Daniel Blanche has thankfully distanced himself from Hamas. Now his friend Ben White has attempted to follow suit.
The cartoonish White has a new article on Comment Is Free. Shockingly for Ben White, the article is critical of Hamas (What’s going on incidentally? Has Ben White also fallen under the shadowy spell of the Zionist Lobby, which controls the media?).
This context includes a young woman accosted by Hamas police on the beach, who then roughed up her male companions. It has also meant the harassment of shopkeepers displaying mannequins and lingerie packets. The background is a “virtue campaign” organised by the religious affairs ministry, which, in the words of the Hamas deputy religious affairs minister, is intended to “keep [people] away from sin”.
But why is this happening now? One answer is that these developments in Gaza are a consequence of the state of siege that the tiny territory has been under – a society that has been fenced-in, starved, and seen its very fabric torn apart by unemployment and wanton military destruction. In the words of a Gaza human rights worker, isolation bred “extremism and dark ideas”.
So why does White blame Hamas’ brutality on Israel?
Well, remember back in 2008, when White declared:
Human rights abuses by Palestinian security forces should be exposed, even if they provide Israel with a public relations coup.
Now White has found a way to blame Israel and draw attention to human rights abuses by Palestinian leaders. Great!
Having argued that Hezbollah is not a jihadist group (this didn’t stop the expert from reviewing a book on jihad for the Fulcrum website), White now argues Hamas is persecuting women because Hamas represents ‘the colonised’.
Yet Hamas, as a chapter of the Muslim Brotherhood, sees Palestine as the first step to the global Islamic caliphate. Hamas is also deeply anti-woman. Hamas do not want to oppress women because they represent an oppressed people but because their extremist ideology is by nature oppressive. Hamas hates women. And Jews.
Update: More at Honest Reporting.