israelis pay for electricity for the very terrorists who are attempting to murder them.
 
The Finance Ministry is funding a 3 billion shekel guarantee for the Israel Electric Company in order to avoid a financial crisis.
 
At the same time, the PA owes the electric company 700 million shekels in unpaid electric bills – which continue to amass despite Israel collecting 400-500 million in tax money on behalf of the PA every month and transferring the sum to the PA.
 
“Even when the residents of the south Israel are living in a reality of ‘Code Red’, under a barrage of missiles and rockets, the Israeli Electric Company continues to provide free electricity to the shooters and terrorists,” the Legal Forum stated in a letter to Finance Ministry CEO Doron Cohen.
 
“Reason, justice and morality require immediate action before providing huge guarantees to the Electric Company at the expense of the citizens of Israel, when it has not yet collected the funds of the murderers of Gaza,” the group argued.
 
If Israel continues transferring funds to the PA that are used for Gaza, it will be funding terrorism against its own citizens, the Legal Forum concluded.

IDF Warning to Hamas: Don't Show Your Faces Above Ground

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 14 November 2012 19:36
The IDF is planning further operations into GazaIDF spokesman, Brigadier General Yoav (Poly) Mordechai held a press conference Wednesday night and addressed the military operation in Gaza. He said the operation was launched "After a long period of several years of unbearable fire aimed at residents of the south, which has intensified even more in recent weeks, including launches aimed at communities in the South and attacks against IDF forces."
 
Mordechai said that so far, the IDF has attacked dozens of targets, and noted that "the IDF operates with pinpoint accuracy to try to make as clean a hit as possible, but unfortunately some of the weapons are located near kindergartens and mosques. An orchard is intende for oranges, not weapons, and a school is intended for studies and not weapons. A mosque is intended for prayer and not weapons."
 
Mordechai said that he expects further operations in the coming days, saying, "We expect that in the coming days the challenge will be very difficult and there will be rockets shot at southern Israel. I encourage all members of Hamas not to walk around above ground.”
 
On its Facebook page, the IDF wrote, “We recommend that no Hamas operatives, whether low level or senior leaders, show their faces above ground in the days ahead.”
 
Below the message was a picture of Jaabari with the word “eliminated” stamped across it.
 
Ahmed Jaabari, head of Hamas' military wing, was killed in an Israeli airstrike in Gaza Wednesday afternoon.

IDF Kills Hamas's 'Chief of Staff', Launches Major Operation

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 14 November 2012 18:50
Hamass Chief of StaffThe IAF fired a missile at a car in Gaza Wednesday, killing the commander of Hamas's "military" terror wing, Ahmed Jaabari. Israel's TV Channel 2 says his son was also killed.
 
There are reports that Raed al-Atar, Commander of Hamas's southern division, has also been killed. 
 
Hamas responded by saying that it was now in a state of "open war" with Israel with no date set for its end.
 
The IAF reportedly also struck targets in Khan Younes and Rafiah. Channel 2 said that the IAF has been striking launch silos for Hamas's longer-range Fajr rockets, which can hit central Israel, in order to preclude their use. About 20 reinforced silos holding Fajr-3 and Fajr-5 silos were reportedly hit.
 
Nine people have been killed in Gaza, according to reports.
{youtube}kXatG2Z9Oqc{/youtube}
 
The IDF has begun a wide scale operation, which has been named "Amud Anan," a phrase that refers to the column-shaped cloud that led the Israelites in Sinai during the Exodus from Egypt. The official English name is Pillar of Defense.
 
Terrorists fired at least 10 missiles at Be'er Sheva, after firing at Sderot and Ashkelon. There have been no reports of casualties. Iron Dome anti-missile batteries successfully intercepted most of the rockets fired at Be'er Sheva. 
 
Terrorists also launched a rocket from Gaza at Dimona, where Israel operates a nuclear plant. The rocket landed in an open area. There are no reports of injuries. 
 
Egypt's response to the events is not yet known. Cairo denounced what it said was "Israeli aggression in Gaza" Wednesday evening and Egyptian president Mohammed Morsi held consultations with senior officials to decide on his course of action. Hamas has been calling upon Morsi to show that he is not like his predecessor, Hosni Mubarak. Hamas is saying that the "new Egypt" under Morsi must withdraw from the Camp David accords with Israel and expel Israel's ambassador in Cairo. 
{youtube}Awn4J4cyYqA{/youtube}
 
Among other exploits, Ahmed Jaabari, 52, was personally responsible for the abduction and holding of IDF Sgt. Gilad Shalit. Raed al-Atar was in charge of Hamas's smuggling tunnels. He was released from jail in Israeli in 1995. 
 
