A weakened Hamas is in desperate straits and the Palestinian terror group is in a last-ditch, all-out war with Israel, says Ido Aharoni, Israel's consul general in New York.
"All-out war is the right description, it's the right framework for this conversation,'' Aharoni said Wednesday on "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV
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"What you're seeing is an organization operating out of acute weakness caused by several factors: the implosion of Syria, the international pressure on Iran, the counter-revolution in Egypt that put their ideological twin, the Islamic Brotherhood, behind bars.''
Also, Mahmoud Abbas, president of the Palestinian Authority, is beginning to understand that the political alliance he formed with Hamas was a strategic mistake, Aharoni explained.
"The people of Gaza themselves are beginning to ask questions. Why are we doing this? What is the exit strategy? What is the end goal of this military onslaught against Israeli civilians?'' he said.
"So, a combination of all those factors put Hamas in an extremely difficult position. I would even say vulnerable position in the eyes of the Gazans themselves.''
Civilian casualties in Gaza over the past few weeks have sparked severe criticism of both Israel and Hamas. The fighting in Gaza is amplified because of its size, Aharoni says.
"It is true that Gaza is a very small place, extremely crowded. It has one of the highest population densities in the world. But it is also true that Hamas is using civilians as human shields, and that's committing a double crime, a crime against Israeli citizens and a crime against its own citizens and supporters,'' he said.
"So, the reality on the ground is highly complex, and the military operation that is right now being conducted by the Israel Defense Forces on the ground requires maximum caution, requires maximum, pin-pointed approach, and this is exactly what we're trying to do.''
Aharoni said he is concerned about a report that North Korea has been selling Hamas millions of dollars' worth of rockets, but noted there are other suppliers as well
"Hamas will get weapons and ammunition from whoever is willing to give it to them. We know that Syria is a main supplier, we know that Iran is a main supplier, we know that the arms went through the Sinai into Gaza through the tunnel, sometimes by sea,'' he said.
"We know that Sudan had something to do with it, but people have to understand. We are fighting the fight of the free world here, and I realize that some of the images coming out of Gaza are not easy to watch.
"They're not easy to watch for us, as well, but we have to understand this is an uncompromising, brutal, deadly organization that is nurturing bigotry, hatred and death, and they will take weapons from anybody, whether it's the North Koreans or who knows who.''
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