Monday , 27 May 2024

Hamas Destroys Gaza, Now Trying to Claim That a ‘Victory’

gatestoneinstitute.org – The prospect of Hamas declaring or celebrating “victory” worries not only Israel, but many Arabs — including Palestinians — who want to see the terrorist group completely destroyed and removed from power, but are often afraid to speak out for fear of retaliation.

“The continuity of Hamas’s rule in Gaza is an ultra mega major disaster for the Palestinian people’s aspirations, cause, hope for the reconstruction of the battered coastal enclave, and prospects for a new path forward to bring about progress, reconciliation, coexistence & peace.” — Ahmed Fouad Alkhatib, “Proud American from Gaza City; pro-Palestine, pro-peace, anti-Hamas”, X, April 8, 2024.

Hamas, clearly buoyed by having the US on their side, has unsurprisingly hardened its position. It is now and is saying it wants Israel to make even more concessions.

Where is any US pressure on Hamas, Iran or Qatar?

“Yes, Hamas thanked the United States. When a terrorist group is thanking you, you’re probably doing something wrong.” — Joe Truzman, senior research analyst, X, April 9, 2024.

The Hamas terrorists have only been emboldened by the Biden administration’s growing hostility towards Israel and its demand that Israel end the war, a move that would effectively be a surrender to Hamas.

“What victory are you talking about? Are you in your right mind? [Hamas has brought] complete devastation; thousands killed and displaced…. This is what the terrorist Hamas group, Iran’s puppet, brought upon the people of Gaza. The leaders of Hamas defeated the people of Gaza and exterminated them without mercy.” — Omar Shaybalras, X, April 9, 2024.

“Gaza has been destroyed, starved, slaughtered…. The people of Gaza are cursing Hamas, [Palestinian] Islamic Jihad, and Iran…. The members of Hamas’s armed wing use children as human shields.” — Osama al-Ali ,member of the Palestinian National Council, the PLO’s parliament-in-exile, television interview, X, December 7, 2023.

“As long as [Hamas leaders Ismail] Haniyeh, [Yahya] Sinwar and [Khaled] Mashaal are alive, it is a victory for them, As for the destruction and the blood of the women and children of Gaza, it is a profitable enterprise as far as Hamas is concerned.” — Abdallah Abou Aymen, April 9, 2024.

Unlike the Biden administration and anti-Israel protestors in the West, these observers understand that Hamas, Iran and Qatar are fully and solely responsible for the mass destruction and high casualties in the Gaza Strip…. We are already seeing calls for “Death to America” in America. A ceasefire would save Hamas, allow it to continue preparing for future massacres against Israelis, and enable Iran and Qatar to “export the Revolution” even more aggressively.

Above all, a US-bestowed, fake “victory” for Hamas would assure China, Russia and other predators that belligerency works and incentivize them to put the finishing touches on what many perceive as an “ultra mega major disaster” of a presidential legacy.

Hamas, clearly buoyed by having the US on their side, has unsurprisingly hardened its position. It is now and is saying it wants Israel to make even more concessions.Where is any US pressure on Hamas, Iran or Qatar? Pictured: Yahya Sinwar (L), leader of Hamas in the Gaza Strip, shares some laughs with senior Hamas leaders Khalil al-Haya (C) Ismail Haniyeh (R) in Rafah on February 24, 2017. (Photo by Said Khatib/AFP via Getty Images)

The Iran-backed Palestinian terrorist group Hamas is reportedly preparing to hold “victory” rallies if and when the war in the Gaza Strip ends. Many Arabs, however, have scoffed at Hamas’s expected celebrations and accused the terrorist group and its patrons in Tehran of destroying the Gaza Strip.

“A friend in the City of Rafah told me he saw large signs and banners being printed/prepared by Hamas to hold ‘victory rallies’ that the Islamist group plans on having when a ceasefire/hostage deal is announced, highlighting the withdrawal of IDF troops from Gaza as an achievement,” said Ahmed Fouad Alkhatib, who describes himself as a “proud American from Gaza City; pro-Palestine, pro-peace, and anti-Hamas,” who lost 31 family members in the Israel-Hamas war.