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak appear to have purposely diverted attention away from Gaza by visiting northern Israel and publicly discussing the Syrian threat Wednesday, in order to make it easier to catch the Hamas off guard.
 
11-14-123The IDF Spokesman, Brig. Gen. Yoav Mordechai, announced on his Facebook page that "A harsh blow has landed upon Hamas's command and control array, as the IDF hit Ahmed Jaabari, the head of the military wing of Hamas in Gaza, who headed the organization and dealt directly with carrying out terror attacks against Israel.
 
"We are at the beginning of a wide scale attack, in view of the unbearable situation of the residents of the South," he added.
 
"While we are not talking about conquering all of Gaza," Mordechai told Channel 2, "there is preparation for a ground operation as well, which will be undertaken if it is necessary. The required military units that need to be diverted for such an operation are at the ready," he said.
 
"The occupation has opened the gates of hell on itself," said a statement from Hamas's Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, which vowed its terrorists would "continue the path of resistance."
 
The United States is closely watching developments in Gaza following the killing Wednesday of Hamas' military chief in an Israeli air strike, a Pentagon spokesman said.
 
"We're monitoring the situation closely. We stand by our Israeli partners in their right to defend themselves against terrorism," Lieutenant Colonel Stephen Warren said.
 
President Barack Obama's national security adviser, Tom Donilon, met Monday with his Israeli counterpart, Yaakov Amidror, at the White House.

Four Rocket Attacks via Sinai

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 14 November 2012 08:02
Katyusha missileArab terrorists Wednesday attacked the south with four Katyusha rockets either from the Sinai or from Gaza through the Sinai. No one was injured, and no property damage was reported, but at least one missile exploded between homes.
 
One of the rockets was fired towards the community of Bnei Netzarim without causing any injuries, a security source said. The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood government is ostensibly responsible for protecting the Sinai from terrorists.
 
The missile attacks came after a 24-hour lull in rocket launches on Israel, following a bombardment of more than 150 missiles and mortar shells since last Friday.
 
Bnei Netzarim, referring the children of the former Gaza community that was destroyed by the government in 2005, is located approximately three miles from Gaza.
 
The Sharon government ordered the expulsion of all Jews and the withdrawal of all military personnel from Gaza in the summer of 2005, promising that the “disengagement” would end rocket fire on the south.
 
Since then, Hamas and allied terrorists have fired thousands of missiles on Israel, reaching as far north as the southern edge of metropolitan Tel Aviv.

Syria Shuts Down Hamas Offices

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 06 November 2012 08:59
Islamic JihadSyrian security forces on Monday shut down all the offices belonging to Hamas in the country, Al-Jazeera reported.
 
Despite previously being close allies, there has been a rift between Hamas and the Syrian regime ever since the uprising against President Bashar Al-Assad began. In the first months of the uprising, Hamas’ leaders expressed support in principle for the struggle of the Syrian people while also highlighting the importance of the movement’s historical relationship with the Syrian regime.
 
However, as the rift deepened, reports surfaced last year that Hamas is moving its headquarters from Damascus to Egypt and the terror group is strengthening itself in the Sinai.
 
Some reports claimed that the Damascus-based Hamas leadership left Syria after the Syrian government asked the Hamas leaders to leave.
 
Subsequently it was reported that dozens of Hamas members have quietly returned to Gaza from Damascus. Later reports said that Hamas leaders attached to the organization's long-standing Damascus bureau are fleeing Syria with their families as Assad's regime grows increasingly unstable.
 
The areas in Syria which serve as camps for people registered as Palestinian refugees have openly sided with the rebels, and Syrian troops have attacked several such camps. Just last week, two Hamas leaders were killed by the Syrian army in a Deraa refugee camp.
 
Last month, Assad's forces bombed the Deraa camp, killing at least 20 people and injuring dozens more. Sources in the Deraa camp told Ma’an that artillery shells and mortars targeted several streets near the area's mosque.
 
In August, the fighting between Assad’s forces and rebels hit Al-Yarmouk, a Damascus neighborhood that serves as an unofficial camp for roughly 150,000 people registered as Palestinian refugees.
 
Hamas issued a statement condemning the Syrian regime's attack on the camps, said that more than 320 registered Palestinian refugees have been killed since the beginning of the uprising in Syria.
 
Most people in Syria who are considered Palestinian refugees are Syrian-born, but are not considered Syrian, and do not have political rights. Their situation is better than that of refugees in neighboring countries such as Lebanon, where refugees have limited work options and are refused citizenship.

