Thousands rally in Gaza City; leaders say resistance victorious

Thousands of Palestinians on January 20 rallied in cities across the Gaza Strip, responding to a Hamas declaration that the people should “celebrate the resistance victory in the war against Israeli forces.”

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Thousands of Palestinians on January 20 rallied in cities across the Gaza Strip, responding to a Hamas declaration that the people should “celebrate the resistance victory in the war against Israeli forces.”

Rallies began in local mosques where citizens emerged waving faction and national flags as processions poured out into streets chanting songs and slogans of resistance. Gazans cheered for the resistance that defeated the Israeli army until they retreated.

Israeli forces, one slogan rang, managed to kill only women and children and destroy only homes after the resistance beat them.

Massive crowds gathered in front of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) headquarters in Gaza City, shouting that they were with the resistance.

Head of Popular Activities for Hamas Ashraf Abu Dayya commented on the rally, saying such mass participation reflected the popular support for the resistance fighters and the stance of resistance. He applauded the participation of the families those fighters killed during the Israeli onslaught, as well as those who were injured and whose homes were demolished.
Abu Dayya interpreted the rallies as a signal that Hamas policies are still accepted in Gaza. Addressing the mammoth gathering in Gaza City he said, “We are here in front of the demolished PLC headquarters to assert that we will be steadfast in our lands and adhere to our rights. We will not give up, nor will we wave the white flag.”

Participants in the rallies said they considered the Israeli withdrawal and ceasefire a result of the power of the resistance fighters, who overcame the destruction wrought on the people of Gaza by Israel.

Hamas leader Ismail Radwan later addressed the mass of people saying, “We took to the streets to celebrate the resistance victory in the battle between good and evil,” he said, “between willingness to react and being slow to act.”

“They thought we would wave white flags, but we will not, neither will we bargain,” he said quoting slain Hamas leader Nizar Rayyan, “Israeli will neither demolish our communities of resistance nor our communities in all the cities of Gaza.”

Speaking sarcastically, Radwan quoted Israeli leaders Ehud Olmert and Tzipi Livni, saying “they thought they would ‘topple Hamas’ and ‘stop the flow of Palestinian projectiles on Israeli towns.’ But what have you done Zionists? Have you toppled our government? Have you stopped projectiles? Have you broken Hamas? Today, the legitimate Hamas government – elected by its people – has more support than before.

“Today, the Arab and the Islamic peoples support Hamas because Hamas awoke the hopes of the nation when the Al-Qassam Brigades and their fellow fighters became the symbol of hope to revive the nation.”

Israel used treachery and lies to conceal their crimes, Radwan added, and Israeli leaders tricked them and traded blood for no gains. Addressing Israelis, Radwan said, “You will not have security and safety unless we do.”