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If someone started firing rockets on Manhattan or Peoria, I would expect the United States to take military action to stop them and the United States would be completely justified in doing so.   This would be true whether or not the rockets were successful at killing many Americans.   It would, in almost all circumstances, not matter why these attacks were being launched.  For example, the fact that they might be launched by groups with significant legitimate past or present grievances against the United States would make no difference.

Hamas attacked Israel with multiple rockets.  The rockets were fired from Gaza, an area under the effective control of Hamas. Rockets are not rocks thrown by teenagers; multiple rocket attacks are an act of war.   An Israeli military response to destroy Hamas and/or its ability to attack Israel was appropriate and justified.  

So far, this issue should be an easy one.  In fact, if someone disagreed with the foregoing, I would have to conclude that they are either disconnected from reality or an apologist for Hamas.

The reality on the ground is both more complicated and tragic than the hypothetical at the beginning of this diary and adds another dimension to the issue.  

Gaza is a densely populated area, approximately as densely populated as Boston or DC.  When an area like this is attacked by a modern military, civilian casualties will be significant.  It is to Israel's credit that they have taken steps to minimize civilian casualties, including providing warnings of (some) attacks; but it should surprise no one that these steps have been of limited effectiveness.  (Though the death toll in this invasion of Gaza has been significantly lower than the death toll in 2009, despite apparently being focused on more highly urbanized parts of Gaza than the 2009 attack.)

Suggestions I've read here in recent days that Israel is "genocidal" are some poisonous blend of obscene and insane,  but as I write this the death toll of Palestinians in Gaza was last reported at 817, the significant majority of which were, by all accounts, innocent bystanders, including a significant number of children.   I can also predict with unfortunate confidence that no matter what attempts Israel makes to minimize civilian casualties the death toll will continue to rise as long as the combat continues and will continue to be overwhelmingly innocent bystanders.

Hamas has continued to fire rockets at Israel and rejected one option for a mutual ceasefire and it should be uncontroversial that Hamas bears a significant share of the blame for the deaths of Palestinian civilians.   For those whose goal is simply to stop the deaths,  Hamas' rejection of that last Israeli ceasefire should be the subject of unequivocal condemnation; for those who have another goal for which they are willing to see more die...it is understandable that they would support continued combat.  

That Hamas bears a significant share of the blame does not absolve Israel of its responsibility for the deaths of hundreds of Palestinians. And, in thinking about its course of action, Israel does need to take the potential for Palestinian civilian deaths into account.

I think, in light of Hamas rocket attacks, and despite the resulting tragedy, the Israeli response was and is justified.  But it is neither as uncontroversial nor as one-sided an issue as it would be were the death toll significantly lower, or the proportion that were not combatants significantly higher or the Hamas attacks on Israel more dangerous.

However, it is important to recognize the tragedy that results from even justified military action.  And it is nothing less than obscene to cheer the deaths of the innocent.  

There is another issue that need be addressed here:

Justified does not necessarily mean smart.  When Hamas started launching rockets at Israel, it was pretty close to a well-deserved demise.  It had agreed to a Palestinian unity government because it was unable to pay salaries. It was increasingly unpopular among Palestinians.  Its ability to obtain additional supplies and arms had been crippled, partly by the determination of Egypt to end Hamas, but also by the dissolution of Syria and preoccupation of Iran.   The effect of Israel's attack has been to somewhat continue the degradation of Hamas' military capabilities but massively (and understandably) increase its popularity.

It is probably time for Israel to propose a ceasefire to end this, similar to the ceasefire that ended the 2009 Gaza conflict.  (That is, Israel will cease fire for some period of time and if Hamas does the same proceed to withdraw its ground troops from Gaza.) That will lead to an immediate halt in the deaths of Palestinian civilians. Because of how badly weakened Hamas is, though, I suspect that Hamas will again not accept and Israel will be faced with the choice of resuming active combat or just ignoring Hamas attacks for a time.  

The question for Israel at that point will be: how long will it take Hamas to run out of rockets and how many Israelis will die before they do?  And, the question, for those who would suggest Israel take this course of action is what should cause Israel to once again resume active combat against Hamas?

 

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Comment Preferences

  •  Do you really think this will happen (8+ / 0-)

    ". . . Israel will cease fire for some period of time and if Hamas does the same proceed to withdraw its ground troops from Gaza."

