This article from The Jerusalem Post (thanks to Sr. Soph) reports Palestinian support and opposition to an al-Qaeda presence in the Gaza strip. Whatever the mood of the average Gazan and whether or not al-Qaeda is using Hamas as a proxy, there can be no doubt that the volatile situation in the region will only result in more jihad.
Has al-Qaida started operating in the Gaza Strip? A leaflet distributed in Khan Yunis over the weekend by al-Qaida’s “Palestine branch” announced that the terrorist group has begun working towards uniting the Muslims under one Islamic state.
“The Muslim nation has been subjected, through various periods, to conspiracies by the infidels,” the leaflet said. “[The infidels] have brought down the Islamic Caliphate, dividing the nation into small and weak states. They also managed to dilute the Islamic and character of the nation.”
The leaflet said unity was the only way for Muslims to achieve victory over their enemies, adding that the terrorist group’s chief goal was to enforce Islamic law in the entire world.
“Our efforts are now focused on establishing a strong and unified Muslim nation where love prevails among all its members,” it added.
The utopian ideal is reiterated. Islam will reign supreme; the ummah will control every aspect of society and the infidel will pay the jizya to finance the earthly bliss.
Palestinians reacted with mixed feelings to reports that al-Qaida had begun operating in the Gaza Strip.
“The Palestinian Authority is responsible for this new phenomenon,” said a resident of Gaza City named Nizar. “Extremist rhetoric in some areas, especially in mosques, produces such cases. The Palestinian Authority is to blame because it is preventing economic development and prosperity, particularly in the refugee camps, where it is easy to recruit unemployed and frustrated young men.”
According to Nizar, some areas in the southern Gaza Strip are already beginning to resemble Afghanistan when it was ruled by the Taliban. “This is very disturbing,” he remarked. “You see more and more women covering their faces and in the mosques you hear extremely radical sermons. The people there are behaving as if they were members of a tribe in Afghanistan.”
Another Gaza City resident, Fadel, urged al-Qaida to stop tampering with the future of the Palestinians. “They’re not welcome here,” he said. “Their presence will only destroy our lives.”
However, some Palestinians welcomed the news about al-Qaida’s presence in Gaza. “This is good news and we welcome al-Qaida in Palestine — from the sea to the river,” said a Khan Yunis resident named Ayman.
Last week al-Qaida’s new on-line television channel branded PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas a “collaborator with the Jews,” accusing him of assisting Israel in its war on Hamas.
The restored Caliphate will have no tolerance for those who have “collaborated” with the Jews.