During a speech in eastern Khan Yunis, Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar welcomed on stage the commander of the Eastern Brigade of the ‘Izz Al-Din Al-Qassam Brigades, who handed him a handgun allegedly taken from an elite Israel Defense Forces’ unit during a recent botched undercover operation in Gaza. Sinwar mockingly encouraged the Arab countries to welcome [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu and other Israeli ministers to their capital cities, saying: “From us here in Gaza, [Israel] will never get anything but guns, fire, martyrdom, death and killing.”
Sinwar also praised the Palestinian youth in the West Bank who had attacked Israelis with knives or cars, and he added: “If only there was a leadership behind them that would protect them, sponsor them, support them, and help them with money an weapons—like we do in Gaza—the state of our cause would not be like it is.” The speech aired on Al-Aqsa TV on Nov. 16, 2018.
Following are excerpts:
Announcer: We welcome on the stage of this ceremony a brave lion and a true mujahid from the Al-Qassam Brigades. The courageous mujahid, the commander of the Eastern brigade, who will hand over the weapon that the mujahideen captured from the elite Zionist unit. Allah Akbar! Praise be to Allah!
Crowd: Allah Akbar! Praise be to Allah!
Announcer: We salute the Brigades of …
Crowd: ‘Izz Al-Din!
Yahya Sinwar: To those who normalize [relations with Israel], I say: Today, the capital cities of Arab countries open their gates wide open for Netanyahu, his ministers, and the occupying and plundering Zionists, who are defiling our Jerusalem. Oh you who normalize [relations with Israel], open your capitals to [the Israelis], welcome them in your palaces, smile into their faces, honor them, and treat them nicely. But form us here in Gaza, they will never get anything but guns, fire, martyrdom, death and killing.
In two years, the West Bank produced about 300 martyrdom-seekers. These young boys and girls used knives in their attacks, or cars to ram and run over. If only there was a leadership behind them that would protect them, sponsor them, support them, and help them with money and weapons—like we do in Gaza—the state of our cause would not be like it is today.