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IDF Comes Across Luxury Apartments in Khan Yunis for Hamas Big Shots

IDF Comes Across Luxury Apartments in Khan Yunis for Hamas Big Shots
Meet the ‘oppressed’ leadership that takes very good care of itself.
By Hugh Fitzgerald

As is well known, the senior leadership of Hamas takes good care of itself. Just three of its leaders — Ismail Haniyeh, Mousa Abu Marzouk, and Khaled Meshaal — have between them squirreled away $11 billion, stolen from the aid money that was meant for the people of Gaza. They all now live in lavish apartments in Doha, Qatar, watching the war from a safe distance, while egging on those who are doing the real fighting, and dying.

Qatar has been the main financial supporter of Hamas, and it isn’t just money it provides. Qatar thoughtfully built luxury apartments for the senior echelon — those just below the very top — of Hamas’ military wing. Not only are the living quarters beyond the wildest dreams of ordinary Gazans, enduring their hardscrabble existences, but they also contain hiding places for large numbers of weapons and, just possibly, for other things as well. More on these luxury apartments, just discovered by the IDF, can be found here: “Qatar apparently built luxury apartment buildings in Gaza to Hamas military specifications in case of war,” Elder of Ziyon, March 15, 2024:

Haaretz reports on fierce fighting in the Hamad neighborhood in western Khan Yunis, known for its Qatari-built luxury apartments.

“We have experienced combat here the likes of which we have not seen anywhere else in the Gaza Strip,” said [Col. Omer] Cohen. “The neighborhood is full of terrorists and advanced combat equipment, including sophisticated explosive devices that have already been used against us.”

Built with Qatari aid money, the neighborhood was seized by Hamas as a protected area that Israel would be wary of harming. Intelligence information may have indicated the presence of hostages in the area, as well as the presence of senior Hamas members who likely fled to the tunnels that IDF bulldozers are currently working to uncover.

It almost seems as though parts of the neighborhood were built in preparation for the day when IDF forces enter the area. Each building has hiding places and corners beneficial for urban fighting.

“Everything here seems extraordinarily organized. On its face, it is a beautiful and quiet neighborhood,” says Lt. Col. A. … “We understand that there is an underground system here, and it’s only a matter of time before we expose it.”

“Only when you come in do you understand that this is really a hornet’s nest of terrorists,” A. adds. He leads us to a nearby building and into an apartment where weapons were found. Guns, grenades, explosive devices, intelligence materials and other items are arranged neatly. “All these are just from this building,” he explains before we hear another radio call about a clash.

These are “dual-use” apartments, luxurious living for the inhabitants, beyond the wildest dreams of ordinary Gazans who have their hovels, and — as befits a Gazan home — an arsenal of weapons: guns, grenades, and advanced explosives, ready to be employed for the Cause of Palestine.

A number of years ago, a European diplomat told me some information about how the Qatari envoy to Gaza, Mohammed Abdul Karim Al Emadi, operated when he was building apartments there….

The diplomat described how Emadi worked:

The whole objective of Qatari engagement in Gaza is to strengthen Hamas….

They build roads, hospitals and apartment complexes, but when I asked him, what they do with the apartments once they are finished, he said “we hand them over.” When I asked to whom, he said it depends, some people just get it as a present, others have to pay some money for an apartment in installments that goes into a fund. When I asked according to what criteria they chose who gets an apartment and who doesn’t, he said they decide it with the local partners (Hamas) and the only real criteria is that the person doesn’t own an apartment yet. And he said sometimes his wife comes and talks to the people and when she meets someone needy she gives them an apartment as a present.

Imagine the power of Hamas, deciding who shall get a luxury apartment and who will do without. Obviously only members of Hamas, or those who are deeply sympathetic towards the group, will be eligible, and among them, there will be a mad scramble as to who gets what — and who leaves empty-handed. There is a certain kind of “to each according to his needs” sharing of this wealth: you are eligible for these free apartments only if you do not already own an apartment. Otherwise, it’s no doubt a matter of who you know in Hamas, and who you are related to.

What it means is that Hamas sympathisers and important people get an apartment as a present. And then we’re back to the question of how is Arab gulf money used to reward “martyrs.”…

You have to be either a member of Hamas, or a “sympathizer” with the terror group, or have to be an “important person” to be eligible for a free apartment. When that news gets around, how many people, do you suppose, have suddenly discovered that they are deep admirers of the terror group? And among those “important people” are sure to be those who are part of the extended family, or clan, of a Hamas member. Ordinary Gazans haven’t much of a chance, unless for some reason their tale of economic woe touches the heart of the apartment builder Emadi’s wife, who on at least one occasion turned out to be a Lady Bountiful, giving an apartment to someone who was “needy.”

These apartments are important to Hamas they are not merely very expensive dwelling places belonging in most cases to Hamas big shots, but they are also military outposts, containing arsenals of advanced weapons, and connected directly to the vast tunnel network built under much of Gaza. The IDF found the fighters at these buildings tougher to dislodge than anywhere else in Gaza; these buildings were constructed with thick walls, places and hiding enormous quantities of weapons of every kind. Each one was a veritable military outpost, which is why Hamas was so determined to resist to the last the IDF’s assault on these sites.

Could there be under these buildings an even larger, more elaborate network of tunnels, holding huge numbers of weapons, from rifles to RPGs, grenades, rocket launchers, of a sophistication not seen anywhere else in Gaza? Could there be a giant locked depository, a mini-Fort Knox, where the “gold of Hamas”— that comes from Qatar — is kept, and only a handful of senior Hamas men even know of its existence? Could these very deep tunnels under the luxury buildings in the Hamad neighborhood of Khan Yunis be where Yahya Sinwar himself is hiding? The IDF will soon know, and reveal to the world, the answers to these questions.. And the people of Gaza will. at long last be allowed to visit, and to gape, and to be enraged, at the fantastic luxury these Hamas leaders permitted themselves.

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