ISIS’ Sinai Attacks Show Real Threat to Hamas

Hamas fighters (Photo: Video screenshot)

Hamas fighters (Photo: Video screenshot)

Clarion Project, by Ryan Mauro, July 3, 2015:

The attacks on Egypt in the Sinai Peninsula by the Islamic State (ISIS) this week shows why its new vow to topple Hamas in the Gaza Strip should be taken seriously. Polls show that Palestinians have the highest level of sympathy for ISIS in the Arab world with the possible exception of Syria.

ISIS has killed at least 17 Egyptian security personnel (13 soldiers and 4 police officers) and injured 30 in coordinated attacks that reflect increasing sophistication.  The Egyptian military said 70 Islamist terrorists participated and five checkpoints were assaulted. ISIS claims it struck 15 sites all at once.

The Egyptian government immediately accused the Muslim Brotherhood of involvement as it has in the past. Egypt also claims Hamas, the Brotherhood’s Palestinian wing, is secretly supporting ISIS operations in the Sinai Peninsula. It has even threatened to attack Hamas in Gaza in response.

The Egyptian claims are questionable because of the open animosity between the two groups and ISIS’ new video pledging to conquer the Gaza Strip, but the Israeli military confirmed the links after Wednesday’s attacks. It identified two senior Hamas officials who advise ISIS and covertly arrange for hospital visits in Gaza for its injured operatives.

The Brotherhood denies involvement and its website has a statementurging Egyptians to reject violence, but the group’s double-talk is well-documented. It is simply false that the Brotherhood is completely non-violent and Brotherhood media outlets explicitly call for violence like that perpetrated by ISIS this week.

However, there does appear to be a division within the Brotherhood.Youth leaders and elements outside the country are advocating violent jihad, while the older generation repeatedly reaffirms the group’s non-violent stance in Egypt. It’s possible this is all a calculated deception. It’s also possible the rift is real and a faction would be willing to support ISIS against a common enemy.

One Brotherhood official, Mohamed Gaber, said it “seeks to use all expertise inside and outside the Brotherhood to achieve its goals at this stage,” referring to toppling the Egyptian government.

The Egyptian government’s crackdown on the Brotherhood makes it tempting for Hamas to support ISIS operations in the Sinai. Hamas may prefer a situation where its southern border is a battlefield between ISIS and Egyptian forces instead of a base for either. Plus, the Brotherhood uses every death as proof that Egypt’s crackdown is counter-productive and should end.

There are three possibilities: Claims of Hamas/Brotherhood links to ISIS in Sinai are simply wrong; the two groups simultaneously collaborate and fight with each other depending on circumstances; or there are elements within Hamas/Brotherhood that work independently with ISIS against the wishes of the leadership.

Whatever the truth is, the attacks in the Sinai show the threat to Hamas should be taken seriously.

A November 2014 poll found that the Palestinians are the most sympathetic population to ISIS in the Arab world. Only 4% view ISIS positively but if you include those who view it somewhat positively, it grows to nearly one-quarter of the population. However, another poll found that only 3% of Palestinians view ISIS’ gains positively and 88% view it negatively.

ISIS could capitalize on widespread dissatisfaction with Hamas and the situation in Gaza. ISIS’ message that Gaza is in bad shape because Hamas is not sufficiently implementing Sharia could resonate with Islamists who are struggling to understand why Hamas’ rule has not been blessed by Allah. The video also slams Hamas for being too soft on Israel.

A poll released last month shows that 50% of the population in Gaza—and an astounding 80% of the youth—want to leave. About 63% favor continuing rocket attacks on Israel. Another poll found that almost 25% would not vote if elections were held today.

Should a full-blown war between Hamas and ISIS break out that makes Gaza look like Syria, the West mustn’t embrace Hamas as the better alternative. The minute differences between them should not be exaggerated out of a desire for a side to pick. They are the two manifestations of the same enemy.

Also see:

Iranian-backed Hizballah and Hamas Bolster Worldwide Terrorist Presence

Lebanese Hezbollah supporters gesture as they march during a religious procession to mark Ashura in Beirut's suburbs. (photo credit:REUTERS)

Lebanese Hezbollah supporters gesture as they march during a religious procession to mark Ashura in Beirut’s suburbs. (photo credit:REUTERS)

by IPT News  •  Jul 1, 2015

While the West extends nuclear negotiations with Iran, the Islamic Republic continues to enhance its international terrorism infrastructure through its proxies. Hizballah has 950 active operatives in the Western European state while Hamas maintains 300 operatives, according to a German intelligence report summarized by the Jerusalem Post.

The number of Islamists in Germany rose from 43,190 in 2013 to 43,890 in 2014, the report said.

Radical Islamists are “the greatest danger to Germany…Germany is on the spectrum of goals for Islamic terrorists,” said Hans-Georg Maassen, president of German’s domestic intelligence agency – the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV).

The report’s chapter on “Islamism and Islamic terrorism” reveals that “Hamas was successful” in organizing people beyond its main support base to participate in anti-Israel protests. There were “more Hamas- supporting events than peace demonstrations, and there was clearly public anti-Semitism” during last summer’s war in Gaza.

A reminder about Hizballah’s reach came this week in a Cyprus criminal court, where an operative was sentenced to six years in jail following a guilty plea to all eight charges levied against him in connection with a plot to attack Israeli and Jewish targets. Authorities seized nine tons of ammonium nitrate from Hussein Bassam Abdallah, a Lebanese-Canadian. Prosecutors revealed that Abdallah was recruited into Hizballah’s military wing roughly five years ago and visited Cyprus approximately 10 times since 2012. This incident marks the second time a Cypriot court sentenced a Hizballah operative to prison for planning attacks against Israeli targets in the last three years.

These developments demonstrate that Iranian backed terrorist organizations continue to bolster their presence internationally and plot attacks throughout the world. Over the last few years, Hizballah has planned attacks against Israeli and Western targets in Thailand, India, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Cyprus, Nepal, and Nigeria among others. In 2012, the terrorist group was responsible for a deadly suicide bus bombing which killed five Israeli tourists and the bus driver in Bulgaria.

Hamas, a terrorist group with long-standing Iranian support, is also enhancing its international terrorist infrastructure. For example, recent reports show that Hamas is actively recruiting Palestinians studying in Malaysia, who are then sent to train in Turkey, to conduct terrorist attacks against Israelis upon returning to the West Bank.

War Crimes in Gaza: Filmmaker Takes Cameras Deep into Hamas Territory appeared first on Breitbart

Youtube/Screenshot

Youtube/Screenshot

Breitbart, by Phyllis Chesler, June 26. 2015:

Just as another “Freedom Flotilla” is sailing to Gaza, veteran filmmaker Pierre Rehov’s latest film War Crimes in Gaza will be shown next week to the European Parliament under the auspices of the Simon Wiesenthal Center.

Pierre Rehov’s film should also be seen by the International Criminal Court, which has just received files documenting what it claims are “Israeli war crimes.”

This 55-minute film is superb and packed with both visual, factual, and historical information. If everyone on board this flotilla watched this film—and if they were open to reason—they would turn back.

Going undercover into Gaza, Rehov is able to show us some of the wealthy mansions and villas of Gaza, the bustling malls and supermarkets, luxury cars, and well-dressed people at beachfront resorts—so different from the usual visual narratives of disinformation. Rehov shows us those as well: The weeping Palestinian civilians amidst rubble telling tales of IDF atrocities and devastation.

Undercover, Rehov has frightening footage of Hamas training children as young as six how to kill; the torture and public corpse-desecration of anyone whom Hamas suspected was a ‘collaborator’ or anyone whom they viewed as an opponent; Hamas’s omnipresent but hidden “civilian” army in Gaza; the location of Hamas missiles and guns in heavily populated civilian areas; how different Hamas missiles look than IDF missiles once they have hit their target—and much else.

