Posts Tagged: Hamas


29
Sep 10

Hamas celebrating the past ten years of killing Jews

On the tenth anniversary of the beginning of the “second intifada” terror spree, Hamas has come out with its own statistics.

According to the terrorist organization, writing in the Qassam Brigades website, Hamas has launched some 4300 attacks since 2000, including rocket and mortar attacks, sniping, ambushes and 61 suicide bombings.

The one attack that they specify as being the most praiseworthy was the 2002 Passover massacre at the Park Hotel in Netanya, which killed 30 people (Hamas claims “36 Zionists.”) In that attack, Hamas heroically murdered 21 people over the age of 70, ten of them elderly married couples (plus two other couples who were younger.)

Some 1800 Hamas members were “martyred” in these past ten years.

Elder of Ziyon


28
Sep 10

Hamas says Arafat instructed them to attack Jews

Palestine Press Agency quotes Hamas leader Mahmoud al-Zahar as saying that Yasir Arafat instructed Hamas to attack Jewish civilians at the start of the second intifada.

Speaking at an event commemorating the tenth anniversary of the beginning of the terror spree in September 2000, Zahar said “the late Palestinian President Yasser Arafat had ordered Hamas to implement a number of military operations in the heart of the Jewish state, after the failure of negotiations with the Israeli government at that time.”

We already knew that Arafat would use other organizations as cover for terror acts, but this is the first time we have seen Arafat colluding with Hamas for attacks (although the Fatah-affiliated Al Aqsa Brigades had cooperated with Hamas in the past.)

Most of Zahar’s speech attacked the idea of negotiations with Israel and the effectiveness of “resistance.”

He also said that Hamas’ rule in Gaza proves the usefulness of resistance, apparently saying that the Hamas police and security forces had participated in attacks on Israeli targets. If that is the real translation, then we have evenmore proof that Goldstone and other “human rights” organizations were wrong in trying to distinguish between Hamas’ “civilian” police and their military, and Israel was entirely correct in attacking the police stations.

Elder of Ziyon


28
Sep 10

Hamas not thrilled with “Jewish” ship to Gaza

A ship of some 9 Jews is now being intercepted by the Israeli navy en route to Gaza. The Islamic Jihad newspaper Palestine Today notes, that, unlike other flotillas and vessels, Hamas has been ambivalent at best towards the entire idea of this particular pseudo-aid ship.

The reason? Because it has some Israelis on board who do not fully support the destruction of Israel.

Political writer Dr. Issam Shawar wrote that the reception of these peace activists in the Gaza Strip means recognizing the legitimacy of the Israeli occupation of the areas occupied in 1948. Even though they claim to recognize the right of the people of Gaza and the West to exist, they do not recognize the right of the majority of the Palestinian people to return to their homeland and do not recognize as well as the crime of occupation for the rest of our territory. Those people are trying to ignore the usurpation of people’s rights, and trying to mask the ugly face of occupation with this photo-op. Do not fool us this trick, which is widely practiced in the West and the rest of the world….This is much different from allowing Israeli journalists [into Gaza] as that does not imply recognition of the [Zionist] regime.

“We must stop them so as not to burden the government with responsibility to have to protect them or even hand them over to the Israeli side in the event that their lives become at risk by organizations see their arrival as an opportunity to increase the number of hostages or to avenge the victims of the holocaust of Gaza.”

Spokesman for the Hamas parliamentary bloc al-Masri did not reveal a clear position on receiving the ship, but stressed that his government would welcome any sincere effort and motivation to break the siege on the Gaza Strip.

Elder of Ziyon


27
Sep 10

Pathetic: FBI Escorts Known Hamas Operative Through Top-Secret National Counterterrorism Center as “Outreach” to Muslim Community

This is just stupid:

Curiously, Bradley’s report on the Citizen’s Academy fails to make note Mustapha’s extensive terrorist ties and support for Hamas, including his former employment with the Holy Land Foundation, which was listed as a specially designated terrorist group by the U.S. government in December 2001, and whose executives were convicted of terrorism support in 2008 and sentenced to lengthy prison terms. Mustapha was personally named unindicted co-conspirator (#31) in the case and employment records submitted by federal prosecutors during the trial showed that he received more than $ 154,000 for his work for the Holy Land Foundation between 1996 and 2000. During the trial, FBI Special Agent Lara Burns testified that Mustapha also sang in a band sponsored by the Holy Land Foundation that regularly featured songs dedicated to killing Jews and glorifying Hamas. In a deposition he gave in a civil trial concerned with the murder of a Chicago teenager killed by Hamas while waiting for a bus in Israel, Mustapha admitted that he was the registered agent for the Holy Land Foundation in Illinois, and also to his involvement with other Hamas front groups, including the Islamic Association for Palestine. He was later hired as an imam by the Mosque Foundation in Bridgeview, which the Chicago Tribune reported in 2004 has long been a hotbed of Hamas support.

