What kind of resistance is it that insists on continuing to shed Palestinian blood at the lowest price just to prove it is a “resistance,” even if it sacrifices all else?
Translation of a report from a mainstream Palestinian Forum, (Wednesday, 30 April 2008):
Just before dawn, shots began to be fired from the border in northern Gaza Strip toward Hayy an-Nada, al-‘Awdah and the Izbat Beit Hanun towers. Tension heightened in the area. A shell fell on the home of a family in al-Izbah, killing four children and their mother. A new massacre was added to the long list of Israeli massacres. But why did the IDF fire the shell on that house?Abu Raja, a resident of the an-Nada quarter – the second front line, as Hamas elements call it – told Amad that a tank and a personnel carrier entered the area. The area was thronging with masked men, most of them carrying big handbags containing light and medium-weight weapons. “They stormed our building and asked the residents to evacuate their homes.” There were the Israeli tank, the carrier and a bulldozer, backed up by a reconnaissance plane and a rubber balloon that for years has been placed in the area over Beit Hanun crossing near the action zone.
Why does the IDF fire rockets from its planes, shells from its tanks, and artillery and machine gun fire on populated areas - targets that are not designated by the IDF prior to invading those areas?
It is time to raise these questions and know the causes. “Amad” followed up on the latest Israeli raid in northern Gaza Strip to find out what is happening. He asked some residents about the increased number of victims in each Israeli raid.
Amad will respect the request of those interviewed and keep their identities anonymous for their safety.
Abu Raja added, “Women, men and children gathered around the “resistance” men, asking them to distance themselves from their buildings and children. Following altercations that reached the point of some people being beaten and insulted by the “resistance” members, most of whom are controlled by Hamas and al-Qassam brigades, most of the Hayy an-Nada tower residents were evicted. Then came the confrontation of the “occupation” tank, carrier, bulldozer and planes filling the skies of the area”
He went on, “We left our homes for ‘them.’ They brought sand bags into our bedrooms and living rooms. They set up heavy machine guns and planted Shewath- explosive charges on the nearby asphalt, leaving us behind in the open, as if we were worthless shepherds and what they were doing was a sacred duty even if the price is the souls and blood of our children.”
On the verge of bursting in anger, Abu Raja said, "What kind of resistance is this that occupies the homes of innocent civilians and set up its rockets near the homes of unarmed and innocent people, to launch a rocket that falls on the ground in an open area, so children and women will be killed afterwards? What kind of resistance is it that insists on continuing to shed Palestinian blood at the lowest price just to prove it is a “resistance,” even if it sacrifices all else? How long shall we ourselves believe it? It's absurd that my son will be killed for nothing in his sleep for the sake of one resistance fighter who set up a machine gun in his bedroom window and started firing at Israelis who retaliate with a shell that kills my son and demolishes my home.” [emp- SC&A]
In al-‘Awdah towers, most of whose residents are “military,” the least of them with 15 years of service, the scene was no less miserable or less tense, according to Abu Hasan. When the Israeli tank began to move near al-Hawouz and the sound of bulldozing began to be heard, scores of elements from the al-Qassam brigades and the rest of the armed factions began to converge on the towers. They occupied the “shelters” and deployed their ammunition under the eyes of the Israelis flying overhead and watching out for every move on the ground. Al-Qassam “resistance” fighters opened all the gates of the towers from 1 to 8. Some of them went so far as to try and demolish the wall around one building, under the pretext of opening a gap to be used as an emergency passageway.
Abu Hasan told Amad, “The residents stood in the face of the “resistance fighters” so as to guard the safety of about 3000 residents in Hayy an-Nada and Izbat Beit Hanun. The “resistance” fighters, however, met the residents’ insistence on defending their families and children with toughness, cruelty and harshness that does not indicate the tolerance of someone who claims to have put his life on the line to meet the face of Allah who will be satisfied with what he did. Some Qassam fighters went so far as to fire shots at the feet of a resident who asked them not to destroy the wall of the building. Another fighter slapped someone who asked him not to bring harm to the residents and give the occupation an excuse to commit a new massacre, like the one that befell the Abu-Ma’taq family in nearby al-Izbah. When night came, some of the fighters knocked at the door of the Imam of the mosque, who asked the residents to close ranks and join hands to face the possible alternatives. The Imam and some residents refused to open the doors to the roofs of the eight towers for the fighters seeking to set up their machine guns as if the [Israeli] planes are dolls that cannot monitor everything.
Abu Hussein added, “They escorted the sheikh and a neighbor of his, under the cover of darkness, to a nearby spot and gave them a very severe physical and verbal beating. They released the neighbor, who is a pious old man as well, but they kept the sick Imam. They began to blackmail and threaten him, even terrorizing him if he does not desist from preaching that people should safeguard their families and homes and not open the doors to the roofs.”
The Al-Qassam brigades “resistance” monitors any armed element not belonging to their ranks during the [Israeli] raids, so as to disarm and dismiss them from the area. A witness overheard a wireless conversation by a man reporting to his superior: “’I spotted armed Fatah men near such and such a point…am awaiting instructions.’ The superior responded, ‘Arrest them and disarm the nonbelievers - al-kuffar.’”
Another witness swore by Allah that armed men belonging to a faction he could not recognize were stopped by members of the al-Qassam brigades near Hayy an-Nada. They asked them to leave the area immediately or else they will be arrested
Storing weapons inside homes…and the victims, using mosques as arms depots…and their destruction, accidental explosions…and victims…occupying the homes of civilians and turning them into firing ranges…and then these homes will be destroyed and their residents killed. Exploiting children by having them fetch rocket pads after launchings, exposing them to danger of death. These are some of the grave mistakes committed by the armed elements working under the umbrella of “resistance.”
Hamas is now turning the whole Gaza Strip into a military barracks, giving the treacherous and criminal occupation army pretexts to bombard any place at any time. Then [Hamas] cries out that women were victims and casualties, that people lost their property, and they show children crying on the TV screens that [Israel] destroyed them.
This file is not closed, and it is not being opened to underestimate the importance of resistance but to amend its ways and protect the lives and property of civilians. Resistance is a legitimate right for those whose land is occupied and who have lost their freedom. The methods of resistance are many. Yet one, or the most important one, of its sacred principles should be to maintain the safety of innocent, unarmed civilians, not to shed their blood. The confrontation with the enemy can take place at the proper time. But a drop of innocent blood shed in vain cannot be redeemed, unless some are intent on shedding blood profusely to achieve a political gain here and there.