Sun 10 Dec 2023 9:21 am - Jerusalem Time

The New York Times: Hamas is still reaping benefits from the “Al-Aqsa flood”

The American newspaper "The New York Times" confirmed that Hamas is still reaping the benefits from the "Al-Aqsa Flood" that it launched against the Israeli occupation, on October 7, noting that the movement is considered "the only Palestinian faction that has obtained concessions from Israel in many years." 

The newspaper pointed out that the movement cast "a bloody shadow over Israel's plans to improve relations with the Arabs" and returned the Palestinian issue to "the agendas of world leaders."

More than two months after the Israeli aggression on Gaza, and despite the “pledges” of Israeli officials to destroy Hamas, “Israel” was unable to kill its senior leaders, release the remaining prisoners in the Gaza Strip, or provide convincing evidence that it is capable of achieving its goal of eliminating the movement, according to the newspaper.

As for Hamas’ calculations, “the high ceiling of Israel’s goals constitutes an additional advantage for the movement,” according to what the newspaper saw, explaining that Hamas “can declare victory as soon as it continues to fight,” while adhering to its long-term goal, which is the destruction of “Israel.”

The New York Times quoted Middle East policy analyst Ahmed Fouad Al-Khatib as saying, “Israel will be stuck in this unwinnable war, which will cause massive death and destruction.”

According to it, what exactly “Israel” can achieve remains “an open question,” indicating that simply continuing the war may harm the occupation’s economy and “its international standing,” while encouraging a new generation of Palestinians to hate “Israel,” and all of this will benefit Hamas.

Despite Israeli brutality that has not been seen in decades, Hamas fighters and other Palestinian resistance factions are still attacking Israeli forces penetrating the Gaza Strip, where they killed more than 90 Israeli soldiers, as the newspaper continued.

The New York Times also indicated that coordination between Hamas members, inside and outside Gaza, continues, which allowed leaders residing in Qatar to negotiate a prisoner exchange, which was later implemented.

It also pointed to the work of Hamas' media teams, which issue news updates, leaders' statements, and video clips of attacks and civilians killed as a result of Israeli raids, and movement officials in Turkey and Lebanon convey their views to journalists and diplomats.

In this context, the newspaper referred to what the representative of the Hamas movement in Lebanon, Ahmed Abdel Hadi, said, considering that the “Al-Aqsa flood” represents a “qualitative shift” in the struggle against the Israeli occupation, and that Hamas and the Palestinians “accepted the necessary sacrifices to keep the Palestinian cause alive.”

Although there is “a lot of horror” about the Israeli aggression on Gaza, Hamas is now “without a doubt, the leader of Palestinian nationalism,” said Abdul Jawad Hamayel, a lecturer at Birzeit University in the West Bank.

According to what he continued and was quoted by the New York Times, Hamas, through the “flood of Al-Aqsa” and the liberation of 240 Palestinian prisoners from Israeli prisons, “overshadowed the internationally recognized Palestinian Authority.”

In addition, the newspaper said that observers indicated that Israeli and Western leaders “quickly assumed that Israel was capable of destroying Hamas.”

In this regard, The New York Times covered an analysis entitled “Israel May Lose,” published by John Alterman, the first vice president of the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, a month after the war had passed.

In his analysis, Alterman said that the war may serve Hamas' long-term goals by withdrawing support from the Palestinian Authority. This, in turn, “increases Israel’s isolation” from the countries of the Arab world and the countries of the South, and “complicates its relations with the United States of America and Europe.”

In an interview last week, Alterman said that the risk of this outcome still exists.

The newspaper also returned to history where the Israeli occupation failed to destroy its enemies, as happened in the July War against Lebanon, in 2006, noting that the Islamic resistance in Lebanon - Hezbollah - returned strongly in the following years.

As for the Gaza Strip, the occupation has also launched three major wars against Hamas and the Palestinian resistance since 2008, but none of them prevented Hamas from rearming and preparing for October 7.

In his speech to the newspaper, Al-Khatib pointed out that the occupation had killed senior leaders of the Hamas movement, and therefore “it had the impression that Hamas was weak.” However, it admitted that it was wrong, pointing out “the extent of the movement’s flexibility and its ability to adapt, and it will find, one way or another, a way to reshape itself".


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The New York Times: Hamas is still reaping benefits from the “Al-Aqsa flood”