Saturday, January 10, 2009

The Crisis in Israel


Last week I sat in on an NGO meeting of progressive organizations (both Israeli and Palestinian)in the Congressional Office Building Longworth. Three representatives took time speaking of the human rights atrocities occurring in the Gaza Strip.

The meeting wasn't overly productive, but they did touch base on some of the major problems (access of aid, not the aid itself) and tactics from both sides (using bombs and rockets which kill many civilians).

Israel has flaunted it's military muscle at the vulnerable Palestinians. And the outcry internationally has been overwhelmingly anti-Israel.

Save for the United States that is.

So what will President Obama inherit in a week and a half?

Is Israel acting boisterous now predicting Obama may not be the vociferous supporter of Israel that President Bush has been?

I doubt it.

Obama has voiced continuously his unwavering support of Israel's self-defense (if you can call it that).

If my tone is interpreted as curse toward the Israeli government, it is intentional. For being the self-proclaimed best army in the world, the IDF sure uses some abhorred tactics to achieve its unclearly stated goals.

Surely the Qassam rockets need to cease from Hamas. Surely the funneling of better missiles and money into Gaza should stop. But how many civilian casualties (which perpetuate this cycle of hate) need to be killed first? How many future leaders of Hamas will be inspired by this current crisis?

With the intelligence that Israel possesses, it seems ridiculous to result to such primitive and carefree styles of warfare.

It seems to me it's more of a power ploy.

Israel has the capacity to starve and exile people living in Gaza. They can shut and monitor electricity and water. Close all humanitarian aid at the border. But to wrecklessly maim innocents with bombs is ill-suited for a nation that relies on public support of America (and generally Europe).

I do not hold a belief that Muslims and Jews in Israel can ever peacefully coexist. There is too much hate and religion to divide them. Too many territory issues and too much familial baggage.

Hopefully I'm wrong.

I've been corresponding with my friend Oshrat I met on my trip to Israel. She is concerned for her friends who are part of the offensive. She could possibly be called back herself.

The cease-fires proposed have produced pitiable results thus far.

When will it end?

Or won't it?

7 comments:

Jackpot said...

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Anonymous said...

Very, very sad

Anonymous said...

I think Israel shutting off the water and electricity supply is more inhuman than dropping bombs in places that are Hamas strongholds. Israel has done a fine join in limiting collateral damage and I hope they continue to do so.

Anonymous said...

Shutting off electricity, water, and cutting off food aid is a violation of international law, and I agree, with the previous post that it is inhumane. However, according to the ICRC, Israel is not doing a good job, nor meeting its legal responsibilities in limiting "collateral damage" as was referred to so cavalierly. See:
http://www.icrc.org/Web/eng/siteeng0.nsf/html/palestine-news-080109!OpenDocument

Note however, that in so stating, I am not supporting either side, nor the claim that Hamas is not also violating rules of war (though arguably as a non-state actor they couldn't be applied to them in the same standards Israel can be held to). I just simply wanted to correct the idea that Israel has done a "fine job" in limiting collateral damage. (oh, and I second the very, very sad statement)

Anonymous said...

neilther israel or the palestinians really want this to end. tiny intermittent eruptions like the one going on now keep the nuclear nuts away...the big culprits here are the u.s. and arab states which provide weaponry and inflame the situation for their own particular profit and powoer...

ConArtist said...

interesting feedback. I agree with Jackpot most though jk.
Surely cutting off electricity and water is inhumane and can have very damaging results.
However I agree vehemently with the fourth comment, that Israel has done a very (and intentionally) poor job in preventing civilian casualties.
The fifth comment is sadly true as well. What a disaster.

Anonymous said...

who gives a damn about the religious fanatics killing each other off? they are mentally insane anyway and their hostilities only substantiate the notion that religion is morally corrupt and bankrupt.