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Genocide in Gaza

Xenophon's picture
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Photo by Adel Hana AP

The silence is deafening.

January 18, 2008

Israel blocked shipment of food, fuel and all other supplies into the Gaza Strip on Friday and intensified airstrikes on the Palestinian territory, calling the steps a response to increasing rocket attacks into Israel. Ellen Knickmeyer, Washington Post

December 27, 2008

Hospitals crowded with people, civilians rushing in wounded people in cars, vans and ambulances. "There are heads without bodies .... There's blood in the corridors. People are weeping, women are crying, doctors are shouting, "

said nurse Ahmed Abdel Salaam from Shifa Hospital, Gaza's main treatment center. By early evening, 205 Gazans were known to be dead and 388 wounded, Gaza health official Dr. Moaiya Hassanain said. He did not provide figures on civilian deaths. Israeli military officials said more than 100 tons of bombs were dropped on Gaza by mid-afternoon. IBRAHIM BARZAK, Associated Press

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DCblogger's picture
Submitted by DCblogger on

thank you for posting on this

apolitiko's picture
Submitted by apolitiko on

and whenever I mention that there is a Palestinian side to the issue (that largely of the victim), I'm met with cold, icy, uninterested stares from most Americans.

Like DCBlogger, thank you for posting this.

vastleft's picture
Submitted by vastleft on

A. The mainstream, which includes the news media, the Beltway, and non-lefties. In their world, Israel is never blameworthy, Jerusalem must be its permanent capital, etc.
B. Lefty circles (progressive blogs, academia, etc.), where there is virtually never any outrage expressed about, say, missile attacks and suicide bombings on Israeli targets.

My #1 agenda on this topic is for people to acknowledge that kneejerk "respect" afforded to people's religious superstitions is a huge part of the problem. No God gave anybody any birthright to the "Holy Lands," and the day we can reliably expect rational acknowledgment of that is the day there's a hope of a peaceful resolution.

Nudnik's picture
Submitted by Nudnik on

Hamas has been committing war crimes daily, yet no one of the left ever bothered about that. In fact, more than 5000 missiles have been fired from Gaza into Israel, intentionally targeting civilians - everyone a war crime. On top of that, Hamas has situated its military infrastructure in civilian areas...another war crime.

Almost all those Palestinians killed today were Hamas terrorists. Any civilians killed were a result of Hamas placing their bases in civilian areas, and therefore by international law they are solely responsible for those civilian deaths.

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

total bull.

and our military infrastructure is in civilian areas too -- would that make it ok to bomb every town and city with a military base or armory? no.

they're totally cut off, and can't even get food aid in, and are blocked by both Eqypt and Israel -- wtf should they do?

Nudnik's picture
Submitted by Nudnik on

wtf should they do?

Hmm....stop firing rockets into Israel would be a good first step.

and our military infrastructure is in civilian areas too -- would that make it ok to bomb every town and city with a military base or armory?

But it would be ok to bomb those bases...exactly what Israel is doing in Gaza.

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

... Still, there was a shocking quality to Saturday’s attacks that began in broad daylight, as police cadets were graduating, women were shopping at the outdoor market and children were emerging from school.

The center of Gaza City was a scene of chaotic horror, with rubble everywhere, sirens wailing, and women shrieking as dozens of mutilated bodies were laid out on the pavement and in the lobby of Shifa Hospital so that family members could identify them. Most of those killed were Hamas police officers and security men, including two senior commanders, according to Palestinian officials. But the dead included at least a dozen civilians, including several construction workers and at least two children in school uniforms. ...

Israeli officials said that anyone linked to the Hamas security structure or government was fair game since Hamas was a terrorist group that sought Israel’s destruction. But with work here increasingly scarce because of an international embargo on Hamas, young men are tempted by the steady work of the police force without necessarily fully accepting the Hamas ideology. One of the biggest tolls on Saturday was at a police cadet graduation ceremony in which 15 were killed. ...

Nudnik's picture
Submitted by Nudnik on

Don't know where you're from, but the US does not put military bases in major urban centers, precisely because in the event of an attack they would get bombed.

Meanwhile, Hamas does exactly that; it puts bases, weapons depots, etc in the middle of Gaza City precisely because it knows that when those bases are bombed, civilians will be killed and useful idiots like you will react in exactly the way you did.

