Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

3 Nissan 5764 - March 25, 2004 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly









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Shema Yisrael Torah Network
Shema Yisrael Torah Network

Opinion & Comment
Eliminating Reshoim, One by One

Sheik Ahmed Yassin, founder of the Hamas terror organization, was killed in Gaza on Monday morning in an IAF attack.

Yassin founded Hamas and led it on its path of terror. He was personally and directly responsible for dozens of attacks that claimed the lives of Israeli civilians, foreign citizens, and security personnel. In 1989, Yassin was tried, convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment for his involvement in the murder of IDF soldiers Avi Sasport and Ilan Sa'adon. Released from prison about eight years later in an agreement between Israel and Jordan, he resumed his leadership of Hamas and involvement in its murderous activities.

According to the IDF, Yassin was a central Hamas authority and fully involved in the decisions for terrorism and general policy. In addition, Yassin personally authorized suicide attacks, bombing attacks and Qassam missile attacks against Israel and its citizens. In public appearances, Yassin repeatedly called to continue the "armed struggle" and to carry out terrorist attacks against Israel and all around the world. He said he was carrying out a global Jihad and since the US invaded Iraq, it was also a target. Just two weeks ago Hamas said that a terror bomb attack it carried out in Tel Aviv almost a year ago was part of global Islamic efforts.

After recent serious terror attacks at the Ashdod port and a brazen jeep assault against positions at the Erez crossing, Israeli policymakers concluded that Hamas had made a strategic decision to step up terror activities in the time leading up to the announced Sharon withdrawal from Gaza. Their purpose is to emphasize that Israel is leaving Gaza in response to their terror.

One way that Israel indicated that it would respond is by battering Hamas in advance. Thus, if they would not concede defeat, at least they could not claim victory. From that perspective, eliminating Yassin may be the first step in Sharon's disengagement plan.

There can be no doubt that according to the International Rules of War, Ahmed Yassin was considered a combatant and thus a legitimate target for a lethal attack. In addition, his activities made him a common criminal, many times over.

The only consistent thread in the Hamas policy under Yassin was violence and death. In its early years, Hamas disdained the use of women and children as bombers, in accordance with Islamic tradition. Eventually all restrictions were abandoned, in the interest of more effective murder. Under Yassin, Hamas was interested only in the destruction of Israel and its Jews.

To call someone like that a "spiritual leader," as some of the media do, is a gross distortion of the term. Yassin led in an anti-spiritual direction: not to the realm of truth and beauty, but to the pit of death and destruction. His victims are not only the innocent Jews murdered, but also those of his people that he sends to their death in the cause of murder, and those killed by legitimate efforts to stop the murder that he initiated.

Eliminating such an evil person is a good thing in itself. Ba'avod reshoim rinoh (Mishlei 11:10). We pray that this good act lead to a reduction and eventual cessation of the terrible bloodshed in our area, and a fulfillment of the first part of the posuk: Civilization will rejoice when the tzaddikim have it good.

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