How Iran Plans to Take Gaza

(Gatestone Institute) Khaled Abu Toameh - Even if Hamas were to be removed from power in Gaza, the Palestinians would continue to suffer under other radical groups such as Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ). Iran considers PIJ its main ally and puppet in Gaza. Through PIJ, Iran inserts its tentacles into the internal affairs of the Palestinians. Islamist fundamentalism is enshrined in the hearts and minds of tens of thousands of Palestinians in Gaza. Both Hamas and PIJ do not recognize Israel's right to exist and continue to call for an armed struggle to "liberate all of Palestine" from the Mediterranean Sea to the Jordan River. The Iranian-funded PIJ has an armed wing called Saraya Al-Quds (Jerusalem Brigades), responsible for hundreds of terrorist attacks against Israel, including suicide bombings and rocket and mortar attacks. Just last week, PIJ's military wing again dispatched its heavily-armed fighters to the streets of Gaza in a show of force. Iran has strong reservations about trusting Hamas, based on the fear that Hamas is ready to reach a truce accord with Israel. In the eyes of Iran, this would constitute a betrayal. Iran sees the PIJ as its real ally in the Palestinian arena and as a natural replacement for Hamas in Gaza. Those who believe that all would be well if Israel would only ease restrictions on Gaza inhabit some alternate reality.

2018-10-10 00:00:00

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