Canada-Based Pro-Al-Qaeda Cleric: Hamas's Leaders Are 'Dogs' Who Have Brought Destruction Upon Gaza; Jihad Does Not Obligate One To 'Start A War That Will Result In The Total Annihilation Of Your People'

February 7, 2024

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On February 5 and 6, 2024, Egyptian pro-Al-Qaeda cleric Tariq Abdelhaleem shared on his X and Telegram accounts a series of posts harshly criticizing Hamas's leadership, accusing it of not properly considering Israel's qualitative edge over Hamas before carrying out the October 7, 2023 massacre in southern Israel, or the attack's potential consequences. Abdelhaleem wrote that Hamas's leadership has brought destruction upon Gaza without any achievements to show for it, such as the liberation of the Al-Aqsa Mosque, the lifting of the siege of Gaza, or the release of Palestinian prisoners. He also accused Hamas's leadership of acting out of a desire for honor and on the basis of a failed Muslim Brotherhood ideology in the service of Qatar and Iran. In addition, he wrote that it was forbidden for Hamas to trust the "apostate Shiites" and that the religious obligation of jihad does not require "starting a war that will result in the total annihilation of your people." The following are details about Abdelhaleem's posts:

In a February 5 post on X, Canada-based Egyptian-born pro-Al-Qaeda jihadi cleric Tariq Abdelhaleem lashed out at senior Hamas leader Osama Hamdan after he presented his demands for a prisoner exchange with Israel, which include a complete ceasefire, removal of the siege on Gaza, the rehabilitation of the Gaza Strip, and the establishment of a Palestinian state. Abdelhaleem described the demands as unrealistic and impossibly high, and wrote that they are meant to allow the "failed politician" Hamdan to save face, since he knows that Israel will never accept them.

Abdelhaleem also lashed out at those who view the demands as "heroism, greatness, and pride," and accused Hamas of poor planning by launching an attack on Israel with no possibility of retreat. Asserting that Israel is 1,000 times more powerful than Hamas and that its Shi'ite Iranian backers cannot be trusted to help Sunnis, Abdelhaleem wrote that the religious obligation of jihad does not mandate launching a war "that will result in the complete annihilation of your people." Moreover, he condemned Hamas's approach for being based on the ideology of the Muslim Brotherhood, which he claimed brings "failure on every side," whether it acts violently or nonviolently.[1]

On February 6, 2024, Abdelhaleem shared a post on his X account that read: "The dogs who are the leaders of Hamas have annihilated the people of Gaza by [attacking Israel] without considering the consequences." In the post, he accused Hamas leader in Gaza Yahya Sinwar, whom he referred to as a "dog," of endangering the people of Gaza just so that a handful of "asses" would call him a "hero." In addition, he criticized other Hamas leaders, including political bureau chief Ismail Haniyeh, bureau member Osama Hamdan, and former Hamas leader Khaled Mashal, referring to all of them as the "dogs" of Qatar and of the "Rafidites [a pejorative term for Shiites]."[2]

On the same day, Abdelhaleem wrote that uprooting Hamas from the Gaza Strip would be difficult, "except through a barbaric operation which will be difficult for the world to accept." He speculated that it is very likely that Israel will eventually accept the existence of what is left of Hamas in the Strip, along with some organization based abroad.

In addition, he asked what the purpose of the current war was, since other than the death of tens of thousands of Gazans, the transformation of millions of them into refugees, and the total destruction of Gaza, Hamas could claim no concrete achievements. He elaborated that the Al-Aqsa Mosque has not been liberated, the siege of the Gaza Strip not lifted, and Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli prisons not freed.[3]

These statements by Abdelhaleem reflect his known opposition to Hamas. Notably, Abdelhaleem has called for Hamas's leaders to be tried for "paving the way to genocide in Gaza," and asserted that even the liberation of Palestine would not spare them from Allah's punishment.[4]


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