Documents brought back from the Gaza Strip indicate that Hamas premeditated its atrocities against Israelis and to kidnap and maltreat them

The handwritten note in which the commander of the Izz al-Din Qassam Brigades calls on his subordinates to murder Jews

The handwritten note in which the commander of the Izz al-Din Qassam Brigades calls on his subordinates to murder Jews

  • According to documents located by IDF forces in the Gaza Strip and found in the possession of Hamas operatives who participated in the terrorist attack and massacre on October 7, 2023 (Operation al-Aqsa Flood, according to Hamas), it would appear that the Hamas leadership in the Gaza Strip instructed the organization’s terrorist operatives to brutalize Jews, both soldiers and civilians, while justifying such actions “in the name of Islam.”
  • The documents indicate that violent attacks on civilians had been planned in advance. Training included careful preparations for attacking shelters to take hostages, stripping them and threatening to kill them while questioning them. The captured documents show profound anti-Semitism coupled with radical Islamist ideology of the type which characterizes extremist organizations such as ISIS and al-Qaeda.
  • The captured documents are clear and unequivocal proof that contrary to the claims made by senior Hamas members after the attack and massacre, that the “operation” targeted only military personnel, it had been planned in advance to carry out premeditated acts of violence against the civilian residents of t the cities, towns and villages surrounding the Gaza Strip.
  • For example, when asked about Hamas’ killing large numbers of civilian and taking civilian hostages, Musa Abu Marzouq, a senior Hamas member claimed Israel was spreading false narratives about the deaths of civilians. He claimed that several video clips “proved” that Hamas operatives were careful with the Israeli children. He also claimed evidence existed that the IDF had killed civilians by shelling houses, alleging that the extent of the destruction “proved” Israel had been responsible. As for taking hostages, he said that chaos had followed “the collapse of the Israeli army.” He claimed said hundreds of Palestinian civilians and “fighters” from other organizations had entered Israeli territory and captured a large number of Israelis (Frontline website, October 27, 2023).
  • Ghazi Hamad, a member of Hamas’ political bureau in the Gaza Strip, claimed the objectives of the operation had been “purely military,” to destroy the Gaza Division, kidnap soldiers to free the Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails and close the prisoner file, adding that Muhammad Deif had “ordered them not to harm children, women or the elderly.” He further claimed that the Hamas movement had no intention of taking civilians, but with the opening of the border security fence, Palestinian “civilians” from Beit Hanoun, Jabaliya and Beit Lahia, which are situated very close to the fence, entered the Israeli villages, and “some of them took Israeli civilians ” to trade for their captive relatives (Lebanese Unews website, December 7, 2023).
Sample Documents
Document 1: A hand-written note calling for the brutal murder of Jews
  • A handwritten note found in the pocket of a commander of the Izz al-Din Qassam Brigades, Hamas’ military wing, who was one of the perpetrators of the terrorist attack and massacre on October 7, 2023. He wrote it for his subordinates before he was killed near the border on the Israel side, and it was apparently written to encourage them before the attack.
  • He urges them to kill as many Jews as possible, to behead them and pull out their hearts and livers, as dictated by radical Islamist ideology.
  • The note reads: “Allah has purchased [from the believers their lives and their properties in exchange for paradise].[2] Oh, descendants of Khaled[3] and al-Zabir[4], Allah has designated you and given you the honor to participate in jihad so that you can give what you are able and what you want to give. Act well and be faithful to Allah in your intentions, as was the Prophet [Muhammad], who adhered to jihad and was prepared to be killed for its sake. May Allah buy those souls among you who aspire to meet him and see his Prophet, his companions Abu Amara,[5] Sa’d[6] and Khaled [bin al-Walid], and know that your enemy is a disease which has no cure except beheading and removing their hearts and livers. Attack them and take action as the sword of Abu Suleiman[7] took action against them, judge them according to the verdict of Sa’d. In the name of Allah of Khaybar,[8] we begin [the attack] and will strike with the sword of zulfaqar.”[9]
