With tens of thousand of supporters in attendance in Gaza City, Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh called for the formation of an arab army to liberate Jerusalem in the name of the Palestinians. The rally was called to celebrate the Hamas Movement’s 26th year since its inception. Hamas, classified as a terrorist group by Israel and the United States, seized control of the Gaza Strip in a bloody coup against the leadership of the Palestinian Authority and has ruled there ever since.
Hamas is opposed to any sort of peace treaty with Israel and vows to destroy the Jewish State and eject every Jew from Israel. Hamas was founded by the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.
Recently, Hamas and the Palestinian Authority have tried to bury the hatchet between them and show some level of unity ahead of planned elections, which are scheduled for this spring. The last time Palestinian elections were held Hamas won a majority in the Palestinian Legislature and among city councils. This created a problem for the Palestinian Authority, who has had some level of negotiation with Israel.
Hamas is best known in the western world for being behind a gory spate of suicide bombings across Israel in the early 2000’s which killed hundreds of Israeli Civilians. More recently Hamas has been fires thousands of rockets from the Gaza Strip into southern Israel, leading up to the Israeli Military action refered to as Operation Cast Lead. Hamas has remained committed to a military solution to their conflict with Israel.
Do you think Hamas belongs to be recognized as a legitimate government in Gaza or are they only a terrorist organization?