Union based on terror

Since last Sunday, Hamas and Fatah, with, as usual, Qatar as their sponsor – the state that always qualifies as the protector of all of the Arab world most extreme tendencies – have been seeking unity in meetings held in Doha.

This unity requires the agreement on financing, leadership and bureaucratic organisms, but although expressed in so many different ways, in the end bears the signs of terrorism and of anti-Israeli hatred.

The latest news is that Hamas is welcoming Isis terrorists in its headquarters in Gaza to offer them medical treatment in its hospitals. The world’s most wanted head choppers fighters are being introduced into the Strip in exchange for money, weapons and goods.

They come in from Sinai through the tunnels built by Hamas along its border, and are then accompanied to the Nasser hospital in the city of Khan Yunis. These news, based on Arab sources, were released by the Israeli General Yoav Mordechai, head of Coordination of Government Activities in the Territories.

The fact that Isis enjoys a safe heaven in Gaza, a land of Sunni Islam extremism, is only natural, and was already known. Even more natural is the fact that Hamas is happy to help the organization of cutthroats now that Egypt has stopped any form of friendly relations with Ismail Hanjieh and its acolytes.

Egypt has destroyed dozens of tunnels that lead from Gaza into its territory in Sinai, by flooding them or blowing them up. The Arab portal Elaph has even affirmed that Egypt uses Israeli drone photographs to identify and demolish the tunnels.

The underground galleries, veritable backlines of Hamas terror, often used as casemates and refuges as well, are the pearl of Hamas strategy, its way of stocking up on goods, money and weapons and of bringing terrorist attacks to Israel.

Their construction progresses every day. Lately, the last one occurring last Monday, a series of collapses has killed the young Palestinians digging and fortifying the tunnels.

The latest one was 27 years old. Hamas has celebrated the tunnel victims as heroes and martyrs. In addition to the words, these events indicate a feverish activity as well as strategic and economic difficulties that have been hounding Hamas for quite some time now and are now leading it to seek a new alliance with Fatah. In Israel, the Chief of Staff General Eizenkoth as declared that the Israeli army is acquiring new means for identifying and attacking the tunnels, and has reacted only saying “God knows” to the hypothesis that the fallen tunnels were destroyed by the Israeli Army.

Last Sunday, Hamas called out to renew the use of suicide attacks . In a musical video, Hamas praises the terrorists standing in front of a bus in flames, the green and white bus of the Israeli Egged company, and says “The Intifada is not Intifada if the bus doesn’t blow up”.

At these most cruel words, our memory immediately shifts to the second Intifada, with its many explosions of buses in the years from 2001 to 2005. The six-minute clip also shows a Hamas terrorist getting on to the bus.

Another episode in Hamas’s surge in activity was the execution, occurred three days ago, of one of its military senior officials, Mahmoud Eshtawi, the man on charge with overseeing the tunnels.

“The Al Qassam Brigades (Hamas’s armed wing) announce that the death penalty pronounced against its member, Mahmoud Eshtawi, has been applied today at 4pm hours” was the laconic statement. Sites connected with Fatah have said that Eshtawi had guided the Israeli to the hide-out of the commander Muhammed Deif, the mythical ‘Scarlet Pimpernel’ of terror, who, like many times before, however, managed to escape the ambush.

Hamas’s fibrillation explains the attempt to reconcile with Fatah, which in turn doesn’t miss a chance to praise and encourage the terrorists.

In December, Israel discovered a Hamas cell that was planning terror attacks in Eastern Jerusalem, and a little while later over twenty members of the organization, most of whom students of the Abu Dis university, were arrested.

Abu Mazen, worried about the presence of Hamas in his territory, equally attempts to compete in extremism: he has welcomed in his Muqata with the highest honors the families of the attackers, and his TV is all a hymn to the terrorist shahid.

The proposed unity seems to be the prop of two forces undergoing difficulties, i.e. Hamas that lacks economic and logistic support, and Fatah that is losing ground among the young generations.

This article originally appeared in slightly different form in Italian in Il Giornale (February 10, 2016)

About the Author
Fiamma Nirenstein is a journalist, author, former Deputy President of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the Italian Chamber of Deputies, and member of the Italian delegation at the Council of Europe.
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