Israel is at it again: killing unarmed and defenceless Palestinians en masse. No matter where they go, an Israeli rocket may always find them. The bombardment is indiscriminate. There is no safe haven for anyone in Gaza. More than 700 Palestinian civilians have been killed during the past few weeks, most of them women and children, compared to two (!) Israeli civilians.
Given these numbers, it is utterly ludicrous when Israeli politicians brazenly claim that they have no choice, that they are just defending their own people against Hamas terrorists, who, regrettably and “demonically”, now use their own population as “human shields” and try to get international support for their cause by piling up lots of “telegenically dead” Palestinians. In all seriousness Israel’s bombardment of Gaza is styled as a “war between good and evil” (Daniel Abraham, writing in Israel’s leading newspaper Haaretz, July 24th), which of course leaves no room for negotiation. You cannot, and more importantly should not, negotiate with the devil. A compromise is out of the question. The good must prevail and evil needs to be eradicated, wiped out completely, no matter what the costs are.
Whoever doubts that interpretation, whoever dares criticize Israel’s actions, can only be an “Israel-hater” and “anti-Semite”. How convenient that must be: always to be able to remind the world of the Holocaust, to claim a permanent victim status that gives you the licence to do whatever you damn well please. It’s the oldest defence in the world, which throughout history has helped to justify countless wars and mass killings. The Nazis also claimed that they were only defending themselves when they started killing Jews. And that it was necessary to save the world from a great evil. Not that any of this is even remotely convincing. There is always a choice, and nothing can justify the mass murder of civilians. Yes, Hamas is attacking Israel, but with very limited success. Yes, they may well want to see Israel destroyed, but that is quite understandable given how Israel has treated the Palestinians in the land they have occupied for nearly 50 years now. No matter what they say, Israel is not the victim in this conflict. If you rob a people of their freedom, if you trample on their rights and deny them a life in dignity, then it is no wonder that they fight back in an attempt to regain what has been taken away from them.
Benjamin Netanyahu and his cronies in the Israeli government are war criminals, not only because they violate international conventions that forbid targeting civilians, but because they don’t give a damn how many people die as long as they are not Israelis. Their actions are thoroughly despicable.