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View Diary: Empathizing w/ Gaza does NOT make me anti-Semitic, nor pro-Hamas or anti-Israel. It makes me human. (495 comments)

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  •  That does not alter the equation (63+ / 0-)

    Israel acts with disproportionate force as a matter of historical experience. Overwhelm the opposition and you will win - at least for the moment. They have survived as a nation this way since 1948.

    But more and more I feel that the stick is the only tool in Israel's toolbox, and more and more they see Palestinians as a whole as something that needs to be hit with that stick for lack of a broader vision.

    Thus we wind up with high numbers of civilian casualties, with Hamas the explanation for every one of them. Just how many times has the US accidentally struck the wrong target or a target based on bad information in the past 20 years? Do you think the Israeli military is that much better that they don't make those mistakes?

    Why should Palestinians be happy with their situation? What is being offered to them that would get them to lay down arms? They see settlements being built in territory allocated to them under UN treaty. They are highly constrained in their trade, in their attempts to form foreign relations, in their ability to form a government, and even in their ability to maintain their houses and lands.

    Hamas - the military wing at least - is no angel. But the reason it continues to have any support at all is because they appear to be fighting the Palestinian cause. Get at the root of the problem without including Hamas and it dies on the vine.

    Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves. - William Pitt

    by Phoenix Rising on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 11:27:33 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  it may be something that needs to work its way (6+ / 0-)

      out of the Israeli psyche--but I would counter that if they DIDN'T act this way in the 4 wars from 1948 thorugh 73 they would have ceased to exist in point of fact.

      Now the threat is different as it's from a smaller set of terrorist organzations and not multi-national forces.  But it is still a threat--considering how much support these groups to get from external powers, U.S. support for Israel notwithstanding.

      But yes, this is not the way to go about things.

      •  I have no dispute with early Israeli history (21+ / 0-)

        In those early wars, overwhelming response was, as I said, the only thing that kept them intact.

        But in an ongoing conflict of such a comparatively small scale, Israel's every action these days seems like it's rubbing salt in the wound of a thrashing but mostly impotent victim. Is some of the treatment necessary? Almost certainly. But just as certainly, this is how the Palestinians must feel on even their more charitable days.

        Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves. - William Pitt

        by Phoenix Rising on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 11:56:16 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  recced--these are fair comments that I (7+ / 0-)

          generally agree with.  Not too common in the yelling spree (which I'm admittedly taking part in as well)

          •  Such open minded enhances your credibility, IMO. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Heart of the Rockies, chmood

            I don't know you well, you may do this all the time. I don't mean to imply anything at all about other times. Only wanting to congratulate what appears to be  gracious acknowledgement of certain elements of a different point of view upon fair minded real time assessment.  Which is a good thing.

            Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

            by HoundDog on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 04:02:02 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Those impotent victims... (4+ / 0-)

          Those impotent victims are not the ones launching missiles - Hamas is launching missiles.

          Hamas is launching missiles from places that are surrounded by innocent civilians.

          You are conflating civilians (Palestinians) with terrorists (Hamas).

          Hamas is guilty of innocent people dying by placing them in harms way when Israel responds to missile launches.

          •  The one group is part of the other (5+ / 0-)

            You can't just ignore the Palestinian people when fighting Hamas - you're bound to inflict harm on the former while saying you're only targeting the latter.

            And Hamas continues to have support because of the pain the Palestinians feel.

            Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves. - William Pitt

            by Phoenix Rising on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 12:50:45 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Then your solution is for Israel (0+ / 0-)

              Then your solution is for Israel to accept all the rockets, missiles, and mortars fired by Hamas that kill innocent Israelis without retaliation.

              At what pint will it take for people to recognize that the pain of the Palestinian people is not the fault of the Israel people…..unless you what to rewrite and/or unwind history of the past 65 years.

              If Palestinians and Hamas spent as much time and money on schools and businesses as they do on firing rockets at Israel and building tunnels into Israel, they might all be living healthier lives.

              •  I think you need to go back ... (16+ / 0-)

                ...65 years and more to see from whence this (Hamas et al) came.  The Zionists said:

                A Land without a People for a People without a Land.
                This sounds too much like the disregard the white settlers (invaders) had for the Native Americans back in the day when the Europeans were looking for a land of their own.  We did not consider the Native Americans to be people.  We had no respect for them.  The white invaders did not respect that the Native Americans were living on the land, had been living on it for thousands of years.  Didn't matter.  We wanted it, and we took it.

                I see important similarities between the European's massacre and land theft and what the Israelis have inflicted on Palestine.  

