By Al Mayadeen English – Jan 21, 2024
The Hamas Palestinian Resistance movement explains the reasons behind Operation al-Aqsa Flood from a historical, political, and humanitarian perspective as it seeks to debunk Israeli lies about the operation.
Operation al-Aqsa Flood was a necessary step and a normal response to confront all Israeli conspiracies against the Palestinian people and their cause; a defensive act within the framework of ridding Palestine of the Israeli occupation, reclaiming Palestinian rights, and on the path to liberation and independence like all people around the world, the Palestinian Hamas Resistance movement said.
Hamas published Sunday a memorandum entitled: “Our Narrative… Operation al-Aqsa Flood,” in which the Resistance movement explained the reasons behind the October 7 operation and the motives behind it, as well as its general context concerning the Palestinian cause and a debunking of the Israeli narrative and the accusations raised against the Palestinian Resistance.
Hamas published a memorandum entitled, "Our Narrative… Operation Al-Aqsa Flood" where the #Palestinian resistance movement explains the events that led to Operation Al-Aqsa Flood dating back 105 years.#Palestine#Gaza pic.twitter.com/gVKgIVAuTO
— Al Mayadeen English (@MayadeenEnglish) January 21, 2024
The Resistance movement explained that there were a plethora of reasons that pushed it to carry out the operation, including:
- The Israeli Juadization plans for the al-Aqsa Mosque and attempts to divide it.
The actions of the extremist and right-wing Israeli government, which is taking practical steps toward usurping the entirety of the West Bank and occupied al-Quds amid plans to expel Palestinians from their homes.
The thousands of Palestinians unjustly detained by the Israeli occupation and deprived of their most basic rights amid paramount assaults and humiliation.
The unjust air, sea, and land blockade imposed on the Gaza Strip for the past 17 years.
The expansion of Israeli settlements across the West Bank in an unprecedented manner.
The daily escalations and violence perpetrated by settlers against Palestinians.
The seven million displaced Palestinians living in horrific conditions in refugee camps and wish to return to their lands.
The international community’s failure to establish and the complicity of major powers in preventing the establishment of a Palestinian state.
Hamas argued that the Palestinian people could not be expected to keep waiting and counting on the United Nations, which it described as “helpless,” saying their only option was to “take the initiative in defending the Palestinian people, lands, rights, and sanctities.” Hamas underlined that its actions fall into self-defense, which is a right enshrined in international laws and conventions.
It did not start on Oct. 7
As is being echoed by the supporters of the Palestinian Resistance and cause alike, Hamas underlined that the plight of liberation did not start on October 7; “but started 105 years ago, including 30 years of British colonialism and 75 years of Zionist occupation.”
The memorandum clarified that the Palestinian people in 1918 owned 98.5% of Palestinian land while representing 98% of the population before the Zionists that were brought in coordination between the British colonial authorities and the Zionist movement managed to take control of no more than 6% of Palestinian land when they made up 31% of the population prior to 1948, i.e., before the declared creation of an “Israel”.
“At that time, the Palestinian people were denied the right to self-determination and the Zionist gangs engaged in an ethnic cleansing campaign against the Palestinian people aimed at expelling them from their lands and areas,” the lengthy text added.
The Zionist gangs displaced 57% of the people of Palestine and destroyed over 500 Palestinian villages and towns while committing dozens of massacres against the Palestinian people leading up to the establishment of “Israel” in 1948. “In continuation of the aggression, the Israeli forces in 1967 occupied the rest of Palestine including the West Bank, the Gaza Strip, and Jerusalem in addition to Arab territories around Palestine.”
Throughout the long history of the occupation of Palestine, the Palestinian people suffered all forms of oppression, injustice, and expropriation of their fundamental rights, Hamas underlined, giving Gaza as an example when in 2007 it came under a suffocating blockade still in place to this very day, turning it into the world’s largest open-air prison.
The Resistance movement also reminded that: “The Palestinian people in Gaza also suffered from five destructive wars/aggressions all of which ‘Israel’ was the offending party.”
The Israeli occupation over decades, in the period between January 2000 and September 2023, killed 11,299 Palestinians and injured 156,768 others, the overwhelming majority of them being civilians, Hamas added. Meanwhile, the “US administration and its allies did not pay attention to the suffering of the Palestinian people over the past years but provided cover to the Israeli aggression.”
“The US administration provided financial and military support to the Israeli occupation massacres against the Palestinian civilians and the brutal aggression on the Gaza Strip, and still, the US officials continue to ignore what the Israeli occupation forces commit in Gaza of mass killing,” the memo said.
Even commenting on the 1993 Oslo Accords signed by the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and the Israeli occupation under the auspices of the US, Hamas underlined that the accords stipulated the establishment of a Palestinian independent state in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, the efforts for which were “systemically destroyed” by “Israel” through “a wide campaign of settlement construction and Judaization of the Palestinian lands in the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem.”
In response to all the injustice, Hamas asked: “What was expected from the Palestinian people after all of that?”
