After the end of Gaza Awareness Week, I noticed the influx of apologies for the Israeli government in the Opinion section. That is fine — people have a right to express their opinion. Unfortunately these opinions have very little to do with the conflict and the humanitarian crisis in Gaza — which is what Gaza Awareness Week was meant to shed light on. One reoccurring theme is listing the technological innovations that have come out of Israel. I do not believe that anyone would argue that these breakthroughs are a bad thing, as they have helped people around the world. However, they have next to nothing to do with the conflict, and to ignore the Israeli government’s misdeeds (to put it lightly) in Gaza and the West Bank because of them is simply ludicrous. It would be like telling indigenous people in 19th century America that it’s OK that they are being ethnically cleansed because Thomas Edison, an American, invented the lightbulb. While these folks may think the lightbulb is pretty neat, they’re probably still not cool with being massacred.
[media-credit name=”Justin Ma” align=”alignleft” width=”216″][/media-credit]And a massacre is exactly what happened from Dec. 27, 2008 to Jan 18, 2009. In those three weeks over 1,400 Palestinians were killed, over 5,000 wounded and tens of thousands of homes were destroyed. People were not allowed to flee Gaza and become refugees twice over (can’t forget al Nakba of 1948). Both Israeli as well as Egyptian officials worked together to bar the Gazan people from fleeing Operation Cast Lead. They were trapped in one of the most densely populated areas on the planet while being attacked by one of the most well-equipped militaries on the planet. These are not grossly exaggerated numbers pulled out of the air by Palestinian authorities, as was suggested by Matthew Gluschankoff’s letter to the editor, but were cited from Amnesty International, a highly respected third party non-governmental organization. Amnesty International collaborated with the United Nations to affirm these statistics. B’Tselem (an Israeli human rights group) also reported on the impact on human life as a result of Operation Cast Lead.
What makes this situation even worse is the ongoing economic and military blockade against the Gaza strip. Even after the wanton destruction two years ago, there has been little to no improvement in infrastructure because Israeli officials have banned most building material outright. In a statement made after the assault, John Holmes, under-secretary-general for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief coordinator, said that relief is essential for improvement.
“Many humanitarian workers, including most International NGOs, continue to be refused entry. Moreover, returning to the kind of access restrictions which were in force before the hostilities will be neither acceptable nor workable. If aid workers continue to face rigid limits on their ability to move in and out of Gaza; and if essential items such as construction materials, water pipes, electrical wires and transformers, key equipment and spare parts continue to be effectively banned, or only allowed in infrequently after endless haggling, the lives of the Gazan people cannot significantly improve,” said Holmes.
Of course, some people will say, “What about Hamas and the rockets fired out from Gaza?” This is a fair and valid question. Since 2000, 23 people have been killed by rocket fire. The number of people killed by the Israel Defense Forces in three weeks is hundreds of times more than that. This is not to discount the lives lost as a result of the rockets, but I am simply taking on the perspective that one life is equal to another, regardless of race, religion, regional location and other arbitrary factors. So assuming that all lives are equally sacred and precious, why are Palestinian’s lives treated like they are worth infinitely less than that of an Israeli?
For the record, I am no Hamas apologist. I believe the Hamas regime is corrupt, and I denounce its attacks on Israeli citizens just as I denounce attacks by the Israeli military on Palestinian civilians. But the difference between Hamas and the Israeli Government, is that Hamas makes no claim to be the beacon of democracy and human rights in the Middle East, and my tax dollars do not go toward supplying Hamas with expensive, lethal weaponry. The same cannot be said for Israel. We as a nation are implicated in Israel’s actions to the tune of $7 million a day in taxpayer aid and unquestioning, unconditional support at the international level.
I only wish that the people who have been writing these letters would have actually attended the events. Then we could have had a chance for constructive dialogue.
Thats why Gaza is under blockade. Their leaders call for the death of “the zionist state” and will never recognize their neighbors. they hurl tens of thousands of rockets at Israel, send suicide bombers to blow up pizza parlors and clubs, and train their children to hate Israel and how to use an AK-47.
Israel has made mistakes, has been heavy handed, but their blockade is necessary for their own survival.
