What is Hamas really looking for?

What is Hamas really looking for?

Hamas’ objectives – military, ideological and strategic – are both internal to Palestinian society and regional. The organization, made up of a political branch and an armed branch, initially wanted to demonstrate the fragility of Israeli military power. “The incursion of Hamas into Israeli territory is a means of creating doubt, in opinions and chancelleries, about this dominant military power in the region, equipped with nuclear weapons, and about its capacity to impose its own will” , notes Bertrand Badie, specialist in international relations. Especially since “for a quarter of a century, Arab governments and the international community have treated the Palestinian question through denial. By creating disorder, Hamas believes that all these actors will be forced to review their positions.”

urban warfare

The movement, supported by Iran, also seeks to become the central actor in the Palestinian cause and to outcompete other Palestinian organizations, Jihad and especially Fatah led by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. “Hamas is losing momentum, continues Bertrand Badie. It seems to have made the bet that with this headlong rush into radicalization, it will be able to get back into the lead. Israel’s violent reaction would in turn lead the Palestinian population to weld around it. It’s a particularly cynical calculation.” Because the longer this conflict lasts, the more the number of Palestinian victims will increase.

Could Hamas have launched this action to drag the Jewish state into the trap of an urban war? According to David Khalfa, associate researcher at the Jean-Jaurès Foundation, the Israelis will not have it easy, but, “just as Israel underestimated Hamas’s determination to carry out this type of operation, so too did “The Islamist organization underestimated the determination of the Jewish state to take the fight into enemy territory to eradicate its military infrastructure.”

“The primary objective of Hamas is ideological: it wants to destroy the State of Israel, as indicated in its charter, continues David Khalfa. These massacres are the consequence of this eradicative desire aimed at eliminating the Jewish presence throughout Palestine proxy to replace it with the Islamic State.” Added to this is a regional dimension. By forcing Israel to retaliate massively, Hamas “hopes to derail the normalization train which was at work between Saudi Arabia and Israel and which did not please Hamas’ godfather, Iran”, adds the searcher. This country, like Hamas, wants the political Islamization of the region.

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