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Monday, August 18, 2014

Shin Bet arrests 93 in connection with Hamas plot to overthrow Fatah in 'West Bank'

Israel's Shin Bet General Security Service has announced that it has arrested 93 Hamas terrorists whom it alleges were planning to overthrow 'Palestinian Authority' rule in Judea and Samaria.

According to Shin Bet, Hamas’s goals in the West Bank included – at some stage – “a military coup” to topple the P.A., which is led by the late Yasser Arafat’s al-Fatah faction.  In the Gaza Strip in 2007, after winning an election there, Hamas fighters soundly defeated al-Fatah men – killing many and forcing the survivors to leave.
Shin Bet officials, in issuing details today, insist that this is all true – and not an Israeli invention aimed at jamming a huge wedge between Hamas and the P.A.  The officials deny any connection with the fact that all day Monday, there was high tension over not knowing if a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas would be extended to allow for more negotiations in Cairo.
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Shin Bet says its information about “military” organizing by Hamas in the West Bank is based on interrogations of recently arrested suspects. Information is being released at this time, because it is in legal documents that formalize charges against around 70 Hamas members.
The officials tell of 93 arrests in the current investigation, including a man who allegedly was recruited in Malaysia where he studied computer sciences. Hamas had him trained for code-breaking and cyberwarfare. 

According to information cleared by Israeli authorities for publication, the Hamas military organizing began in May – unrelated to the kidnap and murder of three young Israeli men in the West Bank a month later.
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As for the “military” plot including a coup to take over the P.A., Shin Bet officials say the plan was hatched by Hamas activists in Turkey – with others in Jordan involved in the planning.
The plan included severe terrorist attacks inside Israel, launched from the West Bank, that would trigger harsh responses by Israel.  That, in turn, would lead – Hamas allegedly hoped – to the eruption of a widespread uprising by West Bank Palestinians: a third Intifada.
It seems that Israeli intelligence received some of its information on this plot from Jordan’s security agencies, which is believed to have spies inside various Palestinian factions – and Jordan is reputed to engage in harsh interrogations to extract information about alleged plots.
As part of the Israeli investigation in the West Bank, according to Shin Bet officials, dozens of weapons and hidden storage facilities were found.  Guns, valued at around half a million dollars, are believed to have been smuggled in from Jordan.
 Hmmm.

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