Free the Palestinians from Hamas

If we have learned anything over the past 15 years and in particular the last few weeks, it is that Hamas, the terrorist organization that controls Gaza, wants death and destruction above all else. This is a terrorist organization that cares more about killing Jews than helping Muslims. If the international community really wants to help Palestinians like me, they should stop singling out Israel and hold Hamas accountable for its actions. Our people need to be freed from Hamas — not Israel.

This group has used manipulative and fear-mongering tactics to control our people and convince us we have no other problems except for Israel. Nothing good will come from supporting this genocidal terrorist organization. It saddens me to see how some of my Palestinian brothers have been attracted to Hamas lately. This has more to do with the pathetic state of Fatah and the Palestinian Authority than anything else. But the corruption and ineptitude of one party is no excuse to embrace the genocidal mania of another.

Much of the blame for this falls on the international media. Throughout the last couple of weeks, we have seen the press twist and exploit events in Sheikh Jarrah and Al Aqsa to whip people up into a frenzy. Hamas took advantage of this to start a war with Israel and solidify their political standing over Fatah. The international community, which always predetermines Israeli culpability, ignored the blatant fact that a terrorist organization was continuously shooting rockets at Israeli civilians without provocation.

It is shameful and sad to see so many news organizations and international NGOs utterly refuse to acknowledge the havoc Hamas has wreaked, putting all the blame on Israel for retaliating with precision missile strikes against Hamas military targets. How have we come to the point that an organization that promotes indiscriminate violence, suicide bombings, child martyrdom, and much more, is considered the good guy by the West? There is no logic behind this thinking; Hamas will work to destroy our communities and any prospects for peaceful coexistence.

It is obvious to any honest observer that Hamas is not interested in protecting our families, expanding economic opportunity, or otherwise improving life for Palestinians. Their leadership — safely ensconced in luxury accommodations in Qatar — only wants to encourage violence between Muslims and Jews. This advances their ultimate goal of pushing the Jews into the sea, and it has the added benefit of keeping the international sympathy and aid money flowing. For those of us who care about peace and progress, it is long past time for us to separate ourselves from Hamas.

About the Author
Bassem Eid (born 5 February 1958) is a Palestinian living in Israel who has an extensive career as a Palestinian human rights activist. His initial focus was on human rights violations committed by Israeli armed forces, but for many years has broadened his research to include human rights violations committed by the Palestinian Authority (PA), and the Palestinian armed forces on their own people. He founded the Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring Group in 1996, although it ceased operations in 2011. He now works as a political analyst for Israeli TV and radio.
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