"Power in defense of freedom is greater than power
on behalf of tyranny and oppression."
Quote Malcolm X
At the Palestinian elections of 25-1-2006, Hamas has
obtained a startling victory.
From the 132 seats of parliament, Hamas, which for
the first time was participating in the parliamentary elections,
obtained 74 seats, in contrary with the then reigning Fatah-party, which
obtained merely 43 seats.
The further 13 seats were obtained by different
smaller political parties, as well as independent candidates.
This great victory for Hamas was no surprise
because of the
fundamental Hamas political and military resistance against the Israeli
occupation and the Hamas social activities on behalf of the impoverished
population of especially Gaza
In spite of this, leading American-European
politicians, as well as the newsmedia, didn't only show
great astonishment, they also demanded, that Hamas, as the price for
financial support, would stop armed resistance (or what the Israelis and
their supporters call "renouncing violence") against the Israeli
occupation and also
acknowledge the State of Israel.
When the newly-formed Hamas-government refused to
agree with those American-European demands, the American and Canadian
governments, as well the EU decided to freeze the financial support to
the Palestinian Authority, a measure, which went at the cost of the
already seriously impoverished Palestinian civilian population, since at
least 45 % of the population [there are also reports about a higher
poverty-rate varying untill 70 %] is living below the poverty-rate and
15% is even living in extreme poverty.
Especially the educational and medical conditions are
seriously deteriorated since this boycott.
Moreover, 942.000 Palestinians or 25% of the total
Palestinian population is living from salaries, which are being paid by
the Palestinian Authority However, due to those American-European measures,
those payments can't be done anymore, with all humanitarian consequences
for the families involved.
Not only those boycott-measures are morally highly
reprehensible in regard with the humanitarian consequences for the
Palestinian civilian-population, they also can lead to amounting
tensions within the Palestinian society.
With regard to those measures, many international
NGO's, as well as a number of UN-organisations, have uttered sharp
criticism to those American-European boycott-measures.
Another consequence of the boycott-measure can be,
that the Hamas-government, as a result of the freezing of EU financial
support, shall receive increased financial aid from the governments of
the Arab and Islamic countries, with as a consequence the lessening
of EU political influence regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Recently a number of Arab governments, and Iran, has
either given, or promised, financial aid to the Hamas-government.
Probably aware of the above-mentioned political
consequences of her possible diminishing influence regarding the
Middle-East, the EU, as has been represented by EU Commissioner Louis
Michel, former Belgian minister of foreign affairs has set aside a sum
of 34 million euro in the form of emergency-aid to the Palestinian
territories, which are going to be delivered outside the official Hamas-channels
Also the World Bank, which is fearing further
humanitarian crisis in the Palestinian territories, is exploring, in
direct cooperation with the Quartet [the EU, USA, the Russian Federation
and the UN], to resume the financial aid to the Palestinian population,
outside Hamas-channels, and probably by way of the NGO's, which are
active in the area.
The main motives of the American-European boycott of
the financial aid to the Palestinian Authority lies in the refusal of
Hamas, to renounce the violence against Israel and to acknowledge the
State of Israel.
A further argument regarding the boycott is the fact,
that Hamas has had a main part in the incitement to suicide attacks
against Israeli civilians and is still continuing this strategy.
Although it is evident, that suicide-attacks as
military attacks on civilians and civilian objects are not only inhumane,
but also illegal according International Law, it is seldom mentioned by
the EU and the American-European government, that these attacks are
a matter of cause and effects, since they are the result of the now 39
years of Israeli occupation, despite of the in 1967 unanimously accepted
UN-Security Resolution 242, by which Israel was summoned, to withdraw
its troops from the in the june-war conquered territories, among else
the Palestinian territories.
