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January 21, 2017 / 23 Tevet, 5777
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With UN Support, Hamas, Fatah, Can Win the Next War

As one Hamas official put it, "In the next war with Israel, Israelis will be forced to flee not only their homes, but the whole country."

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Palestinians in Ramallah last week celebrated not only the UN General Assembly's upgrading of their status, but their next victory, too.

'Peace Talks' : Palestinians in Ramallah celebrating UN General Assembly's upgrading of their status. (archive)
Photo Credit: Issam Rimawi / Flash 90

Hamas and Islamic Jihad leaders say they are already preparing for the next war with Israel. They say that their groups still have many rockets that will be used against Israel in the future.

As one Hamas official put it, “In the next war with Israel, Israelis will be forced to flee not only their homes, but the whole country.”

Fatah is also preparing for a possible confrontation with Israel, both on the ground and in the international arena. Some Fatah leaders are now talking about a new intifada against Israel, especially in the West Bank and east Jerusalem.

Every step that Israel takes, such as building new housing units in the Jerusalem suburbs, is being viewed by the Fatah leadership as a “war crime” and “act of aggression” on the UN-recognized State of Palestine.

Mahmoud Abbas’s top aides in Ramallah are now talking about filing charges against Israel with the International Criminal Court over plans to withhold tax revenues belonging to the Palestinian government and the construction of the new housing units.

The Palestinians feel that for the first time in decades they have succeeded in rallying most of the world against Israel.

The celebrations that took place in the Gaza Strip and West Bank over the past two weeks are the result of the Palestinians’ belief that they have defeated Israel twice – first during Operation Pillar of Defense, and second at the UN General Assembly, where a majority of countries voted in favor of upgrading their status to Non-Member Observer State.

The Palestinians are convinced that they have managed to defeat the Israelis, both militarily and diplomatically.

Hamas’s continuing control over the Gaza Strip, despite the recent Israeli military offensive, is seen as a victory for the Islamist movement as well as for many Palestinians.

Palestinians who took to the streets to celebrate the victory chanted slogans in support of Hamas’s rockets and missiles, especially those fired toward Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.

Referring to Hamas’s armed wing, Izaddin al-Kassam, jubilant Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip chanted, “Oh, Kassam, bomb, bomb Tel Aviv!” and “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free!”

They were not celebrating the end of the eight-day military offensive, which led to the death of more than 160 Palestinians.

They were celebrating the fact that Hamas and Islamic Jihad had succeeded in launching rockets at Jerusalem and Tel Aviv; that thousands of Israeli families had to sit in bomb shelters or flee their homes because of the rockets, and that for the first time millions of Israelis were living within the range of Iranian-supplied and locally made rockets and missiles.

Even Fatah officials and supporters took to the streets to join the Hamas and Islamic Jihad celebrations. Some Fatah leaders traveled to Gaza to congratulate Hamas and Islamic Jihad — who a few years ago had thrown Fatah members to their deaths off the the tops of buildings and forced them out of Gaza — and to hail their “resistance and steadfastness.”

A week later, in the aftermath of the UN General Assembly vote, it was Fatah’s turn to claim victory over Israel.

The Fatah celebrations also turned into anti-Israel demonstrations and rallies.

Many Palestinians, after the UN vote, celebrated in Ramallah and other West Bank cities, where they chanted slogans in support of Hamas and the armed struggle. At the rallies Palestinians, in a unique show of unity, raised the flags of both Hamas and Fatah.

The Fatah celebrations — which also took place in the Gaza Strip for the first time since 2007 — were not about the upgrading of the Palestinians’ status so much as the feeling that Israel has been humiliated and isolated in the international community.

There has been no mention of the peace process or coexistence with Israel. The belligerent and defiant tone of Fatah officials sent the message that the Palestinians are now headed toward confrontation with Israel — not peace.

Originally published by the Gatestone Institute.

Khaled Abu Toameh

About the Author: Khaled Abu Toameh, an Arab Muslim, is a veteran award-winning journalist who has been covering Palestinian affairs for nearly three decades.

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  1. Arthur B. Levy says:

    sad but unfortunately the balance of power is seriously affected.