And those "police", aren't exactly the cop-on-the-beat police. They are Hamas fighters, ie military personnel. Bombing them is not only legal, but essential.

Finally, even in the midst of Gaza city, almost all of those killed were Hamas terrorists. From the article you posted:

Most of those killed were Hamas police officers and security men, including two senior commanders, according to Palestinian officials.

The fact that out of more than two hundred killed there were only 12 civilian casualties (95% military) is amazing and a testament to Israel's policy of targeting terrorists and not civilians, in complete contrast to Hamas which does the opposite.

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

they weren't the ones firing rockets. And all cops there are "Hamas police" -- they are the govt.

Just as all people who wanted govt jobs --or to do well-- had to join the Baath Party under Saddam, and the Communist Party under the USSR.

and Israel knows that, too -- they have the best targeting systems our billions in aid each year can buy.

and every week, we're bombing and killing innocent Afghanis -- are they "terrorists" too? Simply because they live there -- and have to make a living?

Nudnik's picture
Submitted by Nudnik on

they weren't the ones firing rockets.

Not yet...but once they graduate, they are the ones who fire the rockets.

So you are equating Hamas to the Baath Party, and to the Communist Party in the USSR. That statement I would agree with...just another totalitarian regime.

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

firing rockets -- the vast vast majority of people in Gaza are not firing rockets either.

What do you suggest people do for work and food there, Nudnik? What are the options? What do you think you'd be doing if you lived in Gaza City? in Baghdad under Saddam? in Iran under the Shahs? in most countries at most times throughout history?

pie's picture
Submitted by pie on

How's the weather down there?

I despise apologists.

zeezee's picture
Submitted by zeezee on

in civilian areas as well. It's strange how someone can hold the Palestinians to a higher standard than he or she holds the Israelis and yet still assume that the Israelis have the moral high ground.... I was about to call it "funny" but nothing about this is funny.

The root of the problem is not the violence. The violence ion both sides is simply a result of the inequality and the occupation and the desire of Israel to treat the people's of that land differently based on their religion or ethnic background.

The best allegory I can think of is of a man standing on another man's chest. Occasionally the prone man lashes out and hits the legs of the man on his chest. In retaliation the man above him kicks him in the head. Bystanders notice and decry the violence, but never seem to notice that one man is standing on the chest of the other, slowly forcing the life out of him. Some people decry the act of violence by the prone man, some decry the violence of the man astride. Some decry that both are to blame. But in the end, the man is still standing on the other man's chest, and no one seems to notice, or see what is obviously the original cause of the violence on both sides.

Few people decried the violence in apartheid South Africa without noticing that it was not a cause of the problem, but only a result. Too few people understand that the problem in Israel and the Occupied Territories, at its base, is the same as it was in South Africa.

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

the overwhelmingly disproportionate response by Israel each time, and the walling and blockading makes the situation even more desperate for Palestinians. They're shut in without food or work, and simply expected to take it?

no one would shut up and accept that treatment -- why should they?

Nudnik's picture
Submitted by Nudnik on

You obviously have never been to Israel. Having traveled extensively in Israel, the only bases I saw were very far away from the cities. The only infrastructure in the cities, is the Defense Ministry in Tel Aviv.

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

all govt workers in Israel are valid targets too, no? It's never a person on a military base who orders bombing and airstrikes and blockades and walls built and checkpoints constructed -- it's govt officials.

zeezee's picture
Submitted by zeezee on

(Yes, she's a Jewish Israeli citizen. ) You obviously weren't paying attention during the Lebanon War, when it was exposed that Israel had several military related outposts situated in close proximity to Arab populated cities in Israel, with the hopes that they would not be targeted by Hezbollah if they were so close to Arab Israelis. You would also know that there are several outpost next to or in Jewish border towns.

If you were as familiar with Israel as I am you would also know that the majority of citizens of Israel over the age of 18 are, or have been, members of the IDF or the reserves. By your standard of complicity, most Israelis are NOT civilians, although I suspect that you, again, hold the Palestinians to a higher standard than you do Israelis.

If you have traveled so often in Israel, then I would guess that you are aware that IDF reserve soldiers, when reporting for duty, do not use military transport, but rather use the Israeli bus system, on which they are encouraged to travel freely. Again, by your standard( if you applied it to the Israelis as well) this would make every suicide attack on an Israeli bus a legitimate attack on a military target.

