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Saturday, November 24, 2012
Long-range rockets change balance of power with Israel – Hamas strongman

Long-range rockets change balance of power with Israel – Hamas strongman
23/11/2012 By Saleh Jumaa

Cairo, Asharq Al-Awsat – Speaking exclusively to Asharq Al-Awsat, Hamas
politburo member, Dr. Mahmoud al-Zahar, stressed that the “rockets of the
resistance” striking Tel Aviv represents a change in the balance of power
between Hamas and the “Israeli entity.” He claimed that this balances the
“terror” that each party can inflict on the other, adding this new balance
will cause the Israelis to think twice before initiating any new aggression
against the Gaza Strip. Al-Zahar also praised the position taken by Egypt in
the conflict and its efforts in securing the eventual ceasefire, saying “we
expected this position from the new Egypt whose president, government and
people stand firmly behind the Palestinian people”

The Gaza strongman compared Hamas’s newer longer range missiles to “stones
of baked clay”, a Quranic reference to Surat al-Fil [The Chapter of the
Elephant]. This Quranic chapter relates to the “companions of the Elephant”
who sought to destroy the holy Kaaba, relating that God sent “flights of
birds” which struck this army with “stones of baked clay”, ultimately
destroying them and making them “like an empty field of stalks and straw.”

Al-Zahar said “the battle of the stones of baked clay with the Israeli enemy
has defined new factors in the nature of the conflict with the occupation
and will shape the end of this aggression via a well-planned and escalating
battle which will reveal the extent of the delusion of the enemy regarding
its disregard of the Palestinian people’s will and their valiant

He added “this battle will be a milestone, not just in the history of the
region, which has seen numerous regime changes, particularly in Egypt; but
also in the history of the world. “

The Hamas senior member asserted that “these regime changes were the result
of protests that swept the world and the strong public sympathy with the
Palestinian people will repel the Israeli aggression.”

Al-Zahar also informed Asharq Al-Awsat that “[Israeli Prime Minister]
Netanyahu wanted to end the war after three days because his security
leadership informed him that the resistance possessed just 300 rockets that
could be fired…however they were surprised when the rocket fire continued
and the resistance rained down rockets on Israel in the final days during
which time the aggression intensified, not decreased.”

Al-Zahar revealed that the Israeli government accepted all the conditions of
the Palestinian resistance, without any amendments or changes, as claimed by
the Israeli media. He said “we did not accept the Israeli proposal regarding
a two-stage de-escalation process, namely firstly a ceasefire and then
opening the border crossings. We rejected this and stuck to our original
demands namely a ceasefire and opening the border crossings in one step, and
Israeli agreed to this.”

He added “we have proven that the option of resistance in this conflict is
the only successful choice in front of us and we have demonstrated this in
driving out the Israeli occupation from Gaza in 2005.”

He said “the period in which the enemy attacked us is over, and we are now
in the stage when we are attacking them.” He confirmed that this period is
one of “bloodshed and the gun” and that the Palestinian people’s only option
is resistance. He added “the occupation is well aware that the blood that
was shed will show us the way and that everything that has been pulled down
will be rebuilt in a liberated Jerusalem.”

In addition to this, the Gaza strongman called on everybody to review their
position and form a coalition supporting the choice of armed resistance,
asserting that the Palestinian people who came out to celebrate the Gaza
victory represented a true referendum regarding the choice of jihad and

He stressed that the Palestinian people today support the valiant resistance
and stand firm in the face of the Israeli aggression. He said “the blood of
the leaders remains the fuel of the people and the resistance.”

Al-Zahar also strongly denied reports that he fled the Gaza Strip during the
Israeli aggression, saying “martyrdom for the sake of God and defeating the
occupation is a goal that we, the people of Palestine, are eager to obtain.
We have given our sons for the sake of Islam and in defense of our land and
holy sites. Therefore, how can you say that I, a Hamas leader, would run
from the battle to Egypt?”

He added “I am present in Gaza and I met the Egyptian delegations and I
shared in the joy of the Palestinian people last night in our victory. I
will remain here on Palestinian land in the forefront of the Palestinian
people until victory or death!”

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