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One Step Closer To Freedom By El Gato

24 February 2006 No Comment

I had previously written a 12 page interview with Dr Na’shat Aqtash, consultant to Hamas during their elections. Dr Aqtash is a gentle man, his voice is deep and rich, words leave his mouth thoughtfully. I wanted a verbal thrashing, he gave me a ballet, but the ballet that he gave me was perhaps far more important than heavy words could ever be…You see, Dr Aqtash is not a member of Hamas. He is a man of the utmost moderation. As he told me, he wants a secular Palestine to be ruled by whomever can rule it with a just hand. I have left his answers in verbal form, because I would like for readers to hear just as he said it, and imagine his voice, and imagine the sound of Palestine…

On world media:

The media is being used a medium of war, besides diplomacy and armies, the media of the U.S are able to convince the world they are doing a good job, that they are protecting the world from radical Muslims. The U.S is doing war because of oil and the media is being used. The International community are unable to name things with any terminology other than that which is defined by the U.S. Bin Laden is a terrorist now, but he was a good boy according to the U.S media when he was fighting the Russians. So my book was essentially talking about the terminology – the inaccurate terminology used by the media.

On Hamas Charter:

The Hamas charter, they are changing part of it, they are saying now that Israel is a reality. The Palestinians want peace-it is the other side, Israel that does not want peace. According to U.N resolution 181, the (geographical land of Palestine) would be divided into 2 states. Israel must pullout (according to the U.N) from the Palestinian land. They have rejected all the resolutions Hamas is accepting of a Hudna, 10 or 20 or 30 years and during this time we can negotiate in peace. Two State solution is very important, the Hudna must be used for reforms such as education, services like water and electricity. We Palestinians want a Palestinian state, over 80% of us support two state solution. They (Israel) do not want the solution. Let me tell you, in 2003 an Arab Summit was held in Beirut, the proposal supported by all the Arab States called for a full withdrawal from 1967 borders and then Arab countries agreed to have full normalization with Israel.

On U.S media presentation of the occupation in Palestine and the Middle East:

You see, even now the American media are describing the Iraqis as terrorists, but they are resisting the occupation, this occupation makes conflicts, it is the problem. This Palestinian situation has nothing to do with religion, Muslims have always been a very kind people-Do you know any Muslim history, he asks me? He carries on, we have always protected the minorities, it was Germany and Russia that was killing the Jews, but in our Muslim lands the minorities, the Jews were always protected. History will state this. But American has convinced the world that the Muslims are out to get them and so this occupation is meant to keep them weak. It was European countries that suffered the Jews, but we are the ones that this occupation is being imposed on.

On Palestinian Christian support for Hamas:

Palestinian Christians voted for Hamas because Hamas represents all the Palestinians, the Muslim, the Jews, the Christians…They stand with Hamas..They are against the Zionist movement. What Hamas wants is Hudna between Israel and Palestine, this is the platform of Hamas. Religion is of no matter in this, Palestinian Jews understand this. In the future, very soon, Hamas wants to provide incentives to the Christian Palestinians and all the Palestinians living abroad to come back to Palestine, their home, we will protect them, they are apart of our nation, our history, our people.

International Media representation of Palestinians:

In general, media’s are bias to the U.S and to Israel, so Palestinians are not able to tell the facts, they have failed also in dealing with the media, they were unable too. Israel has been very good in dealing with the media..and so we have been accused of things that are not true. Some of these newspapers were able to present some of the truth, but the majority did not want to present the truth. I was presenting the Hamas point of view to the ex American President Jimmy Carter in front of 100 observers..So I said, let us define terrorism… They have mentioned several times that Hamas has bombed civilians, but these attacks were 60 in all, and only 300 Israeli died. The Israeli killed over 4000 civilians, and these are unarmed people. Why are they justified in killing us, demolishing our homes, building roads and settlements, and when Palestinians fight the occupation they are terrorists, but the Israeli justify everything….

On Bad Democracies and Good Democracies with a U.S twist of lemon:

Here we have a democracy, a peaceful democracy which is against their interests, democracy is only good when it is for their (purpose). They cheat the world by way of democracy.. Yes, you see what happened in Algeria when they had their democracy, they were almost destroyed. Hamas got the majority, they are now in the P.L.O and under this umbrella, they recognize Israel. So who is in need of recognition, the occupier or the occupied? Israel is recognized by the international communities, the U.N. etc This comes only from double standards on the part of the international communities, and this is increasing the level of hate, anger and frustration inside the Palestinians. So when you see a suicide bomber, yes it is wrong but does the world not understand where it comes from? How unfair, the hatred comes from this feeling that everything is very unfair….

