Hamas and Hezbollah: How Iran Is Secretly Infiltrating Europe
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The terrorist threat to Europe from the Islamic Republic of Iran — and Hamas and Hezbollah, its proxies — is growing. European leaders, however, are absorbed with trying to prevent Israel from eliminating the military capabilities of Hamas in Gaza and Hezbollah in Lebanon, even though that would diminish the ability of these terrorists to operate in Europe.

Even before the October 7 massacre in Israel by Hamas, Mossad Director David Barnea said in September 2023 that Israel’s intelligence services, in cooperation with their foreign partners, had prevented 27 terrorist attacks orchestrated by the Iran just over the last year, “all over the world, in Europe, Africa, the Far East and South America.”

Hamas and Hezbollah: How Iran Is Secretly Infiltrating Europe
Hamas and Hezbollah: How Iran Is Secretly Infiltrating Europe

Only three months later, in December, terrorists from Hamas-affiliated cells in Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands were arrested after planning to attack Jewish targets in Europe. Weapons linked to the arrests in Germany and the Netherlands were found in Bulgaria. According to German prosecutors, the four men arrested in Germany had been gathering weapons to be “kept in a state of readiness in view of potential terrorist attacks against Jewish institutions in Europe.”

There are, it is estimated, 450 Hamas operatives in Germany alone, according to 2023 numbers released by Germany’s domestic intelligence service, the Federal Office for Protection of the Constitution. In 2022, the agency warned:

“Hamas sees Western countries such as Germany as a refuge in which the organization can concentrate on collecting donations, recruiting new supporters, and spreading its propaganda.”

In addition, Germany is home to at least 1,900 members of the Muslim Brotherhood network. Qatar’s Al Jazeera, the Muslim Brotherhood’s main media sponsor and promotor, says of the movement: “Throughout they have always adhered to their ideal of a society governed by Islamic laws and morals.” The motto of the Muslim Brotherhood is:

“Allah is our objective; the Prophet is our leader; the Quran is our law; Jihad is our way; dying in the way of Allah is our highest hope.”

In February, Belgium’s justice minister confirmed that Hamas operates in Brussels — the de facto capital of the European Union — through a network of front companies raising funds for the terrorist organization, along with activities aimed at improving Hamas’s image in Europe. Belgian authorities nevertheless continue to allow Hamas to operate there.

Hamas and Hezbollah: How Iran Is Secretly Infiltrating Europe
Hamas and Hezbollah: How Iran Is Secretly Infiltrating Europe

Belgian MP Michael Freilich recently said:

“Why would you admit [that Hamas is active in the country], and then say, well, we’re allowing them to operate, because in Belgium they are not doing anything extreme? You just said they are fundraising, and that is supposed to be illegal for such an organization. It doesn’t make sense to me.”

Hezbollah has its own organization in Europe. According to a 2022 report by Europol:

“The network of collaborators built by Hezbollah in the EU is suspected of managing the transportation and distribution of illegal drugs into the EU, dealing with firearms trafficking and running professional money laundering operations.”

Hezbollah has been active in Europe for quite a while. In 2012, the terrorist network bombed a bus transporting Israeli tourists in Burgas, Bulgaria, killing six people and wounding dozens of others. In Germany, there are around 1,250 Hezbollah members.

Europe, according to experts, has simply been ignoring Iran’s infiltration of the continent with terrorist proxies.

Hamas and Hezbollah: How Iran Is Secretly Infiltrating Europe
Hamas and Hezbollah: How Iran Is Secretly Infiltrating Europe

“Hamas has been in Europe for about 30 years. It’s an open secret,” commented Lorenzo Vidino, director of the program on extremism at George Washington University and an expert on the Muslim Brotherhood. “Of course, they don’t call themselves Hamas,” Vidino added. (Hamas has been banned in the European Union.)

They will have names like Conference of Palestinians Abroad, Palestinians in (country name), Palestinian Students Abroad, and so on. But when you dig a bit, you find out who the people are behind these associations, and what their connections are back home. It’s always the same cluster of 20-25 people.

“Their propaganda, their social media patterns, everything is Hamas. And it’s very public and visible. This is a typical Muslim Brotherhood tactic. They come up with a million different names for their organizations, for two reasons: Firstly, they want to give the impression that it’s a broad movement, so that when they organize a public event, there will be 50 participating organizations, or if they publish a public letter, there will be 50 signatory groups. Secondly, if one of these groups is taken down by law enforcement, well, there’s all the other ones.”

The European authorities’ investigations of Hamas in Europe, Vidino added, have been a complete failure.

“We looked at investigations conducted against Hamas’s funding networks in the West over the last 25-30 years, and we found that it’s basically been a complete disaster. Investigations have been, for the most part, unsuccessful.

“Some of these key individuals have been investigated. At times, they get arrested, they get charged, but then it never sticks – with a few exceptions…

“The main issue is that Hamas has not really been a priority for European law enforcement. Security forces have limited resources. A country like Belgium would rather invest its resources in tracking down ISIS members, who pose a more direct security threat.”

According to Danny Citrowicz, a research fellow at Israel’s Institute for National Security Studies and a non-resident fellow at the Atlantic Council:

“In Europe, the main terror threats are considered to be Sunni groups such as al-Qaeda and ISIS. You don’t really see them acting against Shiite radicalism. They think they have bigger fish to fry.”

In the past five years, Iran has been behind at least 33 terrorist plots in Europe alone, including against targets in Sweden and the UK, according to Matthew Levitt, a senior fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.

In all of this, Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) is a central actor. As stated by the US Congress, the IRGC “trains, funds, arms, and shares intelligence with dangerous proxy forces throughout the Middle East and abroad” and has targeted both European and American civilians.

The IRGC, as described by the Wall Street Journal, prepared and trained Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorists for the October 7 massacre in Israel.:

“Officers of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps had worked with Hamas since August to devise the air, land and sea incursions… Details of the operation were refined during several meetings in Beirut attended by IRGC officers and representatives of four Iran-backed militant groups, including Hamas, which holds power in Gaza, and Hezbollah, a Shiite militant group and political faction in Lebanon…”

The US Congress, Israel and thousands of Iranians have urged the European Union to designate the IRGC as a terrorist organization. Last year, by an overwhelming majority, the European Parliament passed a resolution to that effect, but the EU nevertheless refuses to designate the IRGC as a terrorist organization. EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell claims there are legal obstacles; however, that claim has been refuted as a lie.

Hamas and Hezbollah: How Iran Is Secretly Infiltrating Europe
Hamas and Hezbollah: How Iran Is Secretly Infiltrating Europe

In April 2023, a bipartisan group of more than 130 US Congress members signed a letter calling on the EU to designate the IRGC as a terrorist organization. The IRGC, they wrote, “has freely and openly carried out plots targeting citizens in countries across the EU.”

“Given the growing threat Iran poses to EU member states and their citizens, we urge you to treat this issue with the utmost urgency,” the letter stated.

European leaders are clearly not treating the issue with any urgency, which is a disaster in the making for all Europeans. As Iran continues to supply Russia with military equipment, Iranian-made drones have been raining destruction on Ukraine. Iran has ballistic missiles that can reach Europe, and is one minute away from nuclear weapons capability, if not already there.

When will the EU start to take this threat seriously?

Robert Williams

Hamas and Hezbollah: How Iran Is Secretly Infiltrating Europe

We also recommend reading:

BORIS JOHNSON — OPEN LETTER, antisemitic incidents in Europe, EU sanctions top Hamas leader, What is Hamas, Dina Rubina — OPEN LETTER.

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