Gaza Strip - Israel, another hotbed of depravity

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English Section / 21 mai

Gaza Strip - Israel, another hotbed of depravity

Versiunea în limba română

(Episode 4)

Episode 1 of this article reported the cases of symmetrical suffering of a Palestinian and an Israeli mother, presenting the ethical and political dilemmas related to humanitarian aid and hostage recovery.

Episode 2 suggests that Netanyahu was able to take advantage of the Hamas attack to strengthen his political position (see the summary of the article "How and why Israel helped create Hamas?", published next).

Episode 3 explores the causes of the Israeli army's ineffectiveness despite its military superiority over the Palestinian army, and how Hamas continues to have popular support among the Palestinian population, despite criticism of the corruption and lavish lifestyles of some of its leaders.

I urge my readers to independently verify the information included in this study and process it for themselves.

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Who is the cat and who is the mouse?

Anti-Israel protests express disagreement with the policies and actions of the government of Israel; they differ from anti-Semitism, which is a form of hatred or discrimination directed against Jews as an ethnic and/or religious group, but the differences have become blurred in reactions to Israel's war in the Gaza Strip.

Likewise, there are big differences between being pro-Palestinian and being anti-Israeli, but on both sides, the principle "who is not with us is against us" works, a principle that erases the distinctions.

Hamas fighters may wear uniforms, but they do not consistently.

They often prefer to dress in civilian clothes to blend in better with civilians or to avoid being identified as combatants.

The fact induces the confusion that every Palestinian is Hamas, a belief that many Israelis have and that produces fanatical chauvinism, not only in times of war.

The ideology of Hamas excludes the existence of Israel as a state, but in the official statements it does not specify what should happen to the Israelis after the dissolution of the state of Israel; some statements and actions contain suggestions of violence, so many Israelis feel threatened with extinction.

For many Israelis, the expression "the struggle for the liberation of Palestine" is synonymous with the expression "killing Israelis".

Protesters, such as those at Columbia University, say they want to end the war in Gaza and pressure the Israeli government to grant the Palestinians a state. According to media reports, some of the organizers of the protests, such as "Students for Justice in Palestine", want the total elimination of Israel as a state, which has led to slogans and chants promoting elimination, not coexistence, and violent and extreme statements not they come from the periphery of the movement, but they come from the leaders of the protests.

The fact provides strong arguments for American and Israeli conservatives who, according to reports, argue that a peaceful solution is unrealistic.

This strengthens the position of right-wing Israeli leaders, who argue that the only solution is total Israeli control over the occupied territories.

The disproportion of the Israeli reaction

We have seen why Israel does not award its military victory, although it has an overwhelming power in relation to the Gaza Strip.

But how is it possible that, after the atrocities committed by Hamas on October 7, 2023, most of the world sided with the Palestinians, when Hamas still holds around 100 hostages?!

The reason seems to be the absolute disproportion of the Israeli revenge reaction, which suppresses any justifying details and masks the possible other causes.

The figures reported by Hamas are not confirmed by neutral third parties, but if it is true that 34-35 thousand Palestinians have been killed, as the graph taken from Al Jazeera shows, then look elsewhere for grounds for international condemnation of Israel and for supporting the Palestinian cause makes it suspect of pro-Israeli partisanship.

However, Hen Mazzig, a senior researcher at the Tel Aviv Institute, told Fox News Digital (22), according to an article published in mid-November: "I don't think the people protesting in the streets really care about Palestinian national rights. I don't think they understand what they are talking about or what they stand for, because if they did, why are they taking to the streets now? Why have they protested since October 8? I saw protests on October 7, even."

Pro-Palestinian demonstrations on October 7, on the very day of the Hamas attack, when Israel was seen by any normal person as a victim?!

So, there are other causes of adherence to the Palestinian cause, which are not directly related to Israeli reprisals.

I will explore this suggestion in future episodes.

Anyway, the horror of this mass killing practiced by Israel made the Hamas monstrosity of October 7, 2023 go into oblivion, and some even throw the blame on Israel.