Hopefully the people of Gaza throw out their leaders like those in Tunisia. Until then, Israel has every right to defend themselves from a hostile nation.
Interesting David, because before Cast Lead, Hamas said they would recognize Israel within the 67 borders. http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3249568,00.html Either way, Hamas is in no position to follow through on any of it’s machismo talk. Training kids to use guns and hate? Maybe so, but one could say the same thing about the settlers. The blockade is absolutely not necessary for Israel’s survival, it’s collective punishment. The BBC published a partial list of items banned in Gaza. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8654337.stm Canned meat is allowed in but not canned fruit. Mineral water is allowed in but no fruit juice. Tahnini but not jam. Yes, Hamas… Read more »
I think the forum ate my first response, Anyways, that’s interesting David because before Operation Cast Lead Hamas said it would recognize Israel within the pre-67 borders. http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3249568,00.html Either way, Hamas is in no position to follow through on any of its machismo talk. Training kids to hate and use guns? One could say the same about the settlers in the West Bank. The blockade is absolutely not necessary for Israel’s survival. It’s collective punishment. The BBC published an article with a partial list of items not allowed into Gaza. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8654337.stm Canned meat is allowed but not canned fruit. Tahini… Read more »
When it comes to banning certain foods Israel was absolutely and utterly wrong and has corrected course. http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/news/abbas-to-obama-i-m-against-lifting-the-gaza-naval-blockade-1.295771 As Abbas has said, the purpose of the Blockade is to delegitimize Hamas and the Hamas government. If Hamas can deliver more aid and more goods they solidify their support with the people. Israel and the PA hope that the blockade would reduce support for Hamas in the Gaza Strip. Hamas is a hostile government. Israel has the right to treat the region as hostile. As a result they are allowed to prevent Hamas from obtaining more weapons and materials for weapons.… Read more »
Let me show you what the anti-Israeli propaganda doesn’t want the world to see. Click on the link. It’s from Arabic News, and yes that’s Gaza.
Really? tens of thousands of rockets? how many suicide bombers did they send? Israel has made no mistakes. and the blockade is necesary for their own survival. really?
So, they have to throw out their leaders, and that will end the blockade? a blockade which you consider to be legitimate I suppose.
Jaret writes, “It would be like telling indigenous people in 19th century America that it’s OK that they are being ethnically cleansed because Thomas Edison, an American, invented the lightbulb.”
Jaret, in case you did not know the Palestinian population growth far exceeds the wrold averages and this is true in Israel, the West Bank and Gaza too.
Do you have any idea what you’re writing about or do you just make stuff up on the fly?
Arafat, must you be so blind to suffering? So, evidently you’re OK with night-time raids on families, bulldozing homes and businesses, preventing aid and erecting double razor wire fences to keep people and families caged up like animals as long as the net population increases? You seem to be pretty cool with the idea that some (very ancient) cultures in the middle east are not to be allowed basic human rights, and in your shrill ad hominem attacks on Jared, you do no favors to the Zionist cause. Have a heart, dude…Jews are not the only people on the planet.
Ken, I appreciate the support, but it’s best not to feed the forum troll.
Caged up like animals?
Ken your hyperbole makes for quite an image even if it has nothing whatsoever to do with reality.
Here is the cage you’re lying about:
Of course Jaret won’t respond to me, because he knows he can’t.
When the facts do not support your side then it’s always easiest to run away and hide, eh Jaret?
Sorry dude, I won’t waste time on a long explanation of my position with credible citations because it seems like you will simply quote something from David Horowitz or some neocon think tank and then insult me.
Frankly, it’s just not worth my time. So go on with the ad hominem attacks and quoting questionable opinion pieces like sacred scripture. I promise you won’t hurt my feelings or impress anyone.
That’s terrific Jaret. So as I understand your position it’s OK for you to rely on Amnesty International to support your position, but I do not have the right to use what you call “neocon” sources to support my position. That’s rich, Jaret. It must be nice to rely on Amnesty International as if it’s some sacred scripture. This is Jaret’s holy grail and source material for his article and opinions. It must be nice to be so cocksure of one’s self even when relying on biased and seriously flawed BS. http://www.globallawforum.org/ViewBlog.aspx?ArticleId=49 Time for you to go into hiding, Jaret.… Read more »
Wow! Jaret wins the Mr. Naivety contest. He really does believe everything he reads (as long as it corroborates his prejudicial opinions.)