                But you must go back to the beginnings to see this, to understand from what Hamas was born.

                "Our duty is to the Constitution, not to the criminals in Washington." Paul Craig Roberts

                by dharmasyd on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 02:17:55 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  precisely, dh (6+ / 0-)

                  Addressed to Pope Francis: "Don't tell me what you me what you DO ........and I will tell you what you believe." (~Meteor Blades)

                  by SeaTurtle on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 03:39:17 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Rubbish (0+ / 0-)

                  You are attempting to go back 65 years and blame the current occupants of Israel for the plight of Palestinians.

                  The joke is that even Muslims and Christians agree that Judaism and its Israeli homeland predates both Mohammed & Jesus.

                  Plainly and simply, if you want to go back in history to establish who founded modern day Israel, even Muslims and Christians agree that the distinction belongs to Jewish people.

                  Muslim control of Jerusalem was not until 700 AD, more than 1,000 years after Kings David & Solomon controlled Jerusalem.

                  War is heck and control of Jerusalem was taken by the Jewish people after defeating the Jordanians.

                  By your estimate, the U.S. should return Texas to Mexico.  As much as I might prefer this unwinding of the clock, war is heck and to the victors go the spoils.

                  It was not Israelis who annexed Palestinians.  However, Israelis have defended itself since the period to which you would prefer the clock be unwound.

              •  If Israel would stop bombing their infrastructure (9+ / 0-)

                Maybe they could build those schools and hospitals, if Israel would let them have cement. But  maybe Israel should stop bombing the ones they've already built first?

                Al-Aqsa Hospital is the third to be hit by Israeli tank fire since Israel launched its ground offensive in Gaza four days ago.

                Al Jazeera's Dekker said the scene of the hospital shelling was an area "where a lot of people had been fleeing to".
                "There's extremely heavy shelling going on in that neighbourhood. This is an area you'd think would be relatively safe," she said.
                 "It's a public hospital; it is run by the government. It was established here before Hamas took over."
                A distressed doctor at the scene of the attack told Al Jazeera: "We cannot do anything here for our patients, all the patients, all the injured in the emergency department."
                There were no known indications that the hospital was used by armed factions of Hamas.


                If trees gave off WIFi signals, we would probably plant so many trees, we would save the planet. Too bad they only produce the oxygen we breathe.

                by skohayes on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 04:01:35 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  The only solution that will possibly work is to... (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                petral, johnr49

                The only solution that will possibly work is to end all military aid, monetary or otherwise, to Israel. To be fair, no such aid should be given to the Palestinians either. All monies should be given, and strictly controlled, on a purely humanitarian basis.

                Let Israel stand or fall on its own.

                That brings up an aside: those who refer to Israel, or any nation, as "she" or "her" should not be taken seriously. Inanimates such as chairs and sofas do not have genders in English. Neither to geopolitical boundaries. Let's cut the "appeal to emotion" fallacies. I know you didn't do it here. But still.

                There is another option NOBODY will like, which means it's probably a good and workable solution: diaspora. Evacuate the entire Gaza Strip, Israel and Palestine both, find both sides new homes in other pre-established nations, and declare the entire mess of land an International Holy Land for all members of all three of the Abrahamic religions. Forbid arms of any kind within the borders, secure the entries, and be done with this shit once and for all.

              •  The pain of the Palestinian people IS the fault (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Diane Gee, johnr49

                of Israel ... when will Zionists stop being so immoral?

              •  What about the time Israel spends herding the (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Diane Gee, johnr49

                Palestinians into smaller and smaller spaces, controlling their movements and commerce, and being immoral thugs?

          •  When a criminal takes a hostage, is it ok for the (22+ / 0-)

            police to shoot the hostage to get to the criminal? Hundreds of times? and not by accident?  

            How about terrorists hijack a plane? Would it be right to just blow up the plane and say, "Hey we got the bad guys! Oh and those bad guys forced us to kill all those hostages too!"  

            •  I'll ask a bit differently…. (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Victor Ward, Justanothernyer, Dburn

              If a criminal with a bomb has taken hostages, would it be OK to use any means necessary to save the lives of the many in the city who could be harmed by the bomb or the few who surround the bomb while the fortress is stormed by the good guys?

              Similarly, if people in a village have contracted bubonic plague, would it make sense to quarantine the town of the relative few to protect the many lives outside the village?

              So one more scenario - what would have been better, shooting Flight 175 out of the air on 9/11 and killing the 56 passengers on-board or allowing it to hit World Trade Center Tower #2 and killing 2,000 innocent lives?

