Israel Falsely Claims Hamas Supports ISIS in Sinai
by Stephen Lendman
Nothing Israeli officials say is credible. Accusing Hamas of supporting ISIS terrorists battling Egyptian forces in Sinai flies in the face of its efforts to rid Gaza of their presence.
General Yoav Mordechai is Israel's Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories. He lied saying "clear information (shows) Hamas is supporting the Wilayat Sinai, which belongs to Daesh (ISIS)."
He turned truth on its head saying it's supplying weapons, training, logistical support and treatment of its wounded in Gaza hospitals.
He claimed "proof" but revealed none. He accused two Hamas members of involvement - again, with nothing backing up his claims.
He ignored close Egyptian monitoring of Sinai/Gaza border areas to prevent free movement between the two areas except when allowed through the Rafah crossing.
Hamas spokesman Sami Abi Zuhri rejected Mordechai's accusations as baseless. "Security forces in Gaza control the borders and prevent any movement into and from Gaza," he said. "Such a silly Israeli incitement will not fool anyone," he added.
Egypt's junta collaborates with Israel in keeping Gazans trapped under siege. A Cairo security source said no evidence indicates "Hamas as an organization" is involved in Sinai attacks.
Israel claiming otherwise is false. Hamas and ISIS are mortal enemies. The Islamic State affiliated Information Bureau of the Aleppo Province released a video accusing Hamas of apostasy.
In June, the Financial Times said "Hamas seeks to stamp out Isis in Gaza. Night-time security checkpoints…around Gaza City (are) the most visible sign of a crackdown" on Islamic State followers. Dozens in Gaza were "rounded up and imprisoned."
A group calling itself "Supporters of the Islamic State in Jerusalem" attacked a Khan Yunis Hamas training site with mortars.
Egypt and Hamas are following ISIS activities "warily." They might forge common cause against a common enemy - overtly or covertly.
Tel Aviv-based Institute for National Security Studies analyst Yoram Scheitzer believes "(t)here might be indirect and undeclared cooperation between Hamas and Egypt, and between Hamas and Israel."
So far, small numbers ISIS adherents are operating in Gaza, Scheitzer explained. Al-Mezan Center for Human Rights director Issam Younis said Hamas arrested about 30 or 40 of its members - compared to its own security, police and military ranks numbering around 35,000.
Political Science Professor Mkhaimar Abusada said in any confrontation between both sides, ISIS elements "will be crushed."
In 2009, Hamas last fought local Salafis when one group's leader, Jund Ansar Allah, declared an Islamic emirate in Gaza. They were brutally defeated.
International Crisis Group analyst Nathan Thrall says "(t)he basic dynamics haven't changed, but the Salafis have gotten more bold. They are now openly attacking and threatening Hamas itself, which is something new."
Claiming Hamas aids Islamic terrorists it opposes is another example of Israeli demonization of Palestine's legitimate government - perhaps as pretext for more planned deadly attacks.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
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