First Gaza, then the World
The confrontation in the Gaza Strip is not between Hamas and Israel, but rather between Al Qaeda, Iran and radical Islam, and the free world.
By Ben Dror Yemini Maariv (Translated from the original Hebrew) January 3 and 10, 2009
Ben Dror Yemini was born in Tel-Aviv, Israel in 1954. He studied Humanities and History in Tel Aviv University, and later studied Law. After his university studies, he was appointed advisor to the Israeli Minister of Immigration Absorption and then became the spokesman of the Ministry. In 1984, he began his career as a journalist and essayist. He worked as a lawyer and was a partner in a law firm. Since 2003 he has been the opinion-editor of the daily newspaper Maariv and also published many articles and essays in other journals.
Some of Israel's most blatant critics have written that for every Israeli killed, about a hundred Palestinians were killed. A half-truth is worse than a lie, but this is not even a half truth. This is deception. Because months and years of rockets fired at a civilian population are not a matter for bloody accounts. It is a nuisance that no country, neither Syria nor Sweden, would tolerate. It is a provocation that requires a tough response. And if we are already going for bloody accounts, we should do the overall math. We can suffice with just the accounting in the Arab-Muslim world.
So, since the establishment of the State of Israel, close to 12 million Arabs and Muslims have been butchered, most of them by Arabs and Muslims. Israel's "contribution," since its establishment, is 60,000, and that includes all the wars and the two intifadas. In other words, one-half of one percent.
And more importantly, the confrontation is not between Hamas with its rockets and Israel. The confrontation is between Hamas, as one of the entities that compose radical Islam, and the free world. Its declared goal is to establish a world Islamic caliphate as part of an anti-Semitic ideology that also calls for the annihilation of the Jews. Explanations will follow. And since political Islam has already annihilated millions without any announcement, we should take it seriously when there is an announcement about annihilation.
Is Hamas part of the global Jihad? Section 7 of the Hamas Covenant explains that it is not a local movement, nor even a national movement. The heading is "The global nature of the Islamic resistance movement." And later, "Because the Muslims are spread throughout the entire world, the movement is global." To remove any doubt, Dr. Yunis Al Astal, a member of the Palestinian parliament, one of the senior Hamas officials, who served as dean of the faculty are of Shariyah and chairman of the Islamic Law Department at Islamic University, stated that "We Will Conquer Rome, and from There Continue to Conquer the Two Americas and Eastern Europe."
Is this a movement that calls for the annihilation of the Jews? That is what is written in a continuation of the same section. "The messenger (Mohammed) said, "The Muslims will fight the Jews and the Muslims will kill them, until the Jew hides behind the stones and the trees, and then the stones and the trees will say, 'Oh, Muslim, servant of Allah, there is a Jew who is hiding, come and kill him." And this is in addition to blaming the Jews for all the wars in the world, for world domination, etc.
The problem is not with quotes from the sources. After all, even Judaism has a Rabbi Shimon, who said, "The best gentile is a dead one." But that did not become the foundation for any movements. Certainly not for a government party. To the contrary. There are innumerable interpretations explaining the special circumstances of that statement and its lack of relevance. Not so with Hamas. The old imperative has become a practical instruction. And the Hamas leaders leave no room for doubt.
Sheikh Muhsin Abu Ita stated on the Al Aqsa channel that, "The annihilation of the Jews is a wonderful blessing."
Dr. Ahmed Bahar, acting speaker of the Palestinian parliament stated that "the Jews are cancer, and they and the Americans should be destroyed to the last person." According to the Palestinian constitution, this man, Bahar, will become the head of the Palestinian Authority if Abu Mazen ceases to function. Dr. Al Astal made clear that the annihilation order is a matter for our time and not for the future, and that "we are sure that the Holocaust is still to come upon the Jews".
The book by Dr. Matthias Kuntzel, "Jihad and Jew-Hatred," elaborates on the annihilation ideology of radical Islam, including among Hamas. We have not yet succeeded in imparting this awareness to the world. It is still not too late.