Have you been to the West Bank? Have you visited with Palestinians? I suggest that the next time you visit, look up Birthright Unplugged and get an eyeful and earful of what you are condoning in the name of Israel.

Nudnik's picture
Submitted by Nudnik on

So Israeli military bases, were in proximity to cities, but not actually in the center of the cities as Hamas has placed them.

The mistake you are making is equating people who are eligible for reserve duty with combatants. This is wholly incorrect. Yes, most Israelis are subject to reserve duty. But while they are not in uniform, they are civilians. This is basic international law. Until they get to their base and put on a uniform, they are not soldiers or combatants, so your entire argument is meaningless.

Moreover, those Hamas terrorists killed were not reserve combatants, they were in uniform, making them legitimate targets.

And yes, I have been to the West Bank, and have visited and talked to Palestinians. And every one of them was a whole lot happier with the situation when Israel was in control of the West Bank. I am sure this goes doubly for Gaza.

zeezee's picture
Submitted by zeezee on

storage area was within meters of the town of Nazareth. It most likely wasn't in the center of Nazareth because 1) There wasn't enough open space for it in the center of Nazareth, which is quite crowded and 2) Security concerns about its Arab citizens would have prevented it from being there. Israel put it there specifically because they wanted to use the Israeli Arabs of Nazareth as human shields.

There was also a Lebanese rocket attack that hit an Israeli base that was right in the middle of one of the Jewish border towns. Israel tried to pretend it was an attack on civilians, but the number of soldiers among the dead belied the fact. If you live in Israel you come to realize that the IDF seldom tells the truth unless forced to..

As for Hamas "military bases" I doubt that there really are such things. They don't have the means to create them. And in case you didn't know, there are no real open spaces in Gaza, which has the highest population density in the world. Again, you hold Palestinians to higher standards than you hold Israelis. So an IDF member is a civilian until he puts on a uniform and reports to his base, but a Palestinian is a military member whether he is in uniform or not, or at a base or not. That is your double standard. Israeli soldiers have been shooting at civilians, including children, for decades now, and yet you only find the fault with Palestinians. http://www.couragetorefuse.org/English/d...

And Israel is still in control in the West Bank, through the occupation, and even in Gaza, through its blockade. Its silly to insist otherwise. So, do you think that Israel is justified in treating the Palestinians in the West Bank as inferior to the Jewish settlers there, with one rule of law for the settlers and another one for the Palestinians. Did you bother to ask the Palestinians how they felt about that?

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

and Obama's gonna stay the course, of course. here he is at AIPAC --

... I will bring to the White House an unshakeable commitment to Israel's security. That starts with ensuring Israel's qualitative military advantage. ...I will ensure Israel can defend itself from any threat, from Gaza to Tehran. ... ... As president I will implelement a Memeorandum of Understanding to provide $30 billion in [defense] investments to Israel - not tied to any other nation.

I will always stand up for Israel's right to defend itself at the UN and around the world. (applause)

Real security can only come through lasting peace. That is In Israel's national interest, in America's national interest, and in the Palestinian peoples' interest. (applause)

I will help achieve the goal of two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security. And I won't wait until waning days of my presidency. I will take an active role to advance cause of peace from start of my administration (applause). ...

There is no room at the negotiating table for terrorist organizations. (applause) That is why I opposed allowing Hamas to run in 2006 presidential elections. Israel and the Palestinian Authority warned us, but this administration pressed ahead. The result is Gaza controlled by Hamas. ...

lenin's tomb--

... according to the UN, the Israeli blockade has resulted in Palestinians receiving running water only once every five to seven days. UNRWA ran out of flour some time ago, and Gaza's bakeries have warned they will have to close down. No more bread. 70% of Gazans already had no reliable source of food. Poverty is soaring, with nine out of ten Gazans living below the poverty line. Gazan families have been forced to eat grass to survive. And if those people aren't sufficiently careful in their selection of pasture, they may end up taking home a poisoned batch, because raw sewage has been pumping out into the streets and into the soil since the blockade was first imposed.
...

