A senior member of Hamas has hailed the systematic slaughter of civilians in Israel on October 7, vowing in an interview that if given the chance, the Palestinian terror group will repeat similar assaults many times in the future until Israel is exterminated.
The remarks by Ghazi Hamad, a member of Hamas’s political bureau, were swiftly shared online by Israeli and Western officials as a vindication of the Jewish state’s resolve to destroy the terror group’s military capabilities in its ongoing war in Gaza, and as proof that no ceasefire can be reached until the threat of additional murderous attacks is removed.
“Israel is a country that has no place on our land,” Hamad said in an interview with Lebanese TV channel LBC on October 24, which was translated and published Wednesday by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI). “We must remove it because it constitutes a security, military and political catastrophe to the Arab and Islamic nation. We are not ashamed to say this.”
In the interview, Hamad said that Israel’s existence is “illogical” and that it must be wiped off all “Palestinian lands,” a term the terror group uses to mean the West Bank, Gaza and Israel, minus the Golan Heights.
When asked whether this meant the complete annihilation of Israel, Hamas replied: “Yes, of course.”
“We must teach Israel a lesson, and we will do it twice and three times. The Al-Aqsa Deluge [the name Hamas gave its October 7 onslaught] is just the first time, and there will be a second, a third, a fourth,” Hamad continued. “Will we have to pay a price? Yes, and we are ready to pay it. We are called a nation of martyrs, and we are proud to sacrifice martyrs.”
Hamas Official Ghazi Hamad: We Will Repeat the October 7 Attack Time and Again Until Israel Is Annihilated; We Are Victims – Everything We Do Is Justified #Hamas #Gaza #Palestinians pic.twitter.com/kXu3U0BtAP
— MEMRI (@MEMRIReports) November 1, 2023
He also repeated the false assertion that Hamas had not intended to harm civilians, but that there were “complications” on the ground. Overwhelming evidence has emerged over the past three weeks of deliberate attacks on Israeli civilians, as part of the instructions given by Hamas commanders. In many cases, the terrorists went from house to house and executed or burned entire families, and some 260 civilians were massacred at an outdoor music festival.
“We are the victims of the occupation. Period. Therefore, nobody should blame us for the things we do. On October 7, October 10, October one-millionth, everything we do is justified,” Hamad said.
On October 7, some 3,000 terrorists led by Hamas burst across the border into Israel from the Gaza Strip by land, air and sea, killing some 1,400 people and seizing at least 245 hostages of all ages under the cover of a deluge of thousands of rockets fired at Israeli towns and cities.
The vast majority of those killed as terrorists seized border communities were civilians — including babies, children and the elderly. Entire families were executed in their homes, and over 260 people were slaughtered at an outdoor festival, many amid horrific acts of brutality by the terrorists.
Israel has responded with a large-scale military offensive in Gaza aimed at destroying Hamas’s infrastructure, and has vowed to eliminate the entire terror group, which has rules the Strip since taking over in a bloody coup in 2007. Jerusalem says it is targeting all areas where Hamas operates, while seeking to minimize civilian casualties.
The Hamas-run Gaza health ministry has stated that Israeli strikes have killed more than 8,700 people. However, the figures cannot be independently verified, and are believed to include both civilians and Hamas members killed in Gaza, including as a consequence of terror groups’ own rocket misfires.
As the images of destruction and civilian casualties in Gaza have proliferated, Israel has come under growing calls for a ceasefire, which it has dismissed as long as its goal of crippling Hamas hasn’t been achieved.
How can there be peace when Hamas are committed to the eradication of Israel?
This is an official from Hamas committing to repeat the atrocities from 07/10 again and again.
— James Cleverly???????? (@JamesCleverly) November 1, 2023
UK Foreign Secretary James Cleverly appeared to back Israel’s stance Wednesday, posting a clip of Hamad’s interview on X and writing: “How can there be peace when Hamas are committed to the eradication of Israel? This is an official from Hamas committing to repeat the atrocities from 07/10 again and again.”
US presidential candidate Nikki Haley said: “Believe terrorists when they tell you who they are. This is why there should be no ceasefire until Hamas is destroyed.”
White House National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby condemned the “chilling comments.”
“That’s what Israel faces,” Kirby told reporters in Minneapolis.
Gershon Baskin, a longtime peace activist and interlocutor with Hamad, wrote a letter denouncing him, stating that he had crossed the line into inhumanity.
A Letter You Simply Must Read:
I interviewed @gershonbaskin. For the past 45 years, he's been a known Israeli peace activist. You can say that he is the only Israeli who has been keeping direct contact with some of the leaders of Hamas, even after the events of 7.10.
In 2006,… pic.twitter.com/C1dMjsNWuP
— Elad Simchayoff (@Elad_Si) November 1, 2023