I am vehemently anti-Hamas although not exclusively because they arm themselves and use violence. Every society past and present has used violence to defend itself and/or to protect its interests and will continue to do so. Some were/are "just" causes others were/are not. Violence is & always was an integral element of human nature The type and scale of violence and the "standards" with respect to armed conflict that used to apply - in theory (a gentleman's code if you will / Geneva Convention most recently) - have long since fell by the wayside. Violence is unsavoury in all its forms but Hamas' use of violence and the methods of its equivalents (Radical Islamists) has passed all acceptable thresholds from as far back as the 1970's. Hamas Hijacking: This time it's the Palestinian Cause not an Airplane Hamas claim that they use force to protect their "people" against oppression, occupation, injustice and persecution. This is simply not the case. This disconnect results in tacit and in some cases outright support in the West for the Palestinian cause "represented" by Hamas. However, Hamas has in fact hijacked the Palestinian cause to further an entirely different set of strategic goals. Many in the West who lend this support misunderstand or are taken in by the false propaganda that Hamas peddles to disguise the true objectives of its use of extreme violence and aggression.
Western Audiences Rationalising the Unthinkable People understand others based on their own experiences. When we approach a topic like suicide bombing which is alien to all right thinking people they ask: "Wow...what would it take to make me strap a bomb to my chest to blow up a bunch of innocent people in a neighbouring country?"
Some would say that this type of barbarous activity could only be justified because of provocation of the most extreme kind that resulted in the death of family and friends, or intense humiliation, or pure desperation. The fact is no justification exists that could legitimise anyone committing such a dreadful act. The Role of Veneer Thin Analysis & Biased Media Reportage The Western media then showcases the actions of a large, modern, well-funded army (IDF) apparently crushing an underdog that is fighting with stones and light weapons. They publish pictures of bloodied children in Gaza, bombed out houses and dead civilians to generate the impression that these actions which they describe as atrocities or state sponsored terror fuel the response from Hamas.
Extremism & Frames of Reference Suicide bombing is extreme, but in the context of how the media report it some people see a kind of twisted rationale behind it. However, the public's thinking short circuits when it comes to groups like Boko Haram and ISIS, which all view as barbarians. Every sane person draws a blank when asking themselves "What circumstances would it take for me to behead all the men in a neighbouring town, enslave the women, and rape them until they have my children?" They have no answer - they lack anything resembling a perspective that could comprehend this let alone justify it or support it.
The Israelis as victims of Hamas, the Christians and Muslims of the Northern States of Nigeria as victims of Boko Haram and the Kurds as victims of ISIS and Turkish State Terror all understand the perspective they are dealing with. Hamas, Boko Haram and ISIS all use violence as a form of religious devotion justified by their twisted interpretation of a book that was written 1400 years ago and which they interpret to suit their agenda and to develop their charters. The key difference between Hamas and Boko Haram / ISIS is not its ideology, it is merely that Hamas' military tends to lose more regularly and spectacularly and use that "underdog" being bullied by an aggressor (Israel) as the key ingredient in their propaganda and funding strategies.
They share only one thing - they are murderous extremists who cannot be negotiated with and are entrenched in views which they will not compromise for the sake of peace because they feel their cause is divine. The West labels it all "extremism" without fully realising that in these societies for these people it is normality and indeed seen as a religious duty. The Actual Strategic Objectives of Hamas Hamas' goal with their use of violence is not peace nor is it the achievement of a two state solution and it most certainly is not the defence of the Palestinian people. The Hamas objective is the explicit destruction of the sovereign State of Israel, the elimination of all Jews - man, woman and child, and the purification of a land currently held by non-believing infidels - not just Jews but Christians, Hindu's, Buddhists, minorities - all in fact who are not Radical Islamists. This is not conjecture. The following excerpts are from the Hamas founding charter: On Hamas belief system: Allah is its goal, the Prophet its model, the Qur’an its Constitution, Jihad its path and death for the case of Allah its most sublime belief. On killing Jews (pre-amble): Muslims will fight the Jews and kill them; until the Jews hide behind rocks and trees, which will cry: O Muslim! there is a Jew hiding behind me, come on and kill him! On peace (article 13): Peace initiatives, the so-called peaceful solutions, and the international conferences to resolve the Palestinian problem, are all contrary to the beliefs of the Islamic Resistance Movement. On Israel (article 28) Israel, by virtue of its being Jewish and of having a Jewish population, defies Islam and the Muslims.
From cradle to grave, Hamas and its predecessors have attempted to ingrain in their people a belief that the highest form of religious sacrifice is to commit violence and to give ones life for their "truths" as interpreted by them to suit their sinister agenda. Those who make that sacrifice are honoured in this world and the afterlife - by the governemnt. Streets are named after martyrs: PA names Ramallah street after Hamas terror mastermind
The government has and continues to support this sacrifice by their citizens including their children who they encourage to become Shahid (witness or martyr): Arafat - "Dead Palestinian Children are the Greatest Message to the World"
Hamas possesses a entirely different mentality than Boko Haram or ISIS. Hamas many misinformed Westerners believe use violence to resist the Israeli "occupation" without realising that Hamas refers to the mere existence of Jews in Israel as an "occupation". Bodies of dead and injured civilians are released and picked up globally by a liberal anti-Israeli media and attract audiences who do not understand that Hamas encourages and highlights these tragedies as a key weapon in their black propaganda efforts. An entire Hamas industry exists to stage powerful propaganda videos to elicit sympathy from the broader world. What really happens in Palestinian Media: Pallywood
This is an interesting "60 Minutes" segment about how the Palestinians use their own camera crews and actors to basically set up war scenes in their favour. Observers call it Pallywood:
Global sympathy elicited from pictures and videos of dead children are Hamas' primary defence against the technologically stronger IDF. Sympathy is their primary source of funding from nations and individuals abroad; whether it be from those that are sympathetic to the goal of destroying Israel or those who are sympathetic to Palestinian suffering.
And the real Palestinians are suffering. Through the deprivation of their basic rights, through the stifling of their freedom to live differently, and through the constant state of war they find themselves in from both within and without - fostered by their "protectors" - Hamas.
In summary, I do not disapprove of the use of violence to protect rights and preserve justice and oppose tyranny. But the Palestinians have a government that uses violence for far different reasons and not as a last resort - and rather than protecting free speech they stifle it, rather than uphold the rights of women to vote they suppress it, rather than encouraging new ideas to flourish they crush them, and instead of defending the Palestinian people they place them in harms way - for their own sake, for their twisted ideologies and for their personal enrichment.
The Noble (and Uber Wealthy) Man of the People
Yasser Arafat was the original head of the PLO, the mastermind behind the suicide bombing tactic, and the leader of the Palestinian PR strategy. Hamas has since taken control of Gaza, but they mention their close relationship with the PLO in their charter. Arafat was estimated by Forbes to have a net worth of US$300m at the time of his death, and a peak net worth of over US$1b; almost all of which was international aid and donations. His wife was well-known for her extravagant lifestyle in France, where she rented entire floors of luxury hotels and spent millions on high fashion: Why was €1m a month sent to Arafat's wife?
Sixty Seconds to Show You What Hamas Does With Foreign Aid for its People
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Posted by Alex Knobel on Tuesday, July 29, 2014