The film teaches us that, since Hamas could not inflict major military damage to Israel, their strategy became one of propaganda—the kind meant to turn the entire world against Israel. It worked. Everyone wanted to believe the worst of the Jewish state. No one wanted to focus on the Muslim-on-Muslim, Arab-on-Arab, and Hamas-on-Palestinian violence.

Colonel Richard Kemp, the former commander of British forces in Afghanistan, confirms, on camera, that Hamas’s goal is not the liberation of Palestinians but the destruction of Israel. Hamas tries to “present Israel as being war criminals.”

According to journalist and author Matti Friedman, hating Jewish Israel “erases a deep sense of guilt” about the Holocaust. Seeing Jews as victimizers not as victims” does that. Friedman also notes in the film that reporters only cover “Israeli actions,” not the preceding Hamas attack, but also because “it matches the story that they want and [reporters] are not interested in being killed [by Hamas]…Bad Jews, good Arabs. Anything that complicates the story is taken out.”

Rehov’s film confirms that Hamas controls all press coverage and will not allow reporters to either see or report on the three kinds of vast, expensive, underground tunnels that Hamas has built all over Gaza. We see the offensive tunnels, which open out into civilian Israel; the smuggling tunnels and the defensive tunnels, which house weapons and Hamas fighters. We come to understand—we see with our own eyes—how Hamas dresses its fighters as “civilians,” and forces it real civilian population to function as human shields in the ground and propaganda wars begun by Hamas.

War Crimes in Gaza turns every Big Lie right side up. From various on-camera Israeli soldiers and military experts, we quickly understand that the IDF follows strict rules of engagement and is, without doubt, the most ethical army in the world with the least civilian casualties possible.

Rehov also challenges some of the latest Lies being told, namely, the IDF purposely killed four small boys who were running on the Gaza beach. Rehov wonders why “so many cameras were filming the sea at this very moment? Were reporters expecting something to happen? Then, who informed them?”

The film attempts to answer some of these. According to Colonel Kemp, “It would not surprise me if the Hamas deliberately lured the IDF to attack this location, as they have done it many times in this conflict before… it is extremely unlikely that children would be targeted by the IDF.” Israeli Colonel Peter Lerner claims that “The IDF had a Hamas terrorist target. We had intelligence pointing specifically to that location.”

Bassem Eid, the founder and director of the Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring group, is perhaps the most eloquent and passionate voice on camera. He hold Hamas responsible for committing war crimes against the Palestinian people. Here is some of what he says:

Israel is using its own rockets and missiles to protect their people. Hamas is doing the opposite. Hamas is gaining power and money while more Palestinians are being victimized in Gaza…there is no doubt that Hamas used people as human shields. IDF sent messages to leave their houses. Hamas prevented them getting out of their houses by saying they are spies of Israel if they do.

Eid insists: “The one [who] committed the genocide is Hamas. The Hamas is offering their innocent people for such a kind of war.”

Rehov has made 12 films, some of which I have previously reviewed. His twelfth film will shortly appear as well. It focuses on the BDS movement. The film’s title is: Beyond Deception Strategy.

Rehov joins Gloria Greenfield as the premier filmmakers spurred by this latest, bloodiest, and long-lasting Al Aqsa Intifada.

Also see:

Investigation Exposes AMP Leaders’ Ties to Former U.S-Based Hamas-Support Network

1186IPT News, June 24, 2015:

Federal investigators shut down a massive Hamas-support network in the United States between 2001 and 2008, prosecuting some elements and freezing the assets of others.

But the Investigative Project on Terrorism finds that many of the same functions – fundraising, propaganda and lobbying ­– endure, now carried out by a group called American Muslims for Palestine (AMP). The IPT investigation identified at least five AMP officials and speakers who worked in the previous, defunct network called the “Palestine Committee.” It was created by the Muslim Brotherhood to advance Hamas’ agenda politically and financially in the United States.

Last year, AMP joined a coalition of national Islamist groups in forming the U.S. Council of Muslim Organizations. The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) is among the other founding members (for more on that coalition, click here). CAIR and its founders appear in internal Palestine Committee records admitted into evidence during the largest terror financing trial in U.S. history.

Several Palestine Committee entities were created by Mousa Abu Marzook, who remains a top Hamas political leader. One branch, the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development (HLF), was convicted in 2008 along with five senior officials, of illegally routing more than $12 million to Hamas. HLF’s role in the Palestine Committee was the chief fundraising arm for Hamas in the United States, prosecutors say.

“The purpose of creating the Holy Land Foundation was as a fundraising arm for Hamas,” said U.S. District Judge Jorge Solis during a sentencing hearing.

A flow chart of other Palestine Committee entities includes the Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP) and a Northern Virginia think tank called the United Association for Studies and Research (UASR). IAP served as a propaganda outlet, organizing rallies and publishing magazines with articles supporting Hamas. CAIR was added to a Palestine Committee meeting agenda shortly after its 1994 creation.

UASR published an academic journal and, prosecutors say, was “involved in passing Hamas communiques to the United States-based Muslim Brotherhood community and relaying messages from that community back to Hamas.”

Today, AMP routinely engages in anti-Israeli rhetoric, sponsors conferences that serve as a platform for Israel bashers, and openly approves “resistance” against the “Zionist state.” One AMP official acknowledged the goal is to “to challenge the legitimacy of the State of Israel.”

An April 2014 AMP-sponsored conference in Chicago, for example, hosted Sabri Samirah, the former chairman of IAP, as a speaker. There was little to no talk about how to achieve peaceful coexistence.

“We are ready to sacrifice all we have for Palestine. Long Live Palestine,” Samirah said. “We have a mission here [in the U.S.] also to support the struggle of our people back there in order to achieve a free land in the Muslim world, without dictators and without corruption.”

The U.S. government had earlier deemed Samirah a “security risk” and he was barred from reentering the country for several years following a trip to Jordan in 2003. While in Jordan, he served as a spokesman for the Jordanian Muslim Brotherhood’s political party, the Islamic Action Front. The charges against Samirah were subsequently dropped and he returned to the U.S. last year.

Read more

Also see:

“Perversion of Truth” – UN Report on the 2014 Gaza War

Former New York Surpreme Court Justice Mary McGowan Davis, Chair of UN Investigation in to 2014 Gasa War

Former New York Surpreme Court Justice Mary McGowan Davis, Chair of UN Investigation in to 2014 Gasa War

NER, by Jerry Gordon, June 23, 2015:

In a mid-May 2015 Jerusalem Report/Jerusalem Post interview by Paul Alster, “The Redoubtable Colonel [Richard] Kemp”, anticipated the findings of the UN Task Force Commission on the 2014 Gaza War. Kemp said: “I think their staff is going to be so heavily biased against Israel that it will be quite a struggle for them to produce a fair report.” Col. Kemp, former commander of British Forces in Afghanistan, was present on the battle front last summer at the Israeli /Gaza frontier had presented his independent testimony to the UN Human Rights Commission investigation. It was a furtherance of his remarks to the earlier UN report following IDF Operation Cast Lead in 2008-2009.  Conclusions, as Col. Kemp indicated,  rejected by Israel.

Former British Commander in Afghnistan Col. Richard Kemp (ret.)

Former British Commander in Afghnistan Col. Richard Kemp (ret.)

His predication was reflected in the UN Report by the ‘independent’ investigation released yesterday in Geneva by the Chairperson, former acting New York Supreme Court Justice Mary McGowan Davis. Davis has made a post retirement career after she left the bench in 1998  conducting  independent UN investigations into human rights violations. Justice Davis was member of the team that concluded the IDF had perpetrated war crimes against civilians in Gaza defending Israeli citizens from Hamas rocket terrorism in Operation Cast Lead in 2008-2009. The summation of the latest UN investigation on the 2014 War in Gaza  accused both  Israel and Hamas of committing war crimes, while holding IDF to a “higher standard” of behavior.