  2. A Y Margalios says:

    יחזקאל כ״ה] טו כֹּה אָמַר אֲדֹנָי יְהוִה יַעַן עֲשׂוֹת פְּלִשְׁתִּים בִּנְקָמָה וַיִּנָּקְמוּ נָקָם בִּשְׁאָט בְּנֶפֶשׁ לְמַשְׁחִית אֵיבַת עוֹלָם. טז לָכֵן כֹּה אָמַר אֲדֹנָי יְהוִה הִנְנִי נוֹטֶה יָדִי עַל-פְּלִשְׁתִּים וְהִכְרַתִּי אֶת-כְּרֵתִים וְהַאֲבַדְתִּי אֶת-שְׁאֵרִית חוֹף הַיָּם. יז וְעָשִׂיתִי בָם נְקָמוֹת גְּדֹלוֹת בְּתוֹכְחוֹת חֵמָה וְיָדְעוּ כִּי-אֲנִי יְהוָה בְּתִתִּי אֶת-נִקְמָתִי בָּם

  3. amonseyman says:

    Thank you, Mr. Toameh. With all of the economic turmoil in the world, and the rise of Islamic radicalism, I’m wondering if the non-Muslim UN world is voting with their pocketbook (they don’t want oil access problems), out of fear (that their local Islamic citizens will be incited), or due to their long standing anti-Jewish beliefs or attitudes, since they fail to understand the history and current dynamics of this conflict. You’ve made it clear that the PA and Hamas are locked into their vision of complete conquest and either the elimination or subjugation of all Jews in Israel. Any step toward that goal is a victory, even amidst military defeat. PA/Hamas is part of the vanguard of Islamic territorial expansion, currently stymied by Israel’s presence. Radical Islam is and has been exported all over the world, becoming the flashpoint of violence throughout the world. Yet, countries, across the EU, South America, Africa, even America are increasing afraid or legally strapped to confront this phenomena (the UN can’t even agree to defining terrorism). Any inch, any recognition they can gain, will only serve to fortify their convictions. Any financial help, “for the poor refugees”, is seemingly re-directed toward the purchase of more weaponry (and new cars and villas for leaders). At times, I think the most sensible thing is for Israel to push the west bank into Jordan’s hands and Gaza into Egypt’s. At least then, recognized states will have responsibility for these territories. Let them become the Puerto Rico or Hawaii of these countries. Give those west bankers and gazans access to each other through Jordon and Egypt. Unfortunately, neither country really wants them, unless there’s a lot of financial benefit. So the role of the PA/Hamas entities continues to be to avenge Islam of its territorial defeats, and strive to remove the barriers to territorial expansion for the next Caliphate. The list of territorial targets doesn’t stop at Israel, but includes Spain, Greece, Italy, England, France, etc., etc.

  4. Arthur B. Levy says:

    Monsey man would you be kind enough to divulge your name. The last person to go by this moniker was a certifiable anti Israel nut job. I truly hope you are not him.
    Rabbi Dr. A.B.Levy former Monsey man born in Good Samaritan hospital. Raised in Monsey now known as “Wesley Hills”…

  5. Grace Acosta says:

    Thank you, Khaled Abu Toameh, for daring to tell the truth. I am sure that you are under immense pressure from your community, and I pray that G-d protect you.

  6. amonseyman says:

    No prior associations to this username. Recent Jewish History grad. Lived in Israel, w/family there.

  7. If The UK was invaded and occupied by France I would probably take up arms to drive The French out.

    That's war; & Israel only has itself to blame after the massive land & water thefts in the West Bank.

    Netanyahu wants conquest, not peace. The Pallies know this.

  8. About this turn of events I wrote 35 years ago. Because of that and I was arrested by the communist authorities, which supported the Arabs with weapons, propaganda and political influence, and created the casus "PLO" Arafat – a product of the Soviet system by the Brezhnev era.

    "President" of the Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas. Popular in the PLO and the world with his revolutionary name Abu Mazen. Provide, as I said, the financing of terrorist attack against the Israeli team during the Olympics in Munich `72, "doctor" of the Oriental Institute of Moscow in 1982 with a thesis:" The secret ties between Nazism and the Zionist movement, " view the Holocaust.

    Mahmoud Abbas – the architect of the strategy for the destruction of Israel – not with one stroke, but gradually, in stages, like the creation of a Palestinian state is part of it.

    Union actions of UN and Islam against Israel began with:

    “Manipulative aspects of the Arab-Israeli conflict”.


    and will end with:

    “The Battle for Jerusalem”.


    see also:

    „Who in Bulgaria is Afraid of the book "The Battle for Jerusalem", written by Todor Machkanov?”.


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