  • The note propounds radical Islamist ideology and fosters anti-Semitism among Hamas while justifying barbaric, brutal acts and the slaughter of Jews in the name of Islam. The Jews are described as a “disease without a cure” that must be exterminated.
The handwritten note in which the commander of the Izz al-Din Qassam Brigades calls on his subordinates to murder Jews
The handwritten note in which the commander of the Izz al-Din Qassam Brigades calls on his subordinates to murder Jews
  • IDF spokesperson Rear Admiral General Daniel Hagari revealed the note to the American media (American CBS network, October 25, 2023). After it had been published, individuals affiliated with Hamas and radical Islam expressed their support for its contents. Some described the note as a “testament” of a shaheed [martyr for the sake of Allah], “a hero who fell ” in Operation al-Aqsa Flood.
  • Dr. Ali al-Qaradaghi, chairman of the World Union of Muslim Scholars, which is affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas’ parent movement, uploaded the wording of the document to his X account, calling it “A letter found in the pocket of one of the Operation al-Aqsa Flood shaheeds (Dr. Ali al-Qaradaghi’s X account, November 16, 2023). One of his supporters tweeted, “Heroes of Palestine and of all Muslims,” referring to the terrorists who carried out the massacre (Abdullah Yahya’s X account, November 16, 2023). Another response included a prayer to Allah to “strengthen the hands of the jihad fighters” (fares077777’s X account , November 17, 2023).
  • A Hamas-affiliated Palestinian responded to a post that quoted the contents of the note, saying he had “[Izz al-Din] Qassam Brigades in [my] heart” (THE FREEDOM X account, October 25, 2024). Another wrote: “Allah, give glory to Islam and Muslims” (Alaomda1’s X account, October 26, 2024).
Document 2: An Arabic-Hebrew phrasebook
  • Among the documents found was an Arabic-Hebrew phrasebook with Hebrew words and phrases transliterated into Arabic characters. The pamphlet was found in the possession of the Jerusalem Battalion of the Izz al-Din Qassam Brigades, Hamas’ military wing, and was apparently distributed to terrorists who participated in the October 7, 2023 attack and massacre, who were supposed to use it. Its contents are shocking and testify to the terrorists’ intentions and plans, including attacking and humiliating civilians, stealing their vehicles, separating men, women and children, capturing and murdering civilians. Some of the Hebrew phrases are, “Take off your pants,” “Where is your weapon?” “I will kill you,” “You are a prisoner,” “Where is the head of the kibbutz?” “We have hostages,” “We will kill the captives,” “Where are the car keys?” “Men are here,” “Women are here,” “The children are here,” “Take off your clothes,” “Where is the commander?”
From the phrasebook: Line 7: "Take off your pants." Line 14: "Where is your weapon?" Line 21: "I will kill you."
From the phrasebook: Line 7: “Take off your pants.” Line 14: “Where is your weapon?” Line 21: “I will kill you.”
From the phrasebook: Line 25: "You are a prisoner." Line 2: "Where is the head of the kibbutz?" Line 29: "We have hostages." Line 30: "We will kill the captives." Line 36: "Where are the car keys?" Line 37: "Men here." Line 38: "Women here." Line 39: "Children here." Line 43: "Take off your clothes." Line 45: "Where is the commander?"
From the phrasebook: Line 25: “You are a prisoner.” Line 2: “Where is the head of the kibbutz?” Line 29: “We have hostages.” Line 30: “We will kill the captives.” Line 36: “Where are the car keys?” Line 37: “Men here.” Line 38: “Women here.” Line 39: “Children here.” Line 43: “Take off your clothes.” Line 45: “Where is the commander?”
Document 3: Practice drills for kidnapping civilians
  • A document seized by the IDF in one of the Hamas strongholds in the Gaza Strip revealed details of the preparations made by Hamas operatives prior to the terrorist attack and massacre in the cities, towns and villages near the Gaza Strip, indicating that the planning of the attack included locating the shelters to deliberately harm as well as kidnap civilians, including women, children and the elderly. The document includes a follow-up report on a platoon exercise carried out by Hamas operatives in preparation for the massacre as well as a review, apparently written by one of the commanders, about the operatives’ performance during the exercise. Among the criticisms it was written, “No thorough operation was carried out to increase the number of hostages (number of women, children, men…),” indicating that the terrorists planned to kidnap civilians.