Shabak Busts Hamas Recruiter Squad in Binyamin Area

Category: News
Created on Monday, 29 October 2012 20:10
Hamas summer campersThe Shabak, along with the IDF and Israel Police, have uncovered extensive Hamas activity in the Binyamin area. A large group of Hamas terrorists have been working in recent months in the villages around Ramallah recruiting members, and terrorists, for the organization, it was released for publication Monday.
 
The Shabak has been conducting a wide-ranging and long-term investigation of this group; so far, about 30 terrorists have been arrested. Among the more notable detainees is Muhammad Khaled Abu Baha, head of the terror group; Mahmad Hassan Abed Allah Dahla, Hamas regional director for central and western areas of Judea and Samaria; and Maher Ayoub Abd al-Jalil Delasha, the regional finance director for Hamas.
 
The detainees told Shabak investigators that the purpose of the group was to revive Hamas activity in the Binyamin region, especially around Ramallah, considered the last stronghold of Fatah in Judea and Samaria. The objective was to recruit, if not terrorists, then at least voters who would elect Hamas representatives in local elections, and to strengthen the Hamas student group at universities in PA controlled areas. The group received financial and other assistance from Hamas in Syria, officials said.
 
Among the detainees are two individuals who have admitted their involvement in the 2000 lynch in Ramallah, in which two IDF reservists, Vadim Nurzhitz and Yossi Avrahami, were murdered when they made a wrong turn into Ramallah. Indictments have been handed down against them and the other arrested terrorists on a variety of charges, including conspiracy to commit acts of terror, illegal collection of money from terrorist sources, and collaborating with enemies.

Senior Hamas Official Arrested in Samaria

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 27 October 2012 15:08
MP Mahmud al-RamahiIsraeli security forces on Saturday arrested senior Hamas MP Mahmud al-Ramahi at a military roadblock in Samaria (Shomron), an army spokeswoman told AFP.
 
"He was arrested on suspicion of illegal activity" at Hawara checkpoint, south of Shechem, and taken for questioning, she said.
 
Arabs in al-Ramahi's home town of Ramallah said he was detained and his car impounded as he attempted to drive through the checkpoint.
 
Ramahi, formerly secretary general of the Palestinian Legislative Council, the Palestinian parliament, has served several stints in Israeli jail. In November 2010 he was arrested for what the army described as "being involved in recent Hamas activities."
 
In 2006 he was arrested in a roundup of dozens of Hamas lawmakers, ministers and other officials after Gaza terrorists seized Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit. He was held for seven months before being released

Hamas accuses Israel of Sudan blast

Category: News
Created on Friday, 26 October 2012 20:25
Ismail HaniyehIsmail Haniya, head of the Hamas government in Gaza, accused Israel of an attack against a military factory in Sudan, in his sermon for the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha on Friday.
 
“On my own behalf and on behalf of the government, we condemn the Zionist terrorism behind the bombing of a (military) factory in Sudan. We condemn this crime and this terrorism,” Haniya said.
 
The attack “proves once again that Israel is an outlaw state sponsoring terrorism in the region and in the world.”
 
Sudan on Wednesday accused Israel of bombing a military factory in Khartoum killing two people.
 
On Thursday, a senior Israeli defense ministry official called Sudan a “dangerous terrorist state,” without denying or claiming the bombing of the factory.
 
In April 2011, Sudan also accused Israel of being behind a mysterious air raid against a vehicle that killed two in Port Sudan.
 
Israel did not comment on it and a similar raid was carried out by a foreign aircraft on a weapons convoy in eastern Sudan in January 2009.
 
Haniya also called on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime to release its “grip” on Palestinians staying in camps in Syria and on “Syrian brothers seeking their freedom and dignity.”
 
“We feel the pain of our (Palestinian) people in camps in Syria, of martyrs and wounded ... May the criminal hand release its grip on children of our Palestinian people in Syria,” Haniya said.
 
Damascus has in the past supported Hamas by offering facilities in Syria but the Palestinian Islamist movement has backed Syrian rebels after the Palestinian refugee camps in the country became targets of bombings.
 
The ties between the two further ruptured following an attack against Khaled Meshaal, the political bureau head of Hamas, on Syrian television.
 
Meshaal angered Damascus by praising “the revolution of the Syrian people for freedom and democracy” when he participated in the congress of Turkey’s ruling party.

Morsi Stands Up for 'Palestinians'

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 25 October 2012 08:16
Mohamed Mursi attends a meeting with Hamas leader Khaled MeshaalEgypt’s President Mohammed Morsi said on Wednesday that Egypt does not accept nor can turn a blind eye to any aggression against Palestinian Authority Arabs, the state-owned news agency MENA reported.
 
