He said that Hamas is against the killing of any civilians, and that the killing of the Israeli teens was not authorized by the Hamas leadership — although he did justify those killings. Nor did he explain why Hamas included the murders of Israeli civilians in its “Glory Record.” Here are some of Hamas’ self-described exploits from that record:
3. Boureen Operation: The militant Hamdan Hussein Al:najar, a member of Hamas, killed the Israeli settler Ya’coub Berey using a big rock as his weapon. The militant was shot down as a martyr after he had ambushed an Israeli patrol using the dead settler’s weapon….
6. Bus No. 405 Operation: Militant Ahmed Hussein Shukry, a member of Hamas, was able to lead an Israeli soldier to a secluded place in Tel Aviv where the militant hit the soldier with a chisel and killed him on 8 September 1989. The following day, the militant got on bus No. 405 and stabbed the driver to take over the bus; however, the passengers were able to stop the militant….
12. Keryat Youval Operation: The militant Mohammed Mustafa Abu Jalala stabbed four Israelis and injured another at a bus station in Keryat Youval in Jerusalem before he was arrested by the Israeli forces.
13. Askalan Road Operation: While driving a taxi, the militant Jameel Ismail Al:baz, a member of Hamas, ran over a group of Israelis waiting on this road on 19 July 1991….
15. Shailou Operation: A military group belonging to Al Qassam Brigades attacked an Israeli bus carrying some settlers on their way to Tel Aviv to participate in demonstrations organized by the extremist party Likud against the peace process. The bus was completely destroyed; two Israelis were killed and five more were injured….
17. Eid Al-maskhara Operation: The militant Ra’ed Al:reefy attacked an Israeli crowd in Jaffa on 17 March 1992. He was able to kill 2 and injure 21 Israelis who gathered to celebrate Eid Al:maskhara, also known as Al:boureem.
18. Beit Lahya Operation: On the third anniversary of Sheikh Ahmed Yassin’s arrest, a group belonging to Al Qassam Brigades attacked an Israeli settler at Beit Lahya and shot him down then withdrew safely….
21. Carlo Factory Operation: Four militants belonging to Al Qassam Brigades broke into a citrus packing factory (Carlo) near Nahal Oaz at 2:30 p.m. on 25 June 1992. Three militants stabbed two Israelis while the other was guarding….
So Meshaal claims that Hamas is against the killing of civilians, yet for years Hamas’s own website included a celebration of the murders of civilian Ya’coub Berey; the civilians on the bus to Tel Aviv; the civilians in the crowd in Jaffa; and the civilian at Beit Lahya; as well as the stabbings of the driver of bus No. 405, the Israelis at the bus station in Keryat Youval, and the citrus packers, as well as the victims of cabbie Jameel Ismail al-Baz.
He also says: “We are not a religious, violent group.” Yet Hamas’s charter bears this epigraph: “Israel will rise and will remain erect until Islam eliminates it as it had eliminated its predecessors.” How will Islam eliminate Israel? By prayer? No, by violence.
As Muhammad said, “War is deceit.” Meshaal here shows himself a to be an excellent practitioner of that art.
“Hamas leader: Don’t compare us to ISIL,” by Michael Isikoff, Yahoo News, August 22, 2014:
DOHA, Qatar—In an interview with Yahoo News, the political leader of Hamas today vigorously rejected any comparison to ISIL terrorists and pledged that the Palestinian militant group will start giving warnings to Israelis about impending rocket attacks in order to avoid the killing of innocent civilians.
As much of the world expressed revulsion over the beheading of American journalist James Foley by an ISIL executioner, Hamas political chief Khaled Meshaal took pains to distance his organization from the Islamist militant group that has conducted a murderous rampage across a large swath of Syria and Iraq.
“This is an opportunity for me to say we are against the killing of any civilians, any journalists,” Meshaal said in the interview. But he then turned the accusation against Israel. “The question is who is killing the civilians,” he said, asserting that more than 15 journalists have been killed during the Israeli assault on Gaza.
Meshaal acknowledged for the first time that Hamas members — but not the group’s political leadership — were behind the slaying of three Israeli settlers on the West Bank in June. But he defended the murders as a legitimate action against Israeli “illegal” occupation.
“We were not aware of this action taken by this group of Hamas members in advance,” he said. “But we understand people are frustrated under the occupation and the oppression, and they take all kinds of action.”
When asked directly whether Hamas members carried out the abduction of the Israeli teens, Meshaal said: “We learned about these confessions from the Israeli investigation … Hamas political leadership was not aware of all these details. We learned about it later on …
“Our view is that soldiers and settlers on the West Bank are aggressors, and they are illegally living in this occupied and stolen land. And the right to resist is the right of Palestinians.”
The hourlong interview was conducted at a gated, unmarked Hamas media office in Doha, Qatar. It came after two days of talks there between Meshaal and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas at the sprawling palace of Qatari Emir Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani following the collapse of a 10-day cease-fire and the resumption of Hamas rocket fire and Israeli airstrikes in Gaza.
In the wide-ranging interview, Meshaal repeatedly blamed Israeli leaders for the current round of violence. He deflected questions about the hundreds of Hamas rockets aimed at Israel, making a new pledge to warn civilians in advance of the attacks.
“We do not target civilians, and we try most of the time to aim at military targets and Israeli bases,” Meshaal said. “But we admit that we have a problem. We do not have sophisticated weapons. We do not have the weapons available to our enemy … so aiming is difficult. We do promise you, though, that we will try in the future and we will warn people … We have given warnings to Israeli civilians. We promise that if we get more precise weapons, we will only target military targets.”
Asked about Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s comments this week that “Hamas is like ISIS, ISIS is like Hamas,” Meshaal called the comparison a “lie” designed to “trick” the American public.
“We are not a religious, violent group,” Meshaal said, calling ISIL (the Islamist militant group also known as ISIS) a “totally different phenomenon. We are fighting against aggression in our land.”