The death of the Italian activist Vittorio Arrigoni came as a shock to the international community, the solidarity movement and the Palestinian people. His death however, cannot be seen only as it appears, is hiding tensions, and a series of factors that could trigger a new war in the Gaza Strip.
Whilst we are all sad for Arrigoni’s death, we should look into perspective and depth in order to discern the real feelings and motives behind this situation that goes far beyond a simple kidnapping went wrong.
The official line is: Vittorio Arrigoni has been kidnapped by a Salafist group, antagonist of Hamas, as an exchange for the liberation of their leader in prison. Even before the ultimatum was due, the hostage was killed, while Hamas security forces were already closing in the terrorist cell.
Hamas has been in power in the Gaza Strip since 2007, replacing the shameful conduct of the Palestinian Authority (ANP) and its inability to protect civilian from the aggressive Israel army. Since then, kidnappings from Salafist groups and splinters faction ceased, due manly to the brutal repression from Hamas in whoever challenge its authority.
Israel never digested this new “neighbour”, and tried several time to destroy the new government, such as in 2008, without taking into the account air strikes and military operation conducted in violation of any international law.
Hamas is trying to transform itself from a terrorist group to institutionalised power, with the aim of replacing the ANP in the heart of the Palestinian people.
This kidnapping come as gold to the Israelis, ANP and salafist/pro Al Qaida groups: the first ones can now demonstrate the inability of Hamas in guaranteeing security; second ones to challenge its authority and maybe regain control in the Gaza Strip; the latter to challenge Hamas and restart a war with Israel. Nevertheless, the reality shows that limited or no benefits are coming to the ANP and splinters groups, as Hamas will ferociously destroy these challenges and Palestinian people are far behind to appease these kind of practices.
This leave only one main actor gaining the benefits of the mindless action of these groups: Israel and the intelligence of the Mossad.
In the past two week, whilst the world was busy talking about Gheddafi, earthquake and reconstruction in Japan, nuclear holocaust, Israel conducted air strikes in the Gaza strip, killing civilian in response to the missiles and rockets launch from across the border. The usual, tiring motif to legitimise a non-proportionate response from Israel, the same for which today we are pounding Libya.
They needed to find motivation, a real excuse to legitimise further actions and bring along the international community consensus. Where to find that? The Salafists, Al Qaida shadows, challenge Hamas, and a martyr, possibly from a country whose public opinion is susceptible of rush decisions.
Then came this kidnapping, the death, the anger and the question, where are we going?
Unfortunately, will never discover the truth on Arrigonis’ death: Hamas will accuse Mossad services but no one will believe, as they are terrorists; the al Qaida /Salafist scaremongering will encourage USA, France, UK and Italy in support Israel for further actions against Hamas. The result will be death of civilians, a new war in the Territories, increase in terrorist actions against Israel, and shame in whoever supports these kinds of decisions.