This is a blog dedicated to a personal interpretation of political news of the day. I attempt to be as knowledgeable as possible before commenting and committing my thoughts to a day's communication.

Monday, February 08, 2016

The Hamas Way : Standards for Morals and Behavior

"We are shocked. He can’t be executed based on the reasons they provide."
"[Hamas officials met the family informing them that they were considering his release]. They tricked us."
Buthaina, Eshtewi, Gaza

Hamas operatives about to execute 'collaborators' (Archive photo)
Hamas operatives about to execute 'collaborators' (Archive photo)

A terse notice was released on Twitter by Hamas in Gaza that the decision to eliminate one of their own high-ranking Al-Qassam commanders after having incarcerated him for a year, was taken by their "military and religious judiciary", and he was killed after having been accused and found guilty of "moral and behavioural violation". This is a man whose family has for generations been Hamas stalwarts.

Mahmoud Eshtewi himself was a leading Hamas commander, in charge of Hamas tunnels, where weapons were stored, and which were used to infiltrate Israel and threaten settlements on the border between Israel and Gaza.

He was accused of leaking vital information to Israeli agents; when planned attacks were thwarted it seemed obvious that someone had been warning the IDF. And when a number of targeted attacks by the IDF took place in an effort to kill a high-ranking Hamas commander, Mohammed Deif, in charge of Hamas's military wing, suspicion eventually fell on Mahmud Eshtewi, leading to his arrest a year ago and now his execution.

This will certainly set an example for any other Hamas functionaries who might flirt with the idea of betraying Hamas to the IDF. There are no lack of other Palestinians in Gaza who have been accused of giving information to Israel, and who have been summarily executed, but this appears to represent the first time that the military brigade, Al-Qassam  court-martialled, sentenced and executed someone of Mr. Eshtewi's rank.

</p><br /><br /> <p> Palestinian civilians take pictures of bodies of men, allegedly Israeli collaborators, on November 20, 2012 at Nasser street near the al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza City, after they were killed by gunmen eyewitnesses told AFP. The victims had notices pinned to their bodies saying they had been killed by Hamas's armed wing.  <br /><br /><br />

AFP/Getty Images

Palestinian civilians take pictures of bodies of men, allegedly Israeli collaborators, after they were shot dead. The victims had notices pinned to their bodies saying they had been killed by Hamas’s armed wing

In late December the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights advised that nine death sentences had been issued and carried out in 2015 in the Gaza Strip, and two others in the areas under Palestinian Authority control. Sari Bashi, HRW’s Israel-Palestine director,  said that Eshtewi's family’s claims were "consistent with persistent and credible reports that Hamas security forces have been arresting and torturing those who express criticism [of Hamas leadership]."

Mr. Eshtewi, as a high-ranking Hamas official, at least died with the dignity he could mount, perhaps before a firing squad. In 2012, another Palestinian was denied the human dignity due him when he was accused of being a collaborator and executed, his body triumphantly dragged by a vehicle through the streets of Gaza City, to the cheers of onlookers.

AFP/Getty Images

And in a return to business as usual, apart from retrieving Hamas bodies from collapsed tunnels, the terrorist group has issued a new song to titillate their members and inspire Palestinians to continue their knife-and-vehicle-ramming intifada with these words: "To die as a martyr for Al-Aqsa [Mosque] gives the explosive device more and more force", on the Hamas channel Al-Aqsa TV.

"The intifada is not an intifada if the bus roof doesn’t fly off."

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