Read more

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Gauging UNRWA’s Purpose on its 65th Anniversary

1181by Paul Alster
Special to IPT News
June 11, 2015

On April 18, two roadside bombs exploded in the Gaza Strip. Neither of the IEDs planted by Salafi jihadists opposed to Hamas rule in the enclave caused serious damage, but both explosions targeted United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine (UNRWA) facilities. While the incidents were widely reported, there has been little questioning of why UNRWA buildings were targeted by those opposing Hamas. The logical conclusion is that in the eyes of those who planted the devices Hamas and UNRWA are identified as cooperating entities.

Back in 2004, confirmation of UNRWA’s relationship with Hamas came from the very highest level when the U.N. organization’s long-time Commissioner-General, Peter Hansen, told the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, “I am sure that there are Hamas members on the UNRWA payroll and I don’t see that as a crime.” Hansen left his post soon after.

According to its critics, UNRWA allows the Palestinian Authority and Hamas to dictate what will be taught in UNRWA schools, including incitement against the State of Israel, the aspiration to martyrdom, and the demonization of Jews. Hamas is alleged to control the UNRWA teaching staff union and through those teachers, feed young and impressionable minds a diet of anti-Israeli and anti-Semitic indoctrination. UNRWA vehemently denies this charge.

At its inception in 1950, UNRWA’s definition of a Palestine refugee was crystal clear, including someone whose “normal place of residence was Palestine during the period 1 June 1946 to 15 May 1948 and who lost both home and means of livelihood as a result of the 1948 conflict.”

Depending on whose figures one accepts, between 600,000-700,000 former residents of British mandated Palestine left their homes in that period. That’s about the same number of Jews who were forced to leave neighboring Arab lands and move to Israel as their lives became untenable in their long established countries of residence.

According to the Center for Near East Policy Studies’ 2011 report ‘The Palestine Papers and the Right of Return’ UNRWA soon expanded the definition of a Palestine refugee to include “descendants of refugees.” Under that definition, there are around5.2 million Palestinian refugees spread across Gaza, the West Bank, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria, around eight times the original number who left Palestine 67 years ago.

UNRWA supports a Palestinian “right of return,” meaning any or all of those 5.2 million people should have the right to move into Israel.

That result would create a demographic avalanche which would end Israel’s existence as a Jewish homeland.

“According to the UNHCR [United Nations High Commission for Refugees, UNRWA’s parent organization], you lose your refugee status if you become a citizen of another country,” David Roet, Israel’s deputy UN ambassador, said in a speech to the UN last week. “But in the Palestinian case, this restriction does not apply. UNRWA – and UNRWA alone – allows refugees to pass their refugee status to their children and now grandchildren.”

UNRWA employs more than 10,000 people in Gaza, Roet added. “Where were they when Hamas stockpiled thousands of rockets, many of them in close vicinity to UNRWR facilities? It seems that while they are quick to condemn Israel, when it comes to reporting on Hamas, UNRWA’s employees become blind, deaf, and mute.”

In UNRWA schools, “Palestinian children are taught that the only solution to their plight is the so-called ‘claim of return.’ Many UNRWA facilities are decorated with keys symbolizing this claim of return. Young children are taught that these keys will one day open doors for them – but in truth these keys have them locked in a distorted reality. The ‘claim of return,’ make no mistake, is a euphemism for the destruction of the State of Israel.”

Roet’s comments came amid UN events marking UNRWA’s 65th anniversary and were in response to UNRWA Commissioner-General Pierre Krahenbuhl’s assertion that Palestinians in Gaza and elsewhere in the Middle East “face an existential crisis on many fronts.” Yet UNRWA appears to allow the Palestinian Authority and Hamas to dictate what will be taught in its schools even though, as a supposedly apolitical body, it holds veto power over classroom instruction.

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Could Hamas be the Next Nobel Peace Prize Winner?

2009-01-08-hamas-firing-rockets-in-gaza-600CSP, by Rachel Silverman, June 10, 2015:

The United Nations and Egypt have both decided to not label Hamas a terrorist organization. When the U.S. State Department created its list of foreign terrorist organizations in 1997, Hamas was one of the first names on it. But I guess according to the UN and Egypt, they somehow don’t qualify to be grouped with armies and guerilla groups that kill and maim children in conflicts worldwide.

On Monday morning, the UN decided to leave Hamas off its blacklist of nations and armed organizations that violate children’s rights during conflict. Despite endless documentation of Hamas using hospital patients and children as human shields.

There is evidence that shows Hamas placing weapons and missile launchers in densely populated areas during Operation Protective Edge. They also sent men, women, and children to act as human shields for terrorists. Innocent bystanders were killed as a result of Hamas’ abuse of its own civilians. Instead of keeping its citizens out of harm’s way, Hamas encouraged and even forced Gazans to join its violent resistance against Israel.

During Operation Protective Edge Hamas also used hospitals as a command center and to launch attacks against Israel. Unfortunately, using hospitals as part of its human shield is not new for Hamas. A PBS report from 2007 shows how Hamas gunmen intimidated the staff at al-Shifa hospital.

During Operation Cast Lead in 2009, The New York Times reported that:

“Hamas has used the last two years to turn Gaza into a deadly maze of tunnels, booby traps, and sophisticated roadside bombs. Weapons are hidden in mosques, schoolyards and civilian houses, and the leadership’s war room is a bunker beneath Gaza’s largest hospital.”

On Saturday, the Cairo Appeal Court for Urgent Matters canceled a previous verdict labeling Hamas as a terrorist organization. The court said the lower court lacked jurisdiction to issue such a verdict in the first place, according to the report.

On February 28, the Cairo Court for Urgent Matters made the ruling after an Egyptian lawyer filed a lawsuit in last November calling for banning Hamas and classifying it as a terror organization.

Hamas, an offshoot of Egypt’s blacklisted Muslim Brotherhood group, used illegal underground tunnels connecting Egyptian Rafah to its twin Palestinian town to enter the country and smuggle weapons to attack Egyptian police and army personnel.

Hamas militants have also been accused of carrying out terrorist attacks and killing over 30 people in late October 2014 as well as carrying out an armed jailbreak to free Brotherhood members during Egypt’s popular uprising in 2011.

So tell me why Egypt thought it was a good idea to overturn a verdict that labeled Hamas a terrorist organization?

On January 31, the same court listed al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of Hamas, as a terrorist organization. The court ruling came days after a series of bloody attacks occurred in Egypt’s restive Sinai Peninsula that killed at least 33 soldiers and policemen. So let me get this straight, Hamas isn’t a terrorist organization, but their military wing is, makes a lot of sense of to me.

The Egyptian government has been at odds with the group repeatedly, with longtime President Hosni Mubarak lashing out at the group and refusing to recognize Hamas’ rule in Gaza. In December 2014 the current Egyptian President, Abdel Fattah al-SISi, viewed Hamas’ movement as subversive, acting against Egypt’s national security and in line with its mother-movement the Muslim Brotherhood.

For years Egypt has played a major role in peace negotiations between Israel and various Palestinian factions, with Egypt being seen as fairly impartial by both sides. There is no doubt in my mind that this new ruling will affect Egypt’s position as a mediator between the two sides.

