|Israel Resource Review
||22nd September, 2005
Hamad Research Center: Moving the Armed Struggle to Judea and Samaria
The Al-Mustaqbal research center, which is affiliated with Hamas, recently published a study on the future of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in the new era after the IDF withdrawal from the Gaza Strip and northern Samaria. Al-Mustaqbal operates in Gaza, and publishes studies and polls.
The publications of the center express the views of Hamas, even if they do not voice the movement's formal position. The institute is headed by Dr. Atef Ibrahim Adwan, a political science lecturer and a graduate of Oxford University.
In June 2005, the center published a study on the Hamas web site
regarding the implications of the disengagement plan on the continuation
of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In August, during the evacuation
of the settlements from the Gaza Strip, the center published another
study, more detailed and focused than the previous one, regarding the
strategy and tactics that Hamas and the other terror organizations would
adopt in light of the new reality expected on the "day after."
Terror offensive will move to Judea and Samaria, along with Kassam
The author of the study details at its end the main conclusions of
the study on the operational level and on the policy and strategic
level: Hamas and the other terror organizations will not disarm and will
not halt the armed struggle against Israel, although the Palestinian
Authority is expected to attempt to compel them to do so, either by
force or by political means. The author predicts that terror will be
renewed, "although there may be calm for a certain period." The nature
of the organizations' activity will change in light of the new reality,
and the focus of the armed activity against Israel will move from Gaza,
where the organizations will adopt a defensive posture, to Judea and
Samaria, where they will conduct offensive initiatives. Within this
context, the organizations will develop new and lethal weaponry and will
ultimately move the Kassam rockets, the leading weapon in the next stage
of the confrontation, to Judea and Samaria.
The study assesses that the Palestinian Authority, the US, the EU and
the Egyptians are incapable of forcing Hamas and the other organizations
to lay down their arms and halt their armed activity.
And perhaps the most important conclusion: The Israeli "flight" from
Gaza illustrated in the Palestinian consciousness the importance of
"resistance" (the armed struggle) and the necessity of adopting it as a
"strategic option" at the expense of the alternative of negotiation and
Fighting in Judea and Samaria will overflow to Gaza Strip
The study expresses the fear that the Palestinian Authority will try
to dismantle the "Murabitun," the popular army of Hamas, which is
perceived by the PA as a threat to its rule. The author of the article
says that the Murabitun protect the Palestinian towns and there will
still be a need for them, in the Gaza Strip too, on the "day after."
However, in the opinion of the article's author it will be necessary to
re-examine the deployment of the Murabitun and their methods of
operation, in order to adapt them to the new reality.
The study does not rule out the possibility that Palestinian
initiatives in Judea and Samaria will lead to Israeli reactions, which
will lead to cautious Palestinian reactions in the Gaza Strip. The
reactive actions of the organizations in the Gaza Strip will be
manifested in firing Kassam rockets at the areas neighboring on the Gaza
Strip. The author of the study is well aware of the escalatory
potential of such fire in the era after the evacuation of Gaza, and
fears a harsh IDF response. Therefore, he notes that the Palestinian
activity from the Gaza Strip must be calculated and cautious so as not
to take matters too far and elicit a massive Israeli reaction ("action
must be taken at such a degree that will not provoke the Zionist enemy
and push it to re-enter the Gaza Strip").
However, the author of the article notes, "in the Gaza Strip, after
the completion of the construction of the apartheid wall, it will be
highly difficult to commit suicide attacks." Therefore, the activity of
the terror organizations will focus in the new stage on terror attacks
on main roads against soldiers and settlers and use of the "new weapon"
that it will be possible to manufacture in Judea and Samaria at the next
stage of the confrontation (this refers to Kassam rockets-HH).
Kassam rockets on Negev and Judea and Samaria in third Intifada
In case of an overall confrontation between Israel and the
Palestinians after the Israeli withdrawal from the Gaza Strip, the
terror organizations will enter from a position of power, in the opinion
of the study's author. This is due to the fact that "the options at
their disposal have increased, and they have developed a number of
weapons, such as extending the range of the Kassam rockets." In this
scenario, the terror organizations in the Gaza Strip will focus on
launching Kassam rockets, their "strategic weapon," at Israeli
communities close to the Gaza Strip.