    Israel is not well known for withdrawing once it has gotten a hold of new territory. I fully expect Palestinian houses to be torn down an new settlement to start appearing in Gaza

    Frankly, I’m getting more than a little tired of hearing from angry America. I’m also less than fond of knee-jerk America. And when you combine the two with the Internet, you too often get stupid America, which is really annoying.

    by jsfox on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 10:14:43 AM PDT

    •  This is what happened in 2009 (7+ / 0-)

      so it is a possibility this time.  As Israel has withdrawn is troops from Gaza several times before, I don't see why it would not do so again.

      •  So that it can tighten the blockade (11+ / 0-)

        and just starve Gazans, shoot them on the street and say"oops", detain them without cause until Gaza boils over again.  Wash, rinse, repeat. Israel offers Gazans  no chance at an even minimally decent life all the while thumbing its nose at international law.

        If the Republicans ever find out that Barack Obama favors respiration, we'll be a one-party system inside two minutes. - Alan Lewis

        by MadRuth on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 10:42:58 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Americans issued our Declaration of Independence (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Johnny Q, Sandino

          For far less.  I sent it to the PA several years ago suggesting they change the section on taxation without representation to the widespread slaughter of civilians, block aid of humanitatarian supplies, restriction of travel, confiscation of fund, and denial of the right to vote in Israeli election.

          They didn't seem to get the point.

          I'm at an autii repair shop now with my IPad, I'll do it for them when I get home

          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 11:05:40 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  First of all (6+ / 0-)

        America has no legal or moral obligation to defend Israel ,America first obligation is too defend the US and   the nation  interest of it own citizen ,the security of Israel and America are to  seperate  issue,Only country in our regions that could send rocket to America is Cuba ,which  they have never did or intend too ,stop your unjust  justification of what is going on in Gaza by Israel

    •  Israel is an occupying army making illegal (10+ / 0-)

      Settlements in defiance roof international law.  I'm beginning to suspect that Israel's brutality has shifted the perceived relative legitimacy to such an extent Palestinians should erect a statue of George Washington in Ramallah and call themselves freedom fighters.

      And calle for international assistance to help them seek freedom and a democratic state.

      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 10:59:06 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I don't think Israel will try to start (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      corvo, MadRuth, HoundDog, too many people

      settlements in Gaza.  Not enough space. Gaza will remain effectively a prison colony for the foreseeable future.  

      What is more likely is that Netanyahu will find some way to spin this to take more West Bank land.  That's where Israel expects to grow, house by house and settlement by settlement, until there is no Palestine left.  Gaza may someday simply merge with Egypt, or just be squeezed so hard that the people just give up and leave if an exit can be negotiated.  But settlements?  Unlikely.

      “If the misery of the poor be caused not by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin.” Charles Darwin

      by ivorybill on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 11:33:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Kibbeh bil sanieh (11+ / 1-)
    3 tbsp olive oil
    800 g minced lamb or beef
    4 large onions, finely chopped
    1 tsp baharat
    ½ tsp cinnamon (optional)
    1 tsp salt
    1½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
    1 tbsp butter
    3 tbsp pine nuts
    Kibbeh

    1½ cups fine burghul, soaked overnight in 250 ml water, drained well
    800 g lean, finely minced lamb or beef (ask your butcher to mince it twice)
    2 large onions, finely grated
    1 tsp baharat
    2 tsp salt
    3 tsp freshly ground black pepper
    1 tbsp olive oil

    For the kibbeh you need to soak the burghul in 250 ml of water overnight. The next day drain well.

    To make the filling, heat the oil in a frying pan over low heat and add the meat. Cook, stirring constantly to break up the grains of meat. When the meat is browned and separated and the moisture is starting to evaporate, stir in the onion, spices, salt and pepper and keep cooking until the onion is soft.

    Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small frying pan and add the pine nuts. Fry until they start to brown, then stir into the meat mixture. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.

    To make the kibbeh, combine the drained burghul, meat, onion, baharat, salt and pepper in a bowl and mix well by hand until it forms a paste. You may need a little water to keep the mixture soft. Cover and leave to rest for 30 minutes.

    Preheat the oven to 180°C and oil a round baking tray with deep sides (around 2 cm). Dampen your hands and layer the tray with half of the kibbeh by forming small balls of the mixture then flattening them over the tray. Smooth the surface and make sure there are no gaps. Spread the cooled meat filling on top, pressing it down a little to keep the layers tight. Top with the rest of the kibbeh using the same technique. When the surface is smooth, push a small hole through the centre of the kibbeh with your finger. Slice into wedges fanning around the hole. Brush with the olive oil and bake in the oven for 25 minutes.