Alkhatib’s remarks came in the aftermath of the withdrawal of IDF forces from the southern Gaza Strip. The move has been falsely read by Hamas and its supporters as an Israeli retreat and defeat, and a “victory” for the terrorist group. Israeli officials, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, have emphasized that the war to destroy Hamas’s military capabilities and release the remaining 133 Israeli hostages held by Hamas inside the Gaza Strip will continue, notwithstanding the IDF pullout from the southern Gaza Strip.

The prospect of Hamas declaring or celebrating “victory” worries not only Israel, but many Arabs — including Palestinians — who want to see the terrorist group completely destroyed and removed from power, but are often afraid to speak out for fear of retaliation.

Alkhatib remarked in another post on X:

“The continuity of Hamas’s rule in Gaza is an ultra mega major disaster for the Palestinian people’s aspirations, cause, hope for the reconstruction of the battered coastal enclave, and prospects for a new path forward to bring about progress, reconciliation, coexistence & peace.”

Upon hearing about Hamas’s plans to celebrate “victory,” some Arabs took to social media to voice their disgust with the terrorist group for bringing disaster and death on the two million Palestinian residents of the Gaza Strip. The reactions of the Arabs show that, unlike the Biden administration, they see any ceasefire in the Gaza Strip as a lifeline for Hamas.

The Biden administration has been pressing Israel to agree to a unilateral ceasefire and increase the amount of humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip. Now that Israel has withdrawn its troops from the Gaza Strip and significantly increased the amount of humanitarian aid, Hamas, clearly buoyed by having the US on their side, has unsurprisingly hardened its position. It is now saying it wants Israel to make even more concessions.

Where is any US pressure on Hamas, Iran or Qatar?

It is no wonder, then, that Hamas has thanked the Biden administration for its efforts to end the war. According to senior research analyst Joe Truzman:

“An example of the effect the Biden administration is having on Israel’s position: Yesterday, Hamas published a statement thanking the mediators involved in the ceasefire negotiations, including Qatar, Egypt and the United States.

“Yes, Hamas thanked the United States. When a terrorist group is thanking you, you’re probably doing something wrong.”

“There is no progress in the negotiations,” asserted Taher al-Nunu, a senior Hamas official.

“Hamas has clear demands for a ceasefire, which include ending the Israeli aggression, allowing the return of displaced persons to Gaza City and the northern sector without restrictions, rebuilding the [Gaza Strip], and ending the siege.”

Palestinian sources said the Egyptian and Qatari mediators presented a new proposal in the latest round of talks for a ceasefire in three stages. The first calls for the return of displaced Palestinians civilians to the northern Gaza Strip without specifying their numbers. The second and third stages call for permitting the entry of 500 aid trucks a day to all areas of the Gaza Strip and the release of 900 Palestinian terrorists held in Israeli prisons, in return for the Israeli hostages.

Hamas leaders hiding in the tunnels in the Gaza Strip or staying in luxurious villas and five-star hotels in Qatar are in no rush to strike a ceasefire deal: they see that the Biden administration is stepping up the pressure not on Hamas, but on Israel. The Hamas terrorists have only been emboldened by the Biden administration’s growing hostility towards Israel and its demand that Israel end the war, a move that would effectively be a surrender to Hamas.

If the Biden administration, including the State Department, want to learn about the sentiments among Arabs towards Hamas, all they need to do is read the comments of these Arabs who are ridiculing the terrorist group for preparing to celebrate “victory.”

“What victory are you talking about? Are you in your right mind?” commented social media user Omar Shaybalras.

“[Hamas has brought] complete devastation; thousands killed and displaced. The smell of death is everywhere. Hunger, epidemic and poverty. This is what the terrorist Hamas group, Iran’s puppet, brought upon the people of Gaza. The leaders of Hamas defeated the people of Gaza and exterminated them without mercy.”

Racha, another social media user, wrote on X:

“All of Gaza has been reduced to rubble. Can someone explain to me how Hamas considers itself victorious? Its entire territory is destroyed and its people are dead, physically and psychologically. What is important is that the leaders of Hamas will be fine underground! It will take 100 years to rebuild the Gaza Strip. Can someone explain to me where the victory is?!”

