Israel and Gaza, again

Israel has had three civilian deaths from Hamas rocket fire this year. How many civilian deaths can Israel now justifiably inflict in retaliation? Well, so far their count is up to 1400. If someone shoots at me from a school bus full of kids, should I return fire with a fully automatic weapon? Yeah, some kids might die, but that bastard shot at me! I’m pretty sure any jury in the world would convict me of homicide at the least for any kid killed.

Aside from that issue, there is the practical issue. Israel’s actions have not made Israel any safer. One of the more disturbing videos I’ve seen is this: http://www.cbsnews.com/news/gaza-fighting-fuels-hatred-for-future-violence/

Israel continues to act in such a way as to recruit more and more Palestinians in the fight against it. Hamas did not recruit that 15 year old to be a suicide bomber. Israel recruited him and thousands like him through their continued bombardment of civilian populations. Each of those recruits carries a fiery hatred for Israel. But wouldn’t you, if a brutal regime had just blown up your house, or killed your family, and shrugged it off as “collateral damage”?

Most of the right-wing blogs I read are happy to place themselves in Israel’s shoes, and say they should be able to defend themselves against attack. How about placing yourself in a Palestinian’s shoes, and see how those fit. You have been denied your right to bear arms. Your land has been confiscated. You have family members who have been abducted off the streets by the police, and are held without charges, and you haven’t heard from them for weeks – but you do know they were likely tortured. Food is strictly rationed, and you never seem to have enough. Now you have been forced out of your house, which was then bombed to rubble by this regime. I think most of the right-wingers would say it’s time to kick off a revolution.

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7 Comments

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7 responses to “Israel and Gaza, again

  1. LibertarianRN,

    If you had a neighbor that repeatedly suffered attack after attack, death after death, day in an day out while trying for peace but occasionally after much warning defended itself; would you blame them?

    If you lived in a country where the leadership put weapon systems in hospitals, churches, day care centers and schools knowing your enemy eventually had to take out those weapons; wouldn’t you blame your leadership?

    If you live in a country where the people were used a shields and propaganda — where the deaths were deliberately courted so the enemy would look bad; wouldn’t you want a different leadership?

    Hamas did not recruit that 15 year old to be a suicide bomber. Israel recruited him and thousands like him through their continued bombardment of civilian populations

    Pardon my French But BULLSHIT! Israel isn’t continually bombarding the Palestinians. They refrain to an incredible degree and when they do; they try to announce their target to clear the people out. Why do you say nothing about the thousands of rockets Hamas fires, the terrorists attacks, the suicide bombs Israel suffers DAILY???

    You have been denied your right to bear arms.

    Wait a minute — if their right to keep and bear arms has been denied; how are they fighting?

    Your land has been confiscated.

    The land that Israelites had lived on for how many centuries? Do you think the Native American Indians would be justified in rocketing Los Angeles daily — their land ‘has been confiscated’, hasn’t?

    You have family members who have been abducted off the streets by the police, and are held without charges, and you haven’t heard from them for weeks – but you do know they were likely tortured.

    And the Israelis who disappear are what? Oh…and you don’t mention that many of those who are ‘abducted’ are terrorists who plant bombs, who kill Israelis civilians, who assist and help Hamas – why are you excusing inexcusable behavior on Hamas’ part?

    Food is strictly rationed, and you never seem to have enough.

    And that is the fault of Israel? Why don’t the other countries in the area step up and feed them? There are dozens of countries that could support every ‘refugee’ making sure they had food and water. Yet they don’t.

    Why?

    Bob S.

  2. If you had a neighbor that repeatedly suffered attack after attack, death after death, day in an day out while trying for peace but occasionally after much warning defended itself; would you blame them?
    If they’re suffering attacks from the people locked in their basement, then yeah, I’d blame them.

    If you lived in a country where the leadership put weapon systems in hospitals, churches, day care centers and schools knowing your enemy eventually had to take out those weapons; wouldn’t you blame your leadership?
    Yep. Hamas sucks too.

    Israel is continually committing violence against Palestinians. Let’s see it in chart form:
    http://www.ifamericansknew.org/stat/deaths.html
    The conflict has always been lopsided, and the Israelis have constantly killed more civilians than the Palestinians.

    On food: that actually is directly Israel’s fault. Their blockade restricts food, and they shoot Palestinian fishermen who venture further than three miles off their coast. A large percentage of their arable land is also near the Israeli-Gaza border, and they shoot people who approach that close to the border.

    Wait a minute — if their right to keep and bear arms has been denied; how are they fighting?
    Poorly. And the disarmed civilian populace is left at the mercy of both sides.

    And the Israelis who disappear are what? Oh…and you don’t mention that many of those who are ‘abducted’ are terrorists who plant bombs, who kill Israelis civilians, who assist and help Hamas – why are you excusing inexcusable behavior on Hamas’ part?
    Which disappeared Israelis would those be? Pretty scarce on the ground. 3 Israeli teens kidnapped by a couple people acting individually, vs hundreds of Palestinians – many of whom are not part of Hamas or other militant groups – abducted by government policy.

    I think Hamas’s actions are terrible. There is no excuse for targeting civilians. But Israel’s actions are also terrible. I don’t argue we should be backing Hamas, but that we should stop backing Israel. An atrocity is an atrocity, whether it is by an Israeli or a Palestinian, by rocket, suicide bomb, gun, or airstrike.

    Israel’s existence as a Jewish state is fait accompi. But Palestine should also be recognized as in independent state, rather than a prison camp writ large. Instead, Israel’s leading party includes in its platform that all the land the Palestinians currently occupy rightly belongs to Israel.

