Israel’s retaliation for relentless missile strikes from Gaza once again remind us that the most dangerous thing in the Middle East is a tiny nation of Jews trying only to survive. Surrounded by hostile Arab states and outnumbered 100 to 1, Israel has created an oasis of life in a desert wasteland. From an area rich only in a fuel source created millions of years ago, Israel has contributed more to scientific, medical, agricultural and technological advancements than any nation on Earth. In return, all she asks is for her neighbors to acknowledge her right to exist. Instead, they are consumed with dreams of her destruction.
I met my young friend, Phillip, now a 20-something of remarkable character, when he was 8 or 10. Sitting at dinner with the “grown-ups”, Phillip was a great target for my covert attacks. I would shoot pieces of bread sticks or crackers at him until he was forced to retaliate, invariably drawing stern warnings from his befuddled father. While everyone else at the table knew of my treachery, poor Phillip bore the brunt of his father’s misguided annoyance. It was only my incessant pranking that got Phillip into trouble. The constant barrage of missiles and rockets from Gaza into Israel are not meant as pranks.
Daoud Kuttab of the Huffington Post said, “The asymmetrical violence against the people of Gaza has again forced regional and international players to consider what to do about the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.” He’s got the “asymmetrical violence” thing right, he’s just got it twisted around the wrong way, a typical media position borne of either ignorance or predisposition.
America’s power may seem asymmetrical compared to the Muslim extremists, but that didn’t stop them from murdering 3,000 innocent civilians in a well-planned terror attack. It doesn’t stop them from crippling and killing our young men and women with “Improvised Explosive Devices”, weapons far more lethal than their name might suggest.
“Gaza Strip” sounds like a shopping mall in South Miami – or topless dancing. Part of the Palestine Mandate of 1920, Gaza was given to Egypt as a a repository for her undesirables, just as the West Bank was given to Jordan as a place where a young King Hussein could expel those he deemed unfit for his new kingdom. In both cases, the land was disclaimed after the Bedouins and criminals were expelled and left to fend for themselves. What some call “occupation” started as a new nation (Israel) offering humanitarian assistance to a displaced people.
Author Mark Perry told Piers Morgan that this recent spate of violence started when Israel took out one of Hamas’ top officials, completely ignoring the thousands of missiles Hamas launched into southern Israel over the past few years, over 200 in the 4 days leading up to the surgical strike on a single car carrying Ahmed al-Jabari. This crazy convolution of facts goes on, unchallenged, working its way into a fictitious narrative, just as Iran’s Ahmadinejad denies the Holocaust.
Even more insulting to common sense is the fact that Hamas rockets are aimed wantonly into civilian populations, while they decry the targeting of specific military combatants. Always compelled to fight with one hand tied behind their backs, Israeli soldiers do everything possible to avoid civilian casualties and excessive collateral damage as they try to neutralize missile bases and ammunition dumps embedded near schools and hospitals. Not only are the terrorist groups willing to sacrifice their sick and their young to further their cause, they build shelter only for their own fighters, inviting civilian casualties to further their public relations effort.
I say it all the time and, like many cliches it’s absolutely true. If the Arabs lay down their guns, there will be no more war. If the Jews lay down their guns, there will be no more Israel. Golda Meir wisely noted that peace would not be possible while Arabs hate Jews more than they love their own children. It is difficult, if not impossible to negotiate with an opponent who is not only able to convince young men and women to sacrifice themselves in martyrdom, but is more than willing to sacrifice is own children in pursuit of your downfall.
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