“We don’t accept that people of Palestine are besieged,” Morsi was quoted as having said during an Endowments Ministry celebration of Preachers’ Day.
 
He explained that Egypt after the revolution would never consent to any aggression over PA Arabs, alluding to former President Hosni Mubarak, who some accused of turning a blind eye to Israel’s Operation Cast Lead in Gaza in late 2008 and early 2009.
 
Morsi stressed that Egypt supports PA Arabs with food and medications, adding that “the Palestinian case is pivotal for us.”
 
"We do not declare war on anyone. Palestinian rights will not be lost, we are in the same trench with our kin [Palestinians] against any aggression toward them," he said.
 
Morsi did not mention the fact that Gaza-based terrorists had fired more than 80 rockets at southern Israel between Wednesday morning and Wednesday afternoon.
 
Three people were wounded, two of them seriously, and three homes were hit in the morning rocket barrage. On Wednesday night there were conflicting reports regarding a supposed Egyptian-brokered ceasefire that was reached between Gaza’s Hamas rulers and Israel.
 
Concerns have been raised over the Israel-Egypt peace treaty since Morsi took power.
 
Morsi, a long-time member of the Muslim Brotherhood, has repeatedly said he would respect international treaties signed by Cairo, but the Brotherhood has also said there is room to revise the accords.
 
Last week, an adviser to Morsi called to urgently change the peace treaty with Israel.
 
This week, the Simon Wiesenthal Center called on President Barack Obama to publicly condemn  Morsi, after he attended a sermon where the preacher called for the "destruction and dispersal of the Jews."
 
At the same time, Morsi recently sent a letter to his Israeli counterpart, Shimon Peres, in which he referred to the Israeli president as a "great friend."

State Dept. in the Dark on Qatar Visit to Gaza

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 24 October 2012 21:51
Hamas soldiers before arrival of Qatari Emir74 - AFPThe emir of oil-rich Qatar is the first foreign leader to visit Hamas in Gaza, but the U.S.  State Dept. does not seem to be clued in.  
 
Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani crossed into Gaza on Tuesday in the first visit by a head of state since the Islamist Hamas movement took over in 2007.
 
During his brief visit, the emir will inaugurate a $254-million Qatari investment project.
 
Asked by a reporter in Washington about the visit, U.S. State Dept, Spokesman Mark Toner said, “I don’t have any reaction to it. I don’t think I have much to – what did you say? He’s going to visit?"
 
Reminded by the journalist that the emir was to visit Gaza, Toner answered, “Gaza. Let me check. I don’t think I have any comment on it.”
{youtube}q3dUzx30ajc{/youtube}
 
He later added at the daily press briefing, “Actually, I did find – we have seen reports about the possible visit to Gaza by Qatari senior officials, and our only comment would be that our position towards Hamas has not changed. We still view them as a designated foreign terrorist organization.”
 
Toner also held back from criticizing former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, who once again lashed out at Israel this week, saying that the United States has “zero influence” on Israel to pursue the “two-state solution.”
 
Toner said he has not seen Carter’s remarks but quickly added that the Obama administration is still pursing the “peace process,” which virtually all media analysts have dismissed as dead and buried,
 
“You know what we’re trying to do there,” Toner said, “David Hale remains very engaged on this issue. The Secretary’s obviously engaged on this issue. We want to see both parties get back to the negotiating table. It’s our firm belief that only by getting them into direct talks will they be able to resolve these issues."

Qatar Brings New Weapon to Gaza -- Money

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 24 October 2012 09:37
Emir of Qatar Sheikh Hamad and his his wife - RuetersThe emir of oil-rich Qatar visited Hamas-controlled Gaza Tuesday, laden with a new weapon - money. The visit was accompanied by bitter condemnation for Israel while upsetting secular Arabs, particularly the Fatah movement led by Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas.
 
His visit was the first by a foreign leader to Gaza since Hamas overthrow Fatah in a bloody militia war five years five years ago. Since then, the Palestinian Authority has been physically and politically fractured.
 
Emir Sheik Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani handed Hamas its biggest diplomatic victory since taking power while illustrating the rising power of Qatar and the mounting influence of Hamas' parent movement, the Muslim Brotherhood, AFP reported.
 
Speaking at the Islamic University, which has been a hotbed of terrorist activity, the sheikh asked, "Why are you staying divided? There are no peace negotiations, and there is no clear strategy of resistance and liberation. Why shouldn't brothers sit together and reconcile?"
 
