“Islamists leave Israel no choice”

An excellent column from The Australian:

On Monday night, the ABC’s Lateline program ran a report on the suffering of civilians in Gaza, an absolutely legitimate subject. Among the heart-rending footage there was an interview with a Gazan civilian who understandably complained bitterly about Israel’s actions. But the ABC reporter didn’t ask the absolutely obvious question: Do you wish your leaders would stop firing missiles into Israel, which make inevitable both the economic blockade and the Israeli military response? The ABC, as usual, was following more or less exactly the terrorists’ preferred script for the Western media. Islamist terrorists have always been centrally concerned with the Western media and their understanding of its story presentation dynamics is acute, as this episode demonstrates. Hamas gets to sheet all blame to Israel.
Israel is always told to retreat to the 1967 borders. The two places where it has done this – southern Lebanon and Gaza – have been disasters for Israel and have not produced peace. The 1967 borders only work for Israel if its neighbours don’t make war on Israel any more. There is no indication at all that either Hamas or Hezbollah, or indeed Iran, which soon enough will possess nuclear weapons, is on a trajectory towards accepting Israel’s right to exist.
And finally, Hamas may well be operating in very close concert with its sponsors, Iran and Syria. There is tremendous Sunni Arab concern about the growing power of Iran, evident not least in the bloody political vacuum in Lebanon.
A crisis in Gaza forces the forthcoming Arab summit to focus on the Palestinians, rather than Syria’s murderous campaign to prevent the emergence of a democratic Lebanon.
After the situation in Lebanon becomes clearer, a huge Israeli operation in Gaza, to take control of the Gaza-Egypt border and to set up new intelligence mechanisms within Gaza, all to prevent the increase in rocket firings, is perhaps all but inevitable.

(via Real Clear Politics)

8 thoughts on ““Islamists leave Israel no choice””

  1. I had dinner with an Israeli friend last night. His dream is a trade between Egypt and Israel. Egypt gives land in the Sinai for a Palestinian state, and Israel gives Egypt pipeline and trade access to Jordan. He knows that it won’t happen. He is much too aware of the Palestinian penchant for blood. And until that changes…

  2. When I think of the Palestinians and their elected govt, Hamas, I am always reminded of a Rolling Stones lyric:

    You can’t always get what you want/but if you try real hard/you just might get what you need.

    the Pals need to recall: do unto us what we would do unto you…or, in game theory, tit for Tat. Actually I amn surprised that Israel simply does not lob shells randoamly into Gaza in the same way they are lobbed into Israel.What, civilioAns ibnjured? But that is what Hamas triles to do daily.

  3. Ralph Peters has usefully distinguished between *practical* terrorism, which is directed toward some political objective, and *apocalyptic* terrorism, in which the violence is an end in itself. I think it’s pretty clear that today’s Paelstinian terrorism is of the second kind. Even if the entire population of Israel was relocated to Louisiana, and the entire country turned over to the Palestinian Authority, does anyone think the terrorists would retire from violence and become farmers, teachers, engineers? Of course not–they would simply find someone else to attack.

    This apocalyptic terrorism has been greatly encouraged by people in the West–journalists, entertainers, professors–who justify and romanticize Palestinian terrorist activities. Some of these people may only suffer from extreme naivite, but I suspect many of them have a personal attraction to nihilistic violence.

  4. I know of some professors sympathetic toward the Palestinians but there seem very few I am aware of who approve of terrorism. Those on the left who support a Palstinian cause usually do so simply because a few years back they discovered that there would be no class warfare ending in a Marxist state and so they now support any and all they deem (often wrong in this) “the oppressed.” If one looks back at Israel in 1958, the left was very supportive of creating statehood.Not so today.

  5. The Left was very supportive of Israel right up to the 1967 war, after which Israel could not be seen as the victim. They committed the greatest sin – fought and won.

    Incidentally, a return to the pre-1967 borders will not produce a Palestinian state. Gaza will be Egyptian and the West Bank Jordanian. The Palestinians became an issue only after the state-to-state wars were lost by Israel’s neighbours. Given the events of 1970-71 in Jordan I doubt if either side wants the West Bank to become part of that state.

  6. Somewhat off topic but prompted by Helen’s remark: why in discussions of the ME does Jordan 70-71 disappear; the magic trick of ignoring that elephant in the middle of the room was especially obvious in interviews with Queen Nor about Israel/Palestinian conflicts.

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