    Hillary does not have the benefit of a glib tongue.

    by The Dead Man on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 10:16:26 AM PDT

  •  If the Outer Boroughs laid siege to Manhattan, (30+ / 0-)

    controlling all access to the city, choking off it's electric and water supplies, preventing food and medicines from getting in and people from getting out, randomly sent in helicopter gunships, F-16s, Tanks and APCs, et cetera to maraud through the city, using any excuse to assassinate city leaders, vilifying the residents as vermin and flaunting UN resolutions demanding that they lift the siege, would the residents of that city have the right to defend themselves?

    If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

    by CwV on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 10:16:42 AM PDT

    •  Good point. We're our founding fathers justified (9+ / 0-)

      In fighting our revolutionary war against the British who would have called them terriorist?

      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 10:29:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Victors write the histories. /nt (6+ / 0-)

        Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
        I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
        —Spike Milligan

        by polecat on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 10:40:47 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  If Israel keeps up like this history may record (5+ / 0-)

          The Hamas leader of Gaza as the George Washington of his day.

          I've been hoping instead for a peaceful revolution where Abbas or that fayad fellow ... Gets to be like mahatma Gandhi.

          Sadly so many hard right Israeli's r under a delusional fantasy that they can replicate the disgrace of what we did to the American Indians.

          Not going to happen in the age of the internet.

          The choice is modeling India or us revolution.

          Either myself or people like me will help write much of this history.  The Extreme Likud narrative is not going to hold up.

          The sooner Israeli realize this the far fewer people will die in the transition.

          I am an advocate of non-violence, but this strategy relies on a certain level of moral conscience on the part of oppressive forces.  The British had this -  do the Israelis.  We will learn soon.

          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 11:18:37 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  18th and 19th Century ethics (or lack thereof) (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            HoundDog, too many people

            don't belong in the 21st.

            The regard for human life in that era was abysmal.

            re: Partitioning (India/Pakistan) -- that didn't work all that well, and both states ended up with enough resources to survive.  Will the resulting state of Gaza/Palestine/etc have enough water and other resources (and access) to actually make it?

            What about people that don't want to relocate from one to the other?

            This gets ugly fast, and India and Pakistan (the Other I/P) aren't going to be friends for generations.  This, IMHO, is worse.

            It would be a useful exercise to figure out what the state of Palestine (in a 2-state scenario) would need to be viable.  The follow up question would be whether Israel would ever allow it to happen even under ideal circumstances.  What about Likud?

            Similar questions come up about Iraq and Biden's notion of partitioning.  (As if we didn't learn enough from the 1919-20 Paris conference and the aftermath!?!)  But there, the resource that no one wants to share is oil.

            Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
            I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
            —Spike Milligan

            by polecat on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 12:56:02 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  What if bank robbers in NJ fled into Manhattan (9+ / 0-)

      And NJ police dropped 2000 lb bombs on apartment complexes of civilians to smoke out the criminal killing hundreds to capture the 5 bank robbers and continued to do this
      S for 60 years?

      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 10:33:59 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Getting a little nervous that (4+ / 0-)

        people are using Manhattan as an example! Yikes.   On a not very related note was shocked to hear that the Gaza Strip is a bit smaller than half of NYC, Those poor people crowded into that small space that is being targeted.  They have no place to go,

        •  Good point. I wish we did not have to get so (2+ / 0-)

          literal to make the higher level conceptual point that dropping 2,000 pounds and missals in highly dense civilian cities is wrong and a war crime and is no where near justified by declaring that some group of apparntly teenagers fired off such crude missles/rockets/firecrackers, that out of the thousands that Israeli alleges have been fired there as been one casualty.

          This does not justify killing 600 plus civilians and wounding 4,500 plus by dropping bombs on apartment complexes.

          If we look at the objective facts the charges of terrorism should be reversed.

          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 01:20:32 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Just one nitpick: flouting, not flaunting. ... (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      CwV, poco, Lady Libertine, Sandino, HoundDog

      ..Otherwise, agreed.

      Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

      by Meteor Blades on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 10:52:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I cannot find the antecedent to which you refer. (0+ / 0-)

        When posts blow up to hundreds of comments following one like yours it can be hard to know what u r agreeing with unless we have a specific reference.

