Turns out the guy on the dead end of the rope wasn’t an Israeli collaborator at all…. Apparently he was a Salafist – A “rival” to Hamas. A *more* rabid Islamist than the rabid Islamist Crusading
GAZA – Tearful and scared, the three-year-old girl knows little of what lies behind the tension and turmoil gripping her homeland. She merely holds tight a picture of her father the way she will want to remember him.
The youngster will certainly do best to forget the images that so shocked the world last week. For even in a land synonymous with violence, the way her father died seemed unusually inhumane.
Publicly executed minutes earlier as an alleged ‘spy for Israel’, his body was dragged through Gaza City by men on motorcycles, waving pistols triumphantly in the air.
Substitute horses for bikes, noted one witness, and it could almost have been a scene from the Crusades.
Along with five others, the ‘collaborator’ was killed on Tuesday for allegedly providing intelligence to enable Israel to pinpoint attack targets. He was shot twice and then ‘finished off’ with a blow from a heavy rock.
Amid dizzying confusion at the height of the eight-day conflict, there were sketchy reports that the traitors were caught ‘red-handed’ with ‘high-tech filming equipment’.
Beyond this, nothing else was known: not their identities nor the precise nature of any evidence against them.
The Mail on Sunday can today reveal that the dead man in the picture is 37-year-old father-of-five Ribhi Badawi, a Palestinian prisoner in Gaza.
His family, neighbours and friends believe the notion that he spied for Israel is absurd – and there is much that supports their view, not least that as a prisoner Badawi was under armed guard during last week’s conflict.
Badawi was a member of the Islamist group Jaljalat – Thunder – which takes its inspiration from Al Qaeda and is more hardline than Hamas.
He had been in prison since 2009 when he was arrested on terrorism charges. It was alleged he was one of several fighters planning to launch attacks on Hamas.
Badawi’s family claim that while in prison, he was tortured until he confessed to being a traitor. (read more)