The options for a 'Jewish state' determined to maintain itself as such, with a majority no lower than 80%, are few. Obviously, any recognition of Palestine as a free nation is anathema to a wide swathe of Israeli opinion, including much elite opinion. And Israeli leaders have never shown any sign that they are willing to contemplate this. Just as surely as Gaza is an "enemy entity" today, a truly independent Palestine would be a mortal enemy entity, calling into question by its very existence the whole narrative and rationale behind a 'Jewish state' built out of blood and iron in an Arab country. However, the incorporation of a Palestinian Arab population into Israel would undermine the labyrinthine racial hierarchy that Israel's leaders have so assiduously constructed. What commentators are apt to describe as the "demographic timebomb" is a colonial one: how to get the territory and at the same dispose of the troublesome population. In a previous era, it might have entailed little difficulty just to drive them out in a bloody purge and force the surviving refugees to try and integrate as discarded untermenschen into societies run by bribed police states. As Benny Morris has said, it would have been much easier for Israel had it simply completed the task in 1948. Now, they've got to answer to the soft-headed humanitarianism of modern television audiences, and they've got to pretend to be the victims. All they have to assist them in this task is a few measly rockets being lobbed into southern Israel to little effect. They don't even have the suicide attacks that characterised the Second Intifada, during which time the decontextualised focus on explosions ensured that people in the West largely missed the fact that Israel was knocking of Palestinian civilians at a much higher rate than the suicide attacks were killing Israelis. With so little to assist its PR plight, no wonder Israel needs its overseas contingent of berserkers more than ever. ...

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

Israel's ongoing war on Palestinian self-determination (EDIT: 200+ dead, Obama: no comment)

NYT, November -- Israeli Strike Is First in Gaza Since Start of Cease-Fire --

... Israel carried out an airstrike on Gaza on Tuesday night after its troops clashed with Hamas gunmen along the border in the first such confrontation since a cease-fire took effect in June.

Five militants were killed, Palestinian officials told The Associated Press.

An Israeli security force had entered Gaza to destroy a tunnel and fought with Hamas gunmen, killing one and wounding at least three, according to Palestinian hospital officials. ...

Nudnik's picture
Submitted by Nudnik on

And the rest of that article says:

An Israeli military official, speaking on the condition of anonymity under army rules, said that the tunnel lay about 270 yards inside Gaza and was apparently intended for use in the abduction of a soldier or soldiers. The tunnel was ready for an “imminent” operation, the official said.

The Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of Hamas, said in a statement that it had fired at least 10 mortar shells at the Israeli force. Several landed in Israeli territory, the Israeli military said.

Israel then launched an airstrike, in which four militants were killed, The A.P. reported.

Military officials said that the initial army raid was a “pinpoint” operation aimed at thwarting a specific threat, and that Israel remained committed to the truce.

The truce has largely held so far, despite some sporadic rocket and mortar fire by Gaza renegades and complaints from Hamas that Israel has not gone far enough in easing the economic embargo on the area.

So the "sporadic rocket and mortar fire" as well as preparing an abduction is part of the truce, but the Israeli response is a violation of it? Makes sense.

Nudnik's picture
Submitted by Nudnik on

No, it was a response to an imminent Hamas operation to abduct a soldier and hold him hostage. The "sporadic rocket and mortar attacks" part of the ceasefire, Israel ignored.

And the truce was that Hamas would not rearm and would not continue shooting rockets at Israel. But that didn't happen.

Hamas was elected...democratically is a bit of a stretch. But that fact also means that the Palestinian people support Hamas's policies. Maybe they should elect someone else next time.

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

they kill far more Palestinians than the other way around -- always. Today's bombs killed hundreds -- and the blockades, walls, and embargo are killing far more.

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

sometimes indirect.

(i do think, tho, that since so many Israelis believe that all Arabs want them all dead, it'd be foolish not to turn that around, and understandable for Palestinians to see it as such -- esp given Israel's official policies of illegal landgrabs, resource grabs, discrimination even against Israeli Arabs, walls, blockades, and overt segregation and apartheid, etc)

Submitted by Randall Kohn on

Otherwise the Kassam rocket attacks would not be happening.

Otherwise, there would have been no need of a truce - a truce which Hamas announced it was going to break.

Day to day, Hamas, not Israel, controls Gaza. Hamas also has an intended aim of killing all Iaraelis. That's a de facto state of war by any measure.

In any event, the blockade is a joint Israel-Egypt operation - not that anyone ever notices.

zeezee's picture
Submitted by zeezee on

been able to do an accurate population count in Gaza or the West Bank for years.
For an alternate viewpoint, there is this from a racist Israeli group about the accuracy of Palestinian projections: http://www.eretzyisroel.org/~jkatz/padem...

