According to the Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center (IICC) in a July 8, 2008 announcement, and based on an Israel Security Agency report, in 2007 approximately $120,000,000 was transferred to Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip to finance terrorist organization activity, about 30% of which was earmarked for financing Hamas' da'wah.
A da'wah is an extensive network of civilian institutions and is Hamas' main source of power. These institutions include banks, schools and camps for children and include "preaching and incitement to terrorism and hatred for Israel and the Jews by running an independent educational system and mosques to brainwash Palestinians with its radical Islamic ideology," according to the IICC.
These indoctrines begin in kindergarten and continue through university level and operate summer camps, more than 100 of which are operated by the "Union of Good". Some of these camps have paramilitary or even fully military activities intended to prepare the young for enlistment into the ranks of the various terrorist organizations. Training at these camps include using guns to subdue an enemy, practicing capture, taking hostages, and workshops for home-made rockets, among other things.
A child at a Hamas summer camp, when asked what he wants to be when he grows up, replied, "I want to be a military man, a holy warrior, to liberate this land, because it is our and does not belong to anyone else."
Additionally, funds are given to family members of suicide bombings, funds are used for "feasts" at mosques and for food donations, it funds orphanages, healthcare clinics, soup kitchens and even sports leagues.
Today, the U.S. Treasury Department on Wednesday named an Islamic charity as a group aiding Hamas militants in the Middle East and prohibited Americans from dealing with the "Union of Good" organization. The Treasury Department said that the Union of Good funnels money to Islamist fighters in the West Bank and Gaza, adding that the government will seize any funds in the United States controlled by the charity.
On the Treasury Department's web site there is an announcement allowing this action under and allowed via Executive Order 13224 blocking Terrorist Property put into effect on September 23, 2001. [PDF]
The following entities have been added to the OFAC's SDN list:
UNION OF GOOD (a.k.a. 101 DAYS CAMPAIGN; a.k.a. CHARITY COALITION; a.k.a. COALITION OF GOOD; a.k.a. ETELAF AL-KHAIR; a.k.a. ETILAFU EL-KHAIR; a.k.a. I'TILAF AL-KHAIR; a.k.a. I'TILAF AL-KHAYR), P.O. Box 136301, Jeddah 21313, Saudia Arabia [SDGT]
[OFAC - Office of Foreign Assets Control]
[SDN - Specially Designated Nationals]
[SDGT - Specially Designated Global Terrorist]
It only took the Treasury Department four months after Israel announced the same, and six years with Israel outlawing the "Union of Good" and Hamas da'wah institutions in 2002. They both have probably had a good idea about the "Union of Good" sending funds to Hamas since late 2000, and certainly since 2001. Why so long? Well, that's a good question for which I don't have an answer for.
Although the "Union of Good" was outlawed in Israel in February 2002, in July of this year, the Defense Minister of Israel, Ehud Barak, signed an order banning 36 global fundraising organizations to the "Union of Good" [PDF] as Israel stepped up efforts to cut off flow of cash to Hamas government. On that order was a list of 36 organizations with an entry of the following: "23. The Union of Good Lebanon - Dar Al Fatwait (Includes US Charitable Organization)"
But by putting the "Union of Good" on the Treasury Departments list, this makes it a criminal offense for U.S. persons to provide material support or resources to Foreign Terrorist Organization's ("FTOs") and requires financial institutions to block all funds in which FTOs or their agents have an interest, per Section 302 of the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996.
Among the types of businesses covered they this regulation, are banks, securities and commodities broker/dealers, investment companies, currency exchanges, issuers, redeemers, and cashiers of traveler's checks, checks, money orders, or similar instruments, credit card system operators, insurance companies, dealers in precious metals, stones or jewels, pawnbrokers, loan and finance companies, travel agencies, licensed money transmitters, telegraph companies, businesses engaged in vehicle sales, including automobile, airplane or boat sales, persons involved in real estate closings or settlements, and casinos.
Such "financial institutions" must notify OFAC Compliance about any blocked funds within ten days of blocking, otherwise they face civil (not criminal) penalties to be assessed against them in an amount equal to $50,000 per violation or twice the amount which should have been blocked, whichever is greater.
The "Union of Good" was established in October 2000, shortly after the beginning of the last Palestinian Intifada against Israel. It is comprised of 50 Islamic "charities", including Hamas and Hezbollah affiliated organizations. The "Union of Good" was suppose to raise funds for only 101 days, but its initial success led the founders, mostly Hamas members, to maintain its operations to date.
The "Union of Good" is headed by Dr. Yussuf al-Qardawi, who is the source of spiritual and religious authority for Hamas and others in the Palestinian territories. Al-Qardawi, who established and leads the Department of Islamic Law (Shari’a) at the Univeristy of Qatar and the Institute for Sunnah Research there, is also on the board of directors of the Al-Taqwa Bank, designated by the US as a terrorist funding organization in November 2001.
Al-Qardawi established legal justification for "financial jihad [al-jihad bil-mal]" in a lecture he gave in May 4, 2002 in the UAE. According to him, "collecting money for the mujahideem (jihad fighters) was not a donation or a gift but a duty necessitated by the sacrifices they made for the Muslim nation."
To the left is part of a "Union of Good" table of shaheeds from 2002, including suicide bombers in Israeli cities. It designates the allocations of funds to their families through the Hamas-affiliated Islamic "charitable society" Al-Tadhamun in Nablus.
If you do not know what Hamas is, they are a LARGE Palestinian Muslim militant movement with origins in the late 1960s when it was started by Sheikh Ahmed Yassin. It is important to remember that although Hamas is a Muslim based organization, this does not mean that all Muslim's are part of Hamas or terrorists. Hamas is a fanatical organization that has it's own charter, a document that is independent from the Qur'an. And in fact many Palestinians [Muslim] do want peace between them and Israel [Jewish].
Yassin established al-Mujamma' al-Islami in 1973 to coordinate the Muslim Brotherhood's political activities in Gaza. Yassin founded Hamas as the Muslim Brotherhood's local political arm in December 1987, following the eruption of the first intifada, a Palestinian uprising against Israeli control of the West Bank and Gaza. Hamas published its official charter in 1988.
Here are some highlights of the principles of Hamas as stated in their Covenant or Charter:
■ "Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it."
■ "The Islamic Resistance Movement believes that the land of Palestine is an Islamic Waqf consecrated for future Moslem generations until Judgement Day. It, or any part of it, should not be squandered: it, or any part of it, should not be given up.
■ "There is no solution for the Palestinian question except through Jihad. Initiatives, proposals and international conferences are all a waste of time and vain endeavors."
The first Hamas suicide bombing took place in April 1993. Five months later, Yasir Arafat, the then-leader of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), and Yitzhak Rabin, then-prime minister of Israel, sealed the Oslo accords - an Israeli-Palestinian peace pact that eventually unraveled. Rabin was assassinated by an Israeli right-wing in November 1995. Arafat died in November 2004.
Hamas is believed to have killed more than five hundred people in more than 350 separate terrorist attacks since 1993 through suicide bombers, mortars, short-range rockets, and small arms fire.
- American Center for Democracy
- The Intelligence & Terrorism Information Center (IICC)
- IICC, Financing- July 8, 2008
- IICC, Training - August 21, 2008
- IICC, Summer Camps - August 24, 2008
- Department of the Treasury, OFAC Recent Actions
- Department of the Treasury, The Terrorism Sanctions [PDF] - This is actually very scary of how many people, groups and organizations are listed on here. 115 pages long.
- TheJANet [Cached version, retrieved on Nov 13, 2008]