Thursday, November 21, 2019

Iran's Proxies United Against Israel

Iran's Palestinian Proxies: United Against Israel

  • Hamas is hardly on its way to transforming itself into a non-violent movement that would uphold Israel's right to exist. Its decision to refrain, this time, from pounding Israel with rockets is in no way a sign of moderation or pragmatism. Instead, the terror group needs a break from the fighting in order to prepare better for its main goal: to take down Israel down, once and for all.

  • Hamas leaders – like their PIJ counterparts – are motivated for their own well-being; the well-being of the two million Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip is a joke to them. Why else would PIJ endanger their people by forcing Israel to respond to the launching of hundreds of rockets toward Israeli civilian communities?

  • This is not a good guy/bad guy scenario. Instead, it is a temporary rift between two extremely bad guys, both of whom are wholly committed to destroying Israel, even if that means destroying their own people along the way as well.

Iran's Palestinian proxies, Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), after last week's round of aggression towards Israel, are said to be at odds with each other. PIJ is reportedly disturbed that Hamas did not join in firing rockets at Israel in retaliation for Israel's assassination of senior PIJ commander Bahaa Abu al-Ata in the Gaza Strip. PIJ, it seems, feels that Hamas left it out in the cold.

The two terror groups may not enjoy a full meeting of minds – as witnessed by Hamas's current failure to bombard Israel with rockets, but these differences are unlikely to escalate into a major confrontation between Hamas and PIJ.

At the end of the day, both groups share the same strategy and goals, as well as the same "enemy" – Israel. They may disagree, but when it comes to waging jihad (holy war) and eliminating Israel, Hamas and PIJ always manage to find common ground.

PIJ's disappointment in Hamas has nothing to do with Hamas's recognizing Israel's right to exist and laying down its weapons: Hamas has done neither. Rather, PIJ and its supporters are disappointed because Hamas chose to refrain, this time, from firing rockets into Israel when PIJ was busy doing just that last week.

Hamas, of course, remains committed to its ideology. Its charter, to which it also remains committed, states:

"There is no solution to the Palestinian problem expect by jihad. Palestine has been an Islamic Waqf throughout the generations and until the Day of Resurrection; no one can renounce it or part of it, or abandon it or part of it."

Hamas's charter also makes it clear that the terrorist group "views the other Islamic movements with respect and appreciation." The charter goes on to explain that even when Hamas "differs from them in one aspect or another on one concept or another, it agrees with them on other points and understandings."

In the past few days, Hamas leaders have been working hard to reassure their friends in PIJ that despite the tensions that erupted between them after the assassination of the PIJ commander, the two groups remain "brothers in blood and weapons." This position is in total keeping with the spirit of its charter, in which Hamas "prays to Allah for guidance and directions for all, and spares no effort to keep the banner of unity raised."

The message Hamas leaders have been sending to their friends in PIJ is, in effect: "Although we may disagree on certain issues, we must remain united in order to achieve our main goal – the destruction of Israel."

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