My sister(the Israeli) says that this viewpoint has gained some measure of acceptance in Israel, thus there is less of a countrywide concern about the "demographic threat".

So its hard to say what the true results of Israel's actions are in Gaza. But its hard to call this:

according to the UN, the Israeli blockade has resulted in Palestinians receiving running water only once every five to seven days. UNRWA ran out of flour some time ago, and Gaza's bakeries have warned they will have to close down. No more bread. 70% of Gazans already had no reliable source of food. Poverty is soaring, with nine out of ten Gazans living below the poverty line. Gazan families have been forced to eat grass to survive. And if those people aren't sufficiently careful in their selection of pasture, they may end up taking home a poisoned batch, because raw sewage has been pumping out into the streets and into the soil since the blockade was first imposed.

anything other than an attempt at slow genocide.

Similar, though somewhat less catastrophic(i.e., slower), things are happening in the West Bank. Perhaps a better word would be "politicide". Israel doesn't mind a few Palestinians around, as long as they have no cohesion as a group, are walled off in isolated enclaves away from fertile land; out of sight and thus out of mind. They are going for the American "solution" vis a vis he American Indians.

Submitted by Randall Kohn on

If they did, they'd occupy Gaza permanently. That's the last thing they seem to want to do.

zeezee's picture
Submitted by zeezee on

Gaza is like one big American Indian reservation of the late nineteeth century and many Palestinian towns in the West Bank are slowly becoming the same because of the Wall and the constant expropriation of more and more Palestinian land.

Israel never really wanted the land in Gaza, except as a holding pen for Palestinians. The land is not rich, and the water table is contaminated with salt water from excessive Israeli drilling. Its perfect reservation land in the US mold.

I'd try a thought experiment if I were you. Imagine that it was not Israel doing this but it was instead being done by the US. Would you understand how people could be shocked by this? Could you be shocked by this?

DCblogger's picture
Submitted by DCblogger on

but Israel's slide to torturing police state began then.

The Palestinians have learned a lot since '67. It has to all be worked out, but the essence has to be adherence to UN Resolutions 242 and 334, Camp David, and the more recent Geneva Accords.

Nudnik's picture
Submitted by Nudnik on

I suggest you reread the UN resolutions you are citing. (And the Geneva Accords are meaningless since they were "negotiated" by people from both sides who had no authority to negotiate anything.) UN 242 does not state that Israel needs to return to the 1967 borders. In fact, in the framing of that resolution, it is clear that the intent was that Israel would not have to return to those borders. In fact, based on the wording of that resolution, a legitimate argument can be made that Israel already fulfilled the terms of it by returning Sinai. Moreover, UN242 requires something from the Arab side...peace. Still waiting for that one.

DCblogger's picture
Submitted by DCblogger on

Complete Text

The Security Council,

Expressing its continuing concern with the grave situation in the Middle East,

Emphasizing the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war and the need to work for a just and lasting peace in which every State in the area can live in security,

Emphasizing further that all Member States in their acceptance of the Charter of the United Nations have undertaken a commitment to act in accordance with Article 2 of the Charter,

1. Affirms that the fulfillment of Charter principles requires the establishment of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East which should include the application of both the following principles:

(i) Withdrawal of Israel armed forces from territories occupied in the recent conflict;

(ii) Termination of all claims or states of belligerency and respect for and acknowledgement of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of every State in the area and their right to live in peace within secure and recognized boundaries free from threats or acts of force;

2. Affirms further the necessity

(a) For guaranteeing freedom of navigation through international waterways in the area;

(b) For achieving a just settlement of the refugee problem;

(c) For guaranteeing the territorial inviolability and political independence of every State in the area, through measures including the establishment of demilitarized zones;

3. Requests the Secretary-General to designate a Special Representative to proceed to the Middle East to establish and maintain contacts with the States concerned in order to promote agreement and assist efforts to achieve a peaceful and accepted settlement in accordance with the provisions and principles in this resolution;

4. Requests the Secretary-General to report to the Security Council on the progress of the efforts of the Special Representative as soon as possible.

Actually it is quite clear, it is just that there is a whole industry devoted to blowing smoke.

Nudnik's picture
Submitted by Nudnik on

Absolutely right, it is quite clear that Israel does not need to withdraw from "all territories" or "the territory" occupied in the conflict. Here is what Lord Carrandon. the British Ambassador to the UN who introduced UN 242 said:

It would have been wrong to demand that Israel return to its positions of June 4, 1967, because those positions were undesirable and artificial. After all, they were just the places where the soldiers of each side happened to be on the day the fighting stopped in 1948. They were just armistice lines. That's why we didn't demand that the Israelis return to them.