Read the whole thing for context.

Liberty Pundits Blog


26
Sep 10

Abbas engaging Hamas: ME peace talks about done

Never ever trust any head of the Palestinian Authority.  Ever.  It’s like a rule.  Hiding behind the public face of settlements, Abbas has skirted everyone involved by engaging Hamas:

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton abandoned her efforts to achieve a compromise Saturday after learning that Abbas had hardened his line and opted for secret diplomacy with Hamas terrorist planners in Damascus. Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu refrained from stating his intentions regarding West Bank construction. He stated from the outset of the US peace initiative that Palestinian pre-conditions for direct talks were unacceptable. The Americans backed off pressure to change his mind after discovering Abbas’ double game.

No, this is not an attempt to achieve reconciliation with Hamas toward a broader peace.  It is failure of Arab leadership to work towards peace at all.  Again.

Here’s more details:

This week, Abbas sent a high-ranking delegation of his own Fatah party to Damascus for secret talks with top Hamas leaders, thereby swinging the critical focus of the Israel-Palestinian peace talks to a new internal Palestinian track led by the radical Hamas and Syria, the foremost opponents of the US-sponsored peace talks with Israel. Abbas was apparently supported in this shift by Egypt.

The Fatah delegation consisted of Azzam al Ahmad, Gen. Nasser Yusuf and Sahar Basiso, head of Fatah General Intelligence, sat down with Hamas’ leader Khaled Meshaal, head of its politburo Mussa Abu Marzouk and Izzat Rishak, intelligence chief.

Rishak personally orchestrated the first attacks on the West Bank on Aug. 30 and Sept. 1, in which four Israelis were murdered and two injured. DEBKAfile’s counter-terror sources report that these were the opening shots of a major Hamas terror campaign, designed to peak with the most devastating terrorist strike yet, which Rishak is in charge of planning. He is using the same perpetrators.  They are still at large because Hamas imported unknown terrorist talent from Syria whose faces are unknown to the Shin Bet. However, a furious hunt is on to catch them in time.

Liberty Pundits Blog


22
Sep 10

UN dhimmis: Israel’s self-defense against jihad flotilla broke international law; Hamas thrilled

The Israeli Foreign Ministry said that the UN Human Rights Council had a “biased, politicized and extremist approach.” That’s an understatement. The UN has thoroughly discredited itself as any kind of moral authority. “UN experts: Israel flotilla raid broke int’l law,” by Frank Jordans for Associated Press, September 22 (thanks to Choi):

GENEVA – A report by three U.N.-appointed human rights experts Wednesday said that Israeli forces violated international law when they raided a Gaza-bound aid flotilla killing nine activists earlier this year.

The U.N. Human Rights Council’s fact-finding mission concluded that Israel’s naval blockade of the Palestinian territory was unlawful because of the humanitarian crisis there, and described the military raid on the flotilla as brutal and disproportionate.

The Israeli Foreign Ministry responded late Wednesday by saying the Human Rights Council, which commissioned the report, had a “biased, politicized and extremist approach.”

The Islamic militant group Hamas that controls Gaza, meanwhile, praised the report and called for those involved in the raid to be punished.

The 56-page document lists a series of alleged crimes committed by Israeli forces during and after the raid, including willful killing and torture, and claims there is “clear evidence to support prosecutions.”

“A series of violations of international law, including international humanitarian and human rights law, were committed by the Israeli forces during the interception of the flotilla and during the detention of passengers in Israel prior to deportation,” the experts found….

No mention, I’m sure, of how the flotilla “peace activists” were chanting “Khaybar, Khaybar, ya yahoud, jaish Muhammad sa yaoud” — Khaybar, Khaybar, O Jews, the army of Muhammad will return — a genocidal chant referring to Muhammad’s massacre of the Jews at the Khaybar oasis in Arabia.

