Israel Needs to Recalibrate Its Response
The rhetoric from the top shows its disdain for Hamas. It runs the risk of going too far in its response to Operation al-Aqsa Flood.
The Israeli defense minister calls the Hamas “human animals” while ordering a complete siege of the Gaza Strip with these stirring (NOT) lines of wartime fervor.
We are fighting against human animals
The U.N. says a complete siege without a corridor for humanitarian aid to reach civilians trapped inside the zone of fighting is a war crime.
Forget the definition of war crimes — it is unconscionable for a country to intentionally want to starve a million people because they were attacked.
We should not accept the annihilation of a people — 43% of whom are children below 14 years of age and therefore have no say in the circumstances they find themselves in — just because Israel is mad at them.
The experience of the Holocaust, where the entire Jewish population of Germany and Europe was held guilty without reason for Germany’s fall from grace after WW1, should tell Israel that punishing an entire population for the real (in Hamas’ case) or imagined (in German Jewry’s case) crimes is never right.
Indians are guilty of this too — religious riots targeting one community or the other for the crimes committed by a handful of adherents of that community are a blight on our record as a nation.
Israel is hurting. More than a thousand Israeli lives have been lost to Hamas’ al-Aqsa Flood raid earlier this week. Was that fair? Did the Hamas do the right thing? I’ve written elsewhere about it and I won’t repeat myself.
When the Twin Towers fell on September 11, George W. Bush, to his credit, visited a mosque to make a distinction between Muslim terrorism and Muslims, saying
Islam is peace.
The difference between the two responses could not be more stark.
And it is not just the defense minister who uses such language.