The shock in international public opinion has the gift of reversing the flow of time: because the monstrosity of Hamas since then finds its justification in the Israeli horror afterwards.

Israeli magazine CTech reported on October 29, 2023: "This month, Harvard bosses ruled that holding Israel "fully responsible' for the killing, kidnapping and rape of its citizens is free speech."

Israel's subsequent reaction became justification for Hamas's initial action.

On the other hand, behind the cruelty of the repression in the Gaza Strip I believe there is fear - the struggle for the survival of Israel.

Surrounded by Arab countries on all sides, Israel survived by the fame of its armed invincibility and the fame of the infallibility of its secret services.

This reputation was destroyed on October 7, when Israel was seen to be weak, its military weak and slow to react, its secret services weak and seemingly out of date, and the state unable to protect its citizens despite adopting unique security measures on the planet.

The repression in the Gaza Strip is probably intended to restore to Israel the image of an unbeatable country, - both externally and in the eyes of its own population - assuming the infamy of the way it does it.

Mistakes upon mistakes.

It is despair.

In the context, a latent calculation can be glimpsed, which cannot be declared without attracting opprobrium.

I warn you that the following idea is shocking and will be immediately contested, mainly by Israelis and pro-Israelis, but it will also be contested by the Palestinians, being humiliating.

The disproportion of the Israeli reaction is contributed by a somewhat strange reason, with its origin in recent history:

In 2011, Israel recovered from Hamas captivity the soldier Gilad Shalit (he had become a hostage in 2006), exchanging 1,027 Palestinian prisoners. He was the first Israeli hostage recovered alive from Hamas. Gilad Shalit's release was celebrated in Israel as a victory for the entire country; the return of the 1,000 to the Gaza Strip created a triumph. Thus, an extravagant "quotation" was established: one Israeli for a thousand Palestinians. This can also be written like this: 1 Israeli = 1,000 Palestinians.

The thinking of some Israelis is stigmatized by this quantitative ratio.

By virtue of this appalling equivalence, the 35,000 Palestinians killed in the Gaza Strip by the Israeli army are still too few to quench the thirst for revenge for the death of the 1,139 people murdered on October 7.

Because 1,139 x 1,000 = 1,139,000 people (ie half of the population of the Gaza Strip - 2.3 million). Killing a million people?

No, no one explicitly claimed such a "price".

But isn't that what Netanyahu's threat to turn the Gaza Strip into a "desert island" means?

The consequences of a lunatic prisoner exchange

The quote of "one in a thousand" put its stamp explicitly on the difficult negotiations for the release of the hostages, between Israel and the Palestinian movements, where Hamas set conditions considered "delusional" by the Israeli press.

I present a systematic synthesis of the conditions imposed by Hamas, reported in the Israeli press (23) from May 8, 2024, where the expressions written in bold letters represent the Israeli conclusions:

1. Release of hostages: Hamas refuses to release 33 live hostages in the first stage (as originally requested), but wants to return both live and dead hostages. The first hostages could be released only on the third day after the entry into force of the agreement, and hence "another three detainees every seven days".

2. Control over the Gaza Strip: The proposal includes requirements that would allow Hamas to consolidate its control over the entire Gaza Strip, including through the partial withdrawal of Israeli troops.

3. Support for Hamas and the marginalization of the Palestinian Authority (PA): The release of Hamas leaders and other key prisoners (including Marwan Barghouti and Ahmad Saadat) could strengthen support for Hamas in the West Bank, further marginalizing the Palestinian Authority (which rules the West Bank) and escalating violence against Israel.

Marwan Barghouti: He was the commander of the Fatah organization. He is serving five life sentences for orchestrating deadly terrorist attacks during the Second Intifada.

Ahmad Saadat: He is the leader of the terrorist organization Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP). Saadat was convicted of organizing the assassination of tourism minister Rehavam Ze'evi in 2001 and is serving a 30-year prison sentence.

4. Reaffirming Terrorist Objectives: The proposal allows Hamas to continue terrorizing Israel, including by refusing to release all hostages and by maintaining a climate of instability and violence in the region.

