Hamas’s military wing, which carried out the brutal massacre of hundreds of civilians in southern Israel on October 7, does not believe in harming women, children, or the elderly, the terror group claimed Sunday in a 16-page report about the onslaught titled “Our Narrative, Operation Al Aqsa Flood.”
The purpose of the newly published report, Hamas’s Al-Qassam Brigades claimed, was to “clarify to the free peoples of the world the reality of what happened on October 7, the motives behind [it], its general context related to the Palestinian cause… and to put the facts into perspective.”
The October 7 assault — referred to by Hamas as “Operation Al Aqsa Flood” — began early on the morning of the Jewish holiday of Simhat Torah, when thousands of Hamas-led terrorists burst through the border with Israel, slaughtering some 1,200 people, most of them civilians, and seizing 253 hostages amid scenes of horrific violence, mutilation, sexual violence, and destruction.
Some 360 people were mowed down at a music festival, entire families were burned alive in their homes, parents were shot in front of their children and children and babies were killed or taken captive, with extensive footage of the systematic targeting of civilians jubilantly shared and celebrated by Hamas itself.
International bodies including the United Nations and the International Criminal Court have launched investigations into possible crimes against humanity committed by Hamas on October 7, acknowledging the severity of the terror group’s widely documented atrocities including rape, sexual assault, mutilation, and torture.
Despite this, the Hamas report, published in both English and Arabic, dismissed the overwhelming evidence of its murderous rampage as “complete lies and fabrication.”
“Avoiding harm to civilians, especially children, women and elderly people is a religious and moral commitment by all the Al-Qassam Brigades’ fighters,” the report claimed, stating that “the Palestinian fighters were keen to avoid harming civilians, despite the fact that the resistance does not possess precise weapons.”
“In addition, if there was any case of targeting civilians, it happened accidently and in the course of the confrontation with the occupation forces,” it added, even though much of the documented targeting of civilians happened with no Israeli troops in sight.
Terrorists wore GoPro cameras retrieved by Israeli security forces that showed them attacking civilian homes, and also filmed themselves and each other — among many other acts — shooting dead civilians in the street, mowing down partygoers at the Nova festival, lobbing grenades into safe rooms packed with terrified civilians, terrorizing parents and children in their homes, setting houses on fire, and abducting injured, shocked civilians — including elderly people — and taking them hostage in Gaza.
Some of the footage shows jeers and celebrations, and laughter from the terrorists as they are committing the acts. And, in some cases, terrorists livestreamed their brutal violence on Facebook from their victims’ phones.
Additional footage of the killing spree was retrieved from kibbutz security cameras, vehicle dashcams, and CCTV.
“Maybe some faults happened during Operation Al-Aqsa Flood’s implementation,” the Hamas report acknowledged, but added that if this was the case, it was “due to the rapid collapse of the Israeli security and military system, and the chaos caused along the border areas with Gaza.”
Unable to entirely dismiss the evidence of civilian killing during the assault, the report instead adopted an approach that has seen growing popularity among fringe conspiracists in the wake of October 7 — blaming civilian casualties on the IDF.
“The brutal killing of civilians is a systematic approach of the Israeli entity, and one of the means to humiliate the Palestinian people,” the report claimed. “The mass killing of Palestinians in Gaza is a clear evidence of such approach.”
The report then moved on to deal with the topic of Israeli hostages, of whom roughly 132 are believed to still be held in Gaza, not all of them alive.
Referring to the 105 hostages released in late November during a week-long ceasefire deal, the report claimed that “as attested by many, the Hamas movement dealt in a positive and kind manner with all civilians who have been held in Gaza.”
The report made no mention as to how so many civilian hostages, including more than 30 children under the age of 18 and one infant, ended up in captivity in Gaza if the terror group avoided targeting civilians on October 7, as it claimed to have done.
While it is true that some hostages appeared to smile and even thank their captors as they were handed over to the Red Cross after 50 days of captivity in late November, these were highly orchestrated events, filmed by Hamas or Palestinian Islamic Jihad propagandists, and medical officials have since confirmed that the hostages had been given tranquilizers to ensure that they complied before they were transferred to the Red Cross.
Family members of children held hostage by Hamas have revealed that the children were branded, ordered not to speak, and threatened with guns at various points during their captivity.
Two young children, 4-year-old Ariel Bibas and 1-year-old Kfir Bibas, are still believed to be held in Gaza with their mother, Shiri Bibas.
Their father Yarden Bibas has been held separately since the family’s abduction on October 7, and former hostage Nili Margalit was forced to watch as Hamas terrorists told him his wife and children had been killed, something which the IDF has not confirmed is true.
The fourth section of the Hamas report is titled “A reminder to the world, who is Hamas?” and is a summary of the terror group’s doctrine, which was sanitized and modernized in 2017 after it was first written in 1988, though it has never stopped openly seeking Israel’s total destruction.
“Hamas affirms that its conflict is with the Zionist project not with the Jews because of their religion,” the report states, quoting its 2017 doctrine, which carefully removed the many and frequent references to “the Jews” that were sprinkled throughout the 1988 doctrine.
Despite the claim toward the end of the report that Hamas only takes issue with Israel as a “Zionist entity,” rather than with the Jewish people, the first chapter of the report, entitled “Why Operation Al-Aqsa Flood?” stated that “the Jews managed to seize control” of Palestinian land when they first came to then British-mandate Palestine before 1948.
Additionally, a central tenet of Hamas’s claims against Israel is the century-old conspiracy that the Jewish state is covertly trying to demolish the Al Aqsa Mosque on Jerusalem’s Temple Mount for religious reasons, and denying that the site — the holiest in Judaism — has any significance to Jews.
The final section of the report issues instructions for “all people across the globe” to “back the resistance of the Palestinian people.”
“We call upon the free peoples of the world… to initiate a global solidarity movement with the Palestinian people and to emphasize the values of justice and equality and the right of the peoples to live in freedom and dignity,” the report stated.
In a similar vein to the Hamas report published Sunday, Fatah Central Committee member Abbas Zaki told Al Jazeera on Saturday that “nobody attacked Israel” on October 7.
— MEMRI (@MEMRIReports) January 21, 2024
In an audio message translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), Zaki can be heard telling the reporter that “it is Israel [who] attack Gaza, nobody attacked Israel,” and claiming that it has no right to self-defense against Hamas and that the Israeli towns attacked on October 7 are “part of Gaza.”
The Fatah official did not appear to explain why Israel allegedly had no right to defend itself against if there was no attack launched against it on October 7.
Fatah, the political party that controls the Palestinian Authority, claims to have a policy of nonviolent resistance although it has not publicly condemned the October 7 attacks or distanced itself from the inflammatory comments made by several of its officials in support of the attacks.