        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 11:25:30 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's CwV's comment above that I directly... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          poco, HoundDog

          ...responded to: "flaunting UN resolutions."

          Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

          by Meteor Blades on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 12:20:07 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Thanks MB. Trying to follow conversations this (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            poco

            complicated on my Iphone has been a learning experience.

            For a moment, it became so confusing I almost concluded that I should be aspiring to a level of brevity an order of magnitude more concise than I've ever imagine.

            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 02:31:32 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Can you click on Parent when reading... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              HoundDog

              ...on your iPhone?

              Also too...  I misread "Humor Alert" as Humus Alert.

              Do I contradict myself? Very well then I contradict myself, (I am large, I contain multitudes.)

              by Arilca Mockingbird on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 04:16:41 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  IDK, I'll give it a try. I don't know where that (0+ / 0-)

                is, but I'll look for it.

                Humus alert would probably work just as well. I may switch over to that as it seems sort of stupid and sad to have to put such silly labels on obvious snark or humor.

                But, you'd be amazed at how many of my attempts at both, go entirely unnoticed or interpreted as having the opposite meaning as I intended.

                I'll bet if I upgraded to humus alerts I'd get a lot more respect around here.

                Thanks Arilca.

                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 07:04:22 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

    •  Certainly but firing rockets into civilian areas (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Proteus7

      with the intent to kill civilians is no form of self-defense. It is a crime against humanity as the Palestinian representative to the UN stated:

      The envoy, Ibrahim Khreisheh, indicated in the interview on Palestinian Authority TV that such a sentiment might be politically unpopular, noting that he is "not a candidate in any Palestinian elections, so I don't need to win popularity among the Palestinians." He added that Israel is also guilty of "crimes against humanity."
      "I am not a candidate in any Palestinian elections, so I don't need to win popularity among the Palestinians. The missiles that are now being launched against Israel, each and every missile constitutes a crime against humanity, whether it hits or misses, because it is directed at civilian targets. What Israel does against Palestinian civilians also constitutes crimes against humanity. With regard to crimes of war under the Fourth Geneva Convention —the settlements, the Judaization, the checkpoints, the arrests, and so on — we find ourselves on very solid ground."
      Khreisheh went on to say that the Israeli army warned Palestinians living in Gaza to evacuate before a bombardment.

      "However, there is a Palestinian weakness with regard to the other issue. Therefore, targeting civilians — be it one civilian or a thousand — is considered a crime against humanity.
      Please note that many of our people in Gaza appeared on TV and said that the Israeli army warned them to evacuate their homes before the bombardment. In such a case, if someone is killed, the law considers it a mistake rather than intentional killing because [the Israelis] followed the legal procedures. As for the missiles launched from our side, we never warn anyone about where these missiles are about to fall, or about the operations we carry out. Therefore, people should know more before they talk emotionally about appealing to the [International Criminal Court]."

      "Stay close to the candles....the staircase can be treacherous" (-8.38,-8.51)

      by JNEREBEL on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 01:55:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The rocket attacks did not start last week (12+ / 0-)

    So your assertion that Israel is completely justified in killing women and children in its zeal to "punish" Hamas is part of the problem Israel has had this time around.  Namely, that everyone knows Hamas did not suddenly decide to start firing rockets at Israel last week after decades of zero confrontation.  If you choose to willfully ignore the reality of the situation in Israel/Palestine, you can expect to be called out for it when you post things like this.  People are dying, and especially innocent people are dying by the scores every day, and yet you think you can just hand wave away the history that brought us to this moment?  

    •  I think that the confrontation has gone through (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RedsFanForever

      periods when it is hotter and more deadly and colder and less so.  

      I have no illusions as to the solubility in the short term of the larger issues, but would prefer that the conflict go back to a colder and less deadly phase.

      •  I think anyman is challenging your incredibly over (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CwV, Johnny Q

        Simplistic generalization that any one who is critical of Israel are apologists for Hamas.

        If u want to persist at this level of discussion somebody could just as easily suggest that anyone who would not support Hamas would have opposed our American revolution so is an anti-American traitor.

        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 10:40:27 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Since I didn't make that assertion, it is (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          mattoqp

          surprising that it would be challenged.  Certain  criticisms of Israel are apologia for Hamas; most aren't.