Jihad Watch


22
Sep 10

Hamas paranoia: Egypt opened Rafah to “trap” Hamas officials

I’ve mentioned the recent detention of a Hamas security chief in Egypt (auto-translated as Mohamed Debabeche.)

Now Hamas says that it was all a trap:

Hamas accused Cairo Tuesday of using the Rafah crossing’s opening to detain party officials as they travel abroad via Egypt following the detention of the Gaza government’s intelligence chief in Cairo.

Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum told reporters that opening the border to trap Hamas officials was “unacceptable and inappropriate,” following the detention of General Security Service Commander Muhammad Dabaeesh, also known as Abu Radwan, at the Cairo International Airport.

Egypt’s move seems to have been as a way to pressure Hamas to hand over the person who shot and killed an Egyptian policeman during the Viva Palestina protests last December, as Dabaeesh is the killer’s boss.

Elder of Ziyon


21
Sep 10

What Gazans think of Hamas

From The National (UAE), a long article about Gaza:

“We are under occupation,” said Abu Mohammed, a secular businessman with close family ties to the old Fatah security services. “After the takeover, people thought it might get better if the religious guys were in charge of the money, that security would improve and corruption would end. But they’re just as corrupt: If you’re not in Hamas, you get nothing. If anyone does anything, they are arrested, tortured or killed. Just like with the Israelis. Except the Jews always give you a lawyer.”

Anger with Hamas is not limited to secular supporters of the Fatah government in Ramallah. Militants devoted to violent resistance say they feel betrayed by what they call an epidemic of corruption – springing from Hamas’s control of the illegal tunnel economy – and by Hamas’s refusal to sanction military operations against Israel from Gaza.

Islamic Jihad, once the closest ally of the Hamas military wing, now refuses to call their former brothers-in-arms resistance fighters. According to Abu Musab, a top Islamic Jihad commander in the Rafah refugee camp, Hamas has failed at governance and resistance alike. “There’s no government in Gaza,” he said flatly. “We’re under Israeli and Hamas occupation.”

“They are as big harami as Dahlan,” he said, using the Arabic slang for “thieves”. “They used to be mujaheddin, but today they are fat millionaires with nice cars,” he added, pointing to his flat stomach. “Look, you can either be a millionaire or you can lead a resistance. But you if you take the medical aid sent by Europe to help the poor people of Gaza and sell it in your own pharmacies to make money for yourself and the government, you can’t have both.”

At this point he pulled a packet of antibiotics from his pocket; it is stamped: “A gift of the people of Norway. Not for resale.”

“I just bought this from a Hamas-run pharmacy here in Rafah for my son,” he said. “I had to go to a Hamas pharmacy to make sure the pills weren’t fake or made from poor materials in Egypt. If you want real medicine, you have to buy the aid Europe sends us.”

Abu Saba, the Gazan political analyst, said that two major events had negatively reshaped public opinion of Hamas – and in both cases, he says, the damage to Hamas was self-inflicted.

“Things first started getting out of control in November, 2007 after Hamas took total control of Gaza earlier that summer,” he said. “There was a legal rally by Fatah supporters on the anniversary of Yasser Arafat’s death to honor their leader and to complain that Hamas was violating human rights promised under the constitution of the Palestinian people.”

He pauses for a moment and looks around the café nervously before going on. “It was the biggest protest in the history of Gaza, bigger than the largest protests during the Intifada,” he continues. “It got out of control when the Hamas police told everyone to go home.”

This sparked a crackdown on political dissent throughout Palestine that continues to this day, with Hamas harassing and jailing Fatah supporters in Gaza and Fatah doing the same to Hamas supporters in the West Bank. The second major blow to Hamas’s standing among Palestinians, according to Abu Saba, was the Israeli invasion of Gaza that began at the end of 2008: “When the war broke out people banded together to survive,” he says, “but after the war most people thought Hamas had provoked it [with a resumption of rocket attacks] but they acted together to portray all of the population as victims of the invasion, which we were. But over the past 18 months, Hamas has fallen further and further in ­support.”

According to one human rights activist, who asked not to be named for fear of being killed by one side or the other, the root of the problem is that both governments – Fatah and Hamas – were born of what he called “original sin”.

“The Palestinian constitution protects the right of the people to peacefully assemble at anytime for political protest,” he said. “It’s a very progressive and wonderful law. But because Hamas can only control traffic and not how people meet privately, they decided to ban all public protests through decree of the police chief. And now they use the same tools that the Dahlan regime and the Israelis used to suppress the Intifada. Torture is a chronic problem here and on the West Bank, we have both sides using illegal and arbitrary detention and it’s led to a systematic deterioration of human rights over the past four years.”

