Yes, it’s sad that Israel must finish off Hamas, no matter what.
Innocent Gazans will die, particularly children.
But they have no choice.
Many of the adults, however, may not be so innocent. They’re people who elected to remain in Gaza under Hamas rule, despite the regime’s brutality equaling the worst in human history, while others sensibly fled.
That most Arab nations don’t want these people for whom violence is a way of life within their borders is not surprising.
That LGBT folks have joined the pro-Hamas demonstrations without realizing what would happen to them under the terrorist’s rule is the darkest of comedy.
That some supposed conservatives see moral equivalency between Hamas and Israel would be laughable were it not so dangerous. Certainly, it’s a display of massive ignorance.
With the prisoner–hostage swap in progress, the efforts of the left and the United Nations, among others, to push Israel into a permanent cease-fire will undoubtedly redouble.
The U.N.’s other off-shoot, the World Health Organization (WHO) that we know from their obeisance to China during COVID-19, has been curiously silent about the use of hospitals for weapons storage, missile launching, those same tunnels, and even command and control headquarters by Hamas. (The director of Shifa Hospital, the largest medical complex in Gaza, is under interrogation by Israel at this moment about this.)
These are the people who will be clamoring for a cease-fire, the very thing Hamas wants so they can regroup and attack again.
The terrorist organization makes no secret they wish to do this. It’s in the genocidal chant we hear everywhere from Los Angeles to London: “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.”
When I say genocidal, I mean really genocidal. In Paris in the late eighties, just after Hamas was formed, I saw one of their early demonstrations at which they chanted “Hamas, Hamas, Jews to the gas!” in English and French.
The good news in all this is that Hamas is finally on the run. We can see this, as the Times of Israel has pointed out, from the nature and timing of the prisoner–hostage exchange. Normally, Hamas asks for a far greater imbalance with a huge number of real terrorists released, as in the case of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who was kidnapped by Hamas for five years.
Not this time. Hamas, in an unusual hurry for a pause, was willing to exchange for women and young prisoners, and fewer of them.
This is a sign that Hamas, which surprised the Israelis on Oct. 7, has been surprised themselves by the force of the Israeli response. They expected the usual three- or four-day counterattack when the Israelis, under global admonition to be “proportionate,” would relent and all would go back to the status quo ante.
Not this time again. Hamas leadership made a serious miscalculation, and Israel shows no sign of backing off. They have apparently had enough of carping from Western nations. Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant made clear on the eve of the temporary truce that the Israel Defense Force will resume fighting “with intensity” for at least two months.
The way things have been going, that would seem sufficient to achieve the fate for Hamas that has already been achieved for its “semblable” ISIS.
It’s hard to know, after that, where things will go for the once-vaunted two-state solution. For some time, the Palestinians haven’t seemed really to want one. In 2007, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert offered the Palestinian Authority 97 percent of what they said they wanted, and their leader Mahmoud Abbas walked away.
But you never know. Real power, properly applied, has the ability to change minds.
What we really should do is ask how it came to pass that Hamas got to accrue such an incredible and seemingly endless arsenal of weaponry, not to mention the funds for their leadership to enjoy the lifestyle of billionaires in luxury hotel suites in Turkey and Qatar while flying about in private jets?
The answer, alas, to some degree points to us.
Yes, most of those funds came via Iran, aka the “world’s greatest sponsor of terrorism,” with an assist from the aforementioned Qatar.
But where did and does Iran get its money to wreak havoc across the Middle East and potentially beyond?
To be blunt, I recommend asking Barack Obama and Joe Biden. They’re the ones who relaxed sanctions on Iran to the tune of billions and billions.
As for Israel, there’s no such thing as being “proportionate” when it comes to conquering evil.