Monday, April 2, 2018


Gaza I

I hate to see what's happening in and to Gaza.

Are Gaza protestors in some cases being intentionally provocative? From what I can tell, yes. I'd be surprised if that weren’t the case. What other style of leadership has Hamas ever had to offer?

Are the Israelis employing overkill? Once again, yes. Given his rightwing government, Netanyahu has fewer constraints than ever, and more encouragement to suppression.

And the residents of Gaza fewer allies.

Gaza is being squeezed not just by Israel but by Egypt, which enforces a blockade from its side. And by the fact that there is no peace between Mahmoud Abbas, the octogenarian who putatively represents West Bank Palestinians, and Hamas; there is only enmity.

One difference I see between the current conflict and the 2014 Israel–Gaza war is that militants in Gaza are not attacking Israel or Israeli settlements directly. There are no rockets being launched. The tunnels Hamas had used to infiltrate Israel have reportedly been destroyed.

Israel has a right to defend itself against attack but in this case is it being attacked?

I see provocative but relatively trivial border incidents to which Israeli troops are violently overreacting, as if each amounted to a real insult to its existence and a challenge to its sovereignty.

Is Hamas playing to "world opinion", whatever that means?

Perhaps. But no one is coming to the rescue of Gaza. The Sunni powers, led by Saudi Arabia, are far more interested in cementing their ties with Israel in preparation for the war against Iran they both crave. (They hope too that Israel Israeli-Washington ties will bring the United States into it.)

My geopolitical ruminations to the side, so far as I can see, between the follies of their own leadership and the enmity of their foes the residents of Gaza are being subjected to unsparing cruelty.

Gaza II

One response to previous post about Gaza:

Gaza protestors being "intentionally provocative".,.? This is no longer in the category of speculative query but verified agenda. Those in doubt should read the manifesto of the terrorist arm of Palestinian cause, Hamas. It's all there available on the internet. The Hamas Charter, 1988, revised in 2017. Resistance to Israel is mandated by any ways and means. The fight against Zionism, aka the continued nationhood of Israel, must continue unrelentingly at whatever cost of human life however long that may take. It's a holy mission, a mandate from Allah never to be relinquished. Palestinian leadership has managed to accumulate capital to their cause in the court of world opinion by victimizing their own people, encouraging them to commit violent acts, to sacrifice their own lives. An immorality sold and bought into by those duped into identifying this duplicity as humanitarian cause.

My response:

I think much of what you say is true about Palestinian dedication to suicidal opposition, but even if every bit of it is true it is still legitimate to ask why the IDF chose lethal responses. It didn't have to. The protestors posed no lethal — certainly no existential — threat to Israel.

No Israelis nor Israeli settlements were harmed. And I've yet to read accounts of the IDF being harmed.

I think the killings were predetermined warnings to Gaza protestors and beyond — to Hamas, and beyond Hamas to Hezbollah and Iran.

And beyond that, to whoever crosses Likud defined tripwires in opposition to Israeli policies — critics of the occupation of the West Bank, and critics of the shrinkage of Israel democracy.

Not that they will be shot but their views will be utterly disregarded.

No, it's not an excuse that residents of Gaza are in a truly dire and pathetic situation, but they are.

And it seems Israel, instead of alleviating it to some degree,  doesn't mind making it more dire.

Let me also express some surprise that those who see Trump as involved in the negation of democracy fail to see anything similar about the reign of Netanyahu.

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