Military Strength of Palestinian Factions


[Calculations before Hamas takeover of Gaza]

Palestinian Authority
Base of Operations
Approximate Number of Fighters
Public Security (controlled by Fatah) * Gaza & West Bank
15,000
Preventive Security (controlled by Fatah) * Gaza & West Bank
4,000
Civil Police (controlled by Fatah) * Gaza & West Bank
11,000
General Intelligence (controlled by Fatah)* Gaza & West Bank
5,000
Presidential Security (controlled by Fatah)* Gaza & West Bank
5,000

Military Intelligence, Navy Police, Force 17 (controlled by Fatah)*

Gaza & West Bank
30,000
Operations Force (controlled by Hamas)* Gaza & West Bank
5,000
Other Forces Gaza & West Bank
1,500
Total  
76,500
     
Pro-PLO    
Palestinian National Liberation Army/Al Fatah Algeria, Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Libya, Jordan, Sudan, Syria, Yemen
5,000-8,000
Fatah Tanzim/Al Aqsa Brigades Gaza & West Bank
Uncertain
Palestine Liberation Front (PLF) Iraq
300-400
Arab Liberation Front (ALF) Lebanon, Iraq
300-400
Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP) Syria, Lebanon
400-600
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) Syria, Lebanon, Gaza & West Bank
800
Palestine Popular Struggle Front (PSF) Syria
600-700
   
Anti-PLO  
Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) Gaza & West Bank
350
Hamas Gaza & West Bank
300
As-Saiqa Syria
600-1,000
Fatah Revolutionary Council/Abu Nidal Organization Lebanon, Syria, Iraq
400
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine - General Command (PFLP-GC) Syria, Lebanon
600
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine - Special Command (PFLP-SC)  
50-100
Palestine Liberation Army (PLA) Syria
4,500
Fatah Intifada Syria, Lebanon
400-1,000

 


Sources: Anthony H. Cordesman, "Escalating to Nowhere: The Israeli-Palestinian War — The Actors in the Conflict: The Palestinian Factions That Challenge Peace and the Palestinian Authority," (DC: CSIS, September 12, 2003), p. 35

* Data from a table prepared by Danny Rubenstein and Reuters (published in Haaretz Hebrew edition, May 16, 2007)