          •  Did I misunderstand this sentence in your post. (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Johnny Q, MadRuth, poco, Killer

            justified.  

            So far, this issue should be an easy one.  In fact, if someone disagreed with the foregoing, I would have to conclude that they are either disconnected from reality or an apologist for Hamas.
            If so, I apologize, I'm trying to participate in this with an iPhone from an auto repair garage.

            Statements like this rile me up. Which explains my counter example to illustrate the problematic nature of such assertions.

            It's almost like waving a red flag to a bull to provoke someone into saying the opposite.  For example,

            So far, this issue should be an easy one.  In fact, if someone disagreed that Hamas are freedom fighters just as justified in fighting for their own freedom and democracy then, I would have to conclude that they are either disconnected from reality or an apologist for fascism, oppressive governments, and anti-American, and anti-humanist, and regressive
            One heck of a conversation starter.  Fun if someone remembered to put on their iron shorts. Lol

            Please note I'm not agreeing with this position just illustrating the symmetry and noting its capability of creating confused enemies out of potential allies.

            Some one like me might now be debating the validity of these two hyothetical extremes rather than whatever was your a
            Original real point.  Which I haven't even been able to get to yet distracted by all the potential for fun latent in seeing how far to an extreme I can push this rhetorical gambit.

            My car is ready and they r getting mad that I'm blocking the bay while writing this.

            I told the miserable shits too wait because someone is wrong on internet but humorless sobs didn't get the joke.  I'll be back once I explain it to these police officers and get home or raise bail.  

            How can they be talking about traffic flow at a time like thi

            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 11:48:43 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  so it'd be OK if the Palestinians went back (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Justanothernyer, Proteus7

      to putting suicide bombers on Israel's buses?

      That's one effect of the economic policy and the searches. Fewer IEDs at large in Israel. I for one applaud that.

      LBJ, Van Cliburn, Ike, Wendy Davis, Lady Bird, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

      by BlackSheep1 on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 11:37:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not any more OK than (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        historys mysteries

        killing four children playing soccer on the beach. Or the collective punishment of deliberately keeping a whole population in near starvation.  I guess that gets a standing ovation from you.

        If the Republicans ever find out that Barack Obama favors respiration, we'll be a one-party system inside two minutes. - Alan Lewis

        by MadRuth on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 12:43:07 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  This is the "abusive spouse defense" (19+ / 0-)

    "Look what you made me do!"

    or

    "I'll stop hitting you when you stop trying to make me stop hitting you!"

    If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

    by Major Kong on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 10:24:11 AM PDT

  •  Hamas wants high civilian casualties (6+ / 0-)

    It keeps the donors donating, makes Israel look evil, and keeps their population angry and hateful, it's 'win-win' for them. Still, Israel looks like a rogue elephant stomping everything in sight.

    May you live in interesting times--Chinese curse

    by oldcrow on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 10:24:25 AM PDT

  •  Israel is not the only nation to wage Urban war... (4+ / 0-)

    The US did so in both Iraq and Afghanistan. And had very few civilian causalities in the initial assaults. Our civilian deaths happened mostly due to long protracted unjustifiable occupations (sound familiar?).

    Libya had a freaking revolution... in an urban setting... with people who had no way to tell each other apart as they'd been neighbors days before...

    And had fewer civilian causalities.

    Somolia has fewer civilian deaths... and its a freaking nation taken right out of a bad apocalypse movie...

    I'm not certain, but I believe Serbia was less deadly for the non-combatants, and they WERE being targeted for genocide...

    In modern times only Syria gets body counts like Israel does... and we know why that is...

    Because like Israel, Syria primarily TARGETS civilians.

    OMG, like, gag them with a multi-colored spoon. Like, ya know.

    by Jyotai on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 10:26:10 AM PDT

    •  Facts are stubborn things (6+ / 0-)

      Estimates of deaths in the Libyan civil war range from 2500 to 25,000 according to Wikipedia.  The lowest number is triple the number of deaths in the Israeli attack on Gaza.

      I haven't looked at the other situations you mention, but given how wide of the mark you are on that one, I'm going to conclude it likely, absent evidence, that you lack any basis for you other assertions.

      That includes the baseless lie that Israel is targeting civilians.  

      •  That's just this attack (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        corvo, poco

        The assault on Gaza has been ongoing.  

