Israel: damned either which way. So now, all the civil strife between Hamas and Fatah is due to those organizations losing sight of the real enemy, Israel. Makes sense — especially since this sort of thing has plenty of precedents in Islamic history. Take the Islamic conquests, for example. Immediately after Muhammad’s death (632), most of the Arab tribes tried to break away from Muslim authority, which led to the Ridda Wars (or “Apostasy Wars”), dominating the first caliph, Abu Bakr’s, short reign (632-634). These civil wars were extremely bloody; tens of thousands of apostates were slain. Second caliph Omar, upon ascension, knew that the best way to put an end to the civil strife was to direct the Arabs’ collective bellicosity to other peoples — all in the name of jihad — setting off the Islamic conquests. Ironically, one of the very first infidel regions to be conquered was Jerusalem. Thus today, since Muslims are losing focus on Israel, they fight and kill each other in Palestine — or at least that’s Islamic Jihad’s take on it.
“Islamic Jihad Movement considers a slow down against Israel as leading to difficulties for the Palestinian people,” from Al-Summaria, October 25 (my translation):
During the ceremony of the 31st anniversary of the assassination of the the Islamic Jihad Movement’s founder, Fathi al-Shiqaqi, the current leader, Nafidh Azzam, considers a slowing down [of operations] against Israel as creating only difficulties for the Palestinian people’s jihad, leading to only an increase in division and internal strife. He called on the Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas to halt negotiations with the Hebrew state. Similarly, Azzam demanded a halt to political arrests between Fatah and Hamas, stressing the need to support a reconciliation and end the division, easing the way for dialogue.