While Secretary of State John Kerry has been trying to push Israeli and Palestinian negotiators toward a peace agreement in recent months, at least one hardline Palestinian group reaffirmed its dedication to the military struggle to destroy the Jewish state.
The Palestinian terrorist group the Al Quds Brigades, a wing of Palestinian Islamic Jihad, on Wednesday issued a warning to Israel of a future “battle of ghosts,” the independent Palestinian news agency Ma’an reported.
“The only appropriate place to meet with Israel is on the battlefield,” a Brigades spokesmen said, according to Ma’an.
“Nightmares will become a reality in Gaza and inside (Israeli) cities,” the unnamed spokesman continued. “The next battle will be a ghost battle.”
The threat came at a military parade in Gaza during which speakers from the militant group blasted the efforts at peace negotiations that are predicated on the two-state solution, one state for Israel and one state for Palestine.
An estimated 2,000 men reportedly took part in the march, many of whom were heavily armed, toting machine guns. The Al Quds Brigades published these photos of the event on its website:
“The balance of power leans towards the enemy because of Western support and Arab collusion,” the masked spokesman said, adding, “our goal will remain to free Palestine, all of Palestine.”
Extremist Palestinian groups including Hamas and Islamic Jihad refer to all of Israel, including territory within the 1948 borders, to be part of “Palestine.”
“From what I can tell, the Iranian-backed PIJ (Palestinian Islamic Jihad) is now threatening Israel not just with a forbidding display of weapons and fighters. They’ve apparently made their threat thematic, likening it to a nightmare or even a haunted house, Middle East expert Jonathan Schanzer with the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and author of the new book, “State of Failure: Yasser Arafat, Mahmoud Abbas, and the Unmaking of the Palestinian State,” told TheBlaze.
“Perhaps this a belated riff off of Halloween. Or perhaps they are referring to a new capability that they plan to reveal,” Schanzer said.
The State Department classifies Palestinian Islamic Jihad as a terrorist organization.