His words carry as much weight as his check of $250 million for a hospital and homes in Gaza, as well as pledge for nearly another quarter of a billion of dollars.
 
The emir spoke of “peace negotiations" and “resistance and liberation” in the same breath, and Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor responded, "It is quite strange that the emir of Qatar should take sides with Hamas, that he will favor Hamas over Fatah that he would even decide to take sides in the Palestinian internal conflict... By hugging Hamas publicly, the emir of Qatar has thrown peace under the bus."
 
De facto Gaza Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh kissed and embraced Sheikh Hamad and declared, "Your visit today officially announces the break of the economic blockade and political blockade imposed on Gaza by the forces of injustice."
 
Hamas orchestrated a grand welcome for the emir, but the cancellation of his speech at a Gaza stadium, which was sparsely filled before his scheduled appearance, brought to question whether the festival atmosphere was genuine,
 
The emir’s visit could turn out to be disastrous mistake, analysts told The Daily Beast.
 
“I think the Qataris are trying to orchestrate the new map of the Middle East and the way to do that is to invest and support the political systems of various countries,” Munther Dajani, a Palestinian political scientist at Al-Quds University in Jerusalem, told the magazine website.
 
“The Qataris know very well they are supporting a government in Gaza that took power through a coup d’état,” he said. “I think they’re committing a mistake by doing that.”
 
If the emir is trying to buy unity between Fatah and Hamas, he may have it deliver some checks to Ramallah as well.
 
Fatah leaders angrily branded the visit to Gaza as deepening the divisions within the Palestinian Authority.
 
“Looking for a political power in the region at the expense of the Palestinian people and their rights and unity is unacceptable,” Fatah stated.
 
Fatah either was not invited for the emir’s visit to Gaza and boycotted it, depending on which source one believes.
 
Fatah leader Yahya Rabah said his faction had not been invited by Qatar or Hamas while Hamas spokesman Taher al-Nunu insisted that Fatah had declined an invitation to attend the welcome ceremony.

PA Calls For Intl Protection For Finnish Flotilla

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 14 October 2012 21:31
Hamas police wait for flotillaOn Sunday, the Palestinian Authority (PA) called for international forces to protect a boat carrying pro-PA activists trying to break Israel's naval blockade on Gaza.
 
Hamas has urged the world to respond to the Finish-flagged boat, Estelle, by pressuring Israel to end its blockade on Gaza, Xinhua has reported.
 
PA spokesperson Nour Odea said “The international community must provide protection for the flotilla because it is a legitimate peaceful activity directed against the Israeli siege…”
 
The boat set sail from Naples, Italy, on October 7, carrying more than a dozen activists bearing “humanitarian aid”, most of them from Western countries.
 
Meanwhile, the Israel foreign ministry Saturday notified Finland that the boat will be stopped if it tried to enter Gaza's waters. 
 
The yacht, which was built in 1922, carries 16 people, mainly from Western countries but also one Israeli national, as well as humanitarian aid, AFP reported. Depending on weather conditions, it is expected to reach Gaza in around two weeks.
 
Canada's Gaza's Ark group, which supports the mission, said on its website the Finnish ministry had informed it of the Israeli warning.
 
Yousef Rizka, a Hamas official, warned that Israel might be willing to use "violence and terror to prevent the humanitarian aid from reaching Gaza". He said the international community must "stop the Israeli aggressive actions".
 
It has been proven conclusively that Gaza is not in need of humanitarian aid, but needs fair distribution of financial resources.There are abundant luxury hotels, shops and spas,teeming markets and thriving smuggling operations, but the rich ignore the plight of the poor.

Israel Must Disappear

Category: News
Created on Friday, 12 October 2012 08:47
Hamas terrorists in GazaAn advisor to the Hamas government in Gaza urged his movement this week to refrain from emulating the PLO in making political concessions and adopting pragmatist policies. Instead, he called upon Hamas to declare that it was created to eliminate the State of Israel.  
 
The advisor, Kana'an 'Obeid, made the call in an October 8 article in the Hamas newspaper Al-Risala. Excerpts from the article were translated and published by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).
 
"The deterioration of the Palestinian cause occurred in a series of steps,” ‘Obeid wrote. “Initially, there were slogans such as 'eliminating Israel' or 'bon appétit, oh fish in the sea!', and the PLO slogan, 'we will not relinquish one single grain of sand.' Then there was the consent to [UN Security Council] Resolution 242, the recognition of Israel, and the freezing of the caduque PLO Charter. After that, Abu Mazen [Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas] declared that Israel is here to stay...
 
