And either lies or repudiates its Charter in the process. Hmmm…which could it be?
By the way, a grammatical aside: AP says “different than.” The Hamas official says “different to.” It’s different from, people. Please.
From AP, with thanks to JE:
CAIRO, Egypt – Hamas officials shrugged off the support offered by al-Qaida’s No. 2 leader, saying Sunday the Palestinian militant group has a different ideology than the terror network and won election through a moderate approach to Islam.
Yes, Hamas is the epitome of Islamic moderation. Bridge for sale! Bridge for sale!
In a video aired Saturday by Al-Jazeera, Ayman al-Zawahri called for jihad, or holy war, to reclaim Palestinian lands and implied al-Qaida’s support for Hamas’ refusal to recognize Israel despite international pressure since the militant Islamic group swept parliamentary elections in January.
A Hamas official in Gaza, speaking on condition of anonymity because the movement did not want to formally respond to al-Zawahri’s support, said: “Hamas believes that Islam is completely different to the ideology of Mr. al-Zawahri.”
“Our battle is against the Israeli occupation and our only concern is to restore our rights and serve our people. We have no links with any group or element outside Palestine,” the official said….
…he said as his nose grew to elephantine proportions. After all, the Charter of the Islamic Resistance Movement (Harakat Al-Muqawama Al-Islamia, hence the acronym HAMAS) says that “the Islamic Resistance Movement is one of the wings of Moslem Brotherhood in Palestine. Moslem Brotherhood Movement is a universal organization which constitutes the largest Islamic movement in modern times….As a result of the fact that those Moslems who adhere to the ways of the Islamic Resistance Movement spread all over the world, rally support for it and its stands, strive towards enhancing its struggle, the Movement is a universal one.” The Muslim Brotherhood was founded in Egypt in 1928 by Hasan Al-Banna, who is quoted in the Hamas Charter. If Hamas is one of its “wings,” and it is a “universal organization,” does it not have ties outside Palestine?
Also, what about that money Hamas receives from Iran? No ties outside Palestine, eh?
Al-Zawahri complained in the videotape that the previous Palestinian leaderships “sold Palestine” through peace agreements in Oslo and Madrid and the U.S.-backed road map peace plan. “This is a dangerous deal which should be dropped immediately,” he said.
“No one has the right, whether a Palestinian or not, to abandon a grain of soil from Palestine which was a Muslim land that was occupied by infidels. It is the duty of every Muslim to work on getting it back,” he said.
Doesn’t sound to me as if he has any disagreement with Hamas on that. After all, the Charter says that Hamas “strives to raise the banner of Allah over every inch of Palestine….The Islamic Resistance Movement believes that the land of Palestine is an Islamic Waqf consecrated for future Moslem generations until Judgement Day. It, or any part of it, should not be squandered: it, or any part of it, should not be given up. Neither a single Arab country nor all Arab countries, neither any king or president, nor all the kings and presidents, neither any organization nor all of them, be they Palestinian or Arab, possess the right to do that.”
In place of negotiations, he said, was “the path of prophets and messengers, which is … jihad, until the soil will be liberated and the Islamic states rise again.”…
Hamas Charter: “There is no solution for the Palestinian question except through Jihad. Initiatives, proposals and international conferences are all a waste of time and vain endeavors.”
And now Hamas is arguing with Zawahri about negotiations? What is amazing about this is that large numbers of learned analysts in the West will take this dog-and-pony show at face value.
“To this regard I have to warn the Muslim brothers in Palestine. … We know for sure that Palestine will not be liberated by the elections, but by jihad,” al-Zawahri said. “I would like to tell my brothers in Palestine that reaching power is needed to implement Islamic rule.”
But in what was seen by some as criticism of Hamas for running in elections, he said: “Entering with those who have sold Palestine, the legislative council, and recognizing their selling, stands against Islam.”
Mahmoud Zahar, a Hamas leader, told Al-Jazeera his group was elected through its moderate approach to Islam, which did not compare to al-Qaida’s exclusionary tactics.
“We are not a movement that labels people infidels or that abandons them. We are a movement that lives the realities of the people and that uses wisdom … to turn them to Islam,” he said.
Hamas Charter: “These conferences are only ways of setting the infidels in the land of the Moslems as arbitraters. When did the infidels do justice to the believers?”
And now they’re a movement that doesn’t label people infidels. Would you buy a used peace agreement from this man? Caveat emptor.
And note also that he speaks of using “wisdom” to turn people to Islam. That remains the ultimate goal, however it is couched.
“When Hamas entered parliament, it did so under the slogan: Islam is the solution. When the people decided to vote for it, they believed that Islam can solve their economic, social and political problems as well their military battles against the occupation.”
That is indeed what they voted for, although Western leaders seem determined to believe otherwise.