October 7 aimed at Israeli military
The Resistance movement went on to explain that its October 7 operation aimed to target Israeli military sites and pressure Israeli authorities for a prisoner exchange deal to release Palestinians from Israeli jails. The focus was on destroying the Israeli occupation forces Gaza Division and military sites near settlements around Gaza.
The Al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas’ military wing, emphasized their commitment to avoiding harm to civilians, especially children, women, and the elderly. They stated that any accidental targeting of civilians occurred during confrontations with the Israeli forces.
Hamas, since its establishment in 1987, undertook a commitment to avoiding harm to civilians. They mentioned initiatives to spare civilians from fighting, but these were allegedly ignored by the Israeli occupation.
The statement acknowledged potential faults during Operation Al-Aqsa Flood due to the rapid collapse of the Israeli security system. The Hamas Movement underlined that it treated positive treatment of civilians in Gaza, seeking their release during a humanitarian truce in exchange for Palestinian women and children held in Israeli jails.
The Palestinian Resistance backed up its efforts to only target the military apparatus with numerous pieces of evidence, highlighting that “Video clips taken on that day – Oct. 7 – along with the testimonies by Israelis themselves that were released later showed that the Al-Qassam Brigades’ fighters didn’t target civilians, and many Israelis were killed by the Israeli army and police due to their confusion.”
The claim of “40 beheaded babies” by Palestinian fighters has been firmly debunked, with even Israeli sources rejecting it. Unfortunately, many Western media outlets have adopted and promoted this false allegation, the memo read.
The allegation that Palestinian fighters committed rape against Israeli women, including the Hamas Movement, has been fully denied. A December 1, 2023, report by Mondoweiss highlighted the lack of evidence for the alleged “mass rape” on October 7, suggesting that “Israel” used this claim to escalate the situation in Gaza.
According to reports from Israeli newspapers Yedioth Ahronoth on October 10 and Haaretz on November 18, an Israeli military helicopter killed numerous Israeli settlers, including those at the Nova music festival near Gaza where 364 settlers died. Hamas fighters, unaware of the festival, were targeted by the helicopter. To prevent further infiltrations from Gaza, the Israeli occupation forces struck over 300 targets in surrounding areas.
Israeli testimonies confirmed that army raids and operations killed both Israeli captives and their captors. The IOF’s Hannibal Directive emphasizes preferring a dead captive or soldier over being taken alive to avoid prisoner swaps with the Palestinian resistance.
Occupation authorities revised the number of their killed soldiers and civilians from 1,400 to 1,200 after discovering that 200 burnt corpses belonging to Palestinian fighters were mixed with Israeli corpses. The Israeli army, possessing military planes, was responsible for the destruction on October 7.
The Israeli occupation’s heavy aerial raids in Gaza resulted in the death of nearly 60 Israeli captives, indicating a disregard for their lives, Hamas stressed.
It also added that the death toll of “civilians” was exaggerated by the fact that many of the Israeli settlers killed during the operation were armed and fighting alongside the Israeli occupation forces, yet they were registered as “civilians” upon being killed in action.
“Those who defend the Israeli aggression do not look at the events in an objective manner but rather go to justify the Israeli mass killing of Palestinians by saying there would be casualties among civilians when attacking the Hamas fighters,” the memorandum read.
Call for justice
Hamas, casting doubts about the commitment of certain countries, namely the US, Germany, Canada, and the United Kingdom, to justice, the movement urged the ICC Prosecutor and team to visit occupied Palestine promptly to examine crimes and violations firsthand, rather than relying on remote observations or succumbing to Israeli restrictions.
In December 2022, the UN General Assembly sought the International Court of Justice’s opinion on the legal consequences of “Israel’s” illegal occupation, supported by nearly 100 countries, the resistance movement highlighted. Countries backing the occupation rejected this move, hindering efforts to prosecute Israeli war criminals through universal jurisdiction in European courts.
The events of October 7 should be understood in the broader context of struggles against colonialism and occupation, it added. Similar struggles demonstrate that oppression by occupiers elicits corresponding responses from those under occupation.
People worldwide recognize the lies perpetuated by governments supporting the Israeli narrative, aiming to justify biased stances and conceal Israeli crimes. These nations overlook the root causes of the conflict—occupation and the denial of Palestinians’ right to live in dignity on their lands. They also show indifference to the unjust blockade on millions in Gaza and the plight of Palestinian detainees in Israeli jails, where basic rights are denied.
Hamas, at the conclusion of the memorandum, called for an immediate halt to Israeli aggression in Gaza, accountability for human suffering caused by the Israeli occupation, support for Palestinian resistance, and solidarity from nations worldwide against double standards.
The Resistance continued by demanding an end to major powers providing cover for “Israel”, rejecting any decisions made by foreign powers regarding Gaza’s future, and opposing Israeli attempts at expulsion. Hamas urged continued global pressure to end the occupation, resistance to normalization with the Israeli regime, and a comprehensive boycott of the occupation and its supporters.
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