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November 24, 2014 / 2 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Gaza Strip’

Hamas Rocket Fire Chief Killed in Air Strike

Thursday, July 10th, 2014

Ayman Siam, the head of Hamas’ Rocket Corps, was killed today in an IAF airstrike, the military reported Thursday.

Hamas denied the report, and pledged to continue the jihad at all cost.

In addition, Palestinian sources told Israel Radio that an IAF sortie attacked the home of another Hamas official, Yahiye Sinwaar, who was released in the Gilad Shalit deal.

The Israel Radio report said that Israel has attacked or fired warning shots at more than 20 homes associated with Hamas or Islamic Jihad activists. Palestinians reported that 15 people had been killed in the strikes. Sources in Gaza also said Israel has blown up the interior minister’s office, as well as the central command of Hamas’ internal security service.

Hamas said in a statement that the organisation’s security force would continue to operate as normal despite the attacks.

 

Steinitz: Israel Will Have to Re-Conquer Gaza

Wednesday, July 9th, 2014

Minister for Strategic Affairs Yuval Steinitz warned Wednesday that the campaign against Hamas would not be short, and added that chances are growing that the army will send ground troops into the Gaza Strip to reign in the rocket fire.

Speaking to Israel Radio, Steinitz said “at some point in the future Israel will have no choice but to re-conquer the entire Strip for a period of time. We cannot reconcile ourselves to a terror army armed with thousands of rockets on our borders.”

Hamas Blames PA For Rocket Fire

Sunday, July 6th, 2014

Hamas officials in Gaza have blamed the Palestinian Authority for the ongoing rocket fire from the Strip at Israeli civilians, and said the time may have come to break apart the month-old Palestinian Unity Government. Ahmed Yousef, a senior Hamas official in Gaza, told the Palestinian Ma’an news service that “From a political point of view, (Prime Minister) Rami Hamdallah is responsible and he can give orders to security services to intervene. Hamas is not ruling the Gaza Strip and so it’s not responsible for protecting borders.”

Hamas leaders have justified the rocket fire as an just response to Israeli “collective punishment” while searching for the killers of Eyal Yifrah, Gil-Ad Sha’ar and Naftali Fraenkel, but they also recognize that Israelis are losing patience with the status quo, both in the Gaza Belt region and in Judea and Samaria. Some Israeli leaders have called to resume targeted killings of Hamas leaders, including Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh and Politburo Chief Khaled Mashaal.

At least some Hamas leaders seem to internalise that point, and have moved in recent weeks to disassociate themselves from both the boys’ abduction/murder as well as the rockets that have accompanied Israelis subsequent manhunt, first for Gilad, Naftali and Eyal, and then for their killers.

Ahmed Yousef said Palestinian security forces had attempted to prevent rocket fire, but had not been very successful because “Israeli ‘aggression’ motivates some response, and we can’t ask these bereaved people to stop,” Yousef said.

So much for unity? 

Since the manhunt for Eyal Yifrah, Gil-Ad Sha’ar and Naftali Fraenkel began on June 13, terror cells have fired hundreds of rockets at civilian targets in Israel. Most have landed in open fields, but several homes and public building. In response to those attacks, Israeli Air Force drones and helicopter gunships have attacked terror cells in Gaza virtually every night.

In response to the ongoing Israeli air strikes, and to the ongoing political crisis between Hamas and Fatah, Ma’an reported that Hamas is considering leaving the unity agreement with Fatah and forming a separatist government in Gaza, to be led by Palestinian factions. Yousef said the lack of clear authority in Gaza has left a serious leadership vacuum.

“There is a political vacuum in the Gaza Strip which creates the atmosphere for security chaos, taking into account that the national consensus government has not taken even a single step toward ending political disagreement.

“In Gaza there are ministries without budgets as well as ministers and employees who don’t receive salaries. From a moral and national point of view everybody should work to end this state,” Ma’an quoted Yousef.

