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(LifeSiteNews) — After the fallout of the October 7 terrorist attack by Hamas, many questions have been raised about the cascade of apparent failures on the part of Israeli military forces to defend their civilian population, but also, and with great perplexity, reports have surfaced documenting Israel’s ironic and long-standing support for the Gaza-based militant group that attacked and killed many of its citizens.
Hamas, which governs the enclave under the weight of the 15-year Israeli blockade, sent large groups of fighters to break through the barrier fence two months ago bringing about the deaths of a reported 1,200 people, military and civilian, though it is unclear how many lost their lives due to friendly fire from the Israeli military themselves.
Perhaps the most well-known fact in the West regarding Hamas is the explicit commitment in its 1988 Charter to “obliterate” the State of Israel whose army forty years earlier had executed many massacres on their Palestinian population as a means of expelling around 700,000 civilians from their lands and homes. These refugees and their descendants, with those added during the Six-Day War in 1967, now number more than 5.9 million and are distributed in Gaza (70 percent of the overall population), Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and the West Bank, with the right to return to their homeland recognized under international law.
Though Hamas later tempered its rhetoric, they still refuse to recognize the State of Israel which seems reasonable to at least some of the staunchest Zionists. Even David Ben-Gurion, who is recognized as Israel’s primary national founder, once told Nahum Goldmann, president of the World Jewish Congress:
If I were an Arab leader I would never make terms with Israel. That is natural: we have taken their country. . . . We come from Israel, but two thousand years ago, and what is that to them? There has been anti‐Semitism, the Nazis, Hitler, Auschwitz, but was that their fault? They only see one thing: we have come here and stolen their country. Why should they accept that?
And similar to the Hamas charter which rejects any recognition of Israel, the Jewish state’s Likud Party platform also commits to ensure the Palestinian people are never permitted to fulfill their legitimate aspirations to establish a state of their own. The two-state solution plan for peace is supported overwhelmingly by the national governments of the world, along with Catholic, Orthodox and many other Christian churches.
The party of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu states it “flatly rejects the establishment of a Palestinian Arab state west of the Jordan river,” and has been able to thwart such a development through the “sin” of its 56-year military occupation of the region, including its ongoing confiscation of Palestinian territory through the expansion of illegal settlements.
Another strategy employed to achieve this goal has been the long-standing support the Likud Party and the Jewish State have afforded to their presumed enemy, Hamas, who like them, rejects the two-state solution.
The day following the October 7 attack, Tal Schneider, writing in The Times of Israel, recalled how Netanyahu had been exercising this policy of treating Hamas “as a partner” for many years. This tactic was meant to divide Gaza from the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank and its diplomatic pursuit—with the international community—of a two-state solution.
“Hamas was upgraded from a mere terror group to an organization with which Israel held indirect negotiations via Egypt, and one that was allowed to receive infusions of cash from abroad,” Schneider wrote adding the Israeli government “allowed suitcases holding millions in Qatari cash to enter Gaza through its crossings since 2018.”
The policy was “to treat the Palestinian Authority as a burden and Hamas as an asset,” she continued, also making reference to reports in 2019 which quoted Netanyahu’s explicit support for fund transfers to Hamas as a means to scuttle a Palestinian state.
As reported by the Israeli publication Haaretz, the prime minister said the following during a Likud party caucus meeting: “Anyone who wants to thwart the establishment of a Palestinian state has to support bolstering Hamas and transferring money to Hamas. … This is part of our strategy.”
There are very few in the West who are aware of this strong support by Netanyahu for Hamas.
“Anyone who wants to thwart the establishment of a Palestinian state has to support bolstering Hamas and transferring money to Hamas,” Netanyahu told his Likud party’s Knesset members in March 2019. “This is part of our strategy”https://t.co/7lTQs9E5Zf
— Haaretz.com (@haaretzcom) October 9, 2023
Also writing on this topic in Haaretz, Adam Raz provides A Brief History of the Netanyahu-Hamas Alliance, presenting a generous level of evidence on how the long-time premier “has lent a hand, in various ways, to the growing military and political power of Hamas,” implementing “a divide-and-conquer policy vis-a-vis the West Bank and Gaza.”
“His goal was to hurt [Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud] Abbas and prevent division of the Land of Israel into two states,” he writes documenting Netanyahu’s actions in this regard, including the leaking of “top secret” military documents and the thwarting of reconciliation talks between Hamas and Fatah in 2017.
“Benjamin Netanyahu and Hamas have an unspoken political alliance against their common enemy – the Palestinian Authority. In other words, Netanyahu has cooperation and agreement with a group whose goal is the destruction of the State of Israel,” Raz observed. And the October 7 attack is “a result of Netanyahu’s policy.”
“Netanyahu and Hamas are political partners, and both sides have fulfilled their side of the bargain,” he concluded.
And yet, according to a 2014 article in the Washington Post, such support from the Israeli government did not begin with the current prime minister, but was given from the very establishment of Hamas which columnist Ishaan Tharoor says “To a certain degree … has the Jewish state to thank for its existence.”
As early as the 1970’s, Yasser Arafat’s secular Fatah party was “the heart of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO)” and its “operatives in the occupied territories faced brutal repression” from the Israeli occupying forces. By contrast, however, “the activities of Islamists affiliated with Egypt’s banned Muslim Brotherhood were allowed in the open in Gaza.”
Seeing these Islamists “as a useful counterweight” to the PLO, Israel looked favorably on the work of paraplegic cleric Sheikh Yassin who “formed the Islamist group Mujama al-Islamiya which Israel first recognized as a charity and then as an association. “Yassin’s Mujama would become Hamas,” Tharoor wrote.
Presenting another possible motive for such policies, Maronite Patriarch Beshara Rai of Beirut observed in 2014 that “the project of the new Middle East is not dead, but it is in play in light of what we saw of the Arab Spring, which did away with popular movements and replaced them with radical organizations.”
“The goal is to divide the Middle East and create sectarian states so that Israel can live in peace and give itself the justification to be a Jewish state,” he said.
Since the October 7 attack, the Israeli military continues to fiercely bombard the Gaza Strip bringing about the deaths of around 15,899 Palestinians 70 percent of whom are reported to be women and children. This does not include the estimated 7,000 who are still missing, including 4,000 children most of whom are expected to be dead, buried under the rubble of their homes.
As a matter of scale, Israel has massacred more Palestinians in these recent attacks than they have in the previous 22 years combined. Additionally, they have killed far more civilians (as distinct from military casualties) in 59 days than died in 20 months due to the Russia-Ukraine war, on both sides of that conflict (9,701).
Last month Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared Israel to be a “terrorist state,” with his government’s communications directorate quoting him in a post on X: “Israel is implementing a strategy of total annihilation of a city and its people. I say very clearly and frankly that Israel is a terrorist state.” Further, he pledged his nation “will take steps to ensure that Israel’s political and military leaders who brutally murdered the oppressed people of Gaza will face trial in international courts.”
Recent polling in the U.S. reveals that 61 percent of American voters support the idea of their government calling for a “permanent” ceasefire in Gaza, a position the Biden administration has rejected.
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