              Unlike your scenario of a hijacked plane that places only the occupants of the plane into harms way, those rockets aimed at Israel have the potential to harm just as many innocent people…..just like Flight #175 placed far more people into harms way than the number of passengers on-board.

              Given your concern - how many of the thousands of rockets, missiles, and mortars sent by Palestinians and Hamas at Israel have been solely at military targets versus civilian targets?

              What portion of missiles, rockets and mortars from Hamas & Palestinians have been aimed at Israeli civilians versus the Israeli military?

              I'm sure you were just as outraged when rockets, missiles, and mortars fired from the Palestinian side of the border hit Israeli hospitals.  Right?  You are posting today because Palestinians are dying, did you also blog in outrage at Hamas on the days when Israeli buses were bombed?  Did you write words of praise for Israel on any day they were bombed and showed restraint for retaliating?  

              Before you cast stones at the response from Israel, ask yourself if the people you are concerned about have shown the same concern you are showing them.  Also, ask yourself if you showed the same outrage when Israelis were killed by Hamas.

          •  Bombing buildings with bombs in them isn't actu... (5+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            AoT, skohayes, Diane Gee, PeterHug, laurnj

            Bombing buildings with bombs in them isn't actually the best way to actually deal with the buildings with bombs in them.

            That anyone is convinced that it is the only way to deal with the problem is really freaking weird to me.

            I'm not even sure how sane it is as a measure of last resort.

            It's an example of extremely effective propaganda. I'll give that.

            •  Think of it this way (10+ / 0-)

              Ever since Netanyahu has been in power, they've overreacted this way to the smallest provocation from Gaza.
              Then they bomb water plants and kill civilians and stop the import of drugs or the export of goods, and are surprised when Hamas starts firing rockets again.
              You'd think that Israel would have figured out by now that what they're doing isn't working.
              Remember the definition of insanity.

              If trees gave off WIFi signals, we would probably plant so many trees, we would save the planet. Too bad they only produce the oxygen we breathe.

              by skohayes on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 04:07:19 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Understand - they're not insane. (5+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Diane Gee, Lepanto, jqb, Lefty Coaster, johnr49

                Israel (by which in this case I mean the current government) knows precisely what they're doing, and they are doing it on purpose.

                This whole constructed cycle of violence has just one objective, and that is to flim-flam the Israeli electorate into re-electing these jackasses so that they can continue their ongoing project of expanding the Settlements until they have their Greater Israel.

                At which point I suppose they will set their sights on Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon.

          •  And the Israelis have targeted (9+ / 0-)

            hospitals and schools and mosques. And every time, they blame it on "nearby" rocket cache, though they never offer proof.

            If trees gave off WIFi signals, we would probably plant so many trees, we would save the planet. Too bad they only produce the oxygen we breathe.

            by skohayes on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 03:58:15 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Terrorism is the killing of civilians (5+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Diane Gee, laurnj, PeterHug, jqb, johnr49

            and it's very apparent that the more heavily armed IDF is doing much more killings of civilians as compared to Hamas. This would lead to many observers questioning which of the two organizations to more acts of terrorism

            War is costly. Peace is priceless!

            by frostbite on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 06:30:24 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  You are guilty of spreading false propaganda (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Diane Gee
      •  Hamas is a nationalistic force (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Diane Gee, Heart of the Rockies, jqb

        regardless of Israeli propaganda. Hamas does not used hired guns as does the IDF. Human shield propaganda serves two objectives. It dehumanized the opposition, and it justifies all killings.

        War is costly. Peace is priceless!

        by frostbite on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 06:23:51 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  The Heart of Darkness (5+ / 0-)

      Each side tries to out-ruthlessness the other, to out-crazy the other.

      Government and laws are the agreement we all make to secure everyone's freedom.

      by Simplify on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 12:11:52 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I'm at a loss (3+ / 0-)

      The so-called Powell Doctrine is being waged by Israel right now.  When war is the decided solution, as it appears to be for Israel, then all resources can be deployed.  Unfortunately, when war is the solution, civilians will die.  And the more that Hamas uses civilians as shields, the more civilians will die.

      Can people be outraged at the disproportionate response from Israel - yes.  But we should not be surprised.  To this day, plenty of people within the U.S. believe that the war in Iraq was a just fight.  Can anyone one of these supporters suggest that the result was not disproportionate?

      When war is a solution, there will always likely be one side that provides a disproportionate response.  This is the reason people should be far more cautious into waging war.