Also see:

IS Threatens Israel Monday, Israel Air Force Jets Return Fire This Morning

Screen-Shot-2015-06-04-at-1CSP, by Caitlin Anglemier, June 4, 2015:

The Islamic State (IS) issued a threat to Israel on Monday, June 1st, declaring that the Sunni terrorist group Hamas must halt its recent attacks and assaults on IS supporters in the Gaza Strip within 48 hours “or else”. Hamas’s recent crackdown is in response to the May 31 assassination of one of its senior commanders by the Hadid Brigade (full name, “Sheikh Omar Hadid Brigade”), a group of IS supporters in the Gaza Strip. IS issued its 48 hour threat, which gave no insight into future consequences if Hamas does not meet its demands, to various Middle East reporters on Monday who then dispersed the news.

According to an article posted on June 2 by World Net Daily, a leader of Ansar Bait al-Maqdis, Islamic State’s affiliate in the Sinai Peninsula, reportedly declared “that if Hamas does not cease its crackdown, the group [IS] will not only continue to target Hamas, it will also break the Israel-Gaza truce with more attacks launched against the Jewish state”. On the same day, however, Hamas forces killed Islamic State supporter Younis al-Honnor. The 27-year-old was reportedly killed unintentionally while resisting arrest by Hamas forces.

As retaliation for Honnor’s death, rockets were fired Wednesday evening from the Gaza Strip at the Israeli city Ashkelon and the town Netivot. The “Omar Brigade,” which is likely the same as the Sheikh Omar Hadid Brigade, claimed responsibility for the assault.

In response to Wednesday night’s attack on Ashkelon and Netivot, Israel Air Force jets hit “three ‘terror infrastructure’ targets in the Gaza Strip” this morning.

Israel’s Defense Minister, Moshe Ya’alon, declared today in a press release “that the IDF [Israeli Defense Forces] struck Hamas targets because even if the militants who fired the rockets belong to ‘rogue gangs’ from the Islamic Jihad, Israel holds Hamas ‘responsible for what is happening in the Strip’”.

Before these recent events, on May 3rd of this year, Hamas followers destroyed the Al-Moutahabbin Mosque, located in the central region of the Gaza Strip. This mosque belonged to a group of Islamic State supporters known as the “Supporters of the Islamic State in Jerusalem”. A daily Egyptian newspaper, Al-Masry al-Youm, reported that this group described the destruction as carried out, “in a manner that even the Jewish and American occupation has not done”. This demolition was in response to previous unclaimed bombings in the Gaza Strip.

After the attack on the Al-Moutahabbin mosque, Supporters of the Islamic State of Jerusalem stated its renewed loyalty to and faith in IS caliph Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. The group then threatened Hamas members, even publishing some names and photos, unless Hamas releases several captives, including a local Salafi sheikh.

Hamas took control of the Gaza Strip in 2007 following what is known as the Battle of Gaza. A primary difference and source of conflict between Hamas and IS is Islamic law, called sharia. IS abides by and fights to enforce much stricter adherence to sharia law and says Hamas is “too liberal” and “soft on Israel.”

Various tweets have been released indicating such differences, one stating, “The Hamas government is apostate [one who renounces a religious or political belief or principle], and what it is doing does not constitute jihad, but rather a defense of democracy.” Another message states, “Khaled Meshaal [head of Hamas political bureau]: Hamas fights for the sake of freedom and independence. The Islamic State: it fights so that all religion can be for God.”

The conflict between Hamas and the Islamic State is much more than a dispute over geographic terrain or political quarreling; it is one about a deeply engrained moral, political, and theological ideology. Based on these ideological differences, events like those that have transpired over the past couple days in Gaza and Israel will not cease anytime soon.

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Hamas-Loving Canadian Islamist Baffled by Suspension

“For many years,” the article begins, “Hamas was my passion.”

Hussein Hamdani, a Canadian lawyer, described his excitement and nervousness over meeting Hamas founder Ahmed Yassin in Gaza. The article, published in 2004, was part of a tribute to Yassin after he was killed in an Israeli airstrike.

Hamdani calls Yassin “the people’s Shaykh” and explains that Yassin was part of a group of Hamas founders who decided “armed struggle must be established” against Israel. “It was like sitting at the feet of history,” Hamdani glowingly wrote about meeting one of his heroes. Yassin’s vision “represented the hope that the occupying forces could be defeated.”

One year after openly embracing a jihadist movement in writing, Hamdani was named to a Canadian national security roundtable, where he continued to serve until being suspended April 29 pending an investigation. A spokesperson for Canada’s Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney said that although questions about Hussein’s “radical ideology have circulated for some time, it was hoped that he could be a positive influence to promote Canadian values in the Muslim community. It is now becoming clear this may not have been the case.”

Hamdani calls the suspension political and went on radio last week threatening legal action against people who called attention to his past statements and connections.

The Hamas article has drawn little attention amid the litany of Hamdani’s indulgence with radical ideas and organizations. Among the others:

  • As a Muslim Students Association officer at McMaster University Hamilton, Ontario in 1996, Hamdani wrote a three-page section for “A Guide on How to Run a Successful MSA.” His chapter, “Islamization of Campus Politics and the Politicization of the MSA,” said, “it should be the long-term goal of every MSA to Islamicize the politics of their respective university …It is the duty of the MSA to bring morality back into the campus.” [Emphasis original]

As an example, he cited a proposal to grant benefits to same-sex couples, which “should clearly be seen as immoral and thus voted against or ignored.”

Hamdani later served as MSA president at the University of Western Ontario. The MSA was founded by Muslim Brotherhood members who came to North America to attend universities here. The Brotherhood’s goal is to spread the faith throughout the world. In the words of founder Hassan al-Banna: “It is the nature of Islam to dominate, not to be dominated, to impose its law on all nations and to extend its power to the entire planet.”

  • His own biography identifies Hamdani as “a founding member of the Ihya Foundation.” Ihya worked with the World Assembly of Muslim Youth (WAMY) in creating annual “Reviving the Islamic Spirit” conferences in 2003. According to the Canadian online publication Point de Bascule, which has investigated Hamdani for several years, Hamdani was publicly described as a “key organizer” of the early conferences.

One conference featured William Baker, a neo-Nazi, radical U.S. imam Siraj Wahhaj and Tariq Ramadan, grandson of Muslim Brotherhood founder Hassan al-Banna.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection said it had “credible intelligence that conferences similar Reviving the Islamic Spirit “were being used by terrorist organizations to fundraise and to hide the travel of terrorists themselves.” The statement came after five American Muslims sued the Department of Homeland Security for being detained, fingerprinted and questioned as they returned from the 2004 conference. That assessment was reinforced in an appellate court opinion which noted a review of classified information, “CBP [Customs and Border Police] had reason to believe that known terrorists, or those with terrorist ties, would be attending the RIS Conference.”

  • In 2012, the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) revoked WAMY’s charitable status after the organization was found to have financed an al-Qaida affiliated organization.

Hamdani’s suspension from the national security panel came the same night a French-language TVA Nouvelles report showcased these and other radical connections. He dismissed the move as retaliation by Conservative Party of Canada members who may be irked by his recent activity for the Liberal Party.

The allegations against him “are lies. I have never, ever, ever been involved with any organization that has links to terrorism whatsoever,” Hamdani told Hamilton radio host Scott Thompson May 12. He also threatened to pursue defamation lawsuits against his critics.

But between 2005 and 2009, two charities Hamdani worked with – the Halton Islamic Association and the Hamdani Foundation – contributed more than $25,000 to IRFAN-Canada. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police raided IRFAN-Canada’s offices last summer and added the organization to a list of terrorist supporters after auditors determined it sent nearly $15 million to Hamas in that same time period.

Hamdani also claimed a standing invitation to a counter-radicalization program organized by the U.S. departments of Homeland Security and Justice this July. Neither organization replied to emails from the Investigative Project on Terrorism seeking confirmation.

“I’ve been vetted by CSIS, the RCMP, the CIA, and the FBI,” Hamdani claimed on Thompson’s program, though it is not clear how or why the CIA would vet the Canadian lawyer.