"[Yet] none of this was sufficient for [Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor] Lieberman to defend Abbas from harm,” he continued, referring to Lieberman’s recent criticism of Abbas. “In fact, Lieberman believes... that Abbas should be forced to crochet the yarmulkes of the religious Jews, as their poet said, and to celebrate the Jewish holiday of Sukkot with them at Al-Aqsa Mosque.  
 
"The arena to which the PLO has been dragged is very clear,” claimed ‘Obeid. “This forces Hamas and the resistance factions to go back [to the beginning] and to avoid pragmatist [measures], as well as the trap of [trying to] win over global public opinion by suggesting the possibility of agreeing to a state within the 1967 borders in return for an extended hudna. This was believed to be the gateway to acceptance by the West, [but, in reality,] it was the first step down a new [slippery] slope that might later be [justified] with brilliant political arguments or even pragmatist religious rulings.
 
"In order to fix this [situation], Hamas must refrain from honoring any agreements that the PLO has signed with Israel. The PLO is a dead thing that cannot [even] be embalmed. Hamas's incorporation into the PLO following its embalming, or following a reform in [the PLO's] ranks, will constitute recognition of the agreements that the PLO has signed with Israel. The national reconciliation in no way means agreeing to a political plan that includes abiding by the Oslo Accords, and political reconciliation does not mean reconciling [in order to act] against the homeland.
 
"We must launch a corrective national vision, in which we distinguish between plans to manage daily life in the homeland and plans to manage the conflict. The PLO abandoned [the latter] and never took them up again, just as it withdrew from the circle of resistance and never returned to it,” wrote ‘Obeid.
 
"Hamas must declare that it was formed to eliminate the state of Israel, and that Israel is an entity that must disappear,” he continued. “[Hamas] should declare that its political, military, and social plan is the liberation of all the land by means of resistance, and that the West bears the burden of [responsibility for] this aberrant entity [Israel]. This plan is Hamas' gateway to the Arab and Islamic world. We must present this to the West, so that it decides to stop backing Israel and realizes that it has made a mistake and must rectify it."

Gaza Salafists Fire Rockets into Israel

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 10 October 2012 20:14
Terrorists brandish RPG in GazaMilitants in Gaza fired two rockets into southern Israel on Wednesday evening in the midst of a recent cross-border fracas. Israeli police told AFP that nobody was injured.
 
Wednesday morning the IAF hit targets in the northern Gaza Strip.
 
Palestinian security sources told the AFP the air strike “hit a training camp in Beit Lahiya which was used by militants from the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of the ruling Hamas movement.”
 
The Israeli military described the target as "a terror tunnel" and said that it was attacked "in response to over 40 rockets that were fired at Israel this week."
 
A small group of Salafists claimed responsibility early on Wednesday for the rocket fire. Salafists, such as the Islamic extremists in Egypt have been gaining strength throughout the Middle East, and especially in Hamas controlled Gaza.
 
Earlier in the week, Hamas and Islamic Jihad fired a round of rockets at southern Israel a day after the IAF raided the border town of Rafah.
 
The recent activity marks the end of a de facto cease-fire that began in June.

Egypt opens closed-door training camp in Alexandria for Hamas and Muslim Brotherhood

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 29 September 2012 14:04
terrorist-training-campThe following article appeared in the Al Wafd newspaper in Egypt on Thursday. September 27, 2012:
Closed-door training camp for Hamas and Muslim Brotherhood 
 
Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood leaders initiated a closed-door training camp in Alexandria, Egypt. The training will take place in Abu Keer, east of Alexandria; the workshop is entitled Senaah El Regal 5 [Industrialization of Men, 5]. 
 
Along with Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood there are 180 members of Hamas arriving from Gaza.
This facility was created by Mubarak’s National Party for use in training its members. The facility cost Egyptian taxpayers many millions of Egyptian pounds. The initiative was prepared and organized through Al-alabdaa Industry Research Studies and Training of Gaza.
 
The training program takes seven days to complete and it includes ongoing intensive training for youth. The training is led by the participation of a group of experts and international trainers in the areas of human development. 
 
The training is free with all expenses paid by the Egyptian taxpayers. 

Hamas MP: ‘Annihilate Jews and Americans’

Category: Islam
Created on Sunday, 26 August 2012 18:51
Bahr AhmadA senior Hamas legislator has widened the usual call to kill Jews and includes all Americans on his hit list for jihadists.
 
A video of his speech was translated and uploaded by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).Deputy Speaker of Hamas Parliament Sheik Ahmad Bahr appeared on Hamas’ Al-Aqsa TV while addressing a crowd of supporters earlier this month, stating that it is their individual duty to wage jihad in order to “annihilate the Jews and Americans.”
 
