Mahmoud al-Zahar, a member of Hamas’ political leadership, is one of that movement’s most influential figures. In a clash with Zahar, Khaled Meshaal was forced to use all his weight and influence to prevent him from being elected to the movement’s Shura Council (supreme governing body). One year after those elections took place, the situation can be described as follows: Not only did Zahar not lose any of his power, but he actually managed to brace himself and reinforce his position within the movement.
Meshaal, chairman of the Hamas political bureau, has since come under harsh criticism, claiming that his policies and faulty judgment have brought Hamas to one of the most difficult moments in the movement’s history. Under his leadership, the Islamic resistance movement has lost all of its supporters and backers in the Arab world.