And what of point 1(ii) of the resolution? Still waiting for that from the Arab belligerents.

zeezee's picture
Submitted by zeezee on

clueless that point 1(ii) applies to Israel as well. and we are all still waiting for the Israeli belligerence to end. Or is it your viewpoint that Israel is not required to adhere to either point 1(i) or point 1(ii)? No wonder there is no peace. There are too many people, in Israel and here in the US, that think that the only way to resolve a conflict is for everyone else to bend to their will, and then can't understand why they are so hated by everyone. It must be because of our religion , or because they envy our freedoms. It couldn't possibly be our attitudes and actions. Yeah, good luck with that.

Good night.

zeezee's picture
Submitted by zeezee on

Israel has been a belligerent occupier of the West Bank and Gaza since 1967. It has never ceased its belligerence. It has twice invaded parts of Lebanon and occupied it. Its the picture postcard of belligerence in this long running conflict. It continues to control Gaza through its blockade, determining what gets in and when, who gets in and who gets out, and its control of Gaza's electricity (having bombed the Gaza power plant, Israel has now made Gazan's totally dependent on electricity from Israel. ) If you can't see the belligerence that Israel has shown through the decades on this, then you truly are clueless.

Nudnik's picture
Submitted by Nudnik on

Israel has already adhered to point 1(i) by returning the Sinai. As to point 1(ii), it is the arab states that refuse to recognize Israel's right to exist, and still insist that there is a state of war with Israel. No wonder there is no peace.

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

BBC, Dec 22 -- Israeli leaders 'to topple Hamas'

...Shortly afterwards, however, Ms Livni told a meeting of her Kadima party that she would topple Hamas if she became prime minister after the general election on 10 February.

"The state of Israel, and a government under me, will make it a strategic objective to topple the Hamas regime in Gaza," she said. "The means for doing this should be military, economic and diplomatic.

"Israel must react when it is fired upon, must re-establish its force of dissuasion and stop the rockets," she added. "This is what has to be done and this is what I will do."

Mr Netanyahu, whose right-wing Likud party is currently ahead in the polls, meanwhile called for a more "active policy of attack", accusing the current government of being too "passive".

"In the long-term, the toppling of the Hamas regime is inevitable," he said while visiting Sderot on Sunday. ...

Xenophon's picture
Submitted by Xenophon on

Israel has been blockading Gaza for over a year. That is food, water, fuel and medical supplies. The Israeli government has been starving Gaza to death. The Israeli death count from some 300 rockets was at last count 0. Israel has become an apartheid state, and worst than that it has commited itself to the eradication of an entire people. What else do you call this but a pogrom?

Nudnik's picture
Submitted by Nudnik on

First, you are incorrect that Israel has been "starving Gaza to death". There has not been one case of starvation in Gaza. Supplies have been getting in during the "truce". Hamas has built dozens of tunnels for smuggling weapons, why haven't they been smuggling food through them too? Moreover, why is Egypt not allowing supplies to get in?

The Israeli death count from those last 300 rockets is so far 1 civilian dead, and 8 injured. But why does that matter? The Palestinians have fired over 5000 missiles into Israel, targeting civilians. Each one of those is a war crime under international law. The fact that they have crappy missiles does not mean that they have not been trying to kill Israeli civilians. Would this Israeli retaliation been ok with you if those missiles had killed people? Does Israel have to wait until its civilians are butchered before it can respond? That is simply inane.

Hamas has been preparing for and waging war against Israel. Now Israel responds, and all the useful idiots get upset. If Hamas had wanted to stop the blockade, or had wanted negotiations, all they had to do was to stop firing missiles into Israel. But then they would actually have to govern, as opposed to being a heroic resistance movement. Much easier to keep their own people miserable than to actually do something good for them. They chose to wage war, thinking that Israel will not have the stomach to fight back, and now they are crying that Israel has done what any country in the world not only would do, but is obligated to do. No, it is not a pogrom, it is a war that Hamas started and that Israel has finally joined.

Xenophon's picture
Submitted by Xenophon on

Egypt’s government contributes to the blockade of Gaza by refusing to open the Rafah crossing point without Israeli approval, as it agreed in a 2005 deal with the Israelis.