As for Judea and Samaria, the study foresees a number of possible
modes of action: Transferring technologies of weaponry such as mortars
and rockets from the Gaza Strip to Judea and Samaria. These will make
it possible to easily shell Israeli population centers located close to
the security fence, and this will render the fence being built useless
("the Kassam rockets will constitute a strategic weapon in the West
Bank"). The study predicts that the mortars will also reach Judea and
Samaria and will be manufactured there in "large quantities."
Along with the Kassam rocket fire, the combat in Judea and Samaria in
the new era will be characterized by guerilla attacks that will be
carried out by small groups of terrorists, "as was done in southern
Lebanon," and by fire from a distance as was done in the Gaza Strip
during the period of "calm." These attacks will focus on settlers and
soldiers, and will consist of attacks against roads, military bases and
The author of the study also addresses the issue of carrying out
suicide bombings in Israeli territory in the new era. These attacks,
states the study, have the greatest effect on Israel, but "after the
construction of the fence they have become highly difficult." However,
in his opinion, committing such attacks is still conceivable, since the
organizations will find methods of circumventing the barrier built by
Israel. "The length of the fence and its proximity to population
centers will make the task easier," states the study.
The study counts a number of new tactics that the organizations may
adopt at the next stage of the confrontation: Forming independent
terrorist cells and avoiding an institutionalized organizational
structure of cells that are linked to each other. Maintaining
compartmentalization and a lack of institutionalization will enable the
various operatives to disperse in case one of the operatives is
arrested, and escape the Israeli security branches. Quality instead of
quantity-placing an emphasis on the quality of the attacks and
professional execution rather than the quantity of attacks.
The study foresees that small, well-trained and well-armed cells will
carry out "quality attacks" rather than "formal attacks," which do not
pose a threat to Israel. This style of operation will also make it
difficult for the Israeli security services to penetrate the cells. [.]
This piece ran in the daily HaTzofeh newspaper on September 22nd, 2005
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The Myth that the Katif Evacuees Do Not Want To Leave Their "Hotels"
Eviicted From Neveh Dekalim, Katif, on August 15th, 2005
The wound grows larger, wider, deeper. The Israeli government has now demanded that each expelled family pay 150 shekels per day for living in a hotel room. Considering that we have no income, nor any home to return to, it is quite a chunk of money to be deducted from our compensation package. Indeed, absolutely no money has been paid to the vast majority of expellees. We are dependent on the kindness of donors even for pocket money.
"Ah," says the government, "but 900 families have received keys to caravillas (caravans made to look like villas). You just don't want to leave the hotel. That's why we?re fining you."
"But we do want to leave," we reply. "We want our own homes. Our own kitchen table. Where are the caravillas?"
"They aren't built yet. We're working on them."
"So even the few of us who have received keys have no doors in which to put them."
"True, but we're telling the media you just want to enjoy the hotels."
"Where is the money you promised us so we can maintain our dignity until the final compensation is worked out?"
"We gave you half a million dollars when you were forcibly removed from Gush Katif."
"But we never received any money."
"Doesn?t matter. We are telling the media you are choking on all the money we've given you. We have the best public relations firms working for us, and collaborators throughout the press. And today people believe what we say. Our message is repeated over and over in all the media. Whom do you think the world believes, the government of Israel or . . . the settlers?"
"Why are you doing this to us? No homes, no money, no jobs, and dependent on the charity of others. And even forced to continue paying mortgages on the homes you destroyed."
"Because if we succeed in convincing the world that we are the good guys and you are the liars we've set the stage for the next expulsion. The settlers of Judea and Samaria understand this very well. They won't give us any trouble when they get their eviction notices. They're watching how we squeeze you and make you suffer. They won't want to be in your shoes. They'll sell out quickly enough. You are the example."