“The original sin was the refusal of the international community to recognize the Hamas victory in 2006 and the power sharing arrangement with Fatah that Saudi Arabia brokered in early 2007,” the activist said. “When Hamas saw that no one would recognize their legitimate victory – and it was a fair election victory then – they decided not to bother trying to be just rulers.”

I ask him if that means the human rights situation was better under Israeli occupation that it is today for residents of both the West Bank and Gaza.

“Why do you think I ask you not use my name? Yes, 100 percent yes,” he said. “At least the occupation had a positive effect of drawing the Palestinian people together instead of dividing them. I now fear that we’re seeing a systematic effort by Hamas and its religious backers to enter every component of society.”

…Later I described my conversation with Khalidi – and my quick chat with Abu Obeida – to Abu Nizar, a former Fatah security official. He laughed at the idea that these two famed Hamas fighters had turned their efforts to community policing: “Was Abu Obeida using community support when he was throwing Fatah officials off high-rise buildings in 2007? Are they working step by step to learn not to shoot people who disagree with them in the kneecaps? There’s a video of Obeida himself executing five Fatah officials in the Jabaliya refugee camp after they surrendered – everyone in Gaza has seen it. So why should I ever think he’s not going to one day come here and kill me?”

Fatah, according to Abu Nizar, no longer poses any threat to Hamas rule in Gaza: it would be insane, he says, for Ramallah to order its cadres to stir up trouble here, given the level of control H amas currently exerts over the population.

“We’d be massacred in five minutes if we plotted against Hamas,” he said. The real threat to Hamas, Abu Nizar continued, comes from its former militant allies. “The jihadis are much more powerful than they have ever been,” he told me, echoing a warning that has been sounded by other experts on Gaza. “Salafists look at Hamas and think they aren’t Islamic enough, because they ran in elections approved by Israel, they have failed to implement Sharia law, and they stop militants from attacking Israeli targets.”

“They can’t challenge Hamas yet. But you can’t hold them off forever. The most religious members want Sharia law and an end to this under-the-table ceasefire. They will never accept Hamas rule, but Hamas tries to appease them by banning women from smoking shisha and other moral laws. But we know appeasing al Qa’eda types never works, they’ll just ask for more and more until one day they have the support to throw Hamas out. Just like what happened to Fatah – but it will be even worse for all of us.”

…Jaysh [al Islam] was at the forefront of the fighting here, and when I asked Jihad whether Hamas fighters had also participated, he scoffed. “When they saw 200 or so policemen were killed the first day in their bases, they all went to the tunnels,” he explained. “Hamas knew Israel was coming to hurt them, so they sent all their men home or to safety. We had 18 martyrs in this neighborhood during the war and we’re a small group. Qassam Brigades has more than 10,000 men all over Gaza, and they only had eight martyrs after the first day.”

“They hid while we died for the glory of God,” he added. “Who are the real Mujihadeen?”

One [member of Jaysh al Aslam] took me by the hand and led me quietly to the edge of the tree line. Not more than 100 metres away, Israeli bulldozers, guarded by massive Merkava tanks, were clearing brush from along the fence. I could see Israeli soldiers walking along, talking to each other, sharing cigarettes and guarding the area. “Past this tree and they’ll see us and start shelling,” my young masked guide explained, before returning me to Jihad and the rest of the men.

“Hamas is our enemy,” Jihad said amid nods from his colleagues. “They have killed our brothers on behalf of the Israelis and they protect Israel from our guns.” He points to one young man who is clutching an M-16 rifle. “This boy,” Jihad says, “was arrested by Hamas for trying to attack Israelis outside of Rafah camp.”

“They held me for 22 days,” the boy says. “They beat me every day and when they released me, my father and I had to sign a paper that said if I attack Israel again, I will owe Hamas $ 22,000 or they will kill me.”

(h/t Vicious Babushka)

Elder of Ziyon


21
Sep 10

What Gazans think of Hamas

From The National (UAE), a long article about Gaza:

“We are under occupation,” said Abu Mohammed, a secular businessman with close family ties to the old Fatah security services. “After the takeover, people thought it might get better if the religious guys were in charge of the money, that security would improve and corruption would end. But they’re just as corrupt: If you’re not in Hamas, you get nothing. If anyone does anything, they are arrested, tortured or killed. Just like with the Israelis. Except the Jews always give you a lawyer.”