“Oh. Allah, destroy the Americans and their supporters,” he intoned. “Oh, Allah, count them one by one, and kill them all without leaving a single one.”
 
He emphasized that Muslim women can become martyrs without the consent of their husband. Last March, Hamas MP, Mushir al-Masri also called on the “blood of the women of Gaza to be sacrificed in an effort to liberate Jerusalem.”
 
Hamas officially is the majority party in the Palestinian Authority legislature, having won the first and only democratic elections in 2006, encouraged and supervised by the United States. The following year, Hamas terrorists ended victorious in a bloody war with Fatah terrorists and took control over Gaza while effectively splitting  the PA into two.
{youtube}ygbJDcOTjjw&feature=player_embedded{/youtube}
 
The rival Fatah party, headed by Mahmoud Abbas, rules from Ramallah in Samaria.

Hamas ‘Fifth Column’ in Abbas’ Bodyguards

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 22 August 2012 18:46
HezbollahHamas has infiltrated into the senior ranks of Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abba’s own security forces, bearing out Israel’s worst fears that the PA might turns it guns on Israelis, according to the DebkaFile website.
 
Debka, staffed by former journalists and former intelligence personnel, said that the Palestinian Authority arrested this past Sunday two Hamas agents of the terrorist’ organization’s military branch who infiltrated into the elite hand-picked security force that guards Abbas.
 
The PA reportedly has clamped a blackout on the arrests.
 
Abbas' personal security force includes approximately 170 men, and the general security forces include an additional 4,000. The discovery of the two Hamas infiltrators indicates the possibility that the PA security army, officially called police under the Oslo Accords, may be filled with more Hamas operatives.
 
Debka said there might be the existence of an “unknown number of sleeper cells awaiting orders to spring into action” against Abbas as well as IDF soldiers and Israeli civilians in Judea and Samaria.
 
Israeli nationalists have warned for years that the government’s allowing the PA to deploy a security force far larger than the number limited by the Oslo Accords, and allowing them to be armed, will bring about a repeat of the terror that broke out in the late 1990s after the Rabin government gave the PA thousands of rifles.
 
The presence of Hamas terrorists in the PA security forces is especially troubling for the United States and Britain, which screened Abbas’ personal guards.

World Jihad in Sinai

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:23
Sinai desertInternational terrorist groups with roots in Libya, Sudan and Iraq are working to take over the Sinai Peninsula, according to a report from the Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center. Efforts to turn the region into a major launching point for attacks are being encouraged by Al-Qaeda head Ayman al-Zawahiri, it stated.
 
The report noted a recent attack near the border as evidence of terrorists’ attempts to take advantage of the anarchy and growing anger in Sinai.
 
Gaza terrorist groups are heavily involved, it noted. “Palestinian terrorist groups active in the Gaza strip are accessible to local Bedouin organizations in Sinai which affiliate themselves with the global jihad, and have both financial and ideological motives."
 
Hamas generally attempts to force international jihad terror groups, including “rebel” groups in Gaza, into following its relatively restrained approach to terrorism, the authors said. Hamas has occasionally declared ceasefires with Israel, apparently fearing a repeat of the Cast Lead counterterror operation of 2008-2009.
 
However, they continued, Hamas leaders are happy to see other groups carry out attacks with no “address” – that is, with no single known terrorist group behind them.
 
Such attacks have included rocket attacks, attacks on Israelis near the border, and weapons smuggling from Sinai to Israel.
 
“Hamas and other organizations are careful to hide this type of activity, and sometimes even to deny it, in order to avoid exposing themselves to an Israeli response,” they noted. In addition, the groups seek to avoid “complicating their relationships with Egypt, particularly in the era after the election of Mohammed Morsi as Egyptian president.”

Hamas to Egypt: Open Rafiah and We'll Close the Tunnels

Category: News
Created on Monday, 13 August 2012 08:51
A smuggling tunnel on the Gaza-Egypt border.Senior Hamas official Salah Bardawil announced on Sunday that his movement would agree to close all the tunnels along the border between Gaza and the Sinai Peninsula, provided that Cairo officially and permanently opens the Rafiah border crossing for traffic.
 
Speaking during a press conference, Bardawil said that the tunnels are “a means the Palestinian people need to deal with the security fence around Gaza and to deal with the blockade.” He added that closure of the tunnels, which are often used by Gaza-based terrorists to smuggle weapons and terrorists to and from Sinai, can only be done if the Egyptian side agrees to permanently open the Rafiah crossing for transfer of goods and people.
 
