April 15, 2011 Special Dispatch No. 3770

Palestinian Legislative Council Deputy Speaker and Hamas Senior Official: The Revolutions in the Arab World – A Prelude to an Islamic Caliphate

April 15, 2011
Palestinians | Special Dispatch No. 3770

In an interview with the Qatari daily Al-Raya, Ahmad Bahr, deputy speaker of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) and a senior official in Hamas, said that the 2008-2009 war in Gaza had been one of the causes of the revolutions in the Arab world. He added that these revolutions, against dictatorships that the West had installed in the Arab countries in order to plunder their resources, heralded the establishment of an Islamic Caliphate. He also said that the opening of the Rafah border crossing and the lifting of the siege on Gaza in the wake of the Egyptian revolution would strengthen the Palestinian resistance in Gaza, and stressed that Hamas hopes to achieve a reconciliation agreement with Fatah that will be "far removed from" the Oslo Accords and the security coordination with Israel.

Following are excerpts of the interview:

An End to Palestinian Schism – A Religious, Moral and National Imperative

Q: "How does [the PLC] view the youth activity aimed at [promoting] intra-Palestinian reconciliation, which has recently surfaced?"

A: "I think that Gaza – which, during the Al-Furqan War [Hamas's name for the Gaza War], stood bare-chested [in the path of] the Israeli tanks, out of belief in the need to achieve victory and honor – was present in Al-Tahrir Square, in Tunisia, in Libya, in Yemen, and in every uprising against oppression. Our battle with the Jews is what changed the balance [of power] on the ground and boosted the self-confidence of the Arab and Muslim youth. Therefore, we are first and foremost proud of our restraint and perseverance. We succeeded in overcoming that criminal force and in realizing the words of Allah: 'How often has a small party vanquished a numerous host by Allah's leave, and Allah is with the steadfast [Koran 2:249].'

"As to ending the schism and [achieving intra-Palestinian] reconciliation, it is a religious, moral and national imperative. I appreciate the efforts of the youth who are striving for a [united] Palestine, but because the Egyptian document met with obstacles, we must lay down rules for the reconciliation: We want a leadership that feels the 'pulse' of the street, and we want reconciliation [based on] the unwavering Palestinian principles, far removed from the Oslo [Accords], the security coordination [with Israel], the American veto, and the Zionist intervention, and in accordance with the principle of which Allah spoke: 'Allah loveth them who battle for His cause in ranks, as if they were a solid structure.'" [Koran 61:4]

The Peace Agreement with Israel – One of the Causes of the Egyptian Revolution

Q: "How does the PLC view the wave of youth revolutions sweeping the Arab street?"

A: "There is no doubt that the [practices of the Arab dictatorships] – the violation of people's dignity, the denial of their rights, the denial of justice and liberty, the spread of oppression and of moral and financial corruption, the holding of elections as a [mere] formality, followed by the announcement of [the ruling party's] victory by imaginary margins, and the usurpation of power by force – are what aroused the rage of the Arab peoples and caused them to rise up in order to restore their liberty and rights. In Egypt, considered the most important country in the Arab and Islamic world, there are the Camp David Accords, which have kept the Egyptian people in fetters, and there is [the issue of the natural] gas, which is sold to the Zionist citizen at a cheaper price than to the Egyptian citizen. An analogy can made to what happened in Tunisia and Libya... As a legislative council, we support the peoples who rebelled against the corrupt regimes, and the restoration of liberty and justice.

"I would like to say that these [revolutions] are [merely] a prelude to the Islamic Caliphate... [whose establishment] the Prophet [Muhammad] foretold in the hadith: 'You will have the prophecy, according to Allah's will. Then will He put an end to it, according to His will. And then there will be a Caliphate by way of prophecy, according to the will of Allah... And there will be a biting kingdom [i.e., an oppressive rule], according to the will of Allah... [and then] a kingdom of coercion, according to the will of Allah... Then there will be a Caliphate by way of prophecy,' etc. The [term] 'kingdom of coercion,' as the hadith [commentators] explained, refers to the dictatorships that oppressed, cheated, killed, and destroyed. These were [created by] Western and American industry, which paved the way for the plundering of all the [Muslim] ummah's resources – its oil and its agriculture. I hope that this awakening heralds the establishment of a Caliphate by way of prophecy, according to the will of Allah..."

Q: "Will the change on the Arab street have a positive effect on the Palestinian cause?"

A: "I believe that it will... When the regime in Egypt fell, Israel shook with fear for [its fate and for the fate] of its agreements [with the Arab countries, because] it believed that the Egyptian regime was the greatest supporter of the Zionist presence in Palestine. The opening of the Rafah border crossing and the lifting of the siege on the [Gaza] Strip are a step on the path that leads to support for the Palestinian resistance in Gaza, and to the strengthening of its role and its voice..."

The Negotiations With Israel Have Failed

Q: "How surprised were you by the documents that were leaked by Al-Jazeera [TV]?"

A: "We were not surprised at all... I think that the resignation of Saeb 'Erekat, the most veteran of the Palestinian negotiators, is decisive proof that the negotiations program has failed. This matter [i.e., the document leak] also exposed before the entire world that the Palestinian negotiator has not achieved a thing over the course of 20 years; in fact, he has given the Zionist entity a green light to continue [its building of] settlements, its Judaization of Jerusalem, and its kidnappings, arrests, and deportations – and the settlements did [indeed] expand.

"Nor will Obama achieve anything, since he is weak in the face of the Zionist lobby, which is threatening his reelection for a second term in office."[1]


[1] Al-Raya (Qatar), April 9, 2011.

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