So just as soon as Israel clears Egypt to let supplies through without violating the 1979 agreement and thereby risking war ... I'm sure Egypt will let convoys through.

Damon's picture
Submitted by Damon on

This is why I have such a hard time sympathizing with Israeli arguments every time this happens. I don't advocate violence, period, which is why I have little patience with the likes of Hamas, but it should be clear to see that the once bullied are now the bulliers. You can see Israel as the victim without realizing that your average Palestinian, here, is even more of a victim.

I'm rather pleased, too, to finally find somewhere where people look at the issue more objectively. Too often and more often the response is "Israel Wrong or Right", and much less the time the only other pole that seems to be present is to downplay Hamas violence.

Nudnik's picture
Submitted by Nudnik on

Yes, the Palestinians are victims of their own leadership.

Damon's picture
Submitted by Damon on

You are hardly objective, as shown by your comments, so I couldn't really care less about your silly little quips. If you're not able or willing to see the Israeli's hand in this conflict, as well, than you needn't be taken seriously. You're a hack, and thus you'll be treated as such.

I can't remember you posting on here, but only now do you feel the need to post?

Xenophon's picture
Submitted by Xenophon on

Since June 2007. Remeber when Hamas beat Fatah?

And excuse me you're correct they are not starving to death. This is a meticulously planned siege.

"'The Israelis have been careful calibrating what they let in so there is no death by starvation,' though he added that Gazans do not have a healthy diet or get enough to eat." Link

Submitted by lambert on

I'm so happy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Xen: Great quote on "carefully calibrated." A torturer's mentality.

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

Delusions of victory in Gaza --

... How many soldiers are expected to be killed in the first wave? How many months is the IDF expected to spend in Gaza, sweeping its houses and tunnels? How many Palestinian civilians will be killed? Will Gilad Shalit survive in such a scenario? Will Hezbollah remain passive during a Gaza offensive? How will the residents of the West Bank, Jordan and Egypt react? What about the new U.S. president? And Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas? Not that he really matters.

According to the government, Israel has full legitimacy to take action against those who threaten its citizens. That is the reason the state was created and no other country would tolerate such attacks on its towns. It's a nice slogan, identical to that of Hamas: Why should Gazan citizens tolerate such a long and severe siege for so long? Can its leadership tolerate a succession of targeted killing against its leaders? And what of the killing of innocent civilians in air strikes? Hamas agreed to a cease-fire to end the violent dialogue.

It should be remembered that Israel chanted the same slogans when the Second Lebanon War began, from which it came back badly bruised. The optimistic scenario did not materialize then and it is hard to believe it will now in Gaza. The legitimacy of the Lebanon war triumphed just as the war was lost.

Unlike the Lebanon war, whose chief priority was to bring back the abducted IDF soldiers which encompassed the destruction of Hezbollah's military "infrastructure," the Gaza operation's motivation is different: Halting rocket-firing at the Negev and destroying Hamas' rule. A new order will be set up in the occupied territories and the PA, and Abbas will be brought back to Gaza under the Israeli military's aegis. Just before we get lost in this dream scenario let us examine reality.

Six months ago Israel asked and received a cease-fire from Hamas. It unilaterally violated it when it blew up a tunnel, while still asking Egypt to get the Islamic group to hold its fire. ...

What the hell is "Victory" in this?

What Israel is doing simply ensures more Hamas anger -- and rockets.

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

Define the objectives in Gaza --

... But understanding is no substitute for wisdom, and the inherent desire for retribution does not necessarily have to blind us to the view from the day after. The expression "time for combat" still does not elucidate the goals of the assault. Does Israel seek to "just" send Hamas a violent, horrifying message? Is the intention to destroy the organization's military and civilian infrastructure? Perhaps the goal is far-reaching to the point of removing Hamas from power in Gaza and transferring rule to the Palestinian Authority, headed by Mahmoud Abbas? How does Israel intend to realize these goals? The aerial assault on its own, as one may recall from the Lebanon War, cannot suffice. Does the IDF plan on deploying thousands of soldiers in the streets of Gaza? And what will the number of casualties be at this stage? ...

That same public knows well, and not only from the Lebanon experience, that working toward long-term goals that would completely change the landscape in the region, like toppling Hamas from power in Gaza, is liable to turn out to be a wild fantasy. ...