Most of these disclosures first came from Point de Bascule (Tipping Point). In the radio interview, Hamdani accused Point de Bascule director Marc Lebuis of being “one of these grand conspiracy theorists that, ‘Oh, every Muslim is a dangerous Muslim.’ And so he had a whole page on me for a long, long time and I just ignored it because, you know, there’s lots of kind of racist guys out there with blogs and you don’t react to every single one.”

Lebuis declined a request for comment.

Asked about the MSA Guide’s instruction to “bring morality back into the campus,” Hamdani said his views on same-sex marriage have changed over the years. But his rambling answer, heard in its entirety below, spent more time arguing that the charge to Islamize campus actually was an endorsement of the democratic process.

[Go to IPT for the audio, I can’t embed it here]

“So anyone who’s saying, ‘you shouldn’t encourage Muslims to vote in elections’ is actually acting undemocratic,” Hamdani said.

None of his critics said anything remotely close. The issue was Hamdani’s instruction in the MSA Guide to Islamize campus politics. Taken in context of his other activities – his admitted “passion” for Hamas, his leadership role in helping launch conferences with radical speakers and more – the concern expressed by Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney makes a lot more sense.

As a student, Hamdani was comfortable advocating that people Islamize their communities. During his time on the Cross-Cultural Roundtable on National Security, though, he has advocated that Canada follow the United States in avoiding references to religion when discussing terrorist threats and attacks.

It is not clear how long the investigation into Hamdani will last.

***

Ezra Levant interviews Marc Lebuis:

FIU Names Radical Muslim to New Post

sd-450x311Frontpage, by Joe Kaufman, May 6, 2015:

‘FIU names Saif Ishoof VP for Engagement.’ This was the headline of a press release sent out by Florida International University (FIU) in March. Does the Miami, Florida-based school know that the individual it appointed to this position is a radical Muslim involved in extremist causes and institutions?

According to the website of FIU’s Office of Engagement, “The office provides leadership for the development and coordination of partnerships at the local, state, national and international levels with the goal of aligning FIU’s instructional, research and creative initiatives with local and global needs and priorities.”

On March 6, FIU published a press release stating that it had granted its position of Vice President of its Office of Engagement to Guyana-born Saif Yamani Ishoof, who the school described as a “dynamic leader who is well known in South Florida for his commitment to partnerships and to improving the lives of young people.” The Miami Herald quotes Ishoof as saying that, in his new role, he will be responsible for “linking students, faculty and administrators with the outside world.”

According to FIU, Ishoof will also serve as a senior fellow in FIU’s School of International and Public Affairs.

The above news is disturbing, given the number of radical causes and institutions Ishoof is and has been involved with, beginning with his involvement in Emerge.

The FIU release states that Ishoof is co-founder and trustee of a group called Emerge USA. The title of the group can easily mislead people into believing that it is one that is patriotic, yet the nature of the group is the very opposite.

Emerge USA is the brainchild of Khurrum Wahid, who today acts as the group’s co-chairman and spokesman. Wahid, a South Florida attorney, has spent years representing those whom the U.S. government has charged with terrorist activity. They include: Rafiq Sabir, who received a 25-year prison sentence for conspiring to provide material support to al-Qaeda; Ahmed Omar Abu Ali, who was given a life sentence for being part of al-Qaeda and for plotting to assassinate President George W. Bush; Hafiz Khan, a Miami, Florida imam who shipped $50,000 to the Taliban to kill American troops overseas; and Palestinian Islamic Jihad leader Sami al-Arian.

Wahid has previously served as a legal advisor for the national office of the Hamas-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and a director of CAIR’s Florida chapter. CAIR was originally founded, in June 1994, as part of an umbrella organization run by then-global leader of Hamas, Mousa Abu Marzook. CAIR was named by the U.S. Justice Department a co-conspirator for two federal trials dealing with the financing of millions of dollars to Hamas. And CAIR was recently labeled a terrorist group by United Arab Emirates (UAE).

According to the Miami New Times, Wahid himself was placed on a federal terrorist watch list in 2011.

In December 2014, Emerge co-sponsored an event for the Muslim Students Association (MSA) with a number of organizations which have been associated with Hamas and/or al-Qaeda financing, including CAIR, ICNA Relief and Islamic Relief.

In August 2006, ICNA Relief was the top donor and partner to Pakistani charity Al Khidmat Foundation (AKF), at the same time AKF took a delegation to Damascus, Syria to hand deliver nearly $100,000 to Hamas global leader Khaled Mashal. Mashal thanked the group and said Hamas would continue to wage “jihad” (war) on the “Zionist yoke” (Israel). ICNA Relief continues to work directly with AKF overseas.

Both Israel and UAE have designated Islamic Relief a “terrorist organization.” In May 2006, Israel arrested the group’s Gaza program manager, Ayaz Ali, for providing “funds and assistance to various Hamas institutions and organizations.” Ali admitted he had cooperated with local Hamas operatives. In 1999, IR collected and sent more than $6 million to Chechen rebels linked to al-Qaeda. That same year, IR received $50,000 from Human Concern International (HCI), a charity that the U.S. Treasury Department labeled a “Bin Laden front.”

Days ago, on April 30th, Emerge featured as a speaker at its Second Annual Founders Benefit Society Dinner held in Arlington, Virginia, Islamic lecturer Sayed Ammar Nakshawani. Nakshawani is a follower of Iranian terror leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini and has previously called for the destruction of Israel.

In a speech made by Nakshawani, titled ‘Sayed Khomeini’s Quds Day,’ he states, “The shame in this world is that, if we put ourselves down to a two-state solution, we would allow a country which has broken 60 UN resolutions to have their own freedom of peace. It is barbaric that this Zionist state is allowed to continue.”

This was not the first time Emerge featured Nakshawani at one of its events. He was also the keynote speaker at Emerge’s Annual Miami Benefit Dinner, held in South Florida in May 2014.

Saif Ishoof was in attendance for both events, at least one of which he was a speaker as well.

Prior to getting involved with Emerge, Ishoof was the rally organizer and contact for the extreme anti-Israel group, March for Justice. The other contact and spokesman of the group was Nidal Sakr, who was arrested in March 2014 after returning to the U.S. from Egypt, where he was a rally organizer for the Muslim Brotherhood.

While with March for Justice, Ishoof organized an event at the University of Miami, in October 2002, which labeled then-Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon “the world’s longest standing terrorist” and Israel an “illegitimate state.” Ishoof said he was “outraged” that his former university would host then-senior advisor to Sharon, Raanan Gissin, referring to Gissin as “a mouthpiece of state sponsored terrorism.”

Today, Ishoof is a director of Nur-Ul-Islam Academy, a Muslim children’s school located in Cooper City, Florida whose former Vice President was Hamas fundraiser Raed Awad. Awad was the Florida representative for the Holy Land Foundation (HLF), a Hamas charity that was shut down by the U.S. government in December 2001. Awad was also the imam who oversaw the conversion to Islam by convicted terrorist and “Dirty Bomber,” Jose Padilla.

According to corporation documents, Ishoof was officially named a director of the school in January 2008, at a time when the home page of the Nur-Ul-Islam website contained links to violent, anti-Semitic and anti-Christian material, including having a link to islamway.com, a website that encouraged its viewers to donate to Hamas.

The radical associations of Saif Ishoof ought to make FIU think twice about their appointment of him.

People who are involved with groups like Emerge, CAIR, March for Justice or Nur-Ul-Islam should not be embraced by legitimate institutions, especially those dealing with youth, as FIU – an upstanding educational facility – does.

These persons should, instead, be shunned from society.