        If the Republicans ever find out that Barack Obama favors respiration, we'll be a one-party system inside two minutes. - Alan Lewis

        by MadRuth on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 10:48:13 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Israel does not have to target civilians to be (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CwV, MadRuth

        Both unwise and in violation of the Geneva Conventions.  To drop 2000 bombs on civilian apt complexes ti kill on all edged terrorist who may be in there somewhere is hideous and a war crime, IMO.

        Israel is destroying its own perceived legitimacy in the eyes of many groups, including those of us who have supported it until now.

        If one creates 20 "terrorist to kill 1 one is unwise.  

        If one slaughters civilian without remorse offering lame justification one convinces many to rebel forces u call terrorists are justified ti call themselves Freedom Fighters.

        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 10:52:54 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  That supports me in a broader look (0+ / 0-)

        The Libyan war was a longer one.

        If we extend the death toll in Gaza out over that time period - it will be in the millions.

        It is a genocide.

        OMG, like, gag them with a multi-colored spoon. Like, ya know.

        by Jyotai on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 02:23:43 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Furthermore... wikipedia on Libya (0+ / 0-)

          notes that most of the deaths were among fighters of each side. The number of civilian dead was, for a several month long war - either very low thousands, or under 200.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/...

          So yes - my point stands.

          Urban warfare does not require slaughtering children, nor any other civilian.

          OMG, like, gag them with a multi-colored spoon. Like, ya know.

          by Jyotai on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 02:32:20 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  You're right they're targeting places that just (0+ / 0-)

        happen to have civilians inside.

    •  I'd like to see some links on those claims. n/t (3+ / 0-)

      Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

      by Meteor Blades on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 10:55:03 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  True, but if the U.S. puts in place a blockade of (8+ / 0-)

    another country, they should expect a hostile response. A blockade is an act of war.

    "Because I am a river to my people."

    by lordcopper on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 10:26:51 AM PDT

  •  If Israel is allowed to resort to violence (6+ / 0-)

    in reaction to violence, are the Palestinians also allowed to resort to violence in reaction to violence?

  •  Can you clarify this: (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    corvo
    as I write this the death toll of Palestinians in Gaza was last reported at 817, the significant majority of which were, by all accounts, innocent bystanders, including a significant number of children.
    Can you please state more precisely how many is a "significant number of children" killed by the Israeli army?

    "Trust me... I've been right before." ~ Tea party patriot

    by Calvino Partigiani on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 10:34:53 AM PDT

  •  "Defending Israel." (5+ / 0-)

    I just ran across this in another diary. Your uprate blows any credibility you may have on the topic right out of the water.

    Ummm Hamas was not firing rockets from the West (1+ / 8-)

    Recommended by:Justanothernyer
    Hidden by:poco, Clytemnestra, corvo, StrayCat, Timaeus, Skaje, Jeff Simpson, IndieGuy

    Bank...yet....although some on this site fervently hope they will do so, killing Israelis by the score.

    by Tackle on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 11:03:19 AM EDT

     [ Parent | Reply to This | Recommend  Hide ]

  •  actually the US did react to the (5+ / 0-)

    equivalent of firing missiles into Manhattan or the Bronx after 9/11.  We also see the problem of trying a military solution to a complicated, nuanced problem.  Our incursion into Afghanistan may have been justified (though it is still debatable as the Taliban would have probably eventually sold bin Laden to us.  They did not like him) and then we stayed.
    We also hit Iraq and we see the results of the two incursions the repercussions of which continue to reverberate through our society

    So you are correct about the US responding as robustly as Israel to provocation.  The only question is if the Israeli response go as terribly awry as our response did
    http://www.juancole.com/...

  •  Damn Apaches... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Portlaw, poco, HoundDog, mickT

    They are all pissed off about being "forced off their lands" and so they shoot arrows into some prospectors and cowboys.  What are we supposed to do?  Any nation has the right to self defense, so we have no alternative to put them in a small controllable territory.  But they persist in shooting arrows at us, so they can hardly complain when we use more force. If their kids get in the way, shame on them for using children as human shields.  

