Hamas Condemns Islamic State Tunisia Terror Attack
20 March 2015
By Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi
From Voice of al-Aqsa (Arabic):
"The Hamas movement condemned on Thursday the incident of the attack on
tourists in the Bardo museum in Tunis that killed more than 20 people and
wounded around 50 of the innocent, describing it as a 'criminal' deed.
The movement said in a summary statement: 'This criminal deed against
civilians is a crime against human values, against glorious Tunisia in its
people and leadership who have outlined a shining example of democratic
operation, peaceful alternation of power and through Tunisia they have
crossed towards the land of security.'"
What does this all mean? Foremost, it reflects how rivals of the Islamic
State [IS] (notably al-Qa'ida affiliates and Hamas) are trying to position
themselves as more 'moderate' than the savagery of IS in a bid to be a viable
alternative to IS.
Compare with al-Qa'ida in the
Arabian Peninsula's condemnation of the massive IS-claimed suicide bombings
in Sanaa that perhaps killed more than 100 Shi'a Houthis, on the grounds of
following Ayman al-Zawahiri's guidelines for restraint to prevent shedding
the blood of innocent Muslims.
Now contrast with IS
statements distributed on the ground in Yemen prior to the officially claimed
Sanaa attacks, promising in bloodthirsty language attacks on Houthis.
In the end, this kind of appeal to savagery and willingness to take action
could be what draws jihadis away from al-Qa'ida to IS, particularly if such
deeds strike terror into the enemy and destabilises its power base.
The same applies for Hamas and the problem of defections within its ranks to
Salafis, particularly of pro-IS orientation: Hamas is simply seen as too
restrained in willing to fight Israel and other non-Islamic forces.