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Is Hamas really like ISIS, as Netanyahu claims?

In his heart of hearts, Netanyahu is aware of the major and fundamental differences between the Palestinian Hamas movement and the so-called “Islamic State” (ISIS) that is not limited to a specific state or nationality. However, for some reason, he is trying to link the two. In doing so, he ignores what is even more dangerous than his erroneous comparison; the significant similarity between ISIS and Israel’s ideology, policies and practices.

Israel calls itself the “Jewish State”, just as Al-Baghdadi calls his group the Islamic State. From the time of its “independence” in 1948, Israel has never declared it borders; in fact, they expand and contract, just as the territory controlled by ISIS does (it rejects the ideas of borders and does not recognise nation states). Indeed, ISIS considers its borders to be wherever its forces have reached. Israel was established on the basis of colonial-settlement and mass immigration of Zionist Jews from all over the world; ISIS is also encouraging immigrants who believe in the ideology of the group, regardless of their ethnicity and nationality.

It is no wonder that the Palestinian resistance is surprised when it captures or kills Israeli soldiers only to find that they are French, British, Polish, German or Russian individuals brought in to fight on Palestinian land and join the ranks of the “Jewish State”. In addition, the war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by Israel throughout its occupation of Palestine far surpass those committed by ISIS; the Israelis kill women and children and commit massacres deliberately, with apparent impunity, and then boast about it.

I do not mean that this comparison should offend ISIS, nor am I very concerned with talking about an organisation being fought by the world. It is undoubtedly a serious phenomenon that requires further reflection and study. What I am really concerned about is revealing Netanyahu’s manipulation and his attempt to divert attention from the real nature of the conflict in Palestine. When he fights Hamas, he is fighting the rightful owners of the land, the Palestinians. He is also following terrorist logic and using unimaginably extreme methods thanks to the world overlooking the Zionist project’s excesses in the region.

The international community is applying blatant double standards in its reaction to Israel and ISIS. Alliances have been formed to fight ISIS but the world turns a blind eye to the Israeli occupation that commits war crimes witnessed by all who wish to see. Over the summer, and not for the first time, Israel bombed hospitals, schools and safe houses while they were still inhabited and used internationally-banned weapons.

Netanyahu’s repeated attempts to link Hamas to ISIS is just more proof of Israel’s defeat and failure in its latest attack on the movement. It is also a cry for help by Israel to the countries of the world after its army failed to progress more than a few metres into Gaza. This is a desperate attempt to discredit and ruin the reputation of the Palestinian resistance and link it to a terrorist organisation reviled across the world. Netanyahu still hasn’t realised that the world is no longer held hostage to Israeli propaganda, and that such links and comparisons do not harm Hamas or change the fact that occupation is terrorism in every sense of the word. There is only one state occupying someone else’s land in the Middle East, and it isn’t the “Islamic State”.

The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.

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