The Situation in Gaza - My Perspective  

Posted by Abba-Dad in

I don't usually get all political on this blog, but I guess I am frustrated enough to put together some rambling uber-post about the best place on earth... the Middle-God-Damned-East!

So after about eight years of having rockets fired on them daily, the Israelis have had enough and being the superior military power they are, decided to drop a few thousand pounds of armament on Gaza lately. Result: hundreds of dead and thousands wounded. Fair? Not really. Inevitable? Maybe. Sad and troubling? You Betcha!

There are so many people spewing vile, hateful verbiage in both directions and the propaganda machines are humming along wonderfully, so I am not about to join that mess. I will just give my views as I see them and add some points from what I've been hearing (that I like or dislike). Here goes:

1) Fact: There will never be peace in the Middle-East. Sorry. Face it, people. There has never been peace in that awful part of the planet and there never will be. Keep reading to find out why.

2) Fact: The goal of Hamas, Fatah, Hezbollah, Al-Qaeda, Iran, Iraq and every other terrorist organization in the region is to destroy Israel and in the process try to kill all the people living there.

3) Fact: The Israelis don't want to kill anyone. Seriously. The only reason they do what they do is because they have no other choice.

4) Conclusion: There will never be peace. Based on the above facts you just have to realize that there are no other options. Let's try to simplify things a bit. Here's the scenario: There are only two people in the world (literally). One is Israeli and one is Palestinian. The world is covered by water and they are both on a tiny Island, just big enough for the both of them. The Palestinian wants to kill the Israeli and accepts no other option. What should the Israeli do? He's tried everything already. He tried to live in peace - didn't work. He tried to negotiate - didn't work. He tried to carve up the island - didn't work. He moved all his stuff to one side of the island and put up a fence - didn't work. The Palestinian just keeps trying to kill him no matter what. What other choices does the Israeli have? Think about that one and see if you can come up with an answer that doesn't involve trying to kill the Palestinian or allowing him to kill the Israeli.

5) Ehud Barak makes an interesting point. He says that the US would not allow one rocket to fly out of Tijuana into San Diego. That's obviously quite extreme. South Israel is no San Diego. So let's try to find a better comparison. Let's say rockets where being fired from Monterrey, Mexico on San Diego, Texas? That's much better, right? I bet you didn't even know there was a San Diego, Texas. Here you go. Here's a map:

Hey, how about this one: What would the US do if Cuba fired a missile at Florida? Oh wait, that almost happened? Really. Jeez, I wonder what happened back then. I hope there wasn't some big global crisis because of those silly Cubans.

6) Some people are saying the Israeli response is not proportional to what the Hamas has done. Well, that may be true. But then these people actually think that some sort of response is warranted. Right? Let's try to break it down for ya'. During the war in Lebanon (was it really two years ago? Sheesh!) some US general asked on CNN what a proportional response should be to the rocket fire. Should Israel just randomly fire the same number of rockets back into Gaza? Would that be the right response? Well, Gaza is way more populated (the Jabalya refugee camp in North Gaza is the most densely populated hole on this planet) so I guess we need to factor that in somehow. So let's say for every 10 rockets fired out of Gaza, Israel fires one back in? 50-to-1? How about for every day that rockets are fired out, Israel fires a single random rocket back in? Still not good enough? Well what is the right response then?

7) I love all the maps explaining how the Israelis "robbed" the Palestinians of their land. Face it, folks. There was never an independent Palestinian state until Israel gave back the West Bank and Gaza. What people are talking about was a British controlled area that included the Kingdom of Jordan. And anyway, that was 60-freaking-years ago! And before that it was the Turks. And before that the Greeks. And before that the Romans, Babylonians, Assyrians and on and on and on. But guess what? Arabs living in Jaffa (right next door to Tel-Aviv) were not asked to leave when the UN voted to give the remaining Jewish holocaust survivors a scrap of land in Israel when they asked the Brits to skedaddle. Ask the Jaffa Arabas how their lives are these days. They are probably the most advanced Arabs living in the Middle-East today! Arabs in Haifa are the same. Arabs in Acre too. Every Israeli Arab has a pretty terrific life. They have a right to vote. They have members of parliament that they voted for looking after their rights and needs. Because they accepted the fact that they can live in peace with the Israelis and don't try to kill them every single day. Boy, it's so easy!

8) Golda Meir had a great saying about 30 years ago: There will only be peace when the Arabs learn to love their children more than they hate the Israelis. Think about it for a second. I don't know of a better way to say it.

9) I love how the rest of the Arab world is standing up for their Palestinian brothers these days (well maybe except for Egypt who has shut down the border so they can't escape from Gaza). But ask those supporters to accept them into their own countries and you will get some wonderful results. The Jordanians massacred them. The Egyptians, who had the opportunity to take back Gaza along with the rest of the Sinai desert during the Egypt-Israel peace process, said HELL NO! Nobody wants them except for the Libyans who allowed the PLO to get out of Lebanon when they had no other choice. Yeah, the Libyans. Model world-class citizens. On the other hand, the Israelis have no place to go. Where will they go if Hamas wins? I think it was Golda (again, was she a smart woman or what?) who said that the Arabs can fight many times but Israel can only lose once.

OK, enough of this.

So now for some full disclosure. Maybe I should have put this at the top of the post, but hey, this is my blog, so the disclosure comes right here:

20 years ago I had the displeasure of visiting Gaza and the West Bank. In uniform. With a loaded automatic rifle in my hand (which I never actually used, phew). AND ABSOLUTELY NOTHING HAS CHANGED SINCE THEN! We walked the disgusting streets of Gaza and I had no idea what we were doing there to begin with. I always said we don't belong there. So three years ago, Israel finally yanked out all the dumb Israelis living there and put up a fence border. Not good enough for Hamas. They want it all back. And they want everyone dead. They have been firing rockets at Israel for the past EIGHT YEARS almost on a daily basis. I read somewhere that the total rocket count over these eight years is over TEN THOUSAND. Would your country allow a single rocket to be fired at it? That's what I thought.

I made my choice a long time ago. I didn't want my kids (before I even had or thought or planned on having kids) growing up in a place where they were in constant danger. Hell, I myself didn't want to live in constant danger. So I left. I gave up. I'm not embarrassed to admit it. Life's too short to spend it fighting over anything. But that's not how others see it. I don't think it's going to work out for anybody. Good luck to both sides. I mourn the deaths of everyone involved. I know there will be many more in the coming days and weeks. What a waste.

This entry was posted on Sunday, January 11, 2009 at 6:51 PM and is filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


Amir, I've always been fascinated with the history of Palestine and Israel. You are right that peace in the Middle East is not attainable in this world, yet we are still commended to pray for it:

6 Pray for the peace of Jerusalem:
"May those who love you be secure.

7 May there be peace within your walls
and security within your citadels."

Psalm 122

January 12, 2009 at 9:32 PM

I don't think many want to live in that constant danger. I hope it felt good for you to do this post.

January 16, 2009 at 1:15 AM

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