    I know that is an imperfect analogy, but seriously... let's at least be honest with ourselves instead of blathering on about how much care the Israeli government is taking to reduce the number of Palestinians they kill.  The Israeli government has absolutely zero intention of negotiating or permitting a Palestinian state. Ever. Gaza is an enclave, a beachfront prison really, for a bunch of people who have no future unless they admit final defeat and flee, if they are allowed, just like the generations of Palestinians in Jordan and Lebanon. Israel will continue to take territory and expand settlements in response to Palestinian "provocation".  If the Palestinians don't play along, Israel will poke them until someone does something violent and stupid (like killing those teenagers), and then that will be the pretext to squeeze a little harder.  Eventually, even the most obdurate Palestinian will realize that they will never have a state, and the choice ultimately is a tightly controlled reservation, prison or exile.

    That's the reality. I don't like it, but I accept it.

    But I sure as hell don't want to hear about how solicitous Israel is toward civilians and how they are trying to separate the innocent Palestinians from the guilty.  I don't want to hear about how Hamas is using "human shields" because they refuse to simply walk out into an empty field and wait for execution.  

    “If the misery of the poor be caused not by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin.” Charles Darwin

    by ivorybill on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 11:21:53 AM PDT

  •  Just forget everything that happened before 2014? (4+ / 0-)

    This diary offers no understanding of the context surrounding and preceding the conflict. Elements of that context include:
    * Gaza is horribly impoverished and is one of the most densely populated areas on the planet. About 80% of its residents are unemployed. The average resident lives on just a few dollars per day.
    * Economic and physical blockades of Gaza have resulted in  extreme hardship for individuals and have prevented the development of civic infrastructure that would help alleviate the poverty.
    * Residents and visitors to Gaza are frequently mistreated and sometimes assaulted (or killed) by the Israeli military without any specific justification.
    * Most of the residents of Gaza have been forced to move there because they were displaced from their homes elsewhere. In many cases, their property (or the property of their immediate ancestors) was taken from them by Israeli forces.

    I do not think Israel can find peace until it addresses these injustices, and yet I see frequent commentary along the lines of this diary that inflates the threat of a few ineffective rockets (arguably "fighting back") to something that the diarist would like to believe overshadows the totality of the blockade. The two things are hardly comparable, and yet this diary focuses overwhelmingly on the smaller issue.

    As George Galloway observed in a recent panel discussion, the residents of Gaza are in much the same situation as were the residents of the Warsaw ghetto, and they are responding in a similar manner. Israel isn't going to solve that problem by engaging in retaliation or in any kind of military action whatsoever.

    •  The residents of Gaza are not fortunately (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mannie

      in the same situation as were the residents of the Warsaw ghetto.

      •  Shall I make another checklist? (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MadRuth, HoundDog, Pablo Bocanegra

        Okay, if I must.
        * Many of the residents were driven to flee to that area by occupying forces.
        * The area is surrounded by a nearly impenetrable wall of fencing, dogs, people with rifles, artillery, and well, walls.
        * Checkpoints tightly restrict the ability of people to enter or leave, as well as their ability to move around.
        * Outside forces maintain a chokehold on what materials may enter the area. There is not sufficient import of food, medicine, or building materials to substantially raise the quality of life inside the walls.
        * There is frequent harassment and violence directed at the people living inside the walls.
        * Some members of the government on the other side of the wall are calling for the extermination of the residents within.
        * What they had previously was taken from them by force.

        I do not claim that the situation is identical to the one in Warsaw, but one cannot honestly say that there are not meaningful similarities.

        •  And becoming more so with each passing day. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          HoundDog

          I certainly found it chilling that Bibi would publicly say that Palestinians don't care for their children like Israelis do.

          If the Republicans ever find out that Barack Obama favors respiration, we'll be a one-party system inside two minutes. - Alan Lewis

          by MadRuth on Fri Jul 25, 2014 at 12:49:49 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Peoria? Hey that's where I live! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Justanothernyer

    Good diary - I would like to reiterate though that the Israeli response is somewhat disproportionate. 2 Israeli civilians have been killed since the conflict began, and the UN estimates that over 400 Palestinian civilians have been killed in the same period.

  •  If Israel was so noble, it could shut everyone up (0+ / 0-)

    by using ground troops to take land instead of bombing everything to smitherins. The USA isn't a perfect country, but I don't remember us killing everyone in Falluja when we wanted to stop the militants operating there. Or Baghdad. If we acted like Israel, we would have killed  100,000 Afghans in the first 10 days of our invasion in 2001.  (The 25 / 1 Kill ratio the Israelis now enjoy)

    The Israelis are not only murderous, they are ridicuoulous.

  •  False in every particular (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    poco

    Hamas didn't attack Israel - it was the other way round.

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