      I am going to make a distinction.  Palestinians vs. Hamas.  Borders of Gaza were negotiated in Oslo Accords 20 years ago by Palestinians.  The recent problems, since about 2007, have come from Hamas.

      I have no beef towards Palestinians, but I cannot accept your characterization that Hamas is simply the military wing, - they are terrorists who have provoked Israel time and again.  They do not agree with the borders that were agreed to and they are willing to kill innocent Israelis just as they are willing to put innocent Palestinians into harms way.

      Further, and with respect to West Bank 'Occupation' by Israel.  Peace plans have been negotiated that include either dismantling some of the Israel established settlements or exchanging land within the West Bank.  While I cannot condone the seemingly aggressive posture of Israel in some of these instances, do not make it appear as if Israel has only been one-sided in their negotiation of land for peace.  

      •  Both sides forgot: The real enemy is War. (10+ / 0-)

        There is no political agenda worth the lives of innocent children. You can and should put up with a awful lot before you are willing to start something which kills kids in their beds. Both sides have lost any moral legitimacy they had when this started, and this includes everyone, even the US. At least we are all, finally, on the same page.

        Figures don't lie, but liars do figure-Mark Twain

        by OregonOak on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 12:33:43 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I agree with the sentiment (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Victor Ward, Lepanto

          I agree with the sentiment that the real enemy is war, but too many Americans still believe that the war in Iraq was just.

          In other words, there are too many people for whom war is fine, as long as it's not their child being placed into harms way.

          I will not defend Israels disproportionate response, but the killing of children is an unintended consequence when the missiles aimed at Israel are unknowingly being protected by these Palestinian children.

          If you strike a match and throw it into gasoline, do not blame the firemen for flooding your basement after putting out the fire.

          •  I partly agree.. metaphors are dangerous.. (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Mr Horrible, Diane Gee, laurnj

            If you put a drum of gasoline in your basement, and tell your neighbors they have to live there, with their children, and cannot leave because they dont share your religion, and they say, the only thing we can do to get out is to light this thing on fire, and hope that the firemen come rescue us, well.....

            That is my sense of it anyway. And I am no expert, but there is a gasoline bomb in Israels basement, and Israel should not be the one to go down there and start throwing fire around. It will not end well for Israel.

            Figures don't lie, but liars do figure-Mark Twain

            by OregonOak on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 01:57:59 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Your firemen analogy would be more accurate: (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            HoundDog, Diane Gee, lurkyloo
            "If you strike a match and throw it into gasoline, do not blame the firemen for blowing up your house, blowing up your neighborhood, bulldozing your Mom's house, bombing the hospital where you might have been taken had you survived, erecting barricades around your city block lest anyone you might have known could ever leave, and then attacking as pro-fire anyone who suggests the response was disproportionate and depraved."
          •  Netanyahu lit the match (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            laurnj, Heart of the Rockies, Lepanto, jqb

            when in stead of admitting he knew those kids were dead, he spent 2 weeks terrorizing hundreds of citizens, arresting innocent people, and spewing invective that lead to burning a kid alive.

            Instead of, say - looking for the criminals?

            That was his excuse.... he wanted to punish civilians, and terrorize the people for wanting their own state, and a unified government.  He has said there will never be a Palestinian State.  

            Now we know his means to that intent.

            Other than that businessdem said it all.  

            Free Gaza! Free Donbass!

            by Diane Gee on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 06:50:46 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  The Palestinians "put up with an awful lot" (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          They are a caged and brutalized people.

      •  Bullshit. What Israel is doing right now is NOT (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        an expression of the Powell Doctrine.

        Per wiki:

        The Powell Doctrine states that a list of questions all have to be answered affirmatively before military action is taken by the United States:

        1)  Is a vital national security interest threatened?
        2)  Do we have a clear attainable objective?
        3)  Have the risks and costs been fully and frankly analyzed?
        4)  Have all other non-violent policy means been fully exhausted?
        5)  Is there a plausible exit strategy to avoid endless entanglement?
        6)  Have the consequences of our action been fully considered?
        7)  Is the action supported by the American people?
        8)  Do we have genuine broad international support?

        In actual fact, it is as far from the Powell Doctrine as it is possible to get.  Not ONE of the questions can be answered affirmatively by Israel regarding their current adventure in Gaza.
      •  Israel cannot legally war against the people who (0+ / 0-)

        are in its charge.

    •  It's also a pack of lies. (0+ / 0-)

      The moral depravity of the comment you're responding is nearly unfathomable.

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