Wierd story on the front page of Al-Hayat today. According to the story Jaysh Al-Umma, a fundamnetalist organization with ideological ties to Al-Qaeda, now exists in the Gaza Strip. According to group leaders, the Army follows Salafi Jihadi thought, and aims to change the Palestinoan secular infidel culture into one of God’s rule. However, the leader emphasized that they have no organizational ties or communications with Al-Qaeda, but are spiritually or ideologically connected. The group has been around for two years, since after Hamas took over, and has an unwritten agreement with Hamas to operate in Gaza. Fighting Israel is their primary concern emphasized the leader.
The story was posted on the very top-front page of Al-Hayat, a major paper, but it seems a bit overblown. Before a group can call themselves an army shouldn’t they have to have more than 23 people? Thats how many appear in the photo and at another point it mentions that reporters saw 25 fighters in the camp.
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