    • LRN,

      The conflict has always been lopsided, and the Israelis have constantly killed more civilians than the Palestinians.

      So because the Israelis are better at killing people and the Palestinians never seem to learn; Israel should just let their people be killed?
      Again, you condemn Israel but offer no advice on how to get the Palestinians to stop bombing Israel, killing its civilians, etc.

      How should Israel do that?

      On food: that actually is directly Israel’s fault.

      In the quality profession, there is a technique for root cause analysis called “5 Whys” == simply ask Why five times to see if you can get to the bottom of a problem. Some times it doesn’t take too long

      Why is there a blockade?
      Because Hamas continues to kill Israel citizens.
      Solution – stop killing people and the blockade is lifted. Again — what measures should Israel take to protect the lives of their people?

      And the disarmed civilian populace is left at the mercy of both sides.
      A disarmed population that outnumbers the killers by magnitudes of order. A population that apparently supports the efforts of the killers also. The civilian population could stop the killers, couldn’t they? Yet they don’t. They continue to allow schools to be used as rocket sites. They continue to allow hospitals to be used as rocket sites. They continue to live and stay in the areas as human shields — and don’t tell me they can’t leave. Flood the borders and force other countries to take them in. Been done in the past, being done now in places, right?

      So excuse if I’m not tied up in knots over the ‘innocent civilians’.

      pretty scarce on the ground. 3 Israeli teens kidnapped by a couple people acting individually, vs hundreds of Palestinians – many of whom are not part of Hamas or other militant groups – abducted by government policy.

      Care to present some evidence of that? And again I’ll go back to “Stop condemning them for being better at war than their enemies”. Good grief, Those people who are abducted are taken for a reason. They either support or are terrorists. Hamas does not operate outside of the support of the people. What is hard to understand about that?

      Why aren’t other Arab countries policing Gaza by the way. If they were interested in preventing Israeli atrocities; they could easily send in peace keeping forces that would stop the terrorists and rocket attacks, right? Yet those surrounding countries don’t. They allow the Palestinians to continue to kill Israelis and continue to die so they can have martyrs for the cause.

      Israel’s existence as a Jewish state is fait accompi.
      One that many Arab countries would see overturned in a hard beat. If you can’t not accept that fact, there is no room for discussion. That has to be a basic agreement — that many countries are willing to actively wipe out Israel or support actions that lead to its destruction. Other countries would not hesitate to act militarily in order to accomplish that mission.
      To deny this is to deny reality and history.

      Bob S.

      • Hey, I even have a quote handy! How to get Hamas to stop bombing Israel:

        “Because strong states tend to enjoy overwhelming conventional military superiority, weak actors will often resort to unconventional strategies such as insurgency or terrorism. Fighting an unconventional war is a daunting task even for powerful states. Usually it demands tremendous investments in intelligence gathering and a deep understanding of a foreign culture. Success requires gaining the allegiance, or at least acquiescence, of local noncombatants by providing personal security and economic stability. Firepower, when not used with utmost discrimination, will likely have counterproductive effects.” – Jonathan D. Caverly

        Israel needs to lift the blockade, while maintaining reasonable border checks. They need to make avoiding civilian casualties their number one priority. It doesn’t matter if you kill a terrorist if, in the act, you recruit five more people for the terrorist organization. Israel needs to be seen as opposing Hamas, not opposing Palestine. They should be bringing in an abundance of civilian supplies, and ensuring their distribution to the civilian population – so the population sees Israel as defending them against Hamas’s theft.

        Then they need to accept that this will take generations, and they will continue to suffer some attacks for decades, without a strong military response. But the other option is to “Make a desert and call it peace,” and I at least have no stomach for genocide.

  3. L-RN,

    Success requires gaining the allegiance, or at least acquiescence, of local noncombatants by providing personal security and economic stability.

    And if the local non-combatants support and agree with the combatants? Because that is what is happening in Palestine. This is not some foreign invaders hiding in a civilian population. This is not some small group of extremists not-reflecting the popular opinion.

    they should be bringing in an abundance of civilian supplies, and ensuring their distribution to the civilian population – so the population sees Israel as defending them against Hamas’s theft.

    So Israel should support the people who are part and parcel of the attempt to wipe them off the map? I’m sorry but it seems deliberate and willful ignorance of the hatred the Arabs have for Israel. Again — the population of ‘civilians’ greatly out numbers Hamas and the other terrorists actively engaging Israel. If the Palestinians truly wanted peace; truly wanted Israel to exist; they could stop Hamas.

    They don’t.

    Then they need to accept that this will take generations, and they will continue to suffer some attacks for decades, without a strong military response.

    Let me purpose an experiment; at random times, random places I will physically assault the people you care about, the people you are charged to protect.
    Your response has to follow the model you’ve outlined for Israel. You and your family/friends/loved ones all agree to hold me blameless for the attacks. No civil consequences, no criminal consequences; you must follow the protocol you set forth.

    How long will you continue when your people have suffered attack after attack after attack after attack?

    Bob S.

  4. http://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/4570/gaza-civilian-casualties

    We will not get to the truth until the battle is over. But we know now that Hamas have ordered their people to report all deaths as innocent civilians. We know too that Hamas has a track record of lying about casualties. After Operation Cast Lead, the 2008-09 fighting in Gaza, the IDF estimated that of 1,166 Palestinian deaths, 709 were fighters. Hamas – backed by several NGOs – claimed that only 49 of its fighters had been killed, the rest were innocent civilians. Much later they were forced to admit that the IDF had been right all along and between 600 and 700 of the casualties had in fact been fighters. But the short-memoried media are incapable of factoring this in before broadcasting their ill-founded and inflammatory assertions.

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