Islamism,  Uncategorized

A Conversation With Anas AlTikriti

This is a guest post by Dave Rushmore

I don’t know if any of you read Anas AlTikriti’s recent apologia for Hamas in the Guardian, in which he sought to whitewash the politics of that organisation, for the benefit of sensitive liberal souls.

Anas AlTikriti 21 Sept 09 5:52pm

“To all those who have quoted items from the Hamas Charter (either correctly or incorrectly): This is a document that was written over 20 years ago, and has been the subject of severe criticism from within Hamas itself. I personally believe that much of it is incorrect, inappropriate, inaccurate and certainly unfit for use. This view is shared by virtually every Hamas leading figure I have spoken to. I am also aware that a complete revision of the Charter is underway, while the current Charter is in no way being cited as any kind of central document, reference or manual for the movement, nor has it been for over a decade. While this might not wash with Hamas’ detractors, it’s important to note this fact……..”

So I followed this “fact” up with a few questions.

21 Sep 09, 6:24pm – daverushmore
“Funny, that’s pretty much what Al Jazeera’s Khaled Hroub wrote in his book Hamas: A beginner’s Guide. It was first published in 2006. 3 years ago!!!
Since then Hamas haven’t even changed so much as a punctuation mark let alone a “complete revision”
How long is this “complete revision ” going to take?
Another 3 years? 10 years? Never?
Anas AlTikriti also wrote “the practice of saying one thing but meaning or intending another as lying and hypocritical”
Isn’t it just!”

No answer

21 Sep 09, 7:35pm – daverushmore –
“Anas! As you’re answering people’s questions would you please answer mine which I put in my last post?
How long is this “complete revision” of the Hamas Charter which you’re “aware of” going to take seeing as Al Jazeera’s Khaled Hroub said there was going to be one when he wrote his book about Hamas in 2006?
It’s been 3 years since the first edition of Hroub’s book and since then, no changes whatsoever in the Charter.
Are you able to present us with any material evidence which proves there is a “complete revision” underway or do we just have to rely on your awareness?
You’ve responded to others, why not me?
Thanks in advance.”

Still no answer!

daverushmore 21 Sept 09 7:52pm
” Anas,

I know you’re reading this, so please answer my question.
How long is this
complete revision of the Hamas Charter going to take?
When can we expect Hamas Charter 2.0?

In fact where’s the evidence that a complete revision of the Charter is taking place?

Or do we just have to rely on your awareness?

Please, throw me a bone, a date and some evidence that the Charter is undergoing a complete revision. Please.”

Bingo!

AnasAltikriti 21 Sep 09, 8:20pm
“daverushmore
The simple answer to your question (which I assure you I’m not deliberately ignoring at all) is: I have no idea! I do not know when this review will be complete, how it’s taking place and who is involved in the process. All I do know is from the statements and comments of Hamas leaders over the past number of years. However, as I said in my comment posted somewhere above, the reality is that Hamas and its supporters seldom if ever refer to it or cite it. That to me reflects the real status of the Charter and how significant it is in today’s terms…..”

Erm…

daverushmore 21 Sep 09, 8:36pm
Anas, excuse me?
What? So you don’t know – how this “process” is taking place, how long it’s going to take, who’s involved? Yet you say there’s a comprehensive review taking place?
But you’re “aware” there’s one taking place?

How can you be aware of a process of which you just yourself admitted that you don’t know how it’s taking place, who’s involved or how long it’s going to take?
Exactly how?
You also stated in a previous post that you spoke to Hamas leaders, and yet this topic (the comprehesive review of the Charter) never came up!!
Did you even think to ask them about it, get some information or evidence and then present it to us as proof that this comprehensive review was indeed taking place??
However, as I said in my comment posted somewhere above, the reality is that Hamas and its supporters seldom if ever refer to it or cite it.
They don’t need to for exactly the same reason why BNP and NF never relate to theirs, Not for a minute does that mean it diminishes its status amung their followers.”

Anas’ reply:

AnasAltikriti 21 Sep 09, 9:23pm
“daverushmore
You’re asking for dates and deadlines. You want specifics and you want to be happy that they meet your satisfaction. I’m telling you that the document is irrelevant, many Hamas leaders have publically rejected it and many more have called on it to be revised and replaced. I’m telling you that Meshal’s statements have gone against the terms of the Charter, and that should matter far more. You quoted Hroub in your earlier comment (whom I have not read, by the way. You alerted me to his statement). He seems to agree, and so do many others from outside Hamas.”

I try again:

daverushmore 21 Sep 09, 9:45pm
“Anas, please
You said there was a comprehensive review of the Charter and have so far produced absolutely nothing which proves this is taking place. Bar your “awareness”. Look the burden of proof is on you, you made a claim and haven’t backed it up with anything material.
Now you’re stating that many Hamas leaders have “publicly rejected” the Charter. Who & where?
Which Hamas leaders have publicly rejected the Charter? And exactly where have they made this public rejection? Until you can show me this as far as we know they may have rejected it for not going far enough. If they even did.

