The past 12 months have been particularly strained for the residents of southern Israel. Barrages of rockets, nights spent huddled in bomb shelters as air raid sirens wail, a scorched earth, violent protests a mere stone’s throw away and waves of incendiary kites and balloons flown across the border are but some of the threats these Israeli civilians face on an almost daily basis. Hamas, the terror organization in complete military and administrative control of the Gaza Strip, stands behind these atrocities.
The name Hamas is an acronym for Harakat al-Muqawamah al-Islamiyya or the Islamic Resistance Movement. Ironically, hamas is also the Hebrew word for violence. It is mentioned 39 times in the Tanakh (OT), each in the context of wickedness, corruption and cruelty.
Hamas is recognized as a terror organization by Canada, New Zealand, Israel, Egypt, Japan, the European Union, Australia, Jordan and the United States. The group’s reign of terror doesn’t only affect Israelis, it also subjects its own people to a life of misery, abject poverty and hopelessness.
“Hamas was born to destroy. Hamas does not know how to build.”—Mosab Hassan Yousef, son of Hamas founder, Sheikh Hassan Yousef
“Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it…Our struggle against the Jews is very great and very serious…It [Hamas] strives to raise the banner of Allah over every inch of Palestine.”—Hamas Covenant, the terror organization’s founding document
“The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence [hamas].”—Genesis 6:11
“We have liberated Gaza…but I am not prepared to accept just Gaza. Our position is: Palestine in its entirety, and not a grain of soil less. We will not give up the resistance in the sense of jihad, martyrdom-seeking, sacrifices…”—Mahmoud Al-Zahar, Hamas co-founder and senior leader
“We are here to remind that there is no peace with the enemy and any attempt or plan will not compel us to make peace with them.”—Yahya Sinwar, Hamas leader in the Gaza Strip
“Today there is no intention of relaxation and calm. Palestinian blood has been spilled. There is no place for talking about peace with the Israeli occupation. If they want to protect their entity from Hamas’s missiles, they will have to put an Iron Dome on every home in Israel.”—Fawzi Barhou, Hamas spokesman
“Here’s the difference between us [Israel and Hamas]. We’re using missile defense to protect our civilians and they’re using their civilians to protect their missiles.”—PM Benjamin Netanyahu
“Moderate men and women of faith…must shift their criticism from the Israeli soldiers—whose terrible choice is to fire and risk harming human shields, or hold their fire and risk the death of their loved ones—to the terrorists who have taken away all choice from the Palestinian children of Gaza.”—Elie Wiesel, Holocaust survivor and Nobel peace laureate
“All the Palestinian people got hurt but not Hamas. How many of Hamas’s members died? Where is Khaled Mashal [former Hamas senior leader who chose to reside out of harm’s way in Qatar]. Where are they? All of Hamas’s leaders are not here.”—Enraged Palestinian woman, decrying the lot of the Gazan people under Hamas
“For the Palestinian people, death has become an industry at which women excel…The elderly excel at this and so does…the children. This is why they have formed human shields of the women, the children, the elderly…We desire death like you desire life.”—Fathi Hammad, Hamas MP
Hamas “puts Gaza’s children in front of Israeli tanks…[and] profits from the death of Palestinian children to get sympathy from the Arab world.”—Mosab Hassan Yousef, son of Hamas founder, Sheikh Hassan Yousef
“Every time a siren sounds, the first thought that crosses your mind is: I’ve got 15 seconds to get to safety! Yes, we deal with the rockets and the attacks. We do what we have to do. But getting used to it? I don’t think that’s possible.”—Johnny Dishi, resident of southern Israel
“We adapt to this life. Every bus stop and play ground has a bomb shelter. When a siren sounds, they [the children] know to run to the nearest shelter. If there’s no shelter, they lie down and cover their heads until they hear the boom. After that they can continue playing like nothing happened. It is part of our life. In a way, it has become part of our routine.”—Margaret Duvdevani, resident of southern Israel
“Everywhere we go, whatever we do, we make sure that we put ourselves in a position where we can make it to safety in time. I recently went to the US with my kids. Their first question when we arrived was, ‘Dad, where’s the bomb shelter?’ They weren’t in a panic or even expecting an attack. It is just a way of life. You know where your closest bomb shelter is. Always.”—Ilan Isaacson, security chief of the Eshkol region, bordering the Gaza Strip
Source: See individual quotes
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