Standing on a newly formed hillside of rubble in the destroyed Jabaliya refugee camp, five young men all claim to be resistance fighters.
“All of Gaza are mujahideen,” they said.
But when asked which of them had actually fired a gun in the three week-long battle with Israel, none gave a convincing answer.
And as armed Hamas policemen return to Gaza’s street-corners and traffic-lights, many in Gaza are wondering where they were when it came to fighting the Israeli Army.
Hamas still has enough power and influence here that few will criticise the Islamist movement openly.
But when Hamas called for a rally to celebrate what it has been calling a historic victory over the Israelis, the citizens of Gaza voted with their feet – they stayed at home.
In the past Hamas could easily call tens of thousands into the streets, but this time only party stalwarts could look around the devastation and believe this could be victory.
“I think the resistance is strong,” said Beithar Ajar, 26, who described himself as a Hamas legal adviser.
“I think the Israeli army is very weak. Very weak.”
A truck with loudspeakers made a turn around Palestine Square in central Gaza city, playing Hamas battle songs.
A barker standing on the back shouted insults to Israel’s government on a microphone.
But relatively few green flags unfurled in the crowd.
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