The Palestinian terrorist organization Hamas celebrated its 29th anniversary last week by parading its heavily-armed fighters next to dozens of children with machine guns, The Sun reported Sunday.
“The Gaza-based extremist group proudly showed off ‘the future of Hamas’ – in a worrying echo of ISIS’s ‘cubs of the caliphate,'” the British paper wrote. Palestinian toddlers could be seen wearing military fatigues and Hamas’ distinctive green headband in the images, which were posted to social media.
— #فلسطينية ✌Raneem✌ (@R92Qassamia) December 10, 2016
One image of a schoolboy with a rifle was captioned: “Hamas cubs, they are the next soldiers of Gaza and the next liberation army, god willing.”
— somaia.ali #gaza (@lifetune1) December 8, 2016
Another picture of a toddler with a beret and gun was captioned: “Generation after generation Hamas is increasing its enthusiasm, dignity, and power.”
— #فلسطينية ✌Raneem✌ (@R92Qassamia) December 12, 2016
— Ma'an News Agency (@MaanNewsAgency) December 8, 2016
Hamas has been celebrating the anniversary of its 1987 founding since the beginning of December, with a major celebration reportedly set to take place Wednesday. The video embedded below includes footage from last week’s parade.
Two years ago, Hamas similarly marked its anniversary by parading its fighters through Gaza and burning an effigy of a religious Jew.
Hamas has a long history of exploiting children in its fight against Israel, including by teaching them to glorify terrorism. This past summer, Hamas turned at least one of its terror tunnels into a tourist attraction that has been frequented by children. In May, videos emerged of Gazan kindergarten children dressing up in fatigues and simulating the capture of an Israeli soldier during a school play.
In At Summer Camp, Hamas Raises the Next Generation of Killers, which was published in the August 2016 issue of The Tower Magazine, Riley Clafton took an in-depth look at Hamas’ training camps for children.
This summer, Mohammad Nofal’s 10-year-old son will be participating in all of the typical Gaza summer camp activities: scouting, beach games, media lessons, military training sessions, and introductory programs on this year’s theme, “Jerusalem Intifada.” Other campers will spend their summer like 12-year-old Musaab, learning to crawl beneath barbed wire and wield assault rifles in simulated attacks on Israeli military outposts. While parent Alaa’ Abou Chanab argued that he sent his child to a Hamas summer camp because “children have the right to play during summer break,” the camps in Gaza are an underestimated vehicle for perpetuating terror and hateful ideology.
“I was surprised that my 14-year-old son was trained on how to carry weapons during the summer camp organized by Hamas,” Abou Chanab told Al-Monitor. What is more surprising, however, is his surprise. The violent, militaristic camps sponsored by the terror groups of Gaza are an annual event, and the organizations behind them make no efforts to hide their agendas. “These camps are designed to prepare a generation that carries the Quran and rifle,” senior Hamas official Khalil al-Haya explained in a press release. “The camps show that Palestinians support the resistance and the project of liberation of Palestine. The goal is to liberate Palestine and the Aqsa Mosque [in Jerusalem].” Every year, the terror groups of Gaza bolster their numbers by reaching out to youth, and every year, children are trained to fire machine guns, storm military positions, perform kidnappings, plant mines, and conduct first aid.
More than 50 percent of the population in Gaza is under the age of 18, and what these children are learning will play a decisive role in the future of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. For anyone attending these camps, that role is unlikely to be positive. The terror groups of the strip use summertime camps for one purpose: to cultivate the next generation of Palestinian terrorists.
[Photo: Twitter ]