Osama al-Ali ,member of the Palestinian National Council, the PLO’s parliament-in-exile, said in a TV interview:

“Gaza is finished. Gaza has been destroyed, starved, slaughtered. Those fools in the Arab world who are cheering Hamas and celebrating its so-called victory, are they able to fathom what has happened to Gaza? Have they seen the children of Gaza being pulled from under the rubble? The people of Gaza are cursing Hamas, [Palestinian] Islamic Jihad, and Iran. Where are the leaders of Hamas? Why are they hiding inside the tunnels located under the buildings? They built tunnels under buildings. The members of Hamas’s armed wing use children as human shields. Children are being killed because the Hamas men are hiding under their houses.”

Saleh, a social media user from Saudi Arabia, called for expelling the Hamas leaders from Qatar:

“Why are the leaders of Hamas in Qatar? What did the leaders of Hamas offer to the Palestinian people? They only destroyed the future of the people of Gaza. Massive destruction, killing and displacing the people of Gaza, destroying their homes and destroying all services. This is Hamas’s project. In my opinion, expelling the Hamas leaders from Qatar is a national and Islamic duty.”

Abdel Nader Eldeeb, another Arab social media pundit, said that whoever believes that Hamas won the war is insane:

“Whoever believes this must have an empty mind. Hamas was victorious after the destruction of more than 70% of Gaza, more than 40,000 martyrs, half of whom were children, and more than 100,000 wounded and missing.”

Another Arab social media account called Asayel Lover, also noted that Hamas’s purported victory has brought nothing but death and catastrophe to the people of the Gaza Strip:

“What a victory, when Gaza lost more than 30,000 martyrs from its people. What a victory, when Gaza has become rubble, and most of the ruins of homes were demolished on its inhabitants. What a victory, when Hamas caused the destruction of the entire infrastructure of Gaza and the cities, and what a victory, when the people of Gaza are besieged without food, water, medicine, or homes to shelter them. Is what happened to Gaza because of Hamas considered a victory?”

“As long as [Hamas leaders Ismail] Haniyeh, [Yahya] Sinwar and [Khaled] Mashaal are alive, it is a victory for them,” wrote Abdallah Abou Aymen, another Arab social media activist.

“As for the destruction and the blood of the women and children of Gaza, it is a profitable enterprise as far as Hamas is concerned. [Hamas official Musa] Abu Marzouk has previously said it explicitly: the tunnels are where Hamas hides, and the residents of Gaza are the responsibility of the United Nations, which should protect them.”

Saudi social media user Abdullah al-Tuwaili said:

“From hotels and tunnels they [Hamas leaders] declare: The destruction of Gaza: a victory for Hamas. The killing of the people of Gaza: a victory for Hamas. The displacement of the people of Gaza: a victory for Hamas. The only defeat for them is Hamas not ruling Gaza, but killing, displacement and destruction are secondary matters that they consider a victory for them!!”

Another Arab, Abdul Habib Othman, commented:

“Hamas is a terrorist organization that carries out the orders of its masters in Tehran. Hamas is the one who opened the gates of hell on Gaza and is the only one responsible for the destruction of Gaza. The tyrants of Hamas and their families are enjoying themselves in Qatar, Turkey, Tehran and Lebanon, while Gaza has been completely destroyed. Young children are dying of hunger. Israel is better than you [Hamas leaders]. The Israelis are people who produce and manufacture.”

Unlike the Biden administration and anti-Israel protestors in the West, these observers understand that Hamas, Iran and Qatar are fully and solely responsible for the mass destruction and high casualties in the Gaza Strip. These observers also understand that a ceasefire would have grave repercussions for Israel, the Middle East and the entire West. We are already seeing calls for “Death to America” in America. A ceasefire would save Hamas, allow it to continue preparing for future massacres against Israelis, and enable Iran and Qatar to “export the Revolution” even more aggressively.

Most observers do not want to see Hamas celebrating some make-believe “victory.” Failure to destroy Hamas’s remaining military infrastructure would embolden the Iranian regime and its terror proxies and pose an existential threat not only to Israel, but also to other counties in the region already feeling squeezed by the octopus arms of Iran.

Above all, a US-bestowed, fake “victory” for Hamas would assure China, Russia and other predators that belligerency works and incentivize them to put the finishing touches on what many perceive (for instance hereherehere and here) as an “ultra mega major disaster” of a presidential legacy.

Bassam Tawil is a Muslim Arab based in the Middle East. The work of Bassam Tawil is made possible through the generous donation of a donor who wished to remain anonymous. Gatestone is most grateful.

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