Also the boycotting countries are ignoring the fact,
that the attacks of Hamas are not only consisting of suicide-attacks,
but also of the internationally legitimated military attacks on the
Repeatedly Hamas has declared, as well before as
after her election-victory, her willingness to stop armed resistance when Israel is prepared to end its occupation of the Palestinian
territories [its international obligation under UN Security Council
Resolution nr 242], to dismantle its settlements in the Palestinian
territories, which are illegal according International Law [see also 2
UN-Security Council Resolutions dd 1979], to dismantle the Wall, which
is being built accross occupied Palestinian territories [see verdict ICJ
dd 9-7-2004], and is acknowledging the Palestinian right of return,
which is confirmed by the General Assembly Resolution 194, dd 1948
All these Hamas demands are being based on
International Law, which has been confirmed by the above-named
resolutions and therefore abslutely legitimate.
Striking however is, that the American-European
boycotting governments are demanding Hamas-disarmament on the one hand,
while at the other hand, no clear demands are being made on Israel,
regarding the implementation of the above mentioned UN-resolutions,
which were voted for by the same American-European States.
Also this double standard-policy is being applied
regard to Israeli and Palestinian violence
Although the condemnation of suicide-attacks against
Israeli civilians is correct and justified, there is however a strong
undervaluation of the serious character of the Israeli human rights
violations and war-crimes, which have been committed by especially the
Israeli army from the beginning of the occupation in 1967.
It is also significant to mention, that from EU-side
there is no real political pressure on Israel to end the occupation and
withdraw from the Palestinian territories.
Seeing from that perspective, the American-European
criticism of Hamas is lacking moral credibility and is testifying very
A The ideology of Hamas and the American-European
political conception with regard to the alleged claim about ''destruction'' of the State
It is a common standard, that in nearly all
American-European newsmedia, as well in statements of politicians, the
Hamas-ideology is being associated with the ''destruction'' of the State
Before trying to unmask this stubborn
American-European assumption I want to throw some light on the political
history of the Hamas Movement.
History of the Hamas Movement:
The word, Hamas, is an abbreviation of Harakat al-muqâwama al-islâmiyya,
which means Islamic Resistance Movement. It had been founded in 1987 as
a religious-nationalistic resistance organisation with Shaikh Yassin as
the spiritual leader.
He was killed in an Israeli airstrike in march
2004, which, being an extra-judicial execution, not only killed him but
also 7 other Palestinian civilians.
However, since the beginning of the eighties, there
was a predecessor of Hamas, also under the leadership of Shaikh Yassin,
which was mainly an Islamic Revival Movement, which was mostly directed
on social and charitable goals.
Although of course opposed to the occupation, it didn't stimulate
the resistance, since it considered the Israeli occupation as a
punishment of God because of Palestinian lack of religious devotion.
In other words, this revival movement was meant
to make the Palestinian population return to the basics of Islam, as
explained by the movement, in their daily life.
Even when the official Hamas organisation had been
founded in 1987, initially there was no real resistance against the
occupation, despite the anti-Zionistic Charter of 1988.
Only later the Hamas organisation
became part of the resistance, resulting in military attacks against the
Israeli occupation army and from 1994 in suicide-attacks against Israeli
The immediate cause was the massacre by the
Jewish-Israeli extreme rightwing Dr Baruch Goldstein on 29 Palestinians,
who were praying in the Ibrahimi Mosque (also known as the Cave of the Patriarchs) in Hebron.
Analysis of the Hamas Charter, that is consisting of
36 articles, reveals that the basis is being formed upon as well the
resistance against the Israeli occupation, as well the
assumption of the dismantlement of the Zionist State of Israel, to be
replaced by an islamic Palestinian State with equal rights for all the
inhabitants and religious freedom regarding Jews and Christians.
Seeing from this perspective, the Charter has an
anti-colonialist conception because of the fundamental criticism on
the colonialist character of the foundation of the State of Israel in
historical Palestine, first being a colony of the Turkish-Ottoman Empire
and after World War I , a British Mandate-area.