Jaret, is this the Amnesty International you hold in such high esteem?
Or is this the Amnesty International you think is God’s gift to the needy?
Jaret is apparently drawn to the worst possible take about Israel as is possible. He’s like a moth to a flame except the consequences of Jaret’s words do not impact him (other than through Karma) but do impact Israelis. In that sense he is just one more pawn in the propoganda war against Israel and he will be like the German citizens who fanned the flames of Hitler’s hatred. Jaret, how do you live with yourself?
Anyway, Jaret, here is a different take on how many people were killed during Operation Cast Lead:
Jaret bemoans the hovel like conditions in Gaza. It must be tough not knowing which restaurant to go to on any given night.
Or to go to the country club instead.
Maybe there is someplace to eat at the high end shopping Mall?
According to the following article Gazans big problem is their big butts, i.e., high blood pressure caused by over-eating. Jaret, this is something you could get all high and mighty about while writing another editorial about the fat Gazans!
I love your logic.
If you can find a nice restaurant in gaza, then its people must not be suffering.
If they have a country club, then they must not be staving.
If they have high blood pressure, then they are obviously overeating.
Let me close by saying I am neither pro-Israeli nor anti-Palestinian. I’m an “independent” and I make my mind up based on the merits of the issue. When I study the situation in the Middle East and study the history of Islam and if Islamic anti-semtisim going all the way back to Mohammed (who hated Jews) I then decide who to support and who not to support.
When I see the following videos it’s simple and obvious which side to support.
As opposed to:
This argument has been tried over and over. But what the Palestinian side seems to ignore is that while Israelis may commit immoral or internationally questionable acts against Palestinians, there are severe consequences for those who do. The Israeli government does not support unnecessary violence. Let’s be honest here: why would a country in such a sensitive situation purposefully ignite fire where there was none to start with? It makes no sense that Israel would openly demonstrate to the world that they are as hostile as many claim. And when the claims start arising that Israel is such an offensive… Read more »
Israeli soldiers admit to deliberate killing of Gaza civilians The Times of London, March 20, 2009 “That’s the beauty of Gaza. You see a man walking, he doesn’t have to have a weapon, and you can shoot him,” one soldier told Danny Zamir, the head of the Rabin pre-military academy, who asked him why a company commander ordered an elderly woman to be shot.” “When we entered a house, we were supposed to bust down the door and start shooting inside and just go up storey by storey… I call that murder. Each storey, if we identify a person, we… Read more »
Eric, this article is for you:
And I’m throwing in a dividend as well just because I like you:
Wow, I came here seeing 10+ comments expecting intelligent conversation, but instead find multi-posts by the same guy who trolls every goddamn Israeli article. Get over yourself, Arafat. By the way, I read your http://old.nationalreview.com/bayefsky/bayefsky200506060928.asp link. Great job on citing NRO, the batshit right-wing website that I accidentally gave link traffic to. But to not attack the messenger, how about the message? Are you really questioning Amnesty International because they decried the conditions of Guantanamo Bay? This shit writes itself, I tell you. Honestly, GTFO dailynexus and get yourself to freepland (or stormfront, if you’re that deranged). Leave reasonable conversation… Read more »
Elereth, You’re silly little twit. Just kidding. You write, “The growth of the Palestinian population is a good thing…” But you left out the context in which I mentioned this fact. The context was as follows. Jaret (or one of those pea-brains) wrote that Israel was committing a slow form of genocide. So I observed that Israel must be pretty bad at genocide because usually when a people commit genocide against a people the victims population does not increase. I’ll give you two examples of this. In 1918 Muslims committed genocide against the Christian Armenians in Turkey. They killed 1.5… Read more »
I think arafat fails to see the problem the growth of the Palestinian population actually poses for Israel. for one, what does Israel plan to do with the land and the Palestinian population that is actually out-growing Israel’s population. If a 2 state solution is now out of the question, as it seem to be the case now with a right wing government that insists Gaza and the west bank to be god given. Then, there is no way for those Palestinians now living in extreme poverty to be able to form some sort of unstable government, next to Israel.… Read more »
No one asked you to ignore the situation in Gaza or the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Almost every article about Israel is about the conflict so it makes people think that is the only thing going on there. Its important to point out that there are many other things going on there, some of which are very positive.
When people think of Israel, they think of conflict. They don’t think about how they have more doctors, lawyers, Nobel prize winners than any other nations. they don’t think about how they brought us modern day computer processors, medical technology and green technology. They don’t think about how Israel had fully functional hospitals up in Haiti within two days of the storm despite being on the other side of the world, or how Israel has brought drip irrigation to Africa so countries can transform their deserts into farmland. They forget that Israel is a modern nation where people go to… Read more »
Mr. Dsforza , we are not arguing that Israel has failed to do any good in the world. What we are arguing is that in spite of its good deeds, Israel seems to be responsible for the oppression of a people. It engages in certain practices that clearly violate the human rights of that people, and it seems to have developed a system that starves a people, settles its lands and de-legitimizes their right to social contract with Israel or hampers the creation of its own state, all in the name of security for its people, in the name of… Read more »
Go read about “Black September”, you have no idea where the Palestinean conflict started. I’ll give you a hint: With their own Arab brothers. You are missing the core of the information. You and the author of this horribly researched article have yet to read more factual history.
Stop writing things in public forums that you either know are wrong or are simply ignorant about. There is NO evidence that Israel is currently starving anyone. There is ample evidence that 100s of tons of aid are transported into Gaza by Israel every week. If people in Gaza are hungry it is because Hamas is pocketing all the food sent to Gaza for free and selling it to make a profit. From the recent Al-Jazeera leaks regarding the peace negotiations, you can see that Israel is now willing to make more concessions for peace than it has at any… Read more »
Sorry Max but it takes a special kind of loyalty to turn facts around with such skill. The Al-Jazeera links show that the PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY was willing to make ridiculous concessions to Israel and they got turned down. They were willing to give up East Jerusalem and the right of return for all Palestinian refugees, but Israel said no. The Palestinian papers show 2 things, 1 that the PA does not really have the Palestinian people’s best interest in mind, and 2 that Israel can be offered the world, but it doesn’t really want peace. As for Jews won’t be… Read more »
Have you read the Hamas charter? It says the trees in Israel will call out to the Muslims “There is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.” I wish it was a joke but it is true. You can say oh that charter is old it is not being used anymore but has any member of the Hamas leadership openly condemned that section of the charter and called for it to be changed? I don’t think Israelis have any choice but to take Hamas at its word when it says that it seeks the destruction of the State of… Read more »
Jaret, to believe that a Jewish state with a Jewish majority is not necessary is to ignore thousands of years of history and to ignore the current situation on the ground. The Holocaust was just a climax to the long history of the persecution of my people. Even as the nations around Israel attack it and as the terrorist in the Palestinian ranks hurl rockets to make Jews live in constant fear, we as a people have never been safer. To deny the fact that Jews need a Jewish state to live freely as Jews is when I can correctly… Read more »
Joshua, You’re rehashing the same points I have already answered twice already, and/or lying about what I wrote. 1) I linked an article to obese Palestinians in answer to the claim that Israelis were starving Gazans. You can’t have it both ways. You cannot be obese and be starving at the same time. 2) I never wrote “tens of thousands of rockets” as you claim. Fine me where I (or anyone else) wrote that. It is widely accepted –even by Palestinian propoganda machines like Amnesty International– that 6,000 rockets were firced into Israel. 3) Yes, few Israelis were killed by… Read more »
To your first point, I would ask you to read this: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/israel/7806209/Dispatch-Just-how-hungry-is-Gaza.html http://makkah.wordpress.com/2011/01/05/wikileaks-israel-told-us-of-intention-to-starve-gazans/ I will concede your point, Israel is not starving Gaza literally, but it is insisting of a policy of collective punishment, bringing economic activity to the “brink of collapse”. To your second point, I quote “Thats why Gaza is under blockade. Their leaders call for the death of “the zionist state” and will never recognize their neighbors. they hurl tens of thousands of rockets at Israel, send suicide bombers to blow up pizza parlors and clubs, and train their children to hate Israel and how to use… Read more »
Jaret writes, “As for Jews won’t be safe if there is a Palestinian majority, it’s the same racism that you hear from white supremacists who want to end non european immigration to the US because the “brown hoards” will overrun us.” He must be the leftist teacher’s pet. Logic be damned, I’ll say what I say and with conviction regardless. What Jaret is really saying is that Europeans are beginning to understand that the leftist parties that have been in power — the multiculturalists liberals — have created a nightmare in which there is no clean way out. Jaret has… Read more »
Max, as you well know, Jaret is living a delusion (or he’s just a rabid anti-Semite), no different than his ilk did prior to the Holocaust. If Israel wanted to commit genocide you and I know they could do it in a blink of an eye, but the Jew’s moral code prohibits such an act. I know, I know, idiots like Jaret and Joshua are going to be ALL over the previous sentence citing act after act of Jew’s doing awful things. In their vacuous minds doing so will seem “smart” and will knock down my argument. But you and… Read more »
لا إله إلا الله ويسوع هو ابنه
Ein Spaziergang durch die Irrenanstalt zeigt, dass der Glaube beweist gar nichts.
This is what is amazing to me, on the one hand, you accuse me and Jaret of being vicious anti-semites, asking for the blood of jews, demonizing anything and everything that they do. We apparently are only able to see their flaws, never their accomplishments, we condemn them without a second look. And in the same breath you proceed to do all of that and label 1.5 billion muslims as define by hatred, following a rapist and a warrior. Let me ask you this, can YOU see any similarities between the anti-semetic propaganda during the Holocaust and the way YOU… Read more »
Joshua, The difference between my words and Goebbel’s words are the difference between lies and truths. Mohammed was a rapist and a warrior. That is true. Do you deny this? If I have not made myself clear, I apologize. Muslims are no different than I was when born. The difference lies in the way most of them are raised, socialized and indocrinated. I was not raised in a church where the pastors called for the death of all Jews and the conquest of all Chirstians, Buddhists and Hindus. I was not raised in a society that glorified death in the… Read more »
You are the definition of a prejudiced man.
um ok, two things, first, if someone calls you an anti-Semite, your response should probably not be to write “There is no god but God and Jesus is his son” as a response (gotta love google translate). And Josh, a Semite may be more than just a Jew, but the term “anti-Semite historically has meant hatred toward the Jewish people. There are other terms to describe racism toward the other groups of the Middle East. The term to use against Arafat is Islamophobe, not anti-Semite. and Arafat, Islam is, like the other Abrahamic religions, a peace loving religion. And, like… Read more »
The Arabic was more about him calling me a closet muslim out to destroy the world, (Christians writing in Arabic??? the pigs are probably flying for a guy who’s ideas are a pleasant mix of David Horowitz and Jack Chick) I really don’t care about the name calling, just makes him look childish. Anyone who actually knows me knows that I’m not an anti-semite, secret muslim, or any other BS that got flung at me on this forum. I’m done. Arafat, Josh, anyone else reading this, if you would like to have an intelligent discussion about the issue Students For… Read more »
I’d encourage you to read the following links.
Islam is unique among the world’s religions. Try keeping and open, curious mind and you may be surprised.
Meanwhile, thank you for your comments. We have our difference, no doubt, but I generally look forward to your comments with great enthusiam. A voice of reason is always appreciated.
Any thoughts you might have on these articles would be appreciated.
Joshua, Like with dsforza I appreciate the civil, rational comment you’ve written in response to my comments. I’ll be the first to concede that I do not always take the time to express myself very clearly — a common mistake characteristic to these types of forums, no? That said, I will try to be open to softening my message and being more open to another perspective. Admittedly, my perspective is nowhere near the middle-ground. I also pappreciate your taking the time to read some of the links embedded within my comments. I will not respond to the specifics you raised… Read more »
You’re right. My comparing any aspect of Islam or Mohammed to Nazis or Hitler is too far-fetched for words.
(The following video is about gays…not Jews):
Jaret, for you not to openly admit that there are strong parallels between Islam and Nazism is to deny reality, and/or to lie about your true intentions. The parallels could not be stronger unless Ahmadinejad spoke german.
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