Thursday, January 24, 2013

24-Jan-13: Sacrificing the lives of an entire generation of adolescents on their altar of hatred, the thugs of Hamas boast of plans to create a children's army

Children at today's graduation ceremony in terrorism-addicted Gaza [Image Source]
Via an extraordinary news report by the Arab-Israeli journalist Khaled Abu Toameh that appears in today's Jerusalem Post, Hamas announces that it is creating military schools to cater for children of twelve years old and up.

Understanding (a) why this happens and (b) how Hamas can flagrantly manipulate the education and upbringing of generations of Palestinian children towards war and terrorism, and encourage them to undertake the killing of civilians (which is essentially the sole form of hostile action in which the Hamas ranks have engaged in their entire history) without being excoriated by Arab and Western leaders who care about children wherever they are, is a large part of comprehending why this ongoing war goes on and on.

Hamas to establish military academy for schoolkids 
Haniyeh says inaugural Gaza school will prepare kids as young as 12 to establish Palestinian state "from the river to the sea."
By KHALED ABU TOAMEH | Jerusalem Post | 01/24/2013 18:42
Hamas is planning to establish a military academy in the Gaza Strip for training and educating schoolchildren. Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh announced Thursday that the new military academy, the first of its kind in the Gaza Strip, would prepare the children for the "phase of liberating Palestine." He said that children in grades 7-9 could join the academy and graduate with a Diploma or Bachelor of Arts in military affairs. Haniyeh was speaking during a ceremony in the Gaza Strip marking the birth of Prophet Mohamed. More than 10,000 schoolchildren attended the ceremony, which included a "military parade" by some of the teenagers. He said that he has instructed the Hamas-run Ministry of Education to lay plans for the establishment of the military academy. Haniyeh said that the new academy would educate and prepare children for the establishment of a Palestinian state "from the river to the sea." The decision to establish a military academy follows Hamas's announcement that it would create its own "Defense Ministry" in the Gaza Strip. The announcement was made shortly after the IDF's Pillars of Defense Operation in the Gaza Strip last November.
An AP report adds that today's parade in Gaza (image above) marked the graduation of the first cohort of 3,000 Palestinian Arab teenagers to graduate from a Hamas high school military training program that commenced in September 2012. Called "Futuwwa" (meaning 'youth'), this is an elective course now offered in all of Gaza's high schools. Hamas officials boast that 3,600 Gazan children participated. (Should we be asking what became of the 600 who signed up but did not graduate?) AP's Ibrahim Barzak writes that the highlights of the rally included children holding mock weapons, crawling commando-style on the ground and taking up fighting positions in front of thousands cheering from the stand.

Sounds like the right time to mention Red Hand Day that is marked on February 12 of each year. It's a day that serves as an occasion to encourage political leaders to be aware of the fate of children forced to serve as soldiers in wars and armed conflicts. Wikipedia says
The aim of Red Hand Day is to call for action against this practice, and support for children who are affected by it. Children have been used repeatedly as soldiers in recent years including armed conflicts in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Uganda, Sudan, Côte d'Ivoire, Myanmar, Philippines, Colombia, and Palestine... Red Hand Day was initiated in 2002 when the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict entered into force on February 12, 2002. This protocol was adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations in May 2000 and currently has signatures from over 100 different states. A number of international organizations are active against the use of children as soldiers. These organizations include, for example, the United Nations Child Fund (UNICEF), Amnesty InternationalTerre des Hommes or the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement.
So which of these do we imagine is going to be the first to condemn Haniyeh and Hamas? Yeah, right.

Above and below: From today's Gaza schoolchildren 'military' rally [Image Source]
 [Image Source]
[Image Source]
Few things in life are as sickening as the manipulation, exploitation and weaponizing of children.

Hamas has developed world-class specialization in the field, rivaled only by the ability of its terrorists in the killing of the other side's children. The murderer of our daughter was a Hamas agent. Now free and living an unhindered life of celebrity in the Arab world, she has repeatedly boasted publicly of the pride she and her peers take in such abominations.


Paul Winter said...

Actually, training adolescents for combat is a natural progression for Hamas and one can expect to PA to follow suit. The development copies the role of the Hitler Jugend which played an increasing role as the ranks of the Wehrmacht and Waffen SS were depleted. It also follows the Nazi ideology of total war and Hitler's notion that German mothers would have four sons, two of whom would die fighting that barbaric Slavs and two would remain to reproduce the "volk".

Just two problems: there is something called the rights of the child, which military training contravenes and if children take up arms, they lose their rights as protected persons under the Geneva Conventions. The IDF would be compelled to kill juvenile combatants and, of course, would be blamed. Israel should, but won't, complain to the UN and the Red Cross, to point out the violations and the consequences.

This Ongoing War said...

In a certain sense, training adolescents for combat might make sense - with all the hesitations and caveats, including the two you mentioned. But it's not combat that Hamas train for. Terrorism Hamas style is focused on one-way attacks on civilian populations. The situations in which Hamas terrorists aimed at soldiers and military targets are relatively few. Fewer still if we remove from the calculation those attacks on civilian buses that happened to have soldiers on board.

Even making a comparison with the loathsome Joseph Kony and his Lord's Resistance Army of children seems unfairly kind to Hamas. Hamas define their enemy as the children of our side. There are no "innocents caught in the crossfire" in a Hamas attack; the innocents are the principal target by design.