Skip to content

What I Wrote About Hamas And Gaza In 2006

December 28, 2008

On July 20, 2oo6 I wrote the following.  I find it interesting that so little has changed in the region of the Middle East I wrote about, and that the issues I cared about, along with the position I had then, are still true today.  Since I penned these thoughts in 2006 the calendar changed, the hatreds deepened, but nothing much postive happened.  Why?

It appears that we are to think that the Palestinians are to snap to attention and ‘clean up’ the rouge elements in the Gaza Strip.  A mindset among the Palestinians that has developed over decades of occupation is not going to be removed by the orders of any authorities in Gaza or the ‘good wishes’ from the former occupiers.  When Israel vacated Gaza they left a poor area bedeviled with all types of social ills that accompany any such populace with high unemployment and political resentments.  For Gaza to have any ability to reclaim economic viability it must have control of its border and commerce lanes, either by sea or air.  Israel has remained in full control of these economic routes and all border crossings.  

When Hamas was elected in a democratic process I ventured that the smart thing to do from an international perspective was to bring them into the political arena and force them to respond to the will of the people they were elected to represent.  Recall that Hamas was elected because the people did not feel other Palestinian politicians were taking care of their concerns.  Instead of dialogue the United States and Israel sought ways to deprive monies flowing to the Hamas government.  Instead of confronting the fringe elements of Hamas with logic and diplomacy we played to their fears and religious zealotry.  It was yet another mistake of American and Israeli foreign policy.  We refused to understand that there are two aspects to the Hamas leadership, one political and the other more militant.  By failing to talk with one we allowed it to wither, and by default emboldened the other.

……….that Israel had a right to defend itself and retrieve her soldier I think it only logical to assume that proportionality should be used by Israel.  To blow up Gaza’s main electrical grid and leave the area without water or power is a horrible way for a democracy to react to the capture of a soldier.  (Remember, this all happened before the capture of two other Israeli soldiers by Hizbullah who live in Lebanon)

While I have written this week that Palestinians have a right to react while under occupation, I feel Hizbullah acted without regard to law or common sense, and still do, as they reside in Lebanon.  The need for a ceasefire grows as the casualties mount, most of them Palestinians and citizens of Lebanon.

The policy of beating the Palestinians into some type of submission is so wrong and so old that the world needs to vocalize a strongly worded message of denunciation.  Sadly, the world also needs some leadership since Washington is tied with AIPAC rope and as a result has been neutered.   We must hope Europe can now lead the way. 

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: