The world‟s all-too-predictable condemnation of Israel over its military operation in Gaza begs an ironic question: Beyond the heated rhetoric, who really cares for the people of Gaza?
Who, that is, seeks to protect human life within this narrow strip of land and to build the economy and civil society that will ensure a bright future?
Let us take a closer look.
Hamas? Not a chance. The Iranian-backed terrorist group, sworn to Israel‟s destruction, treats the people of Gaza as disposable human parts and focuses Palestinian society on Israel’s demise rather than on nourishing the economy and civil society that actually would improve lives.
While launching thousands of rockets into Israel since assuming power in 2006, Hamas hides among the people of Gaza and stores its weapons in schools, mosques and hospitals, creating the inevitability of civilian death no matter how carefully Israel targets its leaders and foot soldiers.
Hamas recruits “martyrs” by preaching the glories of jihad in schools, mosques and summer camps. It then parades the dead bodies of men, women and children through the streets of Gaza, sacrificing its people in the despicable, albeit successful, pursuit of a global propaganda victory.
Hamas media? Hardly. Rather than educate, it seeks to poison and recruit. In a speech that AlAqsa TV aired on December 31, for instance, Egyptian cleric Safwat Higazi said of the Jews, “Dispatch those sons of apes and pigs to the Hellfire, on the wings of the Qassam rockets.”
“The (Jews), who are as smooth as a viper, and who lick their lips as (does) a speckled snake, will never live with us in peace and harmony,” he went on, according to a translation by the Middle East Media Research Institute. “They deserve to be killed. They deserve to die.”
In recent months through Hamas media, masked women boasted of their “martyred” sons and promised to “blow ourselves up among those traitors, those apes and pigs,” Hamas cleric Muhsen Abu „Ita described “the annihilation of the Jews” as “one of the most splendid blessings for Palestine,” Hamas Culture Minister „Atallah Abu Al-Subh quoted excerpts of the notorious Protocols of the Elders of Zion to explain “the evil of the Jews,” and the children‟s character “Assud the Bunny” promised to “get rid of the Jews” and “eat them up.”
The United Nations? Quite the contrary, the global body is more an enabler of anti-Israeli terrorism than a seeker of Israeli-Palestinian peace.
Its General Assembly, Security Council, Human Rights Council and various agencies and experts stoke global anti-Semitism (cloaked in the politically correct language of anti-Zionism) through their almost singular focus on Israel‟s humanitarian “crimes.” Meanwhile, they give short if any shrift to recurrent genocide, torture, and slavery across the globe.
Through the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees (UNRWA), which was created in 1949 with a three-year mandate, the United Nations provides rising levels of aid through a swollen bureaucracy. But it does little to attack a culture of terrorism that poisons Gazan society.
The West? If only. Its leaders, its media, its academy and its populations suffer from moral confusion, equating Israel‟s defensive operations that target terrorists with Hamas‟s desire to kill Israeli (yes, Jewish) citizens and appearing oblivious to what‟s at stake in the long run.
Western leaders push for a ceasefire at all costs, though that will only guarantee Hamas‟s survival, leading to more terrorism after the group regroups, rearms and recruits, more sacrifices of Palestinian bodies when Israel responds, and more poisoning of Palestinian minds.
Western media, itself manipulated by Hamas‟s narrative of victimhood, lambastes Israel for using “disproportionate” force, as if any nation should use halfway measures to stop rocket attacks. That, too, provides justification for a Palestinian return to terrorism down the road.
So, who cares about the Gazans?
What about Israel? Yes Israel, which forcibly removed unwilling settlers when it withdrew from Gaza in 2005 and planned to do the same from much of the West Bank, hoping the Palestinian people would assume control over their own future. Today, the contrast between Israel and Hamas is all too clear.
Unlike Hamas, which seeks civilian Palestinian deaths, Israel warns the people of Gaza that attacks against Hamas are coming in the hopes that civilians will protect themselves by avoiding the group.
Israel is also providing food and medical aid to Gaza in between its military operations, seeking again to reduce the very suffering of the Gazans that Hamas does so much to ensure.
Who cares about the Gazans?