Anger with Hamas is not limited to secular supporters of the Fatah government in Ramallah. Militants devoted to violent resistance say they feel betrayed by what they call an epidemic of corruption – springing from Hamas’s control of the illegal tunnel economy – and by Hamas’s refusal to sanction military operations against Israel from Gaza.

Islamic Jihad, once the closest ally of the Hamas military wing, now refuses to call their former brothers-in-arms resistance fighters. According to Abu Musab, a top Islamic Jihad commander in the Rafah refugee camp, Hamas has failed at governance and resistance alike. “There’s no government in Gaza,” he said flatly. “We’re under Israeli and Hamas occupation.”

“They are as big harami as Dahlan,” he said, using the Arabic slang for “thieves”. “They used to be mujaheddin, but today they are fat millionaires with nice cars,” he added, pointing to his flat stomach. “Look, you can either be a millionaire or you can lead a resistance. But you if you take the medical aid sent by Europe to help the poor people of Gaza and sell it in your own pharmacies to make money for yourself and the government, you can’t have both.”

At this point he pulled a packet of antibiotics from his pocket; it is stamped: “A gift of the people of Norway. Not for resale.”

“I just bought this from a Hamas-run pharmacy here in Rafah for my son,” he said. “I had to go to a Hamas pharmacy to make sure the pills weren’t fake or made from poor materials in Egypt. If you want real medicine, you have to buy the aid Europe sends us.”

Abu Saba, the Gazan political analyst, said that two major events had negatively reshaped public opinion of Hamas – and in both cases, he says, the damage to Hamas was self-inflicted.

“Things first started getting out of control in November, 2007 after Hamas took total control of Gaza earlier that summer,” he said. “There was a legal rally by Fatah supporters on the anniversary of Yasser Arafat’s death to honor their leader and to complain that Hamas was violating human rights promised under the constitution of the Palestinian people.”

He pauses for a moment and looks around the café nervously before going on. “It was the biggest protest in the history of Gaza, bigger than the largest protests during the Intifada,” he continues. “It got out of control when the Hamas police told everyone to go home.”

This sparked a crackdown on political dissent throughout Palestine that continues to this day, with Hamas harassing and jailing Fatah supporters in Gaza and Fatah doing the same to Hamas supporters in the West Bank. The second major blow to Hamas’s standing among Palestinians, according to Abu Saba, was the Israeli invasion of Gaza that began at the end of 2008: “When the war broke out people banded together to survive,” he says, “but after the war most people thought Hamas had provoked it [with a resumption of rocket attacks] but they acted together to portray all of the population as victims of the invasion, which we were. But over the past 18 months, Hamas has fallen further and further in ­support.”

According to one human rights activist, who asked not to be named for fear of being killed by one side or the other, the root of the problem is that both governments – Fatah and Hamas – were born of what he called “original sin”.

“The Palestinian constitution protects the right of the people to peacefully assemble at anytime for political protest,” he said. “It’s a very progressive and wonderful law. But because Hamas can only control traffic and not how people meet privately, they decided to ban all public protests through decree of the police chief. And now they use the same tools that the Dahlan regime and the Israelis used to suppress the Intifada. Torture is a chronic problem here and on the West Bank, we have both sides using illegal and arbitrary detention and it’s led to a systematic deterioration of human rights over the past four years.”

“The original sin was the refusal of the international community to recognize the Hamas victory in 2006 and the power sharing arrangement with Fatah that Saudi Arabia brokered in early 2007,” the activist said. “When Hamas saw that no one would recognize their legitimate victory – and it was a fair election victory then – they decided not to bother trying to be just rulers.”

I ask him if that means the human rights situation was better under Israeli occupation that it is today for residents of both the West Bank and Gaza.

“Why do you think I ask you not use my name? Yes, 100 percent yes,” he said. “At least the occupation had a positive effect of drawing the Palestinian people together instead of dividing them. I now fear that we’re seeing a systematic effort by Hamas and its religious backers to enter every component of society.”

