Hamas Content with Israeli Campaign for Shalit

Published: June 27th 2010
in News » Israel

Gilad Shalit
Pic: Channel 2 News/YouTube

The Hamas movement, responsible for kidnapping and holding in captivity Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit for 4 years, seems to be pleased with the Israeli public campaign urging the government to  accept Hamas’ terms for the release of Shalit. Hamas spokesperson Fawzi Barhoum accused the Israeli government of “stupidity” and “arrogance” because of its decision to ignore the Israeli public opinion and the feelings of the Shalit family.


In a press release published on Hamas’ official website (Palestine-Info) on Sunday, Barhoum downplayed the media reports on Israel’s intention to exert more pressure on Hamas, stressing that the “foolish” Israeli stand will lead it to another failure and to “sliding onto dangerous slopes”. He argued that from the start Israel did not take seriously the demands of the Israeli public and Hamas for implementing the swap deal. “It is clear that Netanyahu’s government is not interested in the Zionist public opinion, in the Shalit family or in Shalit himself, and evidence of that can be found in its unserious approach in dealing with this issue or the middlepersons,” he said.


Barhoum reiterated that the conditions for the release of Shalit are non-discussable and any Israeli attempt to break the will power of the “resistance” will be proven as fruitless. According to Barhoum, Hamas is interested in implementing a “decent” swap deal, in which a large number of Palestinian prisoners, including leaders and those who were sentenced to life imprisonment, will be released from Israeli jails.


Hamas’ website also reported in great detail on the demonstration held in Mitzpe Hila where the Shalit family lives and on the slogans chanted calling the Israeli government to accept Hamas’ conditions.


Meanwhile, News1 publisher Yoav Yitzhak published a report on Sunday in which he criticized Israeli newspapers Yediot Aharonot and Ma’ariv and their editors for what he described as “producing distorted news and engaging in campaigns.” Yitzhak said that by aggressively lobbying for Shalit’s release, the newspapers put Israel’s interests in danger. He added that the Israeli public will pay the price for such campaigns, since the public will be exposed to future kidnappings of soldiers as well as terrorist attacks by those prisoners who will be released as part of the swap.


Yitzhak concluded his report by stating that it would not be in the interests of Israel as a state nor would it be in the interests of the Israeli public to bring back Shalit at any price. He accused the Israeli media of serving the interests of Hamas in the name of ratings as well as to force Prime Minister Netanyahu to change his position, simply because he is a personal friend of billionaire Sheldon Adelson, who is also the owner of competing newspaper Israel Hayom.

Related articles: (Gilad Shalit, Hamas, Swap deal, Israeli newspapers)

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