If they’ve publicly done this – rejected it for being Anti-Semitic and calling for the killing of Jews – who has done so and where? This should be in the public domain. It’s on you to show it and back up your assertion.
“I’m telling you” – that’s not evidence Anas. That proves nothing.
And yet I have to take your word that the Charter is irrelevant? If so why’s it taking so long to revise it?

You haven’t read Hrob’s book? He presented a show on Al Jazeera called a “Book is the best Companion” from their London studios – the same studios you’ve been in (last time I remember was the More Than One Opinion episode about the London Mayoral Elections).
As you and Jazeera have been in contact I’m sure they’ll be able to put you in contact with Hroub himself.
But please prove to me that “many Hamas leaders have publically rejected it and many more have called on it to be revised and replaced”
Name one. Meshal? Haniya?”

One more try:

daverushmore 22 Sep 09, 10:25am (about 12 hours ago)
“Anas, permit me to repeat my question and this time please give me an answer.

Which Hamas leaders have publically rejected it?
Who? Go on, name some.
And exactly where have they made this public rejection? If it’s public then it will have been recorded as this would be major news from within the Hamas camp.

If they’ve publicly done this – rejected it for being Anti-Semitic and calling for the killing of Jews – who has done so and where? This should be in the public domain. It’s on you to show it and back up your assertion.
“I’m telling you” – that’s not evidence Anas. That proves nothing.
In fact an assertion from someone with ties to Hamas with no evidence to back it up at all is worthless. You’re going to have to do better than that.
You said there was a comprehensive review of the Charter and have so far produced absolutely nothing which proves this is taking place. Bar your “awareness”. Look the burden of proof is on you, you made a claim and haven’t backed it up with anything material.
So just to recap.
Now you’re stating that many Hamas leaders have “publicly rejected” the Charter. Who & where?

Which Hamas leaders have publicly rejected the Charter?
Name one. Meshal? Haniya?
(And yet I have to take your word that the Charter is irrelevant? If so why’s it taking so long to revise it? How hard is it to delete the bits on killings Jews, talking trees and the Protocols being fact?)”

And another thing…

daverushmore 22 Sep 09, 11:15am (about 11 hours ago)
In fact Anas,name me just one major Hamas leader who has publically rejected the charter (because of its anti-Semitism and its framing of the conflict as a strictly religious one – not becuase it doesn’t go far enough)

One. I’ll take one. But you’ll have to back it up with something material as opposed to “I’m telling you” or a friend of a friend said.
But there isn’t is there?
No one’s publically rejected the Charter. If they did it would be a major news story in the Arab and world media. There’s no way they’d ignore something of this magnitude.
So go on. Prove me wrong. Name one.

At last!

AnasAltikriti 22 Sep 09, 11:29am (about 11 hours ago)
“daverushmore, joeygrimlock and others on the CharterBesides what I have already said, besides what Hroub seems to have written in his book which you referred to, besides the numerous interviews with Meshal, Haniyeh, Hamdan, Abu Marzouq and many other in which they often express diametrically opposite views and stands to what is in the Charter (including the very interview I tried to comment on in this blog)….I can only refer you to the extensive quotes offered by Alaedin here in the thread from Azzam Tamimi’s book on Hamas. If all that doesn’t convince you, and you cannot see how all of that can possibly make me ‘aware’ of such a revision taking place and that the Charter is an irrelevant historical document that is virtually never ever cited or referred to by Hamas, there’s little else I can do.”

and then he bows out.

AnasAltikriti 22 Sep 09, 11:34am (about 11 hours ago)
“For entirely technical reasons beyond my comprehension, I’m finding it extremely difficult to post any comments; the last one took me about an hour with either the site or my own PC stalling horribly.
Unless I manage to sort this out, I’m afraid that at this point, I’ll have to thank everyone for reading my blog and taking the time to contribute to the discussion, particularly those with constructive thoughts and ideas, even if we did end up disagreeing.
To my Muslim friends; Eid Mubarak. To my jJwish friends; Happy new year…to all others, best wishes and may you find inner and outer peace. Anas “

A final plea for enlightenment:

daverushmore – 22 Sep 09, 11:55am (about 10 hours ago)
“You can do one thing. And that’s answer my question.
What you wrote isn’t an answer is it?
I asked you to name me one Hamas leader who – as you claimed – “publically rejected” (your words not mine) the Hamas Charter or called for it to be relaced. Not offer views that may be diametrically opposite at a particular time or place or gone against .

But publically rejected the Charter. Not downplaying it in front of English speakers but a public rejection.
You claimed that there were Hamas leaders who have indeed done this.
So I asked you to name me one.
Just one.
It appears you’ve been unable to do even that.

Just as I thought.”

Ah well.

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