…Later I described my conversation with Khalidi – and my quick chat with Abu Obeida – to Abu Nizar, a former Fatah security official. He laughed at the idea that these two famed Hamas fighters had turned their efforts to community policing: “Was Abu Obeida using community support when he was throwing Fatah officials off high-rise buildings in 2007? Are they working step by step to learn not to shoot people who disagree with them in the kneecaps? There’s a video of Obeida himself executing five Fatah officials in the Jabaliya refugee camp after they surrendered – everyone in Gaza has seen it. So why should I ever think he’s not going to one day come here and kill me?”

Fatah, according to Abu Nizar, no longer poses any threat to Hamas rule in Gaza: it would be insane, he says, for Ramallah to order its cadres to stir up trouble here, given the level of control H amas currently exerts over the population.

“We’d be massacred in five minutes if we plotted against Hamas,” he said. The real threat to Hamas, Abu Nizar continued, comes from its former militant allies. “The jihadis are much more powerful than they have ever been,” he told me, echoing a warning that has been sounded by other experts on Gaza. “Salafists look at Hamas and think they aren’t Islamic enough, because they ran in elections approved by Israel, they have failed to implement Sharia law, and they stop militants from attacking Israeli targets.”

“They can’t challenge Hamas yet. But you can’t hold them off forever. The most religious members want Sharia law and an end to this under-the-table ceasefire. They will never accept Hamas rule, but Hamas tries to appease them by banning women from smoking shisha and other moral laws. But we know appeasing al Qa’eda types never works, they’ll just ask for more and more until one day they have the support to throw Hamas out. Just like what happened to Fatah – but it will be even worse for all of us.”

…Jaysh [al Islam] was at the forefront of the fighting here, and when I asked Jihad whether Hamas fighters had also participated, he scoffed. “When they saw 200 or so policemen were killed the first day in their bases, they all went to the tunnels,” he explained. “Hamas knew Israel was coming to hurt them, so they sent all their men home or to safety. We had 18 martyrs in this neighborhood during the war and we’re a small group. Qassam Brigades has more than 10,000 men all over Gaza, and they only had eight martyrs after the first day.”

“They hid while we died for the glory of God,” he added. “Who are the real Mujihadeen?”

One [member of Jaysh al Aslam] took me by the hand and led me quietly to the edge of the tree line. Not more than 100 metres away, Israeli bulldozers, guarded by massive Merkava tanks, were clearing brush from along the fence. I could see Israeli soldiers walking along, talking to each other, sharing cigarettes and guarding the area. “Past this tree and they’ll see us and start shelling,” my young masked guide explained, before returning me to Jihad and the rest of the men.

“Hamas is our enemy,” Jihad said amid nods from his colleagues. “They have killed our brothers on behalf of the Israelis and they protect Israel from our guns.” He points to one young man who is clutching an M-16 rifle. “This boy,” Jihad says, “was arrested by Hamas for trying to attack Israelis outside of Rafah camp.”

“They held me for 22 days,” the boy says. “They beat me every day and when they released me, my father and I had to sign a paper that said if I attack Israel again, I will owe Hamas $ 22,000 or they will kill me.”

(h/t Vicious Babushka)

Elder of Ziyon


21
Sep 10

Mahdi Bray, key Ground Zero mosque ally, supporting Hamas and Hizballah

He says the video above was…wait for it…”taken out of context.” There is no context in which I would express enthusiastic support for Hamas and Hizballah, but Mahdi Bray is no doubt much more versed than I am in matters of “context,” since Muslim spokesmen are forever claiming that non-Muslims are quoting them, or the Qur’an, without due regard for it. So judge for yourself. Is Mahdi Bray’s support for Hamas and Hizballah in the video above benign in context?

“Mosque ally’s vid shows ‘Hez’ true colors,” by Tom Topousis in the New York Post, September 21:

Among the Islamic clerics defending plans for a mosque near Ground Zero yesterday was an outspoken critic of Israel who enthusiastically signaled his support for terror groups Hamas and Hezbollah during a rally a decade ago.

At a news conference outside the site of the proposed mosque, Imam Mahdi Bray, executive director of the Washington-based Muslim American Society, was adamant about Muslims’ right to build a mosque where they choose.

But he refused to discuss a video, from a rally in Lafayette Park in Washington, DC, that shows him onstage repeatedly raising his arms when an unidentified speaker asked how many in the crowd supported Hamas and Hezbollah.

Bray claimed the clip was taken out of context. A spokesman for Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, the prime mover of the Ground Zero mosque, declined comment….

Of course. What could he say? Anything he said would only bring more attention to this, and with Rauf the darling of the government and media, he would prefer it ignored.

Jihad Watch