Sunday, July 22, 2007


By Charles Johnson

After voting the Hamas terrorist group into office, Palestinians in the new Islamic State of Gaza are screaming out for more aid from the United Nations: Palestinians in Gaza appeal for more aid.

GAZA (Reuters) - Children raced to help parents collect food from U.N. aid distribution centers in the Gaza Strip as women sat in the shade near trucks, waiting for their names to be called to receive their food rations.

The enclave's isolation has deepened since the Islamist Hamas group routed their Western-backed rivals to seize control last month. Israel, effectively at war with Hamas, has sealed off key border crossings, stifling trade and forcing thousands of Palestinians to seek handouts from U.N. aid bodies.

The U.N. aid agency for Palestinian refugees says that up to 825,000 of Gaza�s 1.5 million inhabitants, classed as refugees, currently receive food rations, and the U.N. World Food Program aids a further 200,000 people.

"We now have only God and then UNRWA," said Ahmed al-Jammal, a father of five, inside an aid centre in Gaza City. "We have no other source of income," he said as he received sacks of flour and rice and bottles of cooking oil.

Hamas, meanwhile, has no problem with letting people like Ahmed starve, while they spend huge amounts of money on plotting terrorism and murder.

Claiming that Hamas has jumped light years since Israel's disengagement from Gaza, a high-ranking IDF officer said that there was currently a limited window of opportunity for Israel to confront the Hamas threat in the Gaza Strip.

There is an opportunity today since the world has not yet become accustomed to the new Hamas entity, and Hamas has not yet fully completed strengthening its military capabilities, the officer said, adding that Israel was on a "collision course" with the Islamist group. ...

Hamas, the officer went on to say, had established a full-fledged army, consisting of four brigades, corresponding to the different sections of the Gaza Strip. The brigades were made up of a number of battalions and platoons. In addition, Hamas had smuggled in the past two months over the twenty tons of explosives via the Philidelphi Corridor from the Sinai into the Gaza Strip.

Furthermore, the officer claimed that the group had obtained anti-tank missiles, as well as an unknown number of anti-aircraft missiles. Hamas also reportedly possessed old models of Katyusha rockets, and they were working to improve the range of their cache of Kassam rockets, he said.

"They have an organized military," the officer said, adding that the total number of infantry had reached some 13,000 recruits. "They have the manpower, they have the training, they have the motivation; the principle is creating a balance of deterrence against Israel," he said.

The officer also noted that over the past two years since the disengagement, several hundred Palestinians had traveled from Gaza to Iran to receive training. In one case, the officer said, a Palestinian who trained in Iran was responsible for training 400 Palestinians upon his return to Gaza.

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