Following are excerpts from an address by Hamas Minister of the Interior and of National Security Fathi Hammad, aired by Al-Hekma TV on March 23, 2012.
Fathi Hammad : Is Egypt incapable of supplying fuel for 1.5 to 2 million people in the Gaza Strip?
If you do not point your compass toward Palestine, Al-Aqsa, and Jerusalem, in order to uproot the Zionist enemy, the US will trample you underfoot. It will besiege you with its conspiracies and will finish you off. Therefore, you must hoist the banner of Jihad, the banner of “there is no god but Allah.”
Brothers, there are 1.8 million of us in Gaza. In Egypt, there are about 90 million people. We equal merely two percent of the Egyptian population. [Supplying us with fuel] would not burden you at all.
At Al-Aqsa and on the land of Palestine, all the conspiracies, throughout history, have been shattered – the conspiracies of the Crusaders, and the conspiracies of the Tatars. At Al-Aqsa and on the land of Palestine, the Battle of Hattin was waged. The [West] does not want this noble history to repeat itself, because the Jews and their allies would be annihilated – the Zionists, the Americans, and the imperialists.
Thus, the conspiracy is very clear. Al-Aqsa and the land of Palestine represent the spearhead for Islam and for the Muslims. Therefore, when we seek the help of our Arab brothers, we are not seeking their help in order to eat, to live, to drink, to dress, or to live a life of luxury. No. When we seek their help, it is in order to continue to wage Jihad.
Allah be praised, we all have Arab roots, and every Palestinian, in Gaza and throughout Palestine, can prove his Arab roots – whether from Saudi Arabia, from Yemen, or anywhere. We have blood ties. So where is your affection and mercy?
Personally, half my family is Egyptian. We are all like that. More than 30 families in the Gaza Strip are called Al-Masri ["Egyptian"]. Brothers, half of the Palestinians are Egyptians and the other half are Saudis.
Who are the Palestinians? We have many families called Al-Masri, whose roots are Egyptian. Egyptian! They may be from Alexandria, from Cairo, from Dumietta, from the North, from Aswan, from Upper Egypt. We are Egyptians. We are Arabs. We are Muslims. We are a part of you.
Allah Akbar. All praise to Allah. Allah Akbar. How can you keep silent, oh Muslims, when the people of Gaza are dying? You watch from the sidelines without providing them with the simplest thing, which you give to the West for the most meager price.
Ah, but when it comes to becoming citizens of those Arab countries that they came from, then they are all “Palestinian” and must be treated like lepers – in order to protect their own nation, of course.
Palestinian Arab nationalism does not reflect any inherent peoplehood but rather it is a political fiction created only in the twentieth century, and only to destroy Zionism. And Fathi Hammad knows the truth, as do many other Arabs. They just won’t be caught dead saying it to Westerners.
The logical conclusion from Hammad’s statements is that Palestinian Arabs should be allowed, if they want to, to become citizens of any Arab country they desire – just as other Arabs can. Human rights groups should be in the forefront of that movement. The Arab nations who refuse to do so are engaging in worse discrimination against Palestinian Arabs than anyone else.
Yet Human Rights Watch is against this simple human right, and for that reason alone it deserves to be exposed as a hypocritical sham. Not to mention the Arab states who self-righteously pretend to support Palestinian Arab while they are in the forefront of keeping them stateless and miserable.
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