Dr. Mark B. Rosenberg is the President of FIU. According to his Curriculum Vitae, he is as well a member of the Board of Directors for the Holocaust Memorial of the Greater Miami Jewish Federation and a member of the Florida Advisory Committee for the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition, an organization which deals in matters of national security and foreign policy.

If you wish to discuss the issue of Saif Ishoof’s appointment with Dr. Rosenberg, you can send an e-mail to Mark.Rosenberg@fiu.edu. Please be respectful, when doing so.

Joe Kaufman is an expert in the fields of counter-terrorism, foreign affairs and energy independence for America. He has been featured on all major cable networks, including Fox News, CNN, MSNBC, CNBC and C-SPAN. Kaufman has served as a consultant to different government agencies, and he has been instrumental in getting U.S.-based terrorist charities shut down and terror-related individuals put behind bars. Exactly one month prior to the September 11 attacks, Kaufman predicted the attacks by stating that the 1993 World Trade Center bombing was not an aberration and that it would happen again.

Taxpayers Made To Pay For Islamic Indoctrination In US University

Hatem Bazian

Hatem Bazian

By Lee Kaplan Contributor to Shoebat.com, May 4, 2015:

Hatem Bazian is a senior lecturer in Near East Studies at UC Berkeley. A Palestinian Arab, Bazian is also a supporter of Hamas and one of the terrorist group’s apparatchiks in the United States. Bazian was the founder of the Students for Justice in Palestine which has chapters on over 80 campuses in the United States and that operates as a Hamas support network in the United States. Bazian also co-founded American Muslims for Palestine which also links to Hamas and functions as a propaganda and fundraising mechanism to Hamas in Washington and is active with the Muslim Students Association on over 150 campuses in the United States and Canada. As an organizer, Bazian is tough to equal and he has used the California college educational system and its taxpayer-funded deep pockets to help facilitate massive propaganda events and fundraising not only for the Palestinian terrorist group, but for pro-jihadist groups across American campuses and Europe as well.

It is through his bully pulpit at UC Berkeley that Bazian also created his Islamophobia Research and Documentation Project at UC Berkeley’s Center for Race and Gender Project. Racism and Sexism are hot topics on college campuses today. The fact that Islam is not a race, nor is a concept of Palestinian nationalism one, both of theories are being sold by Bazian and his acolytes in the university sphere worldwide. Thanks to UC Berkeley and surrounding colleges like San Francisco State (where Bazian did his undergraduate studies and led a Palestinian takeover of that campus as class president), Bazian’s campaign keeps gaining legitimacy as it aids the endless war against both the United States and Israel by militant Islamists including those who are fighting U.S. troops abroad.

A perusal of the websites for Baizan’s “documentation project” and the Center for Race and Gender events page at UC Berkeley reveals endless programs, lectures, events and other promotions dealing with alleged prejudice against all Muslims and “Islam” in America as endemic racism. On May 7th, the Center offers a book signing and lecture by a colleague of Bazian’s at Cal who claims American racism is the result of a refusal to establish a Palestinian state that would be led by notorious terrorists who support America’s and Israel’s downfall, such as Hamas.

“Islamophobia” refers to an irrational fear of Islam. It is supposedly to counter this irrational fear that Bazian staged April 23-25, 2015 his sixth annual “International Conference on Islamophobia: The State of the Islamophobia Field.” As done last year, the event was staged at UC Berkeley’s prestigious Boalt Hall Law School. Aside from providing a free venue at a distinguished law school, the event gets the entire imprimatur of one of the most distinguished universities in America. Other “sponsors” of the event included the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), who members of congress and terrorism experts have declared a Hamas front group in America. The “Ethnic Studies” department at San Francisco State was also a sponsor, a professor of “Resistance Studies” named Rebab Abdulhadi in attendance and one of the conference lecturers who had gained notoriety by spending $6,000 of California taxpayer’s money for a sabbatical to visit female terrorist Leila Khaled in jail in Jordan to “show solidarity.” It should also be noted Hatem Bazian posted personally the conference’s schedule on the website of Bay Area Intifada, a blog that claims to promote “News, Updates, Analysis & Action Alerts for 3rd World Liberation & Decolonization from the Bay Area & Beyond.” An Intifada refers to Palestinian terrorist attacks that have killed thousands of Israeli civilians. The blog features photos attacking Israel and the United States.

I attended this latest conference with a video camera and tape recorder. I did the same thing last year and sat almost next to Hatem Bazian the entire time. Bazian was very cocky back then during last year’s event and joked about my having recorders. I wrote an article about that event. Only last March, Bazian staged yet another “Islamophobia” conference where he claimed Muslims were being denied a voice for their “studies” in the American university system despite his constant conferences and demonstrations to the contrary that I previously reported on and recorded.

Things were to be different at this conference. Bazian had me watched closely. On the second day, he approached me in the audience and told me I had to turn off my recorders. On two more occasions during that day, two goons came to my seat and ordered me to turn off my recording equipment , the last one threatening to “call the police.” It is against state law in California universities to hold private meetings and prevent recordings and a quick cell call to the Chancellor’s Office who contacted the campus police prevented any problems. I noted this occurred after one of the attendees during a question and answer period addressed the current panel and asked to discuss how the “Zionists” (Jews) were responsible for contributing to Islamophobia in America and how a Jewish organization was sending people to Israel to learn public relations that could be deemed as contributing to Islamophobia and how the New York police department was being propagandized by Jews.

From the get go, the accusation that criticism of Islam was racism was a central theme of the entire conference. Discrimination of women was also frequently discussed, but never in the context of Islamic exclusion of women or issues such as honor killings.

Bazian kicked things off accusing certain reporters and writers of contributing to Islamophobia. He dropped the names of Steve Emerson, Frank Gaffney and Ayan Hisri Ali, Brigette Gabriel and Pamela Geller as well as Fox News as being responsible for what he claimed was a smearing Islam to the public. Ayan Hirsi Ali’s speeches on discriminatory practices against women were all branded as “lies.” All the opening panels suggested that Islam is in no way linked to terrorism and it is the misrepresentation by such “Islamophobes” and it is racism to suggest so. What struck me was that as the conference progressed over three days it became more like a meeting of the German-American Bund in support of the Third Reich before the Second World War.

Baizan and company discussed only fleetingly the attack on 9/11 and how the Patriot Act supposedly had a deleterious effect on Muslims in America. But there was no logic to this. The fact is, the day after 9/11 the President and the US government declared that Islam is a peaceful religion and that the US was not at war with Islam itself, only militant Islamists and terrorists. This is still the US government’s position, yet the “academics” at this conference chose to suggest that any opposition to terrorism at all was just another manifestation of “Islamophobia.”

Of interest also was that Islam was not defined as a major religion, or idea, with different sects at this conference . What about Wahhabism? Or Sufi Islam, Shiism or Sunni Islam? None of these differences were discussed or explained, nor the fact that different sects of Islam sometimes fight wars between themselves. The entire conference was a “them v. us” event where any criticism or negative discussion of Islam was branded “Islamophobia,” particularly in the US or Western Europe. Terrorism wasn’t discussed at all unless to accuse the US and West of terrorism, or of false accusations against all Muslims, and no mention was given of terrorism where Muslims killed other Muslims. ISIS was not discussed at all. The Charlie Hebdo attacks in Paris were mentioned, but not in terms of their relationship to Islam as much as something westerners brought upon themselves.

Almost fifty presentations were made as examples of Islamophobia from presenters from across the United States and some even from Europe. But not all were academics or college professors or PhD candidates. Some, like Ramah Kudaimi from the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation, which is the renamed International Solidarity Movement in the US, another pro-Hamas organization whose activists devote their full-time calling for the destruction of Israel and who support terrorist groups, promoted what she called the Adab, or Muslim-American etiquette to promote Islamic activism against the West and American support for Israel. Sana Saeed, a producer for Al Jazeera, the television network funded by Qatar, a Hamas funder, lectured on “The New American Muslim and Faithwashing the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict” in which she called for Muslims to meet their obligations to call for the continued attacks on Israel rather than outlining Islamophobia in the US. Bazian followed where he lectured on “How does it feel to be a Muslim? Thinking through the present colonial perspective. His speech was hardly an example of Islamophobia as much as an adversarial approach by Muslims in America to be at odds with the US government and those fighting militant Islam.