5. Using the agreement for strategic advantage: Hamas can use the agreement to its strategic advantage, abrogating it when it believes it has achieved its goals, while Israel would have little means to enforce it.

In short, Israeli decision-makers argue that the Hamas proposal is designed to consolidate its power and influence in the region, with the prospect of expanding into the West Bank.

US analysts at the Institute for the Study of War wrote on the same day that "Hamas leaders may have calculated that Hamas will survive an Israeli operation in Rafah and that therefore Hamas can afford to maintain its maximalist demands in the ceasefire agreement, without major concessions". (24)

On the Palestinian side, the peace talks are being led by Yahya Sinwar, the head of Hamas in Gaza, who was himself among the 1,027 Palestinian prisoners exchanged by Israel for the release of kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit.

Sinwar is the most senior Hamas official in Gaza and the de facto ruler of Gaza (as well as the second most powerful member of Hamas after Ismail Haniyeh); analysts claim that he masterminded the October 7, 2023 Hamas attack on Israel.

Having personal experience in the exchange of prisoners in 2011, Yahya Sinwar ordered the capture of hostages, because he knew that upon the release of each one (and especially for the female soldiers), he could impose exorbitant conditions.

So the one you're negotiating with is one of the thousand you gave for the release of one of your own - what a terrible rate of multiplication of terrorism!

Who is the cat and who is the mouse in this deadly game?

To try to obtain by exchange your citizens held hostage, negotiating with one previously exchanged, for the release of another of your people - where does this vicious circle end?

The annihilation of one, the other, both, hurting the rest of the world.

Post Scriptum

A valuable comment came from a reader, on Episode 1 of this article from BURSA:

3.3. untitled (response to opinion no. 3.2) (message sent by anonymous on 16.05.2024, 11:40)

I believe that the real cause of the eternal conflict in the area is Israel's refusal to accept honestly and, as far as possible, fairly the division of the territory historically disputed by Jews and Arabs. Even in the territory of the West Bank, assigned to the Arabs, the Jews still rule with a strong hand and favor the implantation of Israeli citizens. Two different, independent states with correct relations between them - even if without sentimental effusions - could ensure the lives of their citizens without the current horrors produced by both sides.

The comment is valuable because it represents the typical common sense opinion of the uninformed citizen that a game of cat and mouse is engaged between the Palestinians and the Israelis, where it is not clear who is one and who is the other. For edification, I quote from Wikipedia:

"Taher El-Nounou, Hamas media advisor, said that he hopes "that the state of war with Israel will become permanent on all borders and that the Arab world will be with [Hamas]".

"Ghazi Hamad, a senior Hamas official, said in an interview: "We must teach Israel a lesson and we will do it again and again..."

He emphasized Hamas' desire to "pay a price", concluding with a call for the elimination of Israel: "We must remove that country because it constitutes a security, military and political catastrophe for the Arab and Islamic nations".

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2023_Hamas-led_attack_on_Israel

"Two different, independent states with fair relations between them"?

No, Hamas and its sponsors (for example, Iran) exclude such a thing.

According to the Wikipedia source cited above, some commentators point out how the founding charter of Hamas, which advocates the destruction of Israel, contains anti-Semitic language and, according to some researchers, implies a call for the genocide of the Jews. This, the same source points out, led to the suggestion that the October 7 attacks were an effort to fulfill this agenda.

Notes

(21) https://www.aljazeera.com/news/longform/2023/10/9/israel-hamas-war-in-maps-and-charts-live-tracker

Observatie: cifrele evolueaza zilnic.

(22) https://www.foxnews.com/media/social-media-giants-feature-far-more-pro-palestinian-content-than-pro-israeli-content-led-by-tiktok

(23) https://www.timesofisrael.com/sinister-hamas-deal-would-let-it-keep-most-hostages-win-the-war-inflame-the-west-bank/

(24) https://www.understandingwar.org/backgrounder/iran-update-may-8-2024

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