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Thread: Gaza complicates Barack Obama's policy in Mideast

  1. #196
    Elite Member january's Avatar
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    Some Israelis say that overwhelmingly their population supports this latest round of attacks, but given the editorial content from their own newspapers and also from firsthand knowledge of people there, I will contest that. I'm not saying that there aren't some who will support this unjust slaying of innocent women and children, but others have the foresight to look past being patriotic or allegiance to their religion and realize what the hell is really going on here.

    And why does posting shit about Hamas somehow excuse the fact that Israel is committing war crimes? If you want to put your country in a good light, stop trying to deflect. Tell me how Israel has helped the people of Gaza by letting humanitarian aid. Tell me that they aren't killing innocent civilians indiscriminately. Tell me that they aren't shelling civilian centers or UN aid trucks trying to deliver aid shipments to the dying. Tell me that they aren't using phosphorous. Is that your only intention, to paint Hamas as a bad guy and Israel as a good guy? I got a news flash for you, they both suck tremendously. The ones that are suffering here are the innocent people that are dying en masse under Israel attacks. This isn't a finger pointing match to say "oh but look at them" to deflect any attention of you. Everyone seems to get that but a few people who are still holding on to the philosophy that Israel is a hapless pathetic victim here. It doesn't boil down to Hamas just hating Israelis and poor Israel having to defend themselves.

    Its hilariously sad because Israel breeds Islamic radicalism when they commit their own brand of terrorist attacks. Which is ironic because then Islamic terrorism conjures up a type of sympathy towards Israel from others. So in a way, Israel wins when they get Islamic religious fanatics in a fervor, they have nothing to lose. Like I said before, the war on terror is a farce. Bush only cares about terrorism when it is committed by someone with darker skin or pray to a certain god, otherwise we embrace terrorism. At least lets not be hypocrites. Are we serious about the war on terror, or are we not? Because I'm pretty sure the children in Gaza are pretty damn terrorized right now.

    Islamic radicalism is something that we need to be vigilant and crack down on, its a genuine and unending concern. We need to be vigilant and stay on course and try to smoke them out. I hate them as much as the next guy, but we need to be honest with ourselves and realize why they have so much rage. Its not as simplistic as saying, "oh they just hate democracy, they never want to be free." Why don't we take a closer look at our own western ideals and what we are teaching other nations? It would go a long way with trying to resolve some of these problems.

    I say this as a woman who loves, loves her country. That doesn't mean that I am always proud of it, and I have an obligation not just as a citizen of the US but as a citizen of the world to say when I think we have serious problems that need to be addressed.
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  2. #197
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    Jan this is for you:

    Israel Sends Humanitarian Aid to Gaza 28 Dec. 2008:
    YouTube - Israel Sends Humanitarian Aid to Gaza 28 Dec. 2008

    Israel Admits Child for Medical Care 31 Dec. 2008:
    YouTube - Israel Admits Child for Medical Care 31 Dec. 2008

    Israeli Humanitarian Aid to Gaza 2 Jan. 2009:
    YouTube - Israeli Humanitarian Aid to Gaza 2 Jan. 2009

    Israel sends humanitarian aid to Gaza, prepares ground offensive:
    YouTube - Israel sends humanitarian aid to Gaza, prepares ground offensive

    Amid Gaza violence, Israeli and Palestinian doctors save baby's life
    YouTube - Amid Gaza violence, Israeli and Palestinian doctors save baby's life

    Feeding Gaza, Fighting Hamas:
    YouTube - Feeding Gaza, Fighting Hamas

  3. #198
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    Really, this whole thing is, and has always been (since the Zionists first arrived in the region) about land and water, water being of the utmost importance. Israel needs to start acting diplomatically. When the last Palestinian election was on Israel, the US and a whole bunch of other nations said they would support whatever government was democratically elected, thinking it would be the PLO. Well, Hamas won fair and square and everyone reneged. I say bring Hamas to the table, start talking and things will change, albeit very, very slowly.
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    Unlike the people directly involved I can see both sides of this argument, and neither side has anything to be proud of. My attitude towards Israel and Hamas will change when either side changes it's behaviour. SOMEONE has to make the first move so who's going to take the higher (non violent) path?
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    Considering Israel holds all the power and all the cards they really need to be the ones to say 'ok, let's talk' but I think they'd see that as a sign of weakness, instead of a sign of strength, which is what it would be. I think this will be sorted one day, but probably not in my lifetime. Then again I never thought I'd see that dickhead Ian Paisley shake hands with Gerry Adams but he did.
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    Elite Member Rica's Avatar
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    Whoever gives in will be seen as the loser. It's just like an feud that has lasted for a long time, no one wants to give in.
    The Israelis invasion of Gaza ISNT just about land, Iran has been smuggling weapons into Gaza to help the Hamas attack Israel. They have tunnels underground and the IDF are searching for those as well as the Hamas.
    Perhaps they have other motives to the invasion, but their main one is to protect their people.
    Think of it from their point of view, if they have talks and make peace with them, how long do you think it will be before more attacks occur on the Israelis? Same can be said either way...this conflict probably wont end into either country is wiped out. And at the moment, it looks like Gaza is going to be destroyed. Sad but true...

    Thanks again Marie for your insight into what is happening from the Israeli side. Stay safe over there
    Oh and, your english is good enough considering it's not your first language

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    I never thought the Troubles would end in Northern Ireland but they more or less have, despite some diehards. Eventually people just want to get on with things and they get worn down by the constant barrage. Israel may want to protect its people but it can't be done with blood on their hands. Sorry but as long as they continue to apply collective punishment they're fucked. It's a stupid, shortsighted policy based on them wanting a complete land-grab. I used to be completely pro-Israel but the more I read and the more I learn has led me to believe they are part of the problem and a big part of the solution, should they choose to be.
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    IRA committed terrorist acts against Britain but Britain didn't start bombing Irish neighborhoods, maiming and killing children year in and year out.

    Why are the Palestinians, under a brutal occupation, expected to act like a population of Ghandi's but Israel is "justified" in it's violence?

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    Elite Member Fluffy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marie View Post
    We do that bc the Hamas hide his weapons in those places! bc the Hamas operat from scholls and that is the problem!!!

    Thats why i call them terorrs, not bc they fight agains me or bc they dont want me here its bc they use kids! Palestines kids us a humane shield and Israeli kids as a targets.

    You need to thank god and be happy that you dont understand that i see that in my eyes and i still dont inderstand how they can use kids like that. be happy that you dont have to deal with terorrist that sent rocket to your child kindergarten from their child kindergarten.
    Marie, a question for you:

    Is there some number of Palestinian civilian deaths that, once exceeded, renders this war unjustifiable? 1,000? 10,000? 25,000? Or is the idea that because Israel is justified in the mission itself, then the number of Palestinian civilian deaths is irrelevant -- that is, Israel should do what it thinks it needs to do and, provided it exercises some form of "restraint," then it is justified regardless of how many innocent human beings (Palestinians) die as a result?

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    While we debate in our safe and warm houses,Israelis are already invading Gaza City right now..
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  11. #206
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    Quote Originally Posted by marie View Post
    What was taken from you? This country was under britannia control from 1917 and under Turkey control from 1517 to 1917.
    Yes, nominal control.. and they still had land. THey weren't shoved into refugee camps or marginalized out of existence by a brutal oppressor.
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  12. #207
    Elite Member january's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffy View Post
    Marie, a question for you:

    Is there some number of Palestinian civilian deaths that, once exceeded, renders this war unjustifiable? 1,000? 10,000? 25,000? Or is the idea that because Israel is justified in the mission itself, then the number of Palestinian civilian deaths is irrelevant -- that is, Israel should do what it thinks it needs to do and, provided it exercises some form of "restraint," then it is justified regardless of how many innocent human beings (Palestinians) die as a result?
    I would like to know the answer to this as well.

    I think Marie is under the impression that every civilian who was blown up, took a bullet, or hit by artillery fire, was somehow being used by Hamas as a human shields, so once again Israel is not responsible for those deaths. Wow, Hamas really are everywhere all at once, using 270 children now as human shields, 68 women, and 90 elderly. So in that way, Hamas is once again the defiant militant and Israel is the peaceful, loving neighbor who would never, ever hurt a child. According to this article: RIA Novosti - World - Half of Gaza dead 'children, women and elderly' "The New York-based rights group Human Rights Watch has accused Israel of using white phosphorous in its attacks on Gaza. Israel has denied the claim."


    Major UN agency suspends Gaza relief operations after driver killed



    UNITED NATIONS, Jan. 8 (Xinhua) -- A UN agency that is a lifeline for 750,000 Palestinian refugees in Gaza suspended food delivery operations on Thursday after Israeli airstrikes killed one of its drivers and injured another.
    Video: Israeli army strikes Gaza's UN School
    More Video >>>

    The airstrikes marked the 13th day of the Israeli offensive launched with the stated aim of ending Hamas militant rocket attacks into Israel.
    The UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) said the clearly-marked convoy carrying a UN flag and picking up supplies at the Erez crossing into Gaza had been coordinated with Israeli liaison officers, who gave the greenlight.
    "This is heartbreaking ... a very, very difficult decision for us to take" to suspend food delivery, UNRWA director of operations in Gaza John Ging told a news conference at the UN headquarters in New York, speaking by video link from Gaza.
    "The people here are in a dreadful state and really need our help at this point but we have also a responsibility to our staff, and eager as they are, and believe me they are, we cannot fly in the face of the security situation."
    While UNRWA is perfectly prepared for reasonable risks in a conflict zone, "added to those is the fact that we cannot rely on firm commitments given by the Israeli side," Ging said.

    The movement of all staff would be suspended until UNRWA could be assured of their safety, he said.
    Meanwhile, UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs John Holmes, speaking at the same news conference, said: "We are seeking those assurances ... We're talking very urgently about how we can make better arrangements, more reliable arrangements to avoid these incidents on the ground which we simply cannot see repeated. Otherwise we simply won't be able to do our job."
    Ging said Israel was investigating the Erez incident, which came two days after Israeli shelling near an UNRWA school killed 40 people and injured more than 100. Israel said it was returning fire from the area of the school. UN officials stressed there were no Hamas or other militants inside the school.
    A second equally coordinated and marked UN medical convoy on its way to fetch the body of an UNRWA staffer killed in an earlier bombardment came under light arms fire in Gaza City on Thursday.
    Palestinians gather at the site of a destroyed mosque following an Israeli air strike in Gaza City, Jan. 8, 2009. (Xinhua Photo)
    Photo Gallery>>>

    Ging said he had received no credible explanation from Israel as to how "the green light turned into three rounds" of light arms fire in the incident, which occurred during Israel's stated daily three-hour lull in fighting.
    Asked how he could be sure that Israel was responsible for the incidents, Ging said the Israelis had not so far disputed the cases.
    Holmes said: "The headlines are that we desperately need a full and immediate ceasefire in Gaza to enable the civilian population to be protected and helped and that need is becoming more desperate by the hour." He stressed that most of the Gaza Strip was without power, although some fuel was getting through, and 20,000 people were in makeshift UN shelters.
    The Israeli lull, which the UN has called totally insufficient, allowed residents to get food supplies, access medical services, get to the dead and wounded in buildings.
    At the same time, rocket fire into Israel continued. Holmes cited credible Palestinian reports as saying the death toll had now reached 758, of whom 257 were children and 56 women, with 3,100 wounded including 1,080 children and 452 women.
    He referred to "absolutely horrifying" accounts that the International Red Cross had reached bombed houses in Zaitoun, finding 12 dead people and four children alive next to their dead mother in one, and 15 wounded in another, noting what was particularly shocking was that a nearby Israeli team must have been aware of the wounded, yet did nothing.
    While UNRWA has suspended its supplies for the 750,000 people classified as refugees, a further 250,000 of Gaza's 1.5 million inhabitants receive food aid from the UN World Food Program (WFP), which has not yet taken a decision on its operations, UN officials said.
    Also on Thursday, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon condemned the incidents, once again calling for an immediate ceasefire.
    In a statement issued by his spokesperson, he noted that four UNRWA local staff had been killed since the conflict started on Dec. 27.
    UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) executive director Ann M. Veneman voiced deep concern that the ongoing violence had forced UNRWA to suspend operations.
    "This can only deepen an already critical humanitarian situation and put children at even greater risk of death or permanent damage," she said in a statement.
    "The distribution of food, water, fuel and medicine should not be impeded. UNICEF calls on all parties to the conflict to take every measure to protect children. It is only with an end to the conflict that children's rights can be fully respected.
    "In the interim, safe spaces and unimpeded humanitarian access must be established in Gaza urgently to ensure that children have access to regular life-saving supplies and support," the statement said.

    In a related development, UN High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres told an open Security Council meeting on Thursday morning that, with Gaza's borders closed, the civilian population cannot flee to safety elsewhere.

    Major UN agency suspends Gaza relief operations after driver killed _English_Xinhua
    Last edited by january; January 11th, 2009 at 03:16 PM.
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    http://www.tehrantimes.com/index_View.asp?code=186545

    Senseless war in Gaza must be seen in historical context
    By Avi Shlaim

    The only way to make sense of Israel's senseless war in Gaza is through understanding the historical context. Establishing the state of Israel in May 1948 involved a monumental injustice to the Palestinians. British officials bitterly resented American partisanship on behalf of the infant state.

    On 2 June 1948, Sir John Troutbeck wrote to the foreign secretary, Ernest Bevin, that the Americans were responsible for the creation of a gangster state headed by “an utterly unscrupulous set of leaders”. I used to think that this judgment was too harsh but Israel's vicious assault on the people of Gaza, and the Bush administration's complicity in this assault, have reopened the question.

    I write as someone who served loyally in the Israeli army in the mid-1960s and who has never questioned the legitimacy of the state of Israel within its pre-1967 borders. What I utterly reject is the Zionist colonial project beyond the Green Line. The Israeli occupation of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip in the aftermath of the June 1967 war had very little to do with security and everything to do with territorial expansionism. The aim was to establish Greater Israel through permanent political, economic and military control over the Palestinian territories. And the result has been one of the most prolonged and brutal military occupations of modern times.

    Four decades of Israeli control did incalculable damage to the economy of the Gaza Strip. With a large population of 1948 refugees crammed into a tiny strip of land, with no infrastructure or natural resources, Gaza's prospects were never bright. Gaza, however, is not simply a case of economic under-development but a uniquely cruel case of deliberate de-development. To use the Biblical phrase, Israel turned the people of Gaza into the hewers of wood and the drawers of water, into a source of cheap labor and a captive market for Israeli goods. The development of local industry was actively impeded so as to make it impossible for the Palestinians to end their subordination to Israel and to establish the economic underpinnings essential for real political independence.

    Gaza is a classic case of colonial exploitation in the post-colonial era. Jewish settlements in occupied territories are immoral, illegal and an insurmountable obstacle to peace. They are at once the instrument of exploitation and the symbol of the hated occupation. In Gaza, the Jewish settlers numbered only 8,000 in 2005 compared with 1.4 million local residents. Yet the settlers controlled 25% of the territory, 40% of the arable land and the lion's share of the scarce water resources. Cheek by jowl with these foreign intruders, the majority of the local population lived in abject poverty and unimaginable misery. Eighty per cent of them still subsist on less than $2 a day. The living conditions in the strip remain an affront to civilized values, a powerful precipitant to resistance and a fertile breeding ground for political extremism.

    In August 2005 a Likud government headed by Ariel Sharon staged a unilateral Israeli pullout from Gaza, withdrawing all 8,000 settlers and destroying the houses and farms they had left behind. Hamas, the Islamic resistance movement, conducted an effective campaign to drive the Israelis out of Gaza. The withdrawal was a humiliation for the Israeli Defense Forces. To the world, Sharon presented the withdrawal from Gaza as a contribution to peace based on a two-state solution. But in the year after, another 12,000 Israelis settled on the West Bank, further reducing the scope for an independent Palestinian state. Land-grabbing and peace-making are simply incompatible. Israel had a choice and it chose land over peace.

    The real purpose behind the move was to redraw unilaterally the borders of Greater Israel by incorporating the main settlement blocs on the West Bank to the state of Israel. Withdrawal from Gaza was thus not a prelude to a peace deal with the Palestinian Authority but a prelude to further Zionist expansion on the West Bank. It was a unilateral Israeli move undertaken in what was seen, mistakenly in my view, as an Israeli national interest. Anchored in a fundamental rejection of the Palestinian national identity, the withdrawal from Gaza was part of a long-term effort to deny the Palestinian people any independent political existence on their land.

    Israel's settlers were withdrawn but Israeli soldiers continued to control all access to the Gaza Strip by land, sea and air. Gaza was converted overnight into an open-air prison. From this point on, the Israeli air force enjoyed unrestricted freedom to drop bombs, to make sonic booms by flying low and breaking the sound barrier, and to terrorize the hapless inhabitants of this prison.

    Israel likes to portray itself as an island of democracy in a sea of authoritarianism. Yet Israel has never in its entire history done anything to promote democracy on the Arab side and has done a great deal to undermine it. Israel has a long history of secret collaboration with reactionary Arab regimes to suppress Palestinian nationalism. Despite all the handicaps, the Palestinian people succeeded in building the only genuine democracy in the Arab world with the possible exception of Lebanon. In January 2006, free and fair elections for the Legislative Council of the Palestinian Authority brought to power a Hamas-led government. Israel, however, refused to recognize the democratically elected government, claiming that Hamas is purely and simply a terrorist organization.

    America and the EU shamelessly joined Israel in ostracizing and demonizing the Hamas government and in trying to bring it down by withholding tax revenues and foreign aid. A surreal situation thus developed with a significant part of the international community imposing economic sanctions not against the occupier but against the occupied, not against the oppressor but against the oppressed.

    As so often in the tragic history of Palestine, the victims were blamed for their own misfortunes. Israel's propaganda machine persistently purveyed the notion that the Palestinians are terrorists, that they reject coexistence with the Jewish state, that their nationalism is little more than antisemitism, that Hamas is just a bunch of religious fanatics and that Islam is incompatible with democracy. But the simple truth is that the Palestinian people are a normal people with normal aspirations. They are no better but they are no worse than any other national group. What they aspire to, above all, is a piece of land to call their own on which to live in freedom and dignity.

    Like other radical movements, Hamas began to moderate its political program following its rise to power. From the ideological rejectionism of its charter, it began to move towards pragmatic accommodation of a two-state solution. In March 2007, Hamas and Fatah formed a national unity government that was ready to negotiate a long-term ceasefire with Israel. Israel, however, refused to negotiate with a government that included Hamas.

    It continued to play the old game of divide and rule between rival Palestinian factions. In the late 1980s, Israel had supported the nascent Hamas in order to weaken Fatah, the secular nationalist movement led by Yasser Arafat. Now Israel began to encourage the corrupt and pliant Fatah leaders to overthrow their religious political rivals and recapture power. Aggressive American neoconservatives participated in the sinister plot to instigate a Palestinian civil war. Their meddling was a major factor in the collapse of the national unity government and in driving Hamas to seize power in Gaza in June 2007 to pre-empt a Fatah coup.

