More realpolitik genius from the U.S. government.
JERUSALEM — An audit has revealed the U.S. government authorized nearly $1 million in aid to a Hamas-controlled university senior terror leaders told WND is openly utilized by Hamas to recruit fighters, manufacture explosives and train on campus grounds for attacks.
The audit concluded the American tax dollars were provided to Gaza’s Islamic University between 2002 and 2006. It stated officials from both the U.S. Agency for International Development in Tel Aviv, which initiated the fund request, and the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv, which conducted an investigation, found no “derogatory information” on the university.
Also in March 2007 State Department spokesman Sean McCormack told WND U.S. officials concluded after a review Islamic University does not supports terrorist activities.
But Israeli and Palestinian security officials and Palestinian terrorist leaders themselves scoffed at the State Department claims.
An Israeli security official took offense with McCormack’s statement.
“It’s the height of absurdity to hear Hamas’ Islamic University is not involved in terrorism,” the official said.
Islamic University was founded by Hamas spiritual leader Ahmed Yassin, who was assassinated by Israel in 2004. Hamas leader in Gaza Ismail Haniya sits on the college board, which was raided in January by Palestinian security forces who seized rocket-propelled grenades and rockets.
Abu Abdullah, considered one of the most important operational members of Hamas’ so-called military wing, told WND Islamic University is regularly used by Hamas to support “resistance activities.”
“It is no secret that we utilize all tools at our disposal, including our fighters at Islamic University in preparations to fight the Zionists,” said Abu Abdullah of Hamas’ Izzedine al-Qassam Martyrs Brigades, Hamas’ declared “resistance” department.
Muhammad Abdel-Al, spokesman of the Popular Resistance Committees, a Hamas-affiliated terror group, told WND Islamic University is “extremely important” for recruitment of militants. He said several members of his group study chemistry at the university to aid in the manufacture of explosives and suicide belts. The Committees is responsible for hundreds of rocket attacks from Gaza aimed at nearby Jewish cities.
According to Israeli and Palestinian intelligence officials Islamic University’s main campus in Gaza City has been used by Hamas’ so-called military wing to recruit terrorists and suicide bombers. The officials told WND chemistry labs were used to manufacture and improve explosives for Hamas-affiliated militias.
Reuven Erlich, director of the Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center and Israel’s Center for Special Studies, told WND his organization analyzed material captured in previous Israeli raids of Islamic University, which yielded mass quantities of weaponry and Hamas incitement material supporting terrorist attacks.
Officials from Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah party last February claimed they captured seven Iranian military trainers — including a general of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards — inside Gaza City’s Islamic University, which they said was being utilized as a Hamas military training ground.
The Fatah officials said they also found some 1,000 Qassam rockets, rocket-propelled grenades and equipment to manufacture the rockets inside the university. They previously suspected kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit was being held for a time on the university grounds.[…]
USAID the past two years has reportedly provided $4 million to Arkan, a Palestinian program that funds law schools at several universities in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, including Al-Najah University. The Arkan program is entirely funded by USAID.
Israeli security officials say Al-Najah University is one of the most important recruitment grounds for West Bank terror organizations. The Israeli Defense Forces a number of times has raided the college and arrested terror suspects. At least 15 Palestinians who carried out suicide bombings the past six years attended the school.
Senior members of the Islamic Jihad and Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades terror groups are openly enrolled at Al-Najah, WND has learned.
One senior leader of the Brigades, the declared military wing of Abbas’ Fatah party, told WND many Brigades leaders study at the university, which he described as a “recruitment center for jihad.”
The senior leader said he is studying sports education.
A leader of the Islamic Jihad terror organization said he is studying chemistry to enhance his terror group’s bomb-making capabilities. He said others in the chemistry department manufacture explosives for Palestinian groups.
Islamic Jihad and the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades has taken joint 2006 bombing in Tel Aviv last April that killed eight Israelis and American teenager Daniel Wultz.
According to the U.S. Foreign Operations Bill of 2006, it is illegal to fund universities which the Secretary of State “knows or has reason to believe advocates, plans, sponsors, engages in, or has engaged in, terrorist activity.”
USAID has a history of funding anti-American Palestinian projects.
WND first reported a northern West Bank street funded by USAID was renamed for Saddam after his execution.
Zacharias Zubeidi, leader of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades in Yaabid, told WND the city changed the name on the U.S.-funded street to show “Saddam Hussein is still alive.”
“We will honor his memory until the American and Zionist occupation is driven from our land,” Zubeidi said.
WND reported USAID also reconstructed roads and municipalities in areas in the Gaza Strip controlled by Hamas.
In a WND interview, Hamas Foreign Minister Mahmoud al-Zahar thanked USAID for its efforts.
According to Palestinian Media Watch translations, after USAID funded road projects in the West Bank city of Jenin in 2004, a central street there was named after the first Iraqi suicide bomber, who killed four American soldiers in Fallujah. The mayor of Jenin reportedly participated in an anti-American dedication ceremony in which speakers blessed the “resistance of the residents of Fallujah”