The Running Commentary


Is Israel correct???


I know that the headline on this is probably going to be perceived as a little strong by many of you out there, but I cannot help but comment on what appears to be yet another senseless war.

My feelings, as regular readers will know, around violence as a solution to an empass are quite strong. I cannot see the need for anyone to take up arms unless they are defending themselves against a real threat. Taking up arms in aggression against another state or person cannot be a solution to an issue. It will only breed anger and contempt and bring about further violent responses.

I must confess to not fully understanding the reason behind this war, but cannot condone the oppression of the people of Gaza by the Israeli’s.  I cannot accept that the blockade of the Gaza area by the Israeli’s was anything more than a set-up to weaken these people. The humanitarian crises that is unfolding with many hundreds of people without the basics is really worrying. This is as a direct result of Israel preventing the flow of goods and services to this area. This is unacceptable as many innocent lives are affected by this action.

(I am now going to get a little more controversial)

I would have thought that a people who were oppressed and brutally murdered, in their millions by the German forces, would have a bias towards finding a peaceful resolution. I cannot accept any answer that says that there was a need for force, “the rockets” that were coming out of Gaza are a sign of frustration and it is arguable in terms of who “broke the ceasefire” that was already in place. This frustration clearly came about as a result of the 18 month economic blockade imposed by the Israeli’s.

In all of this I guess what I am saying is that I hope and pray that peace comes to this region and that the two sides can find a mutually acceptable resolution to this conflict. Heaven knows that this world can certainly do with less violence.


Mike • January 7, 2009

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  1. Barak January 20, 2009 - 9:02 pm

    Rockets were being fired from Gaza at civilian population in Israel for 8 years, with no retaliation from Israel. Try living your life when at every given point in time, you may have to respond within 15 seconds (yes, 15 seconds) to an alarm, by running to a nearby shelter. Imagine having 15 seconds to wonder, whether or not your life is about to come to an end, just because you’re not near a bomb shelter, because you went to the market or the barber shop. Imagine living like that for 8 years. Not only did Israel not retaliate during this period of time (8 years!), it also withdrew completely from the Gaza strip, both civilians and army. Hamams responded with rockets.

    Your comment, that “the rockets… are a sign of frustration”, is naive at best. Hamams is a terrorist organization which doesn’t recognize Isarel’s right to exist. It has nothing to do with “frustration”. Hamas strives to remove Israel from the face of the earth, and is empowered by Iran and other countries who share that interest. Hamas uses civilian buildings and places of worship as cover for their operations, firing missiles from living room windows, hiding grenades under children’s beds, storing missile silos inside Mosques, where people regularly pray.

    Israel has no interest in hurting or starving the Palestinian people. Most Israelis want to live at peace, and have no wish to kill Palestinians, I assure you. Having been through the Holocaust, the danger of perishing is very real for us. The reality around Israel, with Lebanon, Syria and Iran as enemies, poses a real threat.

  2. Mike January 21, 2009 - 12:46 pm

    Barak thank you for taking the time to respond. I think that it always good to get perspective and your response does help me to get another point of view. Let me say that I do not agree with violence as a solution to any conflict, I did make this remark at the start of my post. I understand your view of the conflict and not having lived in any similar situation I can only imagine that it is very very difficult.

    On the flip side I note that you did not comment on the blockade of the area, is this in fact the case? In terms of Hama’s motives for the conflict and their desire to remove Israel “from the face of the earth” I would suggest that this is not an achivable goal just given the disparity in power.

    Surely a true and I mean true negotiated solution is the only way forward in terms of resolving this conflict.

    In closing let me say that I do not support Hamas as their approach is equally incorrect as far as using violence. I do think that Israel is being perceived as the oppressor in all of this and perhaps should be focusing on trying to change the world view / perception by not responding violently? In all of this let me say that I if I were living so close to the conflict perhaps my view would be different.

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