    The war unleashed by Israel on Gaza on 27 December was the culmination of a series of clashes and confrontations with the Hamas government. In a broader sense, however, it is a war between Israel and the Palestinian people, because the people had elected the party to power. The declared aim of the war is to weaken Hamas and to intensify the pressure until its leaders agree to a new ceasefire on Israel's terms. The undeclared aim is to ensure that the Palestinians in Gaza are seen by the world simply as a humanitarian problem and thus to derail their struggle for independence and statehood.

    The timing of the war was determined by political expediency. A general election is scheduled for 10 February and, in the lead-up to the election, all the main contenders are looking for an opportunity to prove their toughness. The army top brass had been champing at the bit to deliver a crushing blow to Hamas in order to remove the stain left on their reputation by the failure of the war against Hezbollah in Lebanon in July 2006. Israel's cynical leaders could also count on apathy and impotence of the pro-western Arab regimes and on blind support from President Bush in the twilight of his term in the White House. Bush readily obliged by putting all the blame for the crisis on Hamas, vetoing proposals at the UN Security Council for an immediate ceasefire and issuing Israel with a free pass to mount a ground invasion of Gaza.

    As always, mighty Israel claims to be the victim of Palestinian aggression but the sheer asymmetry of power between the two sides leaves little room for doubt as to who is the real victim. This is indeed a conflict between David and Goliath but the Biblical image has been inverted - a small and defenseless Palestinian David faces a heavily armed, merciless and overbearing Israeli Goliath. The resort to brute military force is accompanied, as always, by the shrill rhetoric of victimhood and a farrago of self-pity overlaid with self-righteousness. In Hebrew this is known as the syndrome of bokhim ve-yorim, “crying and shooting”.

    To be sure, Hamas is not an entirely innocent party in this conflict. Militants from Hamas and Islamic Jihad kept launching Qassam rocket attacks against Israeli settlements near the border with Gaza until Egypt brokered a six-month ceasefire last June. The damage caused by these primitive rockets is minimal but the psychological impact is immense, prompting the public to demand protection from its government. Under the circumstances, Israel had the right to act in self-defense but its response to the pinpricks of rocket attacks was totally disproportionate. The figures speak for themselves. In the three years after the withdrawal from Gaza, 11 Israelis were killed by rocket fire. On the other hand, in 2005-7 alone, the IDF killed 1,290 Palestinians in Gaza, including 222 children.

    Whatever the numbers, killing civilians is wrong. This rule applies to Israel as much as it does to Hamas, but Israel's entire record is one of unbridled and unremitting brutality towards the inhabitants of Gaza. Israel also maintained the blockade of Gaza after the ceasefire came into force which, in the view of the Hamas leaders, amounted to a violation of the agreement. During the ceasefire, Israel prevented any exports from leaving the strip in clear violation of a 2005 accord, leading to a sharp drop in employment opportunities. Officially, 49.1% of the population is unemployed. At the same time, Israel restricted drastically the number of trucks carrying food, fuel, cooking-gas canisters, spare parts for water and sanitation plants, and medical supplies to Gaza. It is difficult to see how starving and freezing the civilians of Gaza could protect the people on the Israeli side of the border. But even if it did, it would still be immoral, a form of collective punishment that is strictly forbidden by international humanitarian law.

    The brutality of Israel's soldiers is fully matched by the mendacity of its spokesmen. Eight months before launching the current war on Gaza, Israel established a National Information Directorate. The core messages of this directorate to the media are that Hamas broke the ceasefire agreements; that Israel's objective is the defense of its population; and that Israel's forces are taking the utmost care not to hurt innocent civilians. Israel's spin doctors have been remarkably successful in getting this message across. But, in essence, their propaganda is a pack of lies.