There is no logic in madness
The most symbolic event occurred in Iraq. A Shi'ite suicide bomber carried out his attack during a Sunni demonstration of identification with Hamas. A bit confusing, no? After all, this Shi'ite terrorist was supposed to be serving Iranian interests. Iran, as we know, is the country that aids Hamas. And even the battle cries of the demonstrators contained the common denominator of the Shi'ites and the Sunnis: burning Israeli flags and calling for its extermination. So why commit suicide there, of all places? Who was he working for? What exactly was he trying to achieve? Against whom was he protesting? Don't look for answers, because we are dealing with madness. And any attempt to find some logic is doomed to failure.
Slaughter for the sake of slaughter
Samuel Huntington - the prophet of the Clash of Civilizations - died. He was wrong. There is primarily another war, of political Islam against Muslims. And, in effect, it is not a war. It is one-sided slaughter in which the radicals slaughter others, and the others have no idea of how they might have sinned. Women and children who were butchered in villages in Afghanistan and Algeria by the Taliban or the Islamic Front were not collaborating with the West.
It was slaughter for the sake of slaughter. Just like the hundreds of Indians in Mumbai, among whom were 44 Muslims (far more than the Westerners or Jews) who were massacred by other Muslims. Exactly like hundreds of Muslims who are slaughtered by other Muslims in innumerable suicide attacks in Pakistan.
But there is a small addition. In the case of Muslims, 95% of the protest from Pakistan through Um el Fahm to Londonistan, is in favor of the radical Muslims. Muslims in favor of those who are massacring them. Like the demonstrators in Iraq. The fact that they came to demonstrate for Hamas and against Israel did not help them. They, too, were worthy of slaughter. We have already said that there is no logic. We reiterate it.
Israel is defeating itself
Lately, when the prevarication mills (the "industry of lies") began working at full steam on the bitter fate of the refugees in the Gaza Strip, who once again were forced to experience violence, the Cinematheque in Tel Aviv screened the film, The Forgotten Refugees, by director Michael Grynszpan. The film has already been shown in many places around the world, including in the U.S. Congress, but not on any channel in Israel.
The film deals with the Jewish communities in Muslim countries - a million people at the end of the second world war - who were forced to leave or expelled with an enormous amount of property expropriated. They became refugees, primarily in Israel.
The "nakba" occurred because the Arabs rejected the UN proposal, and because they declared a war of annihilation on Israel. The nakba of the Jews in Islamic countries, in contrast, occurred without a reason. The Jews of Morocco or Yemen or Iraq or Egypt did not declare any war. But despite that, in some cases, in Iraq and in Libya, dozens of Jews were slaughtered.
There is no "progressive" academic who does not inflate the Dir Yassin episode. But the slaughter of Jews by Arabs is never mentioned. Most of them arrived with absolutely nothing. They lived in immigrant camps. But they were not perpetuated as an open wound, as refugees, like the Palestinians.
Israel, for reasons that are hard to understand, has never played the card of the Jewish refugees. The story of the forgotten refugees could have been the unequivocal Israeli response to the issue of the Palestinian refugees. After all, the right of the Jewish refugees to reparations is far greater than the right of the Palestinians.
The former suffered and were forced out, despite the fact that they started no war and declared no annihilation. The latter did. So the Jews, and only the Jews, have the right to reparations. Those who didn't succeed in executing their plots of annihilation have no right to reparations. There is no historical precedence for an aggressor who turns himself into a victim. Such an absurdity has never existed, nor will it. Even in this matter, Israel has defeated itself in the propaganda battle. And here, too, it is not too late to rectify the error.
War and Propaganda Crimes
Israel will never kill as many innocent people as Europe has. So they will preach to us?
"We will conquer Rome and then all of Europe. When we are done with Europe, we will conquer both the Americas and we will not give up Eastern Europe either." The speaker who needs such a large territory went on to say that all the Jews should be annihilated.