Ultimately, however, both Hamas and Israel may have little choice but to continue the status quo – Hamas will continue to fire missiles indiscriminately at Israel, likely with no real intention to harm people or property, and Israel will continue to hold its fire and will not strike strongly enough at Hamas to bring that organization to its knees.

According to Alex Fishman, a veteran Israeli defense correspondent, who wrote in the Hebrew-language Yedioth Aharonoth that eliminating Hamas at this stage would likely bring about a leadership vacuum in Gaza that would be filled by intentional jihadi groups such as ISIS.

And as for Hamas, an organization that is very much on the proverbial ropes after seven years in power, the rocket fire restores some of the organization’s credibility on the Palestinian street. For Ismail Haniyeh, the name of the political game is simple, and can be summed up in one word: survival.

But if the goal of leaving Hamas in power in Gaza is to a joint Israeli-Hamas interest, there is only one possible response: Such strange bedfellows makest the Middle East.

Al-Nasser Salah Al-Din Terrorists Take Claim for Rocket Strikes

Monday, June 30th, 2014

The Al-Nasser Salah Al-Din Brigades terror organization has taken credit for 6 or 7 of the rockets that have hit Israel yesterday (Sunday).

Al-Nasser Salah Al-Din is a military wing of the Gaza PRC (Popular Resistance Committees). This terror organization claims it has no connection to the terrorist groups that are active in Judea and Samaria.

The two terrorists killed Friday were part of their rocket crew.

This is the first time in a few months that a specific terror organization has taken credit for the rocket launches.

Al-Nasser Salah Al-Din terrorists participated in the operation that captured Gilad Schalit.

Photos from the funeral of the two rocket terrorists link this terror organization to ISIS (Daash in Arabic), the terror organization that has taken over Iraq, and trying to establish a caliphate over the entire Middle East.

Hamas denies that ISIS is active in the Gaza Strip.

Ultimately, following the reconciliation between Hamas and Fatahm the Palestinian Unity Government (PUG) is responsible for all terror activities in Gaza and other areas they control.

The Two-State Solution Is Obsolete

Wednesday, November 20th, 2013

The Americans, the Europeans and the international community in general are constantly demanding the implementation of a two-state solution based on the 1967 borders. For example, when French President Francois Hollande spoke at the Knesset recently, he stated, “We need a compromise through a two-state solution.” He emphasized that Jerusalem should be a shared capital city of both the Jewish and Palestinian peoples and stressed that settlement construction should come to an end. Statements by US President Barack Obama, US Secretary of State John Kerry, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, and Britain’s Prime Minister David Cameron are very similar to Hollande’s.

However, any political analysis of the current situation on the ground in the Holy Land would suggest that such models are an obsolete way of thinking. For starters, the Gaza Strip and the Palestinian Authority are not controlled by the same political entity. The Gaza Strip is controlled by the Hamas terrorist organization, who to date refuses to reconcile with the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority. By refusing to sign a reconciliation agreement with Fatah, Hamas has essentially ensured that there can be no united Palestinian leadership. If there is no united Palestinian leadership, there can’t be a unified Palestinian state.

History is full of examples of entities that broke up because they were separated by geographic distance and cultural differences. Bangladesh used to be East Pakistan. However, the culture in Bangladesh is very different from the Pakistani mentality. In Pakistan, they primarily speak Urdu, while the language in Bangladesh is Bangla. The Bangladeshi people felt oppressed by Pakistan. Some Bangladeshis accuse them of committing genocide against them. Furthermore, Pakistan was geographically disconnected from them and so they decided to break off to become a separate country.

The situation is quite similar in regards to the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority and the Hamas-dominated Gaza Strip. Fatah supporters in the Gaza Strip feel oppressed by Hamas and Hamas supporters within the Palestinian Authority view the Fatah leadership with disdain. Furthermore, the populations in Gaza and Judea and Samaria are very different from each other culturally speaking. The Arabs living in Judea and Samaria are more liberal and cosmopolitan than the ones living in the Gaza Strip. To add insult to injury, the two territories are geographically disconnected from each other and the two populations rarely intermarry with each other.