"We may be the example of people you have expelled but we have retained our self-respect despite your best efforts."
"But we are working overtime at breaking you, depriving you of your dignity. We signed an agreement to give the people of Kfar Darom an apartment building in Ashkelon so they could stay together. But we reneged."
"We can do with you as we wish. We can make you disappear. We have the power to do so. You witnessed our power first hand. Anyway, elections are on the horizon and Gush Katif must be forgotten -- and soon. That's why we torment and humiliate you. So you'll give up and just go away."
"We will not go away. We are a community and will remain a community. We are a symbol to the world. Our strength lies in our belief in our country, our people, our Torah. Through us Eretz Yisrael will remain strong despite your efforts to weaken it. The love of the people that we inspire will overcome your power. The gaping wound that you have created in Israel's society will heal only through our strength and belief. We will be the healers and we will not be forgotten. And you will not be forgiven."
"Operation Band-Aid" means immediate help to the people of Gush Katif. A discrete envelope with 500 shekels is given to each family to use as they wish. Tax-deductible contributions can be made to:
Central Fund for Israel
Rehov Hagoel 13
Efrat 90435 Israel
Attention: Jay Marcus
Earmarked for: Operation Band-Aid
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Report #4, September 21-22nd: State of Gush Katif, Northern Sinai and Northern Shomron Communities
Toby Klein Greenwald
Families to Karavilot in Yad Binyamin
The first group of families moved into the "kavilot" in Yad Binyamin on
September 21. They were from the Torat Haim yeshiva of Rav Tal.
There have been a number of "shloshim" ceremonies that individual communities have held, among them Ganei Tal and Netzarim. Ganei Tal held their ceremony at Kibbutz Hafetz Haim, where they are still staying in the small guest house rooms, waiting for more karavilot to be ready at Yad Binyamin. Netzarim held their ceremony at the closest possible point to Netzarim.
Many of the evacuees from Gush Katif are now unemployed and the Israeli
government is not helping them find work. All that the government has done so far is told them to sign up at the regular unemployment office in Ashkelon, a city that already has 16% unemployment. Aside from the scant chance of them finding work through this office (as one former Katif lifeguard said yesterday on a Channel One TV special, "What will I do? Take another lifeguard's job?"), They are still scattered all over Israel, from Beer Sheva to the Golan.
A group of volunteers have created a site, www.jobkatif.org.il, which features positions from all over Israel in which priority will be given to people who have been expelled from their homes in Gush Katif.
Evacuees to be Evicted by Regency Hotel (formerly the Hyatt) in Jerusalem
It was reported today, September 22, that before the holiday season, the
evacuees staying at the Regency Hotel in Jerusalem will have to move to either the Gold Hotel or the Ceasar Hotel, also in Jerusalem. This is because the contract between the Regency and the Disengagement Authority will be up and the Regency, it says, has already committed to tour groups. However, Aaron Henya, an evacuee from Gush Katif who is staying at the Regency, said that in the last few weeks he has seen ads in the newspaper in which the Regency has been trying to attract people to the hotel. Henya and others interviewed have stressed over and over again that they do not want to stay in the hotels, but that they want a community solution.
There are 3,100 children who have been expelled from their homes, but
associations for the protection of children have been strangely silent.
The evacuees currently in the hotels are especially upset about the fact that their children will have to move, once again, to different pre-schools and schools, and that it is not even the last move. In the best case scenario, these children will have been in at least four different schools in the course of this last year. (Gush Katif at the end of the last school year, their present location, their new location after moving to one of the new hotels, and their final school, from which they will also have to move about two years from now.)
In a report on Channel Two Radio today, Mr. Shuly Levi of the Disengagement
Authority stated that there were "many solutions" for the evacuees of Neve Dekalim, in rented apartments in various cities. When asked by the radio reporter if there were also solutions for them as a community as well, he said,"Yes, also as communities." This is in direct contradiction to what Mr. Haim Altman, official spokesman for the Disengagement Authority, told this reporter two days ago when he admitted that there were not community solutions for the people of Neve Dekalim at this time. To recap: He said that there are 65 small "karavilot" at the Nitzan trailer camp, and the "eventually" there will be 442 homes ready in the Nitzan settlement, still not enough for all the families of Neve Dekalim.