Sounds like Hitler, but it's only a double. These words were spoken by Dr. Yunis Al-Astal, a Hamas member of the Palestinian parliament. Both his and other Hamas leaders' clear and direct rhetoric regarding Jewish extermination and radical Islam world domination are not kept as a secret. They are recorded on Hamas TV and are available to anyone who is interested, on the MEMRI or PMW websites in Hebrew, English and other languages provided someone who is interested wants to show the true nature of Hamas.
However, official Israel and the elaborate public relations apparatus created, have not found it necessary to show this message, along with many other well documented ones pertaining to Hamas' ideology. If only this was the only failure. There are many more.
NATO also makes mistakes
The refugees thought they found shelter. They were wrong The air strike didn't spare their lives. Over 100 died. This is not the story of the tragic bombing of the school in Gaza. This is the story of the bombing of Korisa in the former Yugoslavia. The strikes were carried out by NATO planes. This happened less than 10 years ago on May 13th 1999. There's more. On April 12th NATO planes killed, accidently of course, 12 civilians. April 14th saw the death of 70 refugees. On April 27 another 16 civilians were killed. On May 1st 23 died when a bus was struck. On May 6th 16 were killed by a cluster bomb. On May 19th a Belgrade hospital was bombed. 3 died. May 30th saw 11 die when a bridge was bombed. On the very same day an old age home was hit and 20 inhabitants were killed. The next day a further 11 died. At the same time the Chinese embassy was bombed, and a misdirected missile flew 30 miles off course and hit the Bulgarian Capital of Sofia. "We are sorry about the mistake" was the regular response of a NATO spokesperson.
This is what happens in war. It's sad, it's unfortunate. Europeans don't have to look all the way back to the bombing of Dresden. They need look back only a decade before they preach to Israel. Israel hasn't reached, and will not reach, even a tenth of the innocent deaths killed by European democracies in just wars.
Israel doesn't have to explain itself to Europe
Has Europe changed? The following is a quote from a report by the UN secretary general: "of the 8000 deaths in Afghanistan in 2007, 1500 are civilian deaths". Of those 1500 deaths, half to two thirds were murdered by their Taliban brethrens. The rest, roughly 500 were killed by various bombings carried out by several armies, including European ones, operating in the region under NATO.
Experts claim these numbers to be significantly lower than the true numbers. In 2008 the situation escalated and many more thousands were killed. In fact, during these very days European armies are killing innocent civilians and justifying it as an inevitable of the struggle against the Taliban.
Israel owe the Europeans no explanations. They owe us. The Taliban didn't fire rockets at any European city. Hamas shoots on Israel. The Taliban do not proclaim their desire to kill all Europeans. Hamas encourages Jew killing in its charter and its leaders' sermons.
Despite this, the Europeans find their stay in Afghanistan justified if only to fight another part of Islamic fanaticism. Just like Israel against the Hamas. In any case, the Hamas' threat to Israel is far greater than the threat the Taliban poses to Europe.
So why, for god's sake, Europeans are allowed to fight thousands of miles from their home, kill hundreds or thousands of innocent civilians and claim that their cause is justified but Israel can't? Where do they get the nerve?
A bit of proportion
Thousands of Taliban fighters die each year versus a few tens of European soldiers. Hundreds or thousands of civilians die in Afghanistan versus no civilian casualties in Europe. So you in Europe want to teach us war ethics and "proportional responses"? Are you joking?
Lebanon, Syria and Jordan can and Israel can't?
Another bit about proportions. In the beginning of the 80's, Hafez Asad, the president of Syria at the time, had to face an Islamist uprising against his regime, conducted by Muslim Brotherhood. Asad knew only one way to deal with the problem: the massacre of Hama. No riots in the Arab world or the west can be remembered. Between 20,000 to 40,000 people, kids and women and innocent people were butchered, in the name of defeating the radical Islam.
In 1970 it was King Hussein of Jordan, who had to face a Palestinian uprising. It's called "The black September." Huge populated areas were bombarded. Between 7,000 to 25,000 people were killed. This was the only way for Hussein to fight the radical Palestinians of the time.