Read more with video

Islam is Nazism with a God

Published on Apr 24, 2015 by Eric Allen Bell

Islam is Nazism with a God. Islamic scripture teaches the hatred and killing of Jews. These teachings are right out in the open in Islamic countries and occur quietly in Islamic Centers and mosques in America and Europe. The solution is to educate the civilized world about the threat of Islam. The enemy of Islamic brutality is information. Spread it far and spread it wide. Spread it like Napalm. The Information Age with be the death of Islam.

ISIS appears ready to announce expansion to Gaza

isis-flag (1)WND, by Aaron Klein, April 16, 2015:

TEL AVIV – Internet forums and group chatter among ISIS supporters indicate the brutal jihadist organization is debating when to declare the Gaza Strip part of its expansive caliphate, WND has learned.

Informed Middle Eastern security officials said Hamas has been preparing a major crackdown on Salafist cells supportive of ISIS ideology, fearing the group could indeed make such a declaration of control over Gaza.

The officials further said Hamas has been trying to bribe Salafist ideologues away from ISIS by providing them with salaries while integrating them among the ranks of Hamas’ salaried security forces.

Asked by WND for comment on the report, Mushir al Masri, a member of Hamas’ parliament and a media spokesman for the group, denied ISIS was even present in the Gaza Strip.

“This is not the first time Israeli and Western media tried to pit us against ISIS. There is no truth to these claims, and ISIS is not in the Gaza Strip,” he said.

Masri further clarified that “anyone caught breaking the law will be dealt with just like all lawbreakers according to the criminal justice system in Gaza.”

However, just last week Hamas reportedly arrested a prominent ISIS-aligned preacher from Gaza after the terrorist group went on a rampage earlier in a Palestinian camp in Syria.

ISIS last month took control for a time of the Yarmouk camp in Syria, home to one of the largest Palestinian camps outside of Gaza. The group took responsibility for beheading several Palestinian men in the camp and reportedly raped some of the women there.

This week, in an apparent attempt to gain sympathy with the Gazan population, ISIS supporters reportedly gave away Israeli-made space heaters adorned with ISIS logos. ISIS supporters also have been giving other so-called charity to Gaza’s Palestinian population.

According to informed Middle Eastern security officials, Israel is so concerned about the prospect of ISIS rising in Gaza that the Jewish state has helped to step up the transport of civilian goods into the territory. Israel fears a shortage could provoke a discontented population to turn closer to ISIS, which has been trying to endear itself to Gazans with numerous Islamic charity initiatives.

Last July, WND reported an attempt by jihadist organizations in the Gaza Strip to unite under the common ISIS banner. Contacted by WND at the time, Abu Saqer, one of the leaders of Jihadiya Salafiya, which represents al-Qaida ideology in the Gaza Strip, confirmed the attempt to organize various jihad groups to fight Israel under the ISIS umbrella.

Sinai to Gaza

Any ISIS gains in Gaza would pose a major threat to both Israel and neighboring Egypt.

The moderate regime of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has been fighting an ISIS and Salafist insurgency in the Sinai Peninsula and beyond. The jihadists seek to connect the Sinai with the Gaza Strip to form one big territory.

ISIS allies took responsibility for a roadside bomb attack on an armored vehicle in Egypt’s northern Sinai that killed six Egyptian soldiers last Sunday.

Also over the weekend, a group formerly known as Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, now fighting under the ISIS banner, released a video that featured the graphic killing of an Egyptian soldier captured April 2 in the northern Sinai.

In December, WND reported Egypt arrested dozens of foreign jihadists in the Sinai Peninsula, stoking fears ISIS militants were seeking to open a new front.

In February, WND was first to report that thousands of foreign jihadists were attempting to infiltrate Egypt, with plans of a coming destabilization campaign akin to the insurgency in Syria, according to informed Middle Eastern security officials.

The officials warned at the time of a troubling development taking place among the al-Qaida-linked organizations already inside Egypt. They said there is information the militant groups are forming a de facto chain of command, with alarming coordination between the various jihadist factions embedded around the country.

The terrorist infrastructure is being set up beyond the Islamist stronghold of the Sinai Peninsula. The officials said al-Qaida-linked groups in Egypt have been forming divisions replete with leadership and assignments to specific territories, including in the Sinai, Suez regions, outside Cairo and along the delta.

Sisi has appealed to the Obama administration and international community for help in battling the insurgency.

In a Fox News interview last month, Sisi appealed for an increase in U.S. military aid.

“It is very important for the United States to understand that our need for the weapons and for the equipment is dire, especially at the time when the Egyptians feel they are fighting terrorism and they would like to feel the United States is standing by them in that fight against terrorism,” he said.

A British Conference on Israel’s Right to Exist: Really?

Gatestone Institute, by George Phillips, April 12, 2015:

Iran has violated the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty time after time, often undetected; it also continues to violate Article 2, clause 4, of the United Nations Charter: “All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state…”

During the British Mandate, the entire area was known as Palestine. The official listing for “Place of Birth” on all passports at the time — for everyone, including Jews — was Palestine.

One can only hope that what clearly seems such a fatally dangerous deal — that threatens the existence of not only Israel, the Middle East and Europe, but, with Iran’s intercontinental ballistic missile program, also the United States — will not be allowed to happen.

The notion of Israel’s “right to exist” has been in the news twice in recent days.

First, the University of Southampton, in Britain, announced that due to “safety fears,” it was cancelling a conference, scheduled for later this month, to question Israel’s right to exist.

Were the “security concerns” related to the fact that the conference would promote the rising infestation of Jew-hatred in Britain? A recent U.K. parliamentary report shows that hate crimes against British Jews have doubled in the past decade, and has called upon the British government to take urgent action.

The second time was when Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, addressing the Obama Administration’s nuclear “framework” with Iran, said that in any deal, Iran should recognize Israel’s right to exist.

Despite being a member of the United Nations along with Israel, Iran nevertheless does not recognize Israel’s right to exist.

Iran has not only been a long-time sponsor of terrorist groups that for years have targeted and killed Israeli civilians (as well as American servicemen in Africa and Lebanon); it has also repeatedly threatened Israel with genocide. The latest announcement came in late March, when Mohammad Reza Naqdi, commander of the Basij militia of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, said that “erasing Israel off the map” was “non-negotiable.”

As Netanyahu has continually stated, a nuclear Iran is a threat to Israel’s existence and America’s existence.

Under such circumstances, that a British university was even thinking of holding such a conference is perplexing, at best.

The Jewish people have historical ties to the land of Israel that reach back nearly 4,000 years, a longstanding nationalist movement, a government in the post-colonial era and recognition by the United Nations — a similar path to existence as most other countries. Does anyone question, say, Zimbabwe’s right to exist?

Responses to statements that might have been raised, if this conference had gone ahead, include:

False Claim #1: Jews were out of Israel for almost 2,000 years.

The Romans crushed a Jewish revolt in 70 AD, and dispersed Jews throughout the Roman Empire. However, a continuous Jewish presence in the region never ceased. Key events recorded in history include: Jews governing Jerusalem when the Persian Sasanian Empire took over in 614; Jewish scribes working on the final text of the Hebrew Bible in the region between the 7th and 11th centuries; Jews enduring the Crusades; and Napoleon’s plans to invite Jews to form a state in 1799.

