Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Canada on Hezbollah and Hamas

Canada's federal agency, Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada (PSEPC) is Canada’s lead department for public safety. It is somewhat equivalent to the US Dept. of Homeland Security. PSEPC's web site has a page of "listed entities," "... a very public means of identifying a group or individual as being associated with terrorism. The definition of an entity includes a person, group, trust, partnership or fund, or an unincorporated association or organization." The currently listed entities page includes Hezbollah, about which it says this:
Hizballah, meaning "Party of God", is an Islamist terrorist organization based in Lebanon. Hizballah seeks to restore Islam to a position of supremacy in the political, social, and economic life of the Muslim world. The objectives of Hizballah, as derived from its February 16, 1985 political manifesto, include removing all Western influences from Lebanon and from the Middle East, as well as destroying the state of Israel and liberating all Palestinian territories and Jerusalem from what it sees as Israeli occupation, with no option for any negotiated peace. Guided by these goals, Hizballah's ultimate objective is to establish a radical Shi'a Islamist theocracy in Lebanon. Hizballah has been responsible for car bombings, hijackings and kidnapping Western and Israeli/Jewish targets in Israel, Western Europe and South America. Hizballah operates principally in Lebanon, but has also been active in Europe, North and South America, and Africa.
The entry for Hamas, active in Gaza, says this:
Hamas, the Arabic acronym of which means "Zeal", is a radical Sunni Muslim terrorist organization which developed from the Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) in 1987. It uses political and violent means, including terrorism, to pursue the goal of establishing an Islamic Palestinian state in Israel. Hamas has stated that "it is in a war with the Jewish people, as well as the state of Israel. The purpose of every operation is to kill Jews; for by killing Jews, all the Zionist settlers and their allies will be driven from the area." Hamas is well‑financed and organized, with its funding coming from an array of sources. In March 1996, Israeli intelligence officials estimated that roughly 95 per cent of the estimated $70‑million a year that it collected went into such charities as hospitals, clinics and schools, with only a small portion siphoned off to pay for weapons and military operations. While some funds supposedly raised for charity go directly to the military wing, some of the charity funds intended for activists, families, and institutions are "leaked" to the terrorist apparatus and are used for terrorist activities. The charity associations pay fines and assist the families of the arrested activists or the activists themselves. In other words, funds need not be utilized exclusively for weapons, explosives or logistical support to facilitate terrorist activities. Since 1990, Hamas has been responsible for several hundred terrorist attacks against both civilian and military targets. Hamas has been one of the primary groups involved in suicide bombings aimed at Israelis in the course of the intifada that started in September 2000.
I added the italics to emphasize the central goals of these two organizations. Site found via Tigerhawk blog, which has some thoughts about the tendency to make moral equivalence between the state of Israel and Hezbollah/Hamas.

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