According to the wish of the European Zionist
movement, the foundation of a ''Jewish'' State in historical Palestine
took place, based on General Assembly Resolution number 181, in 1947, which
contained the division of Palestine into a Jewish and an Arab states,
without any consultation of the autochtone Palestinian population.
It is of importance to mention here, that the
objections of the Palestinians were not against the settlement of Jewish
people in Palestine, but against the division of their country into two
Yet apart from that, Hamas is justly protesting
against the present Zionist State, which is for an important part
based on discriminatory laws and measures, which are at the cost of the
so-called ''Israeli Arabs'', especially regarding educational and medical
One of the most striking example of those
discriminatory laws of State is the fact, that any Jewish man or woman
in the world has the right to settle in Israel, while the right of
return of the Palestinian descendants of the 750,000 refugees who were
evicted from their homeland by Zionist
militias, which was confirmed in General Assembly
Resolution 194, in 1948, is not being acknowledged by Israel.
Notwithstanding anyone's opinion about this anti-Zionist
point of view and the Hamas-assumption about the undesirable foundation
of an Islamic State, it is evident, that the expulsion or even killing
of Israeli-Jewish inhabitants of Israel, which is often suggested by the
American-European politicians and newsmedia, is out of order.
Although in the Charter is being referred to ''the
Jews'', a thorough reading makes clear, that it is a reference to the
Israeli Zionist regime and the Israeli occupation, not to the Jews
as an ethnic-religious group.
Also in Hamas bulletins, the word ''Jews'' is not
used. Rather, the words ''Zionistic enemy'' or the ''Zionist entity''
are usually used.
Mentioning Hamas, mostly the emphasis is being laid
on the suicide-attacks against Israeli civilians, for which it bears
responsibility. It is evident, that those actions are not only
inhumane, but also they are serious violations of the International
Humanitarian Law, that states, that in each military conflict a clear
distinction is to be made between combatants [soldiers or fighters] and
From that point of view it is completely right, that
those attacks are being condemned severely by the International
Although it is important to realize, that the cause
of those suicide attacks is rooted in the Israeli occupation since
1967, which resulted in oppression, humiliations and mostly
unpunished war crimes, it is no justification whatsoever for any
resistance group for also to commit war crimes.
According to International Law it is illegal, to
respond one violation of human rights by committing a reciprocal
violation, even with regard to an occupation
On the other hand, any military action against an
occupation-army is internationally legitimated as a right of an occupied
population to resist against the occupying power.
However, there is too little international
press attention for the fact, that an important part of Hamas strategy
is also the use of this legitimated resistance method.
It is however striking, that as Israel as well as the
USA , qualify those military attacks against the occupation-army, as ''terrorist'',
ignoring the internationally legitimated character.
Recently yet Mr Solana, Secretary-General of the
Council of the European Union for foreign affairs, has confirmed the right on resistance
against a foreign occupation.
C The Israeli liquidation-policy:
Also internationally reprehensible are the Israeli
liquidations of the leaders and activists of the Palestinian
resistance-movements, like Hamas.
Those liquidations started in the beginning of the seventies of the
former century and were being practiced by successive Israeli
They took the form of frontal shootings of cars, the
exploding of mobile telephones and nowadays mostly, the airstrikes,
whether on civilian targets like refugee-camps, flat-apartments, houses,
As commonly known, those attacks are severe
violations of International Law, which states, that every human being
has a right on a fair and independent trial.
Moreover, because of those still daily-committed
liquidations, in many cases also civilians, who just pass by, as well
co-habitants of houses, apartments and refugee-camps are being killed.
