Egyptians call for Mubarak's ouster, Tahrir (Liberation) Square, Cairo, January 29, 2011. Photo by Matthew Cassel.
By Ali Abunimah
January 29, 2011 -- Electronic Intifada -- We are in the middle of a political earthquake in the Arab world and the ground has still not stopped shaking. To make predictions when events are so fluid is risky, but there is no doubt that the uprising in Egypt -- however it ends -- will have a dramatic impact across the region and within Palestine.
By Tony Iltis
January 28, 2009 -- If Western politicians and media are to be believed, the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) is an anti-Semitic, religious fundamentalist, terrorist outfit that forms part of an al Qaeda- (or, alternatively, Iranian-) led movement which seeks to violently impose Islamic law on the world, and is dedicated to the annihilation of Jews.
However, what is Hamas’s actual practice and the source of its strong popularity among Palestinians?
Hamas won the 2006 Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) elections, which international observers described as the most democratic in the Arab world. In government, it has attempted to eradicate corruption and gangsterism.
The demonisation of a democratically elected political leadership has become the justification for war crimes. The entire infrastructure of Gaza — hospitals, mosques, government offices, schools, water and energy, food stores, emergency services, orphanages — can be defined as “Hamas infrastructure” because Hamas remains the civil authority.
“Hamas infrastructure” is equated with “terrorist infrastructure”, providing Israel and its Western backers with justification for deliberately targeting such civilian institutions, in flagrant violation of international law.