Posted by: Nathan M. | January 18, 2009

Snake Heads

clipped from
Over the years Hamas has lost many members in Israeli assassinations and security sweeps.
Khaled Meshaal, now based in Syria, became the group’s overall leader. Abdul Aziz al-Rantissi emerged as Hamas leader in Gaza before he too was assassinated six weeks later on 17 April.
Other prominent Hamas officials killed by the Israelis include Ismail Abu Shanab, in August 2003, and Izz al-Din Qassam Brigades leader Salah Shehada, in July 2002.

Shehada’s successor, Muhammad Deif – whom Israel blames for the 1996 bombings – has escaped several attempts on his life.

More moderate political figures also emerged as significant players within the movement.

One of them was Ismail Haniya, a former aide to Sheikh Yassin, who was appointed to a “collective leadership” in the occupied territories along with the more hardline Mahmoud Zahhar and Said al-Siyam.

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This post it to correct myself in an earlier statement. I said that sometimes cutting the head off of a snake works, but apparently not so in this situation. There have already been many assassination attempts on the leaders of Hamas, some successful, and yet the terrorist organization continues to persist. This means that there are some strong ideological beliefs that carry beyond the leaders of this group. This also means Hamas is an extremely dangerous group for Israel to deal with, because the spirituality of the ideology of the group is not wrapped up in a man, but is wrapped up in the group itself, which is extremely difficult to eliminate. I do not foresee a discontinuation of the conflict in this area for a very long time. The only thing that would end the conflict would be a full-out ideological shift within the Gaza strip-something that is very rare, and almost impossible to force. Forcing an ideological change onto a state often only serves to reinforce the ideology that already persists within that state.

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