1. The complication is that Israel has proven that it has no desire whatsoever to comply with any ceasefire. And that also answers the question of “to what ends?”

    There are many very concrete reasons why Israel is slaughtering more so than is its everyday norm.This slaughter has been planned well advance. Reasons that are so apparent to the Palestinians that they are resolute in their support for Hamas. If you recall it was Hamas that the Palestinians voted in to lead them despite the efforts of both Israel and the US to force them to back the quislings in Fatah.

    And since that vote the Palestinians have been brutally punished for their free democratic choice.

    In my book that’s hardly a war lord scenario.

    It is a completely skewed view of this slaughter to format this as a war between Israel and Hamas as though the Palestinians are passive in regard to their allegiances or have had their preferences taken away from them.

    In that sense any ceasefire has be be considerate of the fact that the Palestinians have a right to defend themselves against the biggest friggin army and the most powerfully weaponed in the Middle East. This is absolutely a racist artificial colonial settler state sustained by massive US backing and political support.

    And in answer to the question “to what ends?” the frank answer for the Palestinians is one of survival. This is as much a genocidal slaughter as was the Nazi’s suppression of the rising in the Warsaw Ghetto.

    There’s this crude attempt to fit up Hamas as some fundamentalist terrorist sect which warrants a drubbing. While the facts are somewhat different — any liberal gestures to fit up Hamas only serves to excuse Israel and cloud the reality that is the history of Zionism.

    • You mean no criticism of Hamas should be allowed because that must automatically signal support for Israel? I disagree.

      Is Hamas terrorist under most definitions of the word? Yes. Was Menachem Begin a terrorist when he blew up the King David Hotel in 1946 knowing civilians were inside? The Brits certainly thought so, and put a price on his head.

      Too many atrocities, not enough peace-making. The bloodshed won’t end until, well, it ends and everyone comes to the peace table as equals.

  2. Hamas is very much a product of this conflict and regardless of what any one at a distance may think of its politics — which as I point out is often caricatured — Hamas isn’t guilty of the massive slaughter that has occurred in Gaza or in Lebanon two years back in the name of “Israel’s right to defend itself.”

    If you accept the ‘equal blame’ game, then you fall into the trap of being considerate of the Zionist state’s right to punish the Palestinians for choosing Hamas.

    But why did these people, so abused and terrorised by the IDF, caged and ghetto-ised behind a massive Berlin wall, choose Hamas above currents which so often bent to Israel’s will?

    That’s another, “to what ends?” question I reckon. What were these people thinking? Why tease the savage wolf that circles you — a wolf that controls your access to water, sewerage, medicines, food, land…that treats you as prisoners…and freely slaughters you and demolishes your homes as it see fit!

    Why bait the beast by choosing Hamas?

    • I see both sides of being responsible for, at various times, contemptible things. Don’t see them as equal or equals, or see why blame must be carefully apportioned. Both sides commit atrocities. And it’s the civilians who get killed as the war lords quarrel.

      While the equal blame game can be a trap, so can saying the enemy of my enemy must be a friend. Not so.

      I’m stunned, as is everyone, by the deliberate savagery of Israel’s attack. It’s almost like they want the world to hate them. Or maybe it’s an internal battle to see who can be PM. Which is despicable, just as is Hamas lobbing missiles at Israel knowing their response will kill innocent Palestinians.

      Why bait the wolf? Did they think Hamas would do this when they elected them? Does the populace in Gaza support this? Who knows?

      I once knew a guy who had been locked up for several years in a California prison SHU (Special Housing Unit) where there is no human contact at all. It’s a vicious form of torture, IMO. He said, when you get out, you’re just a walking time bomb. Maybe that’s what Gaza is like…

  3. A member of the team I worked on in Sri Lanka once made what I consider a brilliant restatement of that war: rather than viewing it as Tamils against Sinhalese, he redrew it as the leaders of both sides against the civilians of both sides. The LTTE does NOT represent the Tamil people as a whole and GOSL does NOT represent the Sinhalese people as a whole– any more than W represents the American people as a whole. Each represents its own subset of interests, which usually do not have the interests of the whole uppermost in mind.

    In that country– and in many others including our own– it is disingenuous to equate the leadership with its constituency. I’d be surprised if the same wasn’t true in Palestine and Israel.

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