The Fatah-Hamas divide in itself should have killed the idea of a two-state for two peoples’ paradigm. This should be the case especially given the fact that Hamas refuses to recognize the existence of the Jewish state as well and states specifically in their charter that they are opposed to all peace negotiations. They support waging a violent jihad until Israel ceases to exist. For them, it is war until either Israel vanishes or they cease to exist.

Even if Fatah recognizes Israel’s right to exist, in the absence of a military defeat of Hamas, two-states for two peoples living in peace is a fairy tale for children. Yet interestingly enough, even Fatah remains committed to destroying Israel in phases, refuses to recognize Israel as a Jewish state, and views the two-states for two-people’s paradigm merely as the first phase towards liberating all of Palestine. Given this reality, it is time for the international community to consider other models for resolving the Palestinian-Israeli conflict in the absence of paradigms that have been proven to be unworkable.

Hamas Admits: We Dug Up the Tunnel to Kidnap Israelis

Monday, October 21st, 2013

The Hamas organization accepted responsibility on Sunday for the digging of the “terror tunnel” exposed by the IDF a week and a half ago in the area between Kibbutz Ein Hashlosha and the Gaza Strip border.

It turns out the Hamas has a “military arm,” which is responsible for doing the bad things, while the “civilian arm” continues to receive donations from the nice folks in Europe. This way they make sure that the money donated to Hamas is only used to feed orphans and widows, all of them 100 percent victims of Israeli genocide.

On Sunday, a spokesman for the bad Hamas, a gentleman nicknamed Abu Ubaida, after a medieval Muslim language scholar (on account of the talking, you get it, right?), told the Hamas radio station in Gaza that the Hamas military force “dug the tunnel and were responsible for it.”

Abu Ubaida stated that the tunnel was dug in an attempt to kidnap an Israeli soldier or civilian, and use them to force Israel to release the remaining thousands of Palestinian prisoners in its jails.

Israel has established many times in the past that not only is it happy to negotiate with terrorist, but that it’s willing to give away the story. The going rate for 1,000 jailed Arabs is one captured Israeli.

In 2011, 1,027 Palestinian prisoners, who were collectively responsible for 569 Israeli deaths, were released in exchange for Gilad Shalit. The campaign to release him (see the girls below painting his portrait on the pavement) reassured Hamas that they don’t need to ever give up anything in negotiations, or recognize, not even on paper, the Jews’ right to live. All they need is to get them a succulent Israeli with good, middle class parents.

Free_Gilad_Shali

It should be noted that the IDF blamed Hamas for the tunnel as soon as it was discovered. It also blamed winter for rain, and summer for those long, hot days in August.

It should also be noted that the tunnel required some 500 tons of cement, which was produced in Israel and provided to the Arabs in Gaza for the explicit purpose of rebuilding their neighborhoods following the 2012 Operation Pillar of Defense.

It appears that the Arabs went ahead and used that precious cement to aggressive ends, rather than to construct their homes. In fact, the IDF estimated that an astounding 20% of Hamas’s annual budget goes into building terror tunnels.

This is astonishing, in light of the fact that they’ve never done anything like that before, and no one in Israel could have imagined this kind of treachery. This is a moral failure on the part of the bad Hams, and we certainly hope the good Hamas will give them a sound rebuke!

The tunnel, incidentally, was 45 feet deep in places, and looks like a mini subway tunnel, complete with a track and a small car that could be used to whisk away the kidnapped soldier, even as his or her parents are being called and urged to start organizing a mass grassroots movement to release a thousand murderers.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu congratulated the IDF for the discovery, saying it’s all part of Israel’s new, aggressive security policy, which is the reason why we’ve had the “quietest year in a decade” in Gaza, despite the rise in terrorist activity in recent years.