In those cases war-crimes are being committed, since
the presence of civilians at civilian goals [streets, market-places,
cars, apartments and refugee-camps] is highly expectable
However, despite the high humanitarian risk for the
civilian-population, recently the Israeli prime-minister Olmert has made
clear, that those airstrikes are to continue, despite of the loss of
Palestinian civilian lives
It is a striking example of Western selective
indignation, that although the Hamas-led suicide attacks are leading to
the freezing of the financial help to the Palestinian Authority, but
regard to those Israeli extrajudicial executions, as well the indiscriminate
military attacks on Gaza, no sanction measures are being taken against
Regarding the fact that Israel being the occupying
country bears the lion's share in the escalation of the present
conflict, especially the EU, which claims to defend the Palestinian
humanitarian interests, is held accountable for this hypocritical point
D Social-charitable Hamas activities
A hitherto undervalued aspect regarding the
activities of Hamas are the social-charitable activities of Hamas on
behalf of especially the serious impoverished population in Gaza.
Ironically by doing this, Hamas is fulfilling the
international-judicial obligation of the Israeli occupation-power to
take care for the occupied Palestinian population.
According one of the most important articles of the
4th Geneva Convention, an occupying power is head-responsible for the
safety, the wellbeing and the welfare of the occupied population, the
so-called ''protected persons''
International reports about the humanitarian
situation in Gaza have learnt, that the Israeli occupation-authorities
have failed to fulfill this obligation regarding the occupied
The impoverished situation of the Palestinian
population is still being intensified by the Israeli military attacks in
Gaza and the West-Bank, which have resulted mostly in serious human
rights violations and war-crimes.
So especially in Gaza [but also in the West-Bank]
mass-house demolitions took place, which is forbidden according article
53, 4th Geneva Convention.
Also especially in Gaza several times the border with
Israel had been closed.
Due to this measure the Palestinians, who work in
Israel, are thus loosing their daily necessities of life.
Recently Israel has, as a retaliatory measure for the
abduction or imprisonment [the news sources are giving different messages
regarding to that], not only closed the border with Gaza, but also
bombed parts of the infrastructure [bridges and main roads], which
caused considerable damage and has cut of the water anf
electricity-supplies of the population.
A thus token retaliatory measure is as a collective
punishment a serious breach of International Law [article 33, 4th Geneva
Convention is forbidding any collective punishment.
When such Israeli measures were taken in the past,
Hamas has supplied the most impoverished part of the population.
Mostly the financial donors of Hamas were donors,
stemming from the Arab world.
However, in contrary with the Palestinian Authority,
Hamas wasn't corrupt at all.
Of course, this led to a great popularity of Hamas
and the striking outcome of the elections.
In this article I've tried to make clear, that not
only the American-European freezing of the financial help to the
Palestinian Authority is immoral, because it is at the cost of the
impoverished Palestinian population, also it is a double standard to
condemn the Hamas violence and to consider the Israeli violence, due to
the Israeli occupation, as a minor issue.
No resistance-organisation whatsoever can be expected
to lay down the arms, while the occupation and oppression is being
continued with the most extreme measures.
However it is evident, that also a
resistance-movement must be based on the obligations according to
However, without closing the eyes for the very
reprehensible suicide-attacks against Israeli civilians, in which Hamas
played an important part, the Hamas fundamental stand against the Israeli
occupation and settlements policy has to be respected, as well its
fundamental resistance against the Zionist State of Israel.
Therefore, I sincerely hope, that Hamas will not yield
to the growing American-European political pressure to make the Israeli
occupation and settlements policy points of negotiation.
However, when Hamas really wants to be respected by
friend and foe, it has to refrain from the attacks on Israeli civilians
Every human being, whether Palestinian or Israeli,
has the right on the same humane treatment and to my opinion, being
occupied is no justification to violate those inalienable rights.
Universal Declaration of Human Rights:
The 3th Geneva Convention, relative to the treatment of prisoners of war:
The 4th Geneva Convention, relative to the protections of civilian persons in time of war:
Israeli human rights violations:
Hamas human rights violations:
Israeli discriminatory measures against Palestinian-Arab children in the Israeli education-system:
Israeli discriminatory laws: