By Ze’ev Ben-Yechiel
With Israel continuing to score major hits in Gaza, at least 25 Gazans suspected of collaboration with Israel are believed to have been killed by Hamas operatives in recent days
Last night, a 13-story building housing a massive Hamas command center was demolished by the IDF, with the army saying that only combatants were harmed in the operation. Last week three top Hamas operatives were killed in an airstrike by the Israeli Air Force, and yesterday’s hit was the latest indication of the IDF’s commitment to destroy Hamas and banish them from the Gaza strip.
Faced with mounting losses, the terror group appears to be venting its frustrations at on its own civilians, as it continues to execute what it claims are “informants” for Israel. Over Thursday and Friday, some 25 civilians were killed in what Hamas called “Operation Strangling Necks.”
News of Hamas’s latest attack on its own civilians reinforces the belief in Israel that the terror organization is the greatest enemy of the Gazan people. Member of Knesset Moti Yogev (Jewish Home) told Tazpit News Agency that the killings had little to do with internal security concerns: “The execution of Gaza residents, men and women, is cruelty that its purpose is to deter the populace,” he said. “There is nothing behind it in terms of real intelligence.”
The parliamentarian noted that those killed were given no opportunity to prove their innocence. “Many of these killings are nothing more than Hamas settling the score in incidental feuds or disputes that are completely unrelated to Israel.”
“Hamas is an organization of animals, similar to the Islamic State,” he continued. Echoing a similar statement made by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Yogev pointed out that “the nation of Israel sanctifies life. Hamas sanctifies death.” As such, he explained, the blood of the Gazans is on their hands.
“The bottom line is that we will need to eliminate Hamas, whether in this war or the next. They are a danger to the nation of Israel and to mankind.”
The killings have drawn fire from Israeli far-left group B’Tselem, who usually reserve their criticism for incidents involving nationalist Jews. “B’Tselem condems the use of the death penalty, which is immoral, and believes that there is a place for punishment in the law books, regardless of the circumstances,” read their statement.
Mordechai Kedar, professor of Arabic literature at Bar-Ilan University, believes that the executions are indeed a sign of tension within Hamas.
“They are afraid that Israel succeeded in penetrating the organization and recruiting a number of its activists as informants,” he noted.”They genuinely suspect that there are collaborators inside the organization. It destroys the confidence they have in each other.”
The scholar cited their lack of popularity in Gaza as another factor that may be fueling the anxiety of the Hamas leadership. “I know that even before Operation Protective Edge the majority in Gaza didn’t want them,” added Kedar. “They have no mercy towards anyone.”
The recent executions are an example of their inhumanity, Kedar said. “Whoever is suspected is executed without any judicial process. Even Amnesty International criticized them very severely,” he noted. “And Amnesty is not at all a pro-Zionist organization.”
Tazpit News Agency