TEL AVIV — The Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas’ so-called military wing, has begun a process of redeployment that includes the reorganization of the movement’s terrorist infrastructure, a Hamas official told Breitbart Jerusalem.
According to the source, the organization of terror units in the al-Qassam Brigades has been cancelled by the Brigades hierarchy and the movement has begun rebuilding and integrating its fighters in a structure that more closely resembles a military regiment.
The source noted that Hamas units were disbanded in all five areas of the Gaza Strip: the north, Gaza City, the center, Khan Younis and Rafah. The five companies, said the official, will be integrated into two main regiments.
One terror regiment will incorporate the northern Gaza company as well as companies from Gaza City and part of the old central district. The second regiment will integrate the rest of the central district along with jihadists previously responsible for southern Gaza.
The source said that this second regiment will be commanded by Muhammad Senwar, the brother of Yehya Senwar, the head of Hamas’ politburo in Gaza. The new terrorist commander has been considered a senior figure in the movement’s “military wing” since his release from Israeli prison in a prisoner exchange deal for Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.
The structural changes, the source said, are part of a plan launched by Hamas after its last war against Israel. As part of this process, Hamas has adopted new tactics.
Raed Saad, a senior figure in the al-Qassam Brigades, will serve as so-called operational commander and, according to the source, will be responsible for Hamas’ operations in any confrontation with Israel.
The source noted that Hamas isn’t interested in conflict with Israel and that the priority for the near future will be to accelerate the reconstruction of the Gaza Strip, a process being led by Egypt and discussed by various players in the region.
The source also stated that the Islamist movement is being forced to maneuver between Egypt and Qatar. Egypt was one of the Arab countries that recently announced the severing of relations with Qatar, while the Gulf kingdom is considered the main source of funding for major projects in the Gaza Strip.
However, the source noted, “in the shadow of the presence of an extremist like [Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor] Lieberman in the army ministry of the occupation” the organization is preparing for every scenario. According to him, Hamas is not overly concerned by talk in Israel about the development of new systems against the terrorist group’s tunnels and rockets and that Hamas’ military wing is continuing to develop new tools “that will surprise the Israelis.”