Of course, it could be that the reason the Arabs have been so quiet is that they’re all underground, digging up tunnels.

It’s interesting to note that the Egyptian Army has found a very effective way of securing its own border with the Gaza Strip: they caved in all the tunnels with bulldozers, then used the same bulldozers to raze a swath of several kilometers worth of buildings, creating a no man’s area where Arabs who dare to enter will be shot.

Could we contract the same Egyptians to fix our Gaza problem?

Hamas Threatens Egypt, Israel and Palestinian Authority

Monday, September 30th, 2013

Originally published at Gatestone Institute.

As Egypt steps up security restrictions along its border with the Gaza Strip, Hamas and some Palestinian terror groups have been holding “military parades” in a bid to show that they are prepared for war.

The parades, which saw hundreds of heavily armed militiamen march through the streets, are mainly intended to send a message of warning to Egypt’s new rulers against any attempt to launch a military offensive inside the Gaza Strip.

Some Hamas leaders are convinced that the Egyptians are preparing to launch a military strike against the Gaza Strip under the pretext of combatting terror in Sinai.

However, the show of force by Hamas and its allies is also designed to send a warning message to Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

Hamas believes that Israel and the Palestinian Authority are directly involved in an Egyptian-led scheme to overthrow their regime and bring Mahmoud Abbas’s forces back to the Gaza Strip.

The parades are also intended to send a warning message to Abbas as to what awaits him and his loyalists if they dare enter the Gaza Strip with the help of Israel and Egypt.

Given Hamas’s growing isolation in the aftermath of the downfall of the Muslim Brotherhood regime in Cairo and the Egyptian authorities’ severe and unprecedented restrictions along the border, there is no underestimating the threats coming out of the Gaza Strip.

If the leaders of Hamas believe that the Egyptians are determined to undermine or topple their regime, they will not hesitate to initiate a new military confrontation with Israel.

In public, Hamas leaders and members say that the “military parades” are aimed at sending a warning message to Israel, and not Egypt.

But in private, several Hamas leaders and spokesmen admit that the biggest and most immediate threat to their regime is coming from Egypt.

The Egyptian authorities see the threats as being directed first and foremost toward Egypt.

This explains why Egypt’s Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy this week deemed it necessary to warn Hamas of a “harsh response” if it threatened his country’s national security. Fahmy said the response would include “military and security choices.”

Days before the warning, hundreds of gunmen belonging to Hamas’s armed wing, Izaddin al-Kassam, staged a provocative march near the border with Egypt, carrying photos of deposed Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi and chanting slogans against the “military coup” in Cairo.

In yet another sign of mounting tensions between the two sides, Egyptian border guards stationed along the border with the Gaza Strip have been hurling abuse and threats at Hamas policemen and Palestinian farmers, Palestinians living in the area said this week.

Palestinian fishermen have also fallen victim to the standoff between Hamas and the Egyptian authorities.

Last week, five fishermen were each sentenced by an Egyptian military court to one year in prison for fishing in Egyptian territorial waters.

Earlier, Egyptian naval forces detained and severely beat other fishermen for approaching Egypt’s territorial waters.

Despite the show of force, Hamas would never dare to initiate a military confrontation against the Egyptian army. Hamas will find it easier to fire rockets at Israel than launch terror attacks against the Egyptians.

Hamas is fully aware that such a confrontation would spark a harsh response from the Egyptians — one that would surely lead to the collapse of its regime. Previous confrontations between Hamas and the Israel Defense Forces would then look like children’s games compared to a clash with the Egyptian or any other Arab army.

That is why Israel needs to be prepared for the possibility of another war with Hamas and its allies in the Gaza Strip.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/columns/khaled-abu-toameh/hamas-threatens-egypt-israel-and-palestinian-authority/2013/09/30/

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