Egypt has only agreed to open the crossing at Rafiah for limited time periods. The tension in the area has been on the rise, especially since last week when terrorists from Gaza carried out an attack in the Sinai, killing 16 Egyptian officers.
 
The terrorists likely entered Egypt through the smuggling tunnels. After the attack last week, Egypt began to seal off the smuggling tunnels.
 
Bardawil referred to the terror attack and said that Hamas is in regular contact with the leadership in Cairo, and has expressed its full readiness to cooperate with Egypt to find those responsible for the attack. He also claimed that “the only factor which has an interest in being involved in an attack like this is the Israeli occupation.” Hamas’ Prime Minister in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh, made similar accusations against Israel after the attack.
 
Bardawil said that neither Hamas nor its leadership in Gaza have received a message from Egypt which blames says that terror elements in Gaza are for the attack. “We have not received any information that Palestinians were involved in this criminal act,” he said.
 
Bardawil also claimed that Hamas has “strong and solid evidence that Israel is trying to harm the security of Egypt and the Egyptian leadership, because it sees the new regime as a threat to the Zionist enterprise.” He accused Israel of “spreading rumors against Gaza and hurting Hamas’ image.”
 
Cairo last week ordered a huge military and police force into the Sinai to arrest the terrorists who were responsible for the attack on the Egyptian officers. The terrorists then attempted to infiltrate the border into Israel near the Kerem Shalom crossing but were foiled by the IDF.
 
Israel has warned that Palestinian Authority Arab terrorists have been migrating from Gaza to the Sinai Peninsula to set up terrorist training camps, and have begun launching operations from the region.
 
Haniyeh has asked Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi to open up Egypt’s border with Gaza. Morsi, despite his warming up to Hamas, has yet to agree.

Egyptian Group Warns: Hamas is Dangerous

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 31 July 2012 09:08
Morsi shakes hands with Haniyeh  RutersThe Justice and Development Organization for Human Rights in Egypt has called to release Gaza from under the rule of Hamas, which violently seized power in a 2007 coup.
 
The organization released a statement on Monday in the city of Minya, in which it argued that Hamas is an illegal entity and is the main reason for the split in the leadership of the Palestinian Authority as well as for the failure to achieve Palestinian statehood.
 
The organization also said that the strategic purpose of planting Hamas in Gaza is to realize Iran’s goal for the region, which is to establish a Shiite state extending all the way to Lebanon and Syria. The organization said that it is for this reason that Iran provides Hamas with financial and logistical support.
 
Nadi Atef, who heads the organization, condemned the frequent visits by Hamas’ leaders, headed by Khaled Mashaal, to Cairo after the recent election victory of Mohammed Morsi. Atef noted that Hamas was one of the allies of Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime, along with Hizbullah.
 
Atef warned against the transfer of weapons and missiles from Libya by the Muslim Brotherhood to Hamas via the Sinai Peninsula and called to prevent a situation whereby the Sinai Peninsula would become Hamas's military base. According to Atef, vigilance is required against a scenario in which the Muslim Brotherhood will cooperate with the United States and with the consent of Hamas to settle PA Arabs in Sinai.
 
Ever since Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood candidate, won the presidential election in Egypt, he has been tightening relations with Hamas, which is an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood.
 
Morsi has met with Mashaal, his deputy Musa Abu Marzouq and other members of Hamas’s politburo. During the meeting, Morsi stressed the importance he places on Egypt's support “for the Palestinian nation’s struggle to achieve its legitimate rights”, unifying the lines between Hamas and its longtime rival Fatah, supplying Gaza with fuel and electricity and easing the restrictions on the border crossing between Gaza and Egypt.
 
Last week Morsi met with Gaza’s de-facto Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh. Hamas has been asking Morsi to open up Egypt’s border with Gaza, but Morsi has yet to agree.
 
For the time being Egypt has eased the visa requirements for Gazans under 40 who want to travel to Egypt through the Rafiah border crossing into the Sinai.
 
Until now, residents of Gaza within that age bracket have been unable to travel without a visa due to security concerns.

Egypt Further Eases Rafiah Crossing Restrictions

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 24 July 2012 09:53
Egypt - Israel BorderEgypt on Monday eased the visa requirements for Gazans under 40 who want to travel to Egypt through the Rafiah border crossing into the Sinai.
 
"We were officially informed by the Egyptian side about a decision to allow any Palestinian under the age of 40 to travel through Rafah with his family without a visa, starting today,” Hamas official Maher Abu Sabha told reporters.
 
Until now, residen