Unprecedented Hostility on Channel One TV
Channel One gave a lot of air time to the promoting of its Wednesday night special, "One Month Later", regarding the state of the evacuees. What viewers saw, however, when they tuned in, was unprecedented hostility on the part of show moderator Geula Even, whose blatant and undisguised hatred and disdain for the evacuees of Gush Katif and the Shomron surpassed even that of veteran news anchor Haim Yavin, whose series "Land of the Settlers" generated an outcry several months ago (and is now being screened in Arab countries). Ilan Cohen, Director of the Prime Minister's office, was the guest from "one side", and Bentzi Lieberman, head of the council of communities of Judea and Samaria, was from the "other side". Lieberman, however, received almost no air time, and the only "difficult" questions that Even asked of Cohen were along the lines of, Why
is the government spending so much money on the evacuees? And, Why doesn't the government just tell them they have to leave the hotels and move into the apartments?
The only moderating voices were those of the reporters who interviewed people in the field. However, even in one of those cases, a reporter felt it necessary to add, after showing the tent cities, that "the settlers are once again fortifying themselves alone, far away from the national consensus".
One evacuee from Elei Sinai asked, "Why do they want to break us apart, destroy us? It is better for us to be together in this tent camp than to be broken apart." One of the hairiest scenes was at a high school at which girls from the hotels are studying. They cried and screamed their anguish at reporters. A number of parents reported that their young children have been saying to them, "Okay, vacation is over, now when do we go home?"
Dr. Smadar Ben-Asher, a psychologist from Ben Gurion University of the Negev, also interviewed, said, "These people are experiencing mourning and loss, and in a situation like that, a person needs an environment that is stable and protected, and that is exactly what they don't have. The most preferable way for them to live now is as communities, not in hotels or in rented apartments."
She quoted Dr. Muly Lahad, Israel's trauma "guru", who said that 30% of the children who have been evacuated will suffer from emotional problems as a result of the disengagement. "The families in the hotel are not functioning as families," said Ben-Asher. "Some of the children are losing their sense of parenting.
They are suffering trauma and sadness."
55% of the evacuees are still living in hotels. As of this week all of them will have 150 shekel a day deducted from their eventual compensation, and as of October 1, it will be 300 shekel a day, even though they have no community option offered to them. Ilan Cohen continued to repeat, like a mantra, that the government is waiting to hear where the people want to go, yet the people themselves say repeatedly that they don't want to be split up. There were scenes of community life in the two tent cities, Ir Haemuna (of Atzmona people) and Elei Sinai, in Yad Mordecai. In both places communal systems of turn-taking and mutual help have been set up by the evacuees.
Update on Homesh Synagogue
When the IDF was asked to explain the destruction of the synagogue in Homesh, they said, "Ask the Ministry of Defense". Their reply was that the synagogue was destroyed because it was in a bomb shelter and it was decided to not leave bomb shelters undestroyed for security reasons. They would not elaborate what those security reasons are.
The Hamas in Kfar Darom
The Hamas has taken over Kfar Darom and renamed it "Ir Yassin" (the City of
Sheikh Yassin). Israeli television filmed the Hamas last night showing off their weapons, including weapons that they boasted had murdered Israeli soldiers, and a row of rockets lined up that they said "will be shot at Sderot".
The Channel One news team that screened the segment requested no reaction from Ariel Sharon, Defense Minsiter Shaul Mofaz, or Chief of staff of the IDF, Dan Halutz.
Artistic Creation out of the Ashes
A new melody to "Adon Haslichot" has been composed by the Hazan Elad Tzfira, because of the destruction of Jewish life in Gush Katif. It can be reached through http://www.katif.net/ro_new.php?id=9218.
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