This post is for folks in a state of confusion, who will be having “balanced discussions” over whether or not Israel’s response is “disproportionate,” in retaliation for the last three years of rocket attacks on schools and houses in Israel, from Hamas.
JERUSALEM — In its efforts to stop amateur rockets from nagging the residents of some of its southern cities, Israel appears to have given new life to the fledging Islamic movement in Palestine.
I don’t know. It’s good, but not really a side-splitter. If Kuttab really wants to make it into the big-time comedy circuit I would have gone with:
JERUSALEM — In its efforts to stop free sensual massages from caressing the residents of one or two tiny little backwater atolls, Israel appears to have rejected health benefits for the dove-like orphans of the Palestinian Peaceful Chiropractic Practicers Union.
Here’s a video of some helpless orphans massaging the Israelis from a Gaza school:
If you find yourself having one of these “balanced discussions,” or making equivocating remarks like, “both sides should show restraint,” or not considering the fact that Hamas’ platform consists of the eradication of Israel – consider the following:
(excerpts from Charles Krauthammer’s column this week, a must read, below – emphasis mine):
Late Saturday, thousands of Gazans received Arabic-language cell-phone messages from the Israeli military, urging them to leave homes where militants might have stashed weapons.
— Associated Press, Dec. 27
Some geopolitical conflicts are morally complicated. The Israel-Gaza war is not. It possesses a moral clarity not only rare but excruciating.
Israel is so scrupulous about civilian life that, risking the element of surprise, it contacts enemy noncombatants in advance to warn them of approaching danger. Hamas, which started this conflict with unrelenting rocket and mortar attacks on unarmed Israelis — 6,464 launched from Gaza in the past three years — deliberately places its weapons in and near the homes of its own people.
This has two purposes. First, counting on the moral scrupulousness of Israel, Hamas figures civilian proximity might help protect at least part of its arsenal. Second, knowing that Israelis have new precision weapons that may allow them to attack nonetheless, Hamas hopes that inevitable collateral damage — or, if it is really fortunate, an errant Israeli bomb — will kill large numbers of its own people for which, of course, the world will blame Israel.
For Hamas, the only thing more prized than dead Jews are dead Palestinians. The religion of Jew-murder and self-martyrdom is ubiquitous. And deeply perverse, such as the Hamas TV children’s program in which an adorable live-action Palestinian Mickey Mouse is beaten to death by an Israeli (then replaced by his more militant cousin, Nahoul the Bee, who vows to continue on Mickey’s path to martyrdom).
At war today in Gaza, one combatant is committed to causing the most civilian pain and suffering on both sides. The other combatant is committed to saving as many lives as possible — also on both sides. It’s a recurring theme. Israel gave similar warnings to Southern Lebanese villagers before attacking Hezbollah in the Lebanon war of 2006. The Israelis did this knowing it would lose for them the element of surprise and cost the lives of their own soldiers.
The grievance? It cannot be occupation, military control or settlers. They were all removed in September 2005. There’s only one grievance and Hamas is open about it. Israel’s very existence.
Nor does Hamas conceal its strategy. Provoke conflict. Wait for the inevitable civilian casualties. Bring down the world’s opprobrium on Israel. Force it into an untenable cease-fire — exactly as happened in Lebanon. Then, as in Lebanon, rearm, rebuild and mobilize for the next round. Perpetual war. Since its raison d’etre is the eradication of Israel, there are only two possible outcomes: the defeat of Hamas or the extinction of Israel.