HAMAS (Islamic Resistance Movement)
Definition/Scope: Hamas is an Islamic Palestinian socio-political organization which includes a paramilitary force, the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades. Since June 2007, Hamas has governed the Gaza portion of the Palestinian Territories. Hamas was created in 1987 by Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, Abdel Aziz al-Rantissi and Mohammad Taha of the Palestinian wing of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood at the beginning of the First Intifada, an uprising against Israeli rule in the Palestinian Territories. Hamas has launched numerous suicide bombings against Israel starting in April, 1993. Hamas has also been responsible for Israel-targeted rocket attacks, IED attacks, and shootings. Hamas’s 1988 charter calls for replacing the State of Israel with a Palestinian Islamic state in the area that is now Israel, the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip. However, Ismail Haniyeh, Prime Minister of the Hamas government in Gaza, stated in 2008 that the group was willing to accept a Palestinian state within the 1967 borders and has offered Israel a long-term truce. Hamas describes its conflict with Israel as neither religious nor antisemitic, the head of Hamas’s political bureau stating in early 2006 that the conflict with Israel "is not religious but political", and that Jews have a covenant from God "that is to be respected and protected.". Nonetheless, the Hamas Charter reflects and public statements by several prominent Hamas members have reflected the influence of antisemitic conspiracy theories.
Used For:Harakat al-Muqawama al-Islamiya
Broader Terms:foreign terrorist organization