Hamas rolled out a “locally produced” military tank, replete with armed escorts, during a memorial service to remember fallen comrades. The “tank” immediately became an internet sensation for all the wrong reasons.
Hamas proudly rolled out a tank at a funeral last week. The procession was meant to pay tribute to multiple Hamas members who were killed after a tunnel they were digging collapsed on them. Though it was a very solemn occasion, the military tank managed to tickle the funny bone of hawk-eyed internet and social media users because the “armored vehicle” may be more parade float than war machine, reported Fox News.
Hamas held a memorial service Saturday for seven Hamas militants killed when the tunnel they were in collapsed on them. During the service, for reasons best known to them, Hamas decided to parade what the group called a “locally produced” tank. Though Hamas did not officially confirm, the tank appeared to be fashioned out of an Israeli Defense Forces’ tank. Hamas had captured a tank belonging to Israel about two years ago.
It is routine to reverse engineer defense technology and develop military equipment that mimics the ones that were captured. The process saves years that would have been spent in testing and prototyping. Though the Hamas tank resembled the Israeli armored vehicle; that is where the similarities end.
As many Twitter users pointed out, besides the mysteriously immobile tank treads, the “tank” appeared to move on a set of regular tires.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s spokesman Ofir Gendelman was the one who even posted a clear photo of the “tank” and pointed out that the contraption appeared to be a mockup, reported The Blaze. He added that the tank may have been nothing but a parade float because it seemed the vehicle was constructed of wood. The armored vehicle was nothing but a carefully constructed mock-up of a tank that was placed atop another vehicle whose wheels could be spotted poking out of the bottom:
Once it was established that the tank was nothing more than a poor attempt at claiming that Hamas now possess the technology and capability of producing armored attack vehicles, internet users stopped at nothing to hurl insults and mock the creation. One suggested the tank’s turret might have been constructed out of a sewage pipe. While pro-Israel Elder of Ziyon blog reported that a poster created by Hamas’ rival Fatah that read:
“Can they excite the feelings of their supporters with … sewer pipes and fiberglass panels?”
What makes the situation even more hilarious is that Hamas’ Izzedin Al-Qassam Brigades spokesman Abu Obeida attempted to convince the assembled crowds of the authenticity of the tank. Besides extolling the implied capability of Hamas, he repeatedly warned the Islamic movement was “preparing ourselves for the day that we shall meet those [Israeli] tanks.”
Middle East Media Research Institute, which posted televised excerpts aired by Hamas’ Al-Aqsa TV, included the translation of the charged speech that Obeida delivered over a Public Address (PA) system,
“Let us point our index finger toward heaven and renew our pledge of allegiance to Allah and to the commanders of the Izzedin Al-Qassam Brigades and vow to continue on the path of jihad and resistance.”
Senior Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh noted that Palestinian fighters are engaged in digging tunnels into Israel. He added that they were also testing homegrown rockets in order to prepare for a new round of fighting with Israel.
[Photo by Mahmud Hams / Getty Images]