Hamas Drives Bedouin from Their Homes

Earlier this month, residents of Umm al-Nasr, a Bedouin community in northern Gaza, saw their homes demolished—but not by Israel. Khaled Abu Toameh reports:

On June 9, hundreds of Hamas security officers raided the village to destroy several houses as part of the terror group’s attempt to evict the residents from the area. Hamas claims that the village was illegally built on “state-owned” land. . . . The residents threw stones at the officers, who responded by firing live ammunition at the protesters.

At least 25 villagers were injured during the clashes, eight of them from gunfire. Sources in the Gaza Strip said that at least one Hamas officer was injured. After the violent clashes, Hamas security forces arrested 85 villagers. . . . Sources in the Gaza Strip said that there are 28 more villages slated for demolition by Hamas on the pretext that they were illegally built on public lands.

Hamas’s practices against the Palestinians do not come as a surprise to many Palestinians, especially those who have been living under its repressive regime in the Gaza Strip since 2007. What does continue to surprise many Palestinians, however, is the ongoing silence of the international community, human-rights groups, the United Nations, and many mainstream media organizations towards the Hamas crimes.

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Read more at Gatestone

More about: Bedouin, Gaza Strip, Hamas, Palestinians

 

The Arab Press Blames Iran Rather Than Israel for Gaza’s Woes

Following the fighting between Israel and Islamic Jihad over the weekend, many journalists and commentators in Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia didn’t rush to condemn the Jewish state. Instead, as the translators at the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) note, they criticized the terrorist group for “operating in service of Iranian interests and thus inflicting suffering on the Gaza Strip’s residents.” One Saudi intellectual, Turki al-Hamad, wrote the following on Twitter:

It is apparent that, if at one time any confrontation between Israel and the Palestinian organizations would attract world and Arab attention and provoke a wave of anger [against Israel], today it does not shock most Arabs and most of the world’s [countries]. Furthermore, even a sense of human solidarity [with the Palestinians] has become rare and embarrassing, raising the question, “Why [is this happening] and who is to blame?”

I believe that the main reason is the lack of confidence in all the Palestinian leaders. . . . From the Arabs’ and the world’s perspective, it is already clear that these leaders are manipulating the [Palestinian] cause out of self-interest and diplomatic, economic, or even personal motives, and that the Palestinian issue is completely unconnected to this. The Palestinian cause has become a bargaining chip in the hands of these and other organizations and states headed by the [Iranian] ayatollah regime.

A, article in a major Arabic-language newspaper took a similar approach:

In a lengthy front-page report on August 7, the London-based UAE daily Al-Arab criticized Islamic Jihad, writing that “Gaza again became an arena for the settling of accounts between Iran and Israel, while the Palestinian citizens are the ones paying the price.” It added that Iran does not want to confront Israel directly for its bombings in Syria and its attacks on Iranian scientists and nuclear facilities.

“The war in Gaza is not the first, nor will it be the last. But it proves . . . that Iran is exploiting Gaza as it exploits Lebanon, in order to strengthen its hand in negotiations with the West. We all know that Iran hasn’t fired a single bullet at Israel, and it also will not do this to defend Gaza or Lebanon.”

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Read more at MEMRI

More about: Gaza Strip, Iran, Islamic Jihad, Israel-Arab relations, Persian Gulf