Yellow arrow: "No thorough operation was carried out to increase the number of hostages (number of women, children, men...)"
Yellow arrow: “No thorough operation was carried out to increase the number of hostages (number of women, children, men…)”

  • In the videos documenting the terrorists’ actions in Kibbutz Sufa during the attack and massacre on October 7, 2023, videos taken from the body cameras of Hamas operatives, the terrorists are seen searching for the shelters and calling out each other. “Where are the shelters?” At first they apparently did not understand that the rooms were inside houses, indicating they knew civilians would go to safe rooms and explicitly planned to find, attack and kill them (Israeli TV Channel 12, January 8, 2024).
Document 4: Inspirational blessings and prayers for murder
  • Hamas’ extreme Islamist ideology was evident in another document which was in the possession of Hamas terrorists. It had blessings and prayers which the organization’s operatives were required to say in various situations. It contained both the specific circumstance and prayer that the operatives of the Izz al-Din Qassam Brigades had to say. For example:
  • Before entering battle they had to say, “Fight them, Allah will torture them through you and bring you victory over them and heal the hearts of the nation of believers.”
  • When a shaheed was killed they had to say, “Know that the ideal end for a believer is death for the sake of Allah [i.e., in jihad]”.
  • For a success in battle they had to say, “Blessed be these arms, which defended the land of the homeland and guarded the land, the honor and the holy places from the impurity of the Jews,” and, “May Allah protect you, jihad fighters, who with your bravery preserved our honor and raised the flag of victory.”
Blessings and prayers used by Hamas operatives during the massacre
Blessings and prayers used by Hamas operatives during the massacre

[1] Click to subscribe and receive the ITIC's daily updates as well as its other publications.
[2] From Surah al-Tawbah, verse 111 in the Qur'an. The periods appear after the first three words, as can be seen in the original, since it is a well-known verse, whose meaning among Islamic circles is encouragement of Muslims to perform jihad, since that way they will enter the gates of paradise.
[3] Khaled bin al-Walid was a Muslim soldier and one of the companions of the Prophet Muhammad. He is considered one of the greatest warriors in Islamic history and is said to have never been defeated. He played a key role in the early stages of the establishment of the Muslim empire.
[4] Al-Zabir bin al-Awam was a relative of Muhammad, the son of his wife Khadijah's brother and one of his friends (the Shahaba) and one of the political and military leaders of the Muslims after the death of Muhammad. He is one of the ten who were promised paradise. .
[5] Hamza bin Abd al-Muttalib, aka Abu Amara, was one of Muhammad's close associates and is considered a hero of Islamic battles.
[6] Sa'd bin Mu'adh, was one of the close associates of the Prophet of Islam, Muhammad, and was one of the leaders of the fight against the Jews of Bani Karita in the Arabian Peninsula.
[7] Abu Suleiman is the nickname of Khaled bin al-Walid (footnote 3).
[8] Khaybar was a settlement built of fortified citadels north of Medina, in the Arabian Peninsula, where Jews lived at the beginning of Islam. In 628 AD, a battle was waged at the site, during which the Muslim army led Muhammad killed a large number of Jews, breaking through their fortifications. After the battle, Muhammad reached an agreement with the settlement's residents to surrender and pay a head tax under the rule of Islam, about half of their property. A large quantity of weapons and the property of the residents, who were rich but weak, were transferred to the Muslims, including huge areas where grew date palms grew. The battle is part of the central ethos in Islam, especially regarding fighting the Jews. All the Muslim warriors mentioned in the note participated in the battle. It became a symbol for radical Islamist elements of the Muslim massacre of Jews, while the more moderate see it as an ideal arrangement for the surrender of Jews and Christians ("people of the Book") to Muslims, based on the submission and humiliation of Jews and Christians under Islamic rule. Regarding the Jews, the memory of the Battle of Khaybar is preserved by contemporary Islamist elements, and especially Hamas, in the chant, "Khaybar, Khaybar, Jews, Muhammad's army will return," and by implication, the murder, surrender and humiliation of the Jews.
[9] According to Muslim tradition, zulfaqar is the sword given by Muhammad, to Ali bin Abu Talib, the fourth Caliph of Islam and Muhammad's son-in-law. Muhammad put him in command of the Islamic army at the Battle of Khaybar and he fought with the sword. It became a symbol of Islam's victory in battle.