 

In 1799, as Napoleon Bonaparte’s army was besieging the city of Acre, Napoleon issued a letter, offering the Palestine as a homeland to the Jews, referring to them as “Rightful heirs of Palestine.” Above, a painting depicting the siege of Acre.

False Claim #2: Israel came about only because of the Zionist movement in the late 19th century.

The 19th century fostered the rise of nationalist movements throughout much of Europe. They led to the creation of modern Greece, Italy, and Germany, and also rose throughout the 20th century, often to end European colonization. In 1914, there were only 62 countries in the world; today there are 196, most of which were formed through nationalist movements, including, recently, Serbia, Croatia and Moldova, among others.

False Claim #3: Jews used violence to gain control of Israel.

Although some Jewish resistance groups occasionally used violence against Britain in an effort to gain independence, many other people, in a press for independence, have taken up arms, too. These include American colonials, Latin American independence movements, and the Algerians, Irish, and Bangladeshis, as well as countless others in the 20th century.

False Claim #4: The Palestinians controlled the land for centuries.

When the Ottoman Empire lost control of Palestine after World War I, there were no people known as “Palestinians” — only Muslims, Christians, Jews and assorted others living in the area. During the British Mandate, which followed World War I, the entire area was known as Palestine. The official listing for “Place of Birth” on all passports at the time — for everyone, including Jews — was Palestine. The word was coined by the Roman Emperor Hadrian in 132 AD, as part of an effort to obliterate the Jewish presence in the province. He changed the telling name of Judaea, and the land around it, to “Syria Palaestina”, and renamed Jerusalem as “Aelia Capitolina.”

The modern concept of Palestinian nationhood came into fruition only after Israel’s War of Independence in 1948, when five Arab armies attacked Israel literally the day of its birth, hoping to kill it in its crib. Many Arabs left; and many Arabs urged their fellow Arabs to leave, assuring them that in a few weeks, after the Jews were routed, they would be able to return. The problem was that the Arabs were the ones who were routed; the Jews won. When the Arabs who had fled wanted to come back, the Israelis said they were not welcome — they had chosen the hostile side. Instead of settling these Arabs in the countries to which they had fled, as the Jews had settled their countrymen fleeing Arab lands, the Arabs preferred to leave them as stateless people — now known as Palestinians. They were then promised, and still are promised, that they will return one day to the homes that they (or, by now, their great-great-grandparents) had voluntarily abandoned to be out of the way of the shooting.

The Arabs who stayed are still where they were, still in their homes, and are full citizens of Israel. They make up 20% of Israel’s population and have equal rights with Israel’s Jewish citizens. They enjoy full representation in Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, and hold senior positions in all professions.

False Claim #5: The UN Resolution legitimizing the State of Israel did not actually pass.

UN Resolution 181, known as the Partition Plan, was a recommendation that in November of 1947 called for the creation in Palestine of an Arab State and Jewish State. It was rejected by the Arabs, who threatened to use force to prevent it — and did.

Israel declared Independence on May 14, 1948, as the British Mandate on Palestine was set to expire. On May 11, 1949, UN Resolution 273, which admitted Israel to the United Nations, was adopted by the required two-thirds majority.

Currently 83% of the UN member states recognize Israel. Countries that refuse to recognize Israel include some Muslim nations, Cuba and North Korea.

False Claim #6: Israel came about only due to sympathies surrounding the Holocaust.

In 1917, well before the Holocaust, the British put forth the Balfour Declaration, which favored a “national home for the Jewish people” in Palestine. Confirmed by the League of Nations in 1922, it put the process to statehood in motion. In 1936, in the midst of Arab violence, the British Peel Commission called for a plan to create a Jewish State, but the plan was not enacted. Had Israel been formed at that point, many more Jews could have fled there to avoid the Holocaust.

False Claim #7: The Palestinians have a right to part of the territory based on the original UN plan.

Palestinians have been offered part of the territory for a Palestinian state again and again. The Palestinians, however, rejected a state of their own offered by the Peel Commission in 1937, and they rejected a state of their own in the UN Resolution 181 Partition Plan, because they would not accept a Jewish state. They came back from the Khartoum Conference in 1967 with three “Nos”: no peace, no recognition, no negotiations; and they twice rejected offers for a Palestinian state from Israel’s Prime Minister Ehud Barak, and later from Israel’s Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, both of whom offered 97% of everything the Palestinians demanded. The Palestinians did not even submit a counter-offer.

One can only conclude that the Palestinians do not actually want state; what they want is to displace the Israeli state. They themselves have confirmed this suspicion at least twice — first in the PLO “Phased Plan” of 1974, never rescinded, which calls for eliminating Israel in stages. The second time was in the Charter of Hamas — now half of a “Palestinian Unity Government” with Fatah. The Hamas Charter calls not just for the destruction of Israel but also for a genocide of all the Jews everywhere. This Charter, too, has never been rescinded.

Israel has granted self-governance to the Palestinians; however, considering the non-stop Arab and Muslim attacks on Israel, Prime Minister Netanyahu and others have said that full autonomy cannot be given to the Palestinians until their terrorist groups are completely demilitarized.

* * *

The “existence” of Israel — the only country in the region with human rights, freedom of expression, and equal justice under law — is not, and should not, even be in question. The more appropriate question is if organizations that ask questions such as that should exist.

Iran has violated the Non-Proliferation Treaty time after time, often undetected; it also continues to violate Article 2, clause 4, of the United Nations Charter: “All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.”

In March 2015, apparently not content with wiping just “Israel off the map,” Iran, in the person of its Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei, also called for “Death to America.”

One can only hope that what clearly seems such a fatally dangerous deal as the Obama Administration’s nuclear “framework” with Iran — that threatens not only the existence of Israel, the Middle East and Europe, but, with Iran’s intercontinental ballistic missile program, also the United States — will not be allowed to happen.

George Phillips served as an aide to Congressman Chris Smith of New Jersey, working on human rights issues.

Hamas Rebuilding War Machine as Gaza Deteriorates

A rebuilt tunnel (source: Al-Risalah, Gaza, October 19, 2014)

A rebuilt tunnel (source: Al-Risalah, Gaza, October 19, 2014)

by IPT News  •  April 15, 2015:

The Hamas leadership in Gaza has been unable to rebuild any of the homes destroyed in last summer’s war with Israel, but the terrorist group has had little trouble using heavy machinery to restore its vast tunnel networks that can be used in future attacks.

Reconstruction of Gaza has “barely begun,” the Associated Press reports. At least the above-ground kind.

Underground, small bulldozers are busy restoring damaged tunnels, using “whatever cement [Hamas] can get its hands on,” the Times of Israel reports.

Hamas has been diverting cement and construction material intended for civilian rebuilding efforts.

Israeli security officials confirmed that the terrorist group was digging tunnels at a rapid pace and trying to produce many short-range rockets in an effort to minimize interception by the Iron Dome defense system and cause maximum destruction against Israeli communities.

Iran sent Hamas tens of millions of dollars to help reconstitute the group’s terrorist infrastructure, the Telegraph reported earlier this month. As news of a framework deal concerning Iran’s nuclear program emerged, the Islamic Republic reportedly increased arms shipments to its terrorist proxies Hamas and Hizballah.

A political fight with the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority has hindered Gaza’s civilian reconstruction projects, the Times of Israel report said. Tens of thousands of Palestinians reportedly still live in tents, schools and other forms of temporary housing.

Their welfare appears to be a secondary concern, however, as available cash and supplies are steered into the Hamas terror infrastructure.

These actions are consistent with other Hamas actions and statements, all of which point more toward a build-up for another confrontation with Israel rather than any concern for improving the lives of Palestinians in Gaza. The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) issued a report this week summarizing the multi-faceted, yet singularly focused effort to gear up for the next war. Read it here.