Will the Palestinian Islamic Movements Become Extinct? - II

  • Publish date:10/03/2011
  • Section:Palestine
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There is no doubt that the earnest activities of the Islamic movements to maintain the strength of their ranks, the unity of their decisions and the precision of their objectives require political and media support to thwart Israel’s desired efforts to brand them as “terrorists”.

Dr. Zahhaar says,
The support of the Arab world is sufficient. We have no diplomatic relations, but our relationships with the Arab systems are good and our relationships with the Arab peoples are better. When the Arab systems accept describing the liberation movements in general and the Islamic movements in particular as terrorist, then they contradict the opinion of the Arab and Islamic street. In this case, the Arab peoples are required to support this strategy, not for the sake of Hamas and the project of the Islamic movement, but to defend themselves in the first place and to avoid confrontation with the Islamists in these countries.
Al-Hindi believes that his movement does not suffer from the complex of being described as “terrorist”, adding, “The Islamic Jihad was established in the late 1970's to solve the dilemma of the factions of the Palestinian Liberation organization that kept Islam away from the battlefield and conflict, as well as the dilemma of the Islamic movement at that time that refused to take part in the struggle against the Israeli Zionist”.
The Islamic Jihad adopted a new strategy considering Palestine as the central case of the Islamic movement. Since its establishment until today, the movement struggles against the occupation inside Palestine and it does not suffer from the complex of being branded as “terrorist”, because it is theoretically and practically an Islamic resistance movement against the Zionist occupation in Palestine.
All Muslims and Arabs, as well as free people worldwide understand this logic which applies to all Palestinian resistant movements.”
Saalih argued,
As a Palestinian Islamic movement, we form part of the forces that work towards achieving the unanimously recognized objectives that are represented in ending the invasion and establishing our Palestinian state. We are in a state of war with the racist and terrorist Zionist occupier; hence, our political programs should accord with the Arab and Islamic reality to succeed in forming a strong Arab and Islamic front that supports the rights of our people in its struggle against the Zionist enemy. We have rejected the accusations of terrorism leveled at the Palestinian and Lebanese Islamic movements through focusing on the terrorism of the Hebrew Zionist state as was the case in the UN Durban Conference of NGOs on Racism.
Alternative political programs:
In response to a question regarding the alternative political programs that are available for his movement to adapt to the requirements of this stage tactically and strategically, Dr. Zahhaar said, “We are in a state of war that witnesses ebbs and flows and we have a clear and unchangeable political program.”
Dr. Al-Hindi considers that this strategy springs from fear of the US-Zionist power and a lack of belief in the axioms of the conflict in Palestine. However, it is important to realize that we are not seeking to verify the validity of any program. The political program of negotiations or the so-called "peace process" was adopted by the Palestinian Liberation Organization for a decade without any gains for the Palestinian people other than weakness and siege.
Consequently, is it logical to demand that the Palestinian Islamic movements abandon their political programs and strategies in response to temporary international circumstances (in spite of the fact that they are unanimously supported on the Arab and Islamic level and even among the people of Oslo) to enter into the dark tunnel of negotiations, liquidation of the Intifaadhah and resistance, which have been a historic Israeli demand?
However, if we speak about tactical moves that remain within the framework of the general strategy of adherence to resistance and struggle, then this is unequivocally acceptable. 
Serious international pressures:
The Palestinian Authority will most likely face international pressures that may force it to cope with the international changes, which necessitate fighting Hamas and Islamic Jihad with the aim of achieving political objectives.
In this regard, Zahhaar confirmed that whoever responds to the USA and tries to slaughter his people would lose his presence in this region. He added, “Can you give me an example of any government that killed its people and then remained in power? However, if we assume that the PA received US orders to dismantle Hamas, the Palestinian people will oppose it, even before starting the implementation. Nevertheless, the wise members of Fatah and the other Palestinian factions cannot let this happen, because it means losing any Arab or Palestinian public support they have.”