Let's continue to this time. In May 2007 a conflict broke out between the Lebanese army and a small group, Fatah Al Islam, in the Nahr Al Bared refugee camp in Lebanon. The group itself is yet another cancerous cell of the global jihad movement. The Lebanese army did not go into urban warfare. They just barraged the city in a way Israel could only dream of doing.
The official number of Lebanese army casualties is 168, and more than 300 were left dead in the refugee camp. Some were militants others civilians. 6 UNIFIL soldiers and two Red Cross workers were killed as well. The refugee camp was in ruins. 33,000 of the 40,000 inhabitants of the camp had nothing to return to. The Lebanese soldiers didn't want to take unnecessary risks. The number of combatants they were facing was tiny, certainly less than the 16,000 Hamas terrorists hiding in Gaza's tunnels. If the Lebanese army had to deal with them there wouldn't be one house standing in Gaza. All of Gaza, not only Jebalya, would be wiped off the face of the earth.
When Lebanon was dealing with this one of many radical Islam menaces, it was the sweetheart of the majority of both the free and Arab worlds. It used means Israel couldn't dream of using. Most casualties were innocent. The terrible pictures of death and destruction, all available to those interested, didn't lead to mass protests on the streets of London or Paris. On the contrary. Lebanon was applauded. Arabs can "take care of" Arabs.
Why can Lebanon use brutal measures to uproot this radical Islam growth? Why can Europe go half way around the world to kill thousands of fighters and civilians in the name of the same anti Jihad cause? Why is Israel not allowed to do the same even though she faces a greater threat?
The Turkish leader, the impertinent Erdogan, joined the critics of Israel. Impertinent because he should keep his mouth shut. His country has laws forbidding mentioning of the crimes perpetrated against the Armenians. If Israel would adopt the Turkish model, a third of all lecturers in the faculties of social sciences and humanities in Israeli universities would be imprisoned, because in Israel inflating the "nakba" (the so called Palestinian holocaust) and other anti-Israel rhetoric actually lead to promotions…
We will remind Erdogan of the tens of thousands of Kurds killed or slaughtered in the campaign to keep them quiet. Let us remind him of Leyla Zana and the short speech she made when elected to the Turkish parliament. She didn't support terrorism. She didn't praise the fire of rockets from Kurdish villages to Turkish ones. She didn't say that the Kurds are shahids. Not close. She ended her short speech in "I take this oath for the brotherhood between the Turkish people and the Kurdish people". Her crime was that she said that "terrible" sentence, and only that sentence, in Kurdish. According to Turkish law speaking that language is a crime. She lost her parliamentary immunity and was sentenced to 10 years in prison. When she wrote something from inside jail a further two years were added to her sentence.
Tell this to the Arab members of the Israeli parliament. By you, Mr. Erdogan, they would all be rotting in prison. Now they admire you. Hypocrisy was always a popular trait to several of them. Now it's yours as well.
The importance of the onscreen fight
In the struggle between Israel and Hamas there can be no victory without legitimating the cause. Israel is not Russia in Chechnya, NATO fighting the Taliban or the Lebanese erasing a whole refugee camp and being applaud for it. Israel needs support. Israel can win with the truth - only the truth.
Official Israel is trying but not even one message went through to the world. Not the fact that Hamas is an anti-Semitic organization calling for the extermination of Jews. Not the fact the Hamas wants to take over the world. Not the fact that "proportional response" is complete nonsense that Europe hasn't adhered to in their past conflicts or in their present ones Not the fact the Hamas is worse than the Taliban. Not the fact that Israel's impact on innocent people, as tragic as it is, is lower than that of Europe.
This failure has reduced the support Israel had during the first days of the war. But the truth is, that it's not the failure of Israel. If Hamas wins the propaganda war, it might be the failure of the free world. We, conscious people, cannot let ourselves loose. The truth must prevail.