    A wide gap separates the reality of Israel's actions from the rhetoric of its spokesmen. It was not Hamas but the IDF that broke the ceasefire. It di d so by a raid into Gaza on 4 November that killed six Hamas men. Israel's objective is not just the defense of its population but the eventual overthrow of the Hamas government in Gaza by turning the people against their rulers. And far from taking care to spare civilians, Israel is guilty of indiscriminate bombing and of a three-year-old blockade that has brought the inhabitants of Gaza, now 1.5 million, to the brink of a humanitarian catastrophe.

    The Biblical injunction of an eye for an eye is savage enough. But Israel's insane offensive against Gaza seems to follow the logic of an eye for an eyelash. After eight days of bombing, with a death toll of more than 400 Palestinians and four Israelis, the gung-ho cabinet ordered a land invasion of Gaza the consequences of which are incalculable.

    No amount of military escalation can buy Israel immunity from rocket attacks from the military wing of Hamas. Despite all the death and destruction that Israel has inflicted on them, they kept up their resistance and they kept firing their rockets. This is a movement that glorifies victimhood and martyrdom. There is simply no military solution to the conflict between the two communities. The problem with Israel's concept of security is that it denies even the most elementary security to the other community. The only way for Israel to achieve security is not through shooting but through talks with Hamas, which has repeatedly declared its readiness to negotiate a long-term ceasefire with the Jewish state within its pre-1967 borders for 20, 30, or even 50 years. Israel has rejected this offer for the same reason it spurned the Arab League peace plan of 2002, which is still on the table: it involves concessions and compromises.

    This brief review of Israel's record over the past four decades makes it difficult to resist the conclusion that it has become a rogue state with “an utterly unscrupulous set of leaders”. A rogue state habitually violates international law, possesses weapons of mass destruction and practices terrorism - the use of violence against civilians for political purposes. Israel fulfils all of these three criteria; the cap fits and it must wear it. Israel's real aim is not peaceful coexistence with its Palestinian neighbors but military domination. It keeps compounding the mistakes of the past with new and more disastrous ones. Politicians, like everyone else, are of course free to repeat the lies and mistakes of the past. But it is not mandatory to do so.

    • Avi Shlaim is a professor of international relations at the University of Oxford and the author of The Iron Wall: Israel and the Arab World and of Lion of Jordan: King Hussein's Life in War and Peace.

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    IRA committed terrorist acts against Britain but Britain didn't start bombing Irish neighborhoods, maiming and killing children year in and year out.

    Why are the Palestinians, under a brutal occupation, expected to act like a population of Ghandi's but Israel is "justified" in it's violence?
    I think the behavior of British troops and the British government during the Troubles is well-documented, particularly now that the gov't is owning up to some of it's greater atrocities. Collective punishment, oppression...you name it and it happened. It may not have been on quite the same scale as what's happening and has happened for a long time in GAza but it's still a government inpower oppressing those without any. I think the Israelis are absolutely fucked and cannot believe they try to justify this kind of thing but I don't see anything changing right now.
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    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sasha View Post
    If at any point the US felt the resolutions were so one-sided as to be unfair to Israel all they had to do was veto them. The fact that so many got through is a miracle in itself. The distortion of the record is actually the opposite of what you state.
    you do know the US doesn't have veto power on the human rights council don't you? in fact, they're not even members. and i was mostly speaking about hrc resolutions since those are the ones i have experience in.

    as for security council resolutions, votes are also political, the veto is a pretty big deal and let's just say not even the US can credibly veto every single resolution on israel that passes through the security council because it's the sort of thing that could then bite them in the ass. any time you're a member of anything at the UN, and there's a vote, you're not just voting on the issue, you're voting while keeping in mind how this vote will affect you in the future - in case of other votes that might concern you, what it will do for your standing with certain regional groups, how it will affect any candidatures you might have to certain posts, etc... no vote is isolated.
    again, i'm not defending israel's history concering international law, i'm just saying that things aren't as black and white as you want them to be.
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

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