Dr. Al-Hindi says, “Islamic Jihad and Hamas are not isolated organizations that adopt strange political programs; rather, they, and the other resistant groups, represent the vanguard of the popular forces that defend the choice of the Palestinian people and Palestinian unanimity. These forces are integral parts of the Palestinian people and they express its choices and directions.”
The other case is internal Palestinian unity, which was embodied for the first time in the unity of all the Palestinian factions and powers inside the trenches of the resistance and Intifaadhah. It is very difficult for all the parties to sacrifice this unity for the sake of illusions. What will the PA get in return for targeting Palestinian unity?
Attacking interests:
Soon after the 9/11 attacks, the USA listed Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Hezbollah as ‎foreign terrorist organizations‎ to reassure the Zionist government ‎headed by Sharon, and pave the way before targeting these movements seriously within the ongoing war.
Zahhaar inquired,
Where will the interests of those two movements be targeted? Hamas is present on the Palestinian arena, and inside every house in the Arab and Muslim world. Every Muslim worldwide is a brother of Hamas and we have a share in every penny in the pocket of any Muslim. Here, I am not speaking about the governments. When Allah The Almighty ordained Zakah (obligatory charity), He knew that the powers of evil will endeavor to prevent it from reaching those who fight to liberate the Palestinian lands and defend the sanctuaries.
Our economic program is worldwide and our political one is confined to Palestine and aims at liberating it. We do not have embassies to be demolished, or economic institutions to be targeted. We have nothing but the amazing human force that taught the whole world how homelands are defended and how the simple human element with its simple abilities can defeat the incomparably strong armies that have the best weapons and military experience. Our project is strong and it is undefeatable, because Allah The Exalted Says (what means): {Allah has written, "I will surely overcome, I and My messengers." Indeed, Allah is Powerful and Exalted in Might.}[Quran 58:21
Dr. Al-Hindi says,
Hezbollah, Hamas, and Islamic Jihad are on the US Foreign Terrorist Organizations List, and this shows the extent of blind US partiality and proves that Washington has no intention of reconsidering its policies in the Middle East or withdrawing its partiality and full support for Israel and its security at the expense of Arab interests and demands. Bush’s announcement about the Palestinian state is nonsense and aims at facilitating the process of joining the Arab and Islamic states into the alliance rather than reflecting a real change in US policy. This also applies to Islamic Jihad, which has no interests on US soil, because it works solely inside Palestine and has no bank accounts to be frozen. Their funds are limited and used directly to spend on the requirements of Jihad and resistance.
Saalih is of the view that classifying Hamas and Islamic Jihad as Terrorist Organizations is insignificant as long as it has no Palestinian, Arab, or Islamic cover, and that the blessed Intifaadhah showed the ugly face of the Zionist terrorist and racist entity and the Arab-Islamic world now supports the struggle of our Palestinian people.
Obviously, the Islamic movements in Palestine believe that Jihaad (struggle) will continue regardless of all obstacles and until all the objectives of their establishment are achieved depending on their belief in victory and the Divine protection for the eternal message of Islam.
However, the Islamic movements should not bury their head in the sand; rather, they should adapt with the international and regional developments making use of the experiments of the Islamic movements in the Arab and Islamic world and their own experiment in the Palestinian territories after the establishment of the Palestinian Authority in 1994 C.E.
Sufficient flexibility is necessary for the Islamic movements to continue their mission. Certainly, it will stumble on some dangerous turning points that may destroy them if they do not adapt quickly to the hardships of the road.
Islamic organizations should reconsider the nature of their work and try to adapt with the circumstances of the open war against them not to jeopardize the interests of their people.
Hence, sometimes it may be necessary to intensify their anti-occupation activities in some stages, and adopt some form of truce at other times. Alternatively, this may mean ceasing the operations that target the Israelis inside the Palestinian lands that were occupied in 1948 C.E. completely, as long as this is for their benefit and the benefit of the Palestinian people.
It is unacceptable for Islamic organizations to neglect political flexibility and understanding of the nature of the changes in the region and the balances of power.
All parties should realize that all Islamic factions are on board the same ship and that all of them are responsible for leading that ship wisely without disagreements.
They should cooperate in what they agree upon, and excuse each other in what they disagree upon. This will guarantee that each faction will give precedence to public interests over its own.

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