On the suicide bombing situation:

Yes, Israel uses all kinds of forces, all kinds of military equipment, the Palestinians have only their bodies to use. 60 bombings only. Nothing else. The Palestinians have only this…Hamas when they entered the Hudna one year ago…there is nothing since then. We are very serious about peace. In war, everything can and does happen, you use all your power…Palestinians have only this, and they use this to kill the Israeli occupation. Israel uses F16 against totally unarmed civilians, aircrafts on Palestinians homes, and tanks in the streets and the markets. When there is a war, you defend yourself and you fight by all means. This was a war, but we want peace now so we have kept our Hudna. They have not stopped. They want to continue, by hook or by crook, right or wrong, they want to continue to kill us. They were meant to be out, (by Oslo and other terms) in 2000 from the West Bank and Gaza. By 2003, in the stage of the Road Map, they were meant to be out of the West Bank and Gaza. They have not done any of this. Nothing. What they want is for us to accept the occupation.

On U.S threats to cut off aid:

The issue of money, let me tell you, we don’t care a damn about the money. This money is obligated to us because of what they have done. They are the one’s supporting Israel and implementing Israel, we Palestinians had to vote under the U.S threat…Palestinians are not changing money for dignity, or land for money. This money is an obligation. We are not relating it to Aid at all. I am an expert of the media, I advised Hamas on their campaign in Ramallah, we expected only 45% to vote for Hamas but 60% voted. They voted because they wanted to vote against Israel, 15% did it only for that. Now they have come to accept the political point of view of Hamas, all the Christians , Muslims and Jews, and they differentiate this from the ideological point of view. So if any European or American does this, they must be very afraid to walk in Palestine. Very afraid.

On P.L.O linking officially linking O.P. to Israel economy, and the Paris Agreement:

After how many, 40 years of occupation in the West Bank and Gaza, everything in the Palestinian economy is totally related to the Israeli economy. The Palestinians do not have a separate border, this border is controlled by Israel. Everything that passes through these borders is under Israeli control, including air cargo. This occupation surrounds the Palestinian economy, it was imposed on us. 40 years of this and our economy is very much related. Ok, like you say this is not wise, many scholars are now speaking out about this, about the ways to separate the economies, it is a big issue. It is a very big issue.

On international suggestions that Hamas disarm:

Hamas has no arms to disarm. They have only, I mean they have only hand made weapons, Kalashnikovs, these weapons are not enough to do anything, certainly not fight a war. What has Hamas to disarm, let me ask? No aircrafts. No tanks. What is the reason for them to disarm? Who is the strong? Who is in control of the power? They are trying to justify their occupation. I never saw a revolver, you know what a revolver is? Well, I never saw one used as a weapon. 80% of Palestinians do not touch guns, do not know about guns in the first place. The West has succeeded in showing the Palestinians as holding rifles and Kalashnikovs. Why don’t they accept the solution?

On Arab Regimes mistress-like relationship to U.S (Astagfirullah)

Arab regimes took power not through the elections. The Saudi Arabian interest lies more in the U.S than in the Arab countries that neighbour them. These type of governments are dictators, family dominated governments and they have to accept the rule of the U.S if they want to stay in power. This is where the problem comes in. This is not a democracy where you have a President and the people have a chance to vote. This is family dominant.

On the peoples of the Middle East:

In 1948, the Arab countries were all mostly occupied. The people were all trying to hope. Syria was under French occupation, Jordan was independent but the General Commander was a British and so was also under British mandate, Egypt was under British occupation. These Arab people could do nothing, they had nothing of their own. In 1967, when the war erupted, these countries were newly independent from the 1930, 1940 and 1950’s…but there were many internal problems, the influence of the occupiers was still very strong and the rulers did not come to power through elections. So there was no power in the Middle East to fight this occupation from Israel. When Iraq was strong, they used Iraq to fight Iran for ten years, to fight Kuwait, later they destroyed Iraq. We see Iraq is destroyed again and very much isolated. Egypt is controlled with the treaty. The P.L.O took the initiative to be responsible for the liberation of the Palestinians, they took it to the Arab Summits, Oslo, Madrid but the Americans manipulated all of this, they called Sharon the man of peace….

On the fairness and realistic nature of a two state solution which grants Palestinians only 22% of their land:

Many Palestinians want and have called for a One State democratic solution

Israel does not even want two states, you see, they are opposing even the Two State Solution, they do not want to end the occupation or have the establishment of a Palestinian state come about. I do believe myself in a democratic one state solution, and I do not believe that two states can work in the long run, but in the short run it is very important, and hopefully this Hudna will give us time for people to talk. The future generation, I hope, will be wiser and do things intelligently to find a solution.

On Israel as a pro-west military enclave, and a permanent source of fuel for a in the Middle East:

Yes, there are many people that believe that Israel is used to protect the empirical interests, especially the oil interests, and this is the only reason why the world is supporting Israel. Left alone, we could have solved the problem long ago… But they don’t want the conflict ended, so that each Arab country can decide what is good for them. The foreign powers want to interrupt this to take the oil. In Palestine the problem has become complicated, because peacefully Hamas took the elections. This has greatly empowered the Arab peoples and threatened the Arab regimes. Either they accept all of the U.S related conditions, or there will be an exchange of power. These are family dominated regimes, and so they must accept the U.S or lose their power.

Thank you Dr Aq’tash.

Thank you Gato, is this your real name?

This exclusive interview was brought to you by El Gato.

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