22 August 2014

I Think that Hamas is in the Process of Completely Losing their Sh%$

It's not been a good few days for Hamas.

Over the past few days, the Israelis have manage to kill 3 Hamas military leaders, and they almost took out Mohammed Deif, the head out of their military wing, the al-Qassam Brigades.

In response, Hamas has start executing people accused as collaborators on an industrial scale:
One day after three top Hamas commanders were killed in an Israeli airstrike, at least 18 Palestinians were executed Friday by firing squads in Gaza City, sentenced to death by a “resistance court” for collaborating with Israel during a time of war.


A group calling itself the Palestinian Resistance announced on Hamas-affiliated Web sites that 11 alleged collaborators — nine men and two women — were executed by firing squad Friday morning in the courtyard of an abandoned police headquarters.

Witnesses said seven more men were placed against walls with bags over their heads and shot by men in black Hamas uniforms in front of the Al-Umari mosque, according to local news media reports.

Neither Hamas nor the Palestinian Resistance named the alleged collaborators or offered details of the charges against them. They said they were withholding the names to spare their families shame.

The Palestinian Maan news agency reported that some of the bodies were later dumped at al-Azhar University and the Shifa hospital.

Palestinian militants said the informers were found guilty by local courts, supported by religious clerics, of providing information to Israel that led to the destruction of “resistance houses,” as well as revealing the location of tunnels and rocket launchers.

The executions came a day after Israeli aircraft targeted and killed three senior Hamas commanders who had gathered in a building in Rafah in south Gaza.

The targeted killings were celebrated as a major success in Israel and taken as a punishing blow in Gaza, where the Hamas commanders were well known.

Two days earlier, Israel targeted a house where it believed Mohammed Deif, the top commander of the Hamas military wing, was staying. The Israeli bombardment killed Deif’s wife and two of his children. It is still unclear whether Deif survived the strike.
Meanwhile, in Turkey, one of the founders of the al-Qassam Brigade is now claiming that Hamas was responsible for the kidnapping and murder of 3 Israeli teens. Note that he did this from the relative safety of Turkey, where is in exile, and I would take this with a grain of salt:
A veteran Hamas official has said that the Islamist group was behind the kidnapping of three Israeli teenagers in the West Bank – an incident that was a major trigger for the current brutal war in Gaza.

Saleh al-Arouri, one of the founders of Hamas's military wing, made his comments at a conference in Istanbul, where he lives in exile. A tape of his comments was posted online by conference organisers.

"There was much speculation about this operation; some said it was a conspiracy," al-Arouri said at a meeting of the International Union of Islamic Scholars on Wednesday.

"The popular will was exercised throughout our occupied land, and culminated in the heroic operation by [Hamas's armed wing] the Qassam Brigades in imprisoning the three settlers in Hebron."

His claim has not been supported by any other member of Hamas.


Hugh Lovatt, Israel and Palestine coordinator at the European Council on Foreign Relations, said that while al-Arouri was a significant Hamas figure – serving as the group's most prominent representative in Turkey – the former militant could have an ulterior motive for making his claim.

"Given the timing I would be very suspicious about his claim. I still don't believe Hamas as an organisation and its upper echelons sanctioned the kidnappings – something that Israeli intelligence also believes," he said.
I think that both of these actions are tied together by the recent reverses suffered by Hamas leadership.

Under such situations, there is an organizational imperative to show agency, and both the executions, and the claim or responsibility, are an attempt to demonstrate that Hamas is in control of the situation.

Both of the acts are counterproductive to Hamas's goals, hence my comment on their losing their sh%$.

In the long run, I do not think that this make a difference though.

The Middle East:  SSDD.


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