Skip to comments.Palestinian Authority, Hamas confront each other in Gaza
Posted on 07/12/2003 4:10:25 PM PDT by stevejackson
Hamas activists in Gaza City attacked cars belonging to the Palestinian Authority's Preventive Security Service Friday night after Minister of Security Muhammed Dahlan's bodyguards shot and wounded a Hamas member.
Palestinian sources said the bodyguards opened fire at Muhmamed Sumari, a Hamas activist, after suspecting him of planning to assassinate Dahlan. Sumari was wounded in the leg and was in critical condition, the sources added.
The incident occurred just after midnight Thursday, as Dahlan was on his way back to Gaza City from a meeting with Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz at the Erez checkpoint.
A statement issued by Hamas Saturday claimed that Dahlan's bodyguards then kicked and beat the Hamas activist while he was lying on the ground bleeding.
"This is an unprecedented irresponsible and dangerous act," the statement said, calling on the PA to punish the bodyguards.
Eyewitnesses said hundreds of armed Hamas activists rushed to the scene and smashed the windshields of a number of cars belonging to the Preventive Security Service. The attackers also lobbed hand grenades at a base used by the Preventive Security Service and shot into the air. The rampage stopped only after the intervention of senior Hamas political leaders.
PA security officials described the shooting of Sumari as a misunderstanding. Senior PA and Fatah officials met Saturday with Hamas leaders and asked them to punish those responsible for the attacks.
On Saturday, Palestinian policemen launched a big operation in the Gaza Strip aimed at confiscating illegal weapons. Some 600 policemen set up checkpoints in different parts of the Gaza Strip and searched vehicles for weapons. Palestinians said at least 20 people were taken into custody.
This is the first time in three years that the Palestinian security forces launch an operation in search of weapons in the Gaza Strip. However, security officials in Gaza City said the campaign is not directed more against "criminal elements" and not Hamas and Islamic Jihad.
Preventive Security chief Rashid Abu Shabak said the operation comes in the framework of the PA's efforts to restore order and law to the Gaza Strip. "The security forces know how to differentiate between weapons used by criminal elements and weapons used for self-defense against Israel," he told al-Jazeera. He also said the purpose of the operation was to locate stolen cars and goods.
The search for illegal weapons comes amid increased tensions between Dahlan and PA Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas on the one hand and the Fatah leadership on the other.
On Friday night Dahlan summoned Palestinian journalists in the Gaza Strip to a meeting, where he called for holding new elections for Fatah's central council. Members of the council last week strongly criticized Dahlan and Abbas for their handling of talks with Israel, prompting the PA prime minister to resign from the body. They also called for cutting down Dahlan's powers, arguing that he was seeking to take control over al the security forces.
Dahlan lashed out at the Fatah central council, saying it was inconceivable that its members, who were appointed 13 years ago, have remained in their posts without elections.
There is no need to apologize for hoping that murderers will kill each other. To hope so is to hope that the innocent will stay alive.
In fact, I wish they'd line up in pickets on the open field in Napoleonic fashion to hasten things up.
Question is, who will be left?
If they were really planning to kill Dahlan, it means he is putting pressure in the right place. At least someone is trying to stop the madness.
Dahlan has a reputation of being a hard nose, no nonsence type if guy and if given the support can turn things around there. Civil wars can go on for 20 years, the last thing we need in Israel is a civil war, it will effect Israeli citizens as well and what if the hardliners win ? Then the cycle starts again.
Whatever his reputation is, it's necessary to understand that personal power is all he's interested in. He is a thug, otherwise he wouldn't reach the position he is in now... So I wouldn't mourn if the PA thugs and Hammas (Jihad Islami, Fatah and so on) thugs mutually destroy each other.
Obviously you are not thinking deeply on this and it sounds more like a gut reaction.
Nobody in the middle east and a lot of other countries especially undemocratic countries like Russia, China, North Korea, Cuba, South America and Africa, (actually the list could go on all night), got into power by being nice guys.
Its just done a little less brutally in the western countries. Just look at Ariel Sharon, he does not have clean record.
You see in the middle east and lot of countries around the world they respect power, or fear it, but either way if play the nice guy you get crushed, instaniously. (Rabin, Sadat, as well as countless others around the world).
So support Dhalan, for what ever your reasons, as if he loses, then the extremists will win and we know what they are capable of, however Dahlan if he is trying to crush these people, should be taken at his word and given the benifit of the doubt.
This is the exact reason why we should all support Dahlan, the other day Arrafat betrayed himself to the world by slagging Abbas in front of reporters, calling him a traitor to the cause for even standing next to Sharon and the Isreali flag.
For the first time in a long time it seems that someone wants to go in the right direction, now it is only a glimmer of hope, but better than none at all. If he is given the full support, then Arrafat will be even more pushed out into the wilderness, as his comments the other day should is beginng.
However when Arrafat said these words, it reminded me of the Gangster movies where the boss states; "That guy deserves every thing thats coming to him". The henchman would take this as a signal to do the killing.
They are disarming the citizens, not the terrorists.