Hamas-Fatah Reconciliation: Hamas’s Al-Aqsa TV Broadcasts IDF Soldier Slaughter – ‘Our Harvest is Your Heads’ (VIDEO)
by Joshua Levitt
As leaders of the Palestinian Authority and Fatah met Hamas in Gaza City on Wednesday to announce plans to unite, Hamas’s Al-Aqsa TV broadcast its hatred of Israel.
PMW also translated an article in official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida that quoted Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh insisting that Hamas’ policy of kidnapping Israeli soldiers would continue under a unified government.
“The kidnapping of Israeli soldiers is part of the agenda of the Palestinian resistance and of the Hamas movement, and will continue as long as there are Palestinian prisoners in the Israeli prisons,” Haniyeh was quoted as saying by Al-Hayat Al-Jadida.
The article was published last week, days before the unity plan was announced to the Israeli and international press. The PA media outlet attributed impetus for the unity push to Haniyeh, who was quoted as describing the unification strategy as “the next stage” of a pre-agreed plan:
Al-Hayat Al-Jadida wrote: “Yesterday [April 15, 2014] morning, Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh of the deposed Hamas government in Gaza, said that the next stage would be the implementation of the reconciliation [between Fatah and Hamas] agreed on in the past, and the announcement of the end of the schism.”
The Israeli government responded immediately and on Thursday the Cabinet voted unanimously to refuse to “negotiate with a Palestinian government backed by Hamas, a terrorist organization that calls for Israel’s destruction.”
On Wednesday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had warned that Abbas “needs to choose between peace with Israel and an agreement with Hamas, a murderous terrorist organization that calls for the destruction of the State of Israel and which both the United States and the European Union define as a terrorist organization.”
“Whoever chooses Hamas does not want peace,” Netanyahu said.
American Jewish groups also responded to the move.
On Thursday, Jewish human rights group the Anti-Defamation League said, “Israel’s suspension of peace talks was fully justified in light of the so-called ‘unity’ agreement between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas.”
“With its embrace of Hamas, a terrorist organization which unabashedly continues to call for the destruction of the State of Israel, Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian Authority apparently have once again turned their back on peace and reconciliation,” Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, said.
Pro-Israel lobby group AIPAC, the America Israel Public Affairs Committee, said, “The announced formation of a Hamas-Fatah unity government represents a direct affront to Secretary of State John Kerry and a severe blow to Israeli-Palestinian peace efforts.”
“Hamas is an Islamist terrorist organization that seeks Israel’s destruction and attacks innocent civilians,” the group added. “Any Palestinian government that includes Hamas cannot be a negotiating partner unless it meets longstanding Quartet demands ensconced in U.S. law: recognize Israel, reject violence, and accept previous Israeli-Palestinian agreements.”
The Zionist Organization of America wrote: “Hamas calls in its Charter for the destruction of Israel (Article 15) and the worldwide murder of Jews (Article 7), while Hamas terrorists have also murdered over 500 Israelis since September 2000.”
The ZOA’s Mort Klein said on Thursday, “By concluding a reconciliation agreement with Hamas, a movement intent on a genocide of the Jews, Abbas’ Fatah/PA has shown conclusively that it is not only not a peace partner, but an avowed enemy of Jews and the Jewish state.”
Klein also pointed to Fatah’s similarities with Hamas: “Fatah calls in its Constitution for the destruction of Israel (Article 12) and the use of terrorism as an indispensable element in the struggle to achieve that goal (Article 19). Fatah terrorists have murdered over 500 Israelis since Yasser Arafat launched his terrorist wave against Israel in September 2000. ”
In Gaza, words of incitement define the debate. In January, Haniyeh spoke at Gaza’s ‘Futuwwa’ youth camp, a program that was graduating 13,000 students with a “jihadi education” on the birthday of Mohammed.
“The best way for us to celebrate the Prophet’s birthday is to walk in his footsteps and provide the future generations a jihadi education,” he told thousands of students, according to a translated broadcast from Al-Aqsa TV.
“We shall walk in his footsteps in educating the future generation to love death for the sake of Allah as much as our enemies love life.”
“This is the generation that will be qualified for liberation, victory, return, and independence. Woe betide you, oh sons of Zion, for weakness knows no entry route to the hearts of this generation.”
“This is the generation of stone, the generation of the missile, the generation of tunnels, and the generation of martyrdom operations.”
The camera then focused on one of the graduates, who said: “Our message to the Zionist enemy, everywhere and at any time, is this: You shall never enjoy a pleasant life on our beloved homeland. We, the sons of the ‘Futuwwa’ youth camps, will confront you on every hill, in every valley, and on every road.”
“Nothing awaits you here but to be killed. Nothing awaits you here but to be killed or to leave.”
As part of a refrain, thousands of students in Yarmouk Stadium chanted responsively with the announcer, “Our utmost desire… is death for the sake of Allah!”
In terms of what the Palestinian leadership moves will mean politically, on the Thursday Israel also vowed to “respond to unilateral Palestinian action” with its own response.
The ZOA’s Klein said, “Until and unless the PA genuinely reforms to cleanse itself of terrorism and extremism, fights and jails terrorists and terminates the culture of hatred and rejection that helps fuel Palestinian violent rejection of the Jewish state of Israel, there is no prospect of peace.”
On the partnership with Hamas, Klein said, “They have nailed their colors to the mast.”
Israeli cabinet members, who passed the resolution unanimously, also focused on what the Hamas flag implies.
Finance Minister Yair Lapid told Israeli press that Hamas is “a jihadi terror organization that is proud of killing civilians – women, children, the elderly – just because they’re Jewish. If the Palestinians really want a treaty with Israel … how did they not demand from Hamas to say it is abandoning terror, to commit to not hurting innocent people and to follow international law?”
Economy Minister Naftali Bennett added a third dimension to what the unity government signifies; it would also mean the inclusion of Islamic Jihad in a future government, he wrote on Facebook on Thursday.
Bennett said, “The signing of the merger between Fatah, Islamic Jihad and Hamas introduces to the Middle East a whole new political era.”
“The Palestinian Authority has just become the largest terrorist entity in the world, twenty minutes from Tel Aviv. These three terrorist groups have killed more than 1,000 Israelis in the streets of Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Haifa since 2000.”
Bennett said, “Just as the United States does not talk with Hamas, Islamic Jihad and al-Qaeda. Also Israel needs to be clear: We do not talk with killers.”
The ZOA said it will “urge” the U.S. government to maintain its strong stance against Hamas, and take the next step of refusing to recognize the Hamas-Fatah coalition.
Royce wrote in The Algemeiner: “The scene has become a depressingly familiar one: while the United States works to advance peace negotiations in the Middle East, the Palestinian Authority’s state-controlled media and educational systems teach their citizens and, most troubling, children to hate Israel and its Jewish people.”
“It often seems more like the Palestinian Authority is preparing its people for war instead of preparing them for peace. The PA’s state-sanctioned media and educational systems systematically deny the existence of a Jewish state, arguing that Israel’s existence is a direct threat to Palestinians; even asserting that the destruction of Israel is justified.”
In a press briefing on Wednesday, U.S. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said, “It’s hard to see how Israel can be expected to negotiate with a government that does not believe in its right to exist.”
Asked if U.S. financial aid to the PA would be a casualty of this move, Psaki replied, “Well, obviously, there would be implications.”
Watch the PMW translation of Gaza’s Al-Aqsa TV segment.