2021 Israeli-Palestine Conflict - Page 6 - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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#15172999
Hamas began all of this by indiscriminately launching thousands of rockets from Gaza into Israel, hitting Israeli residences and a school. Israel had to respond. Unfortunately the IDF have killed civilians and children, which is terrible and should be avoided wherever possible. However, Hamas is also known for using civilians as human shields to hide/protect themselves and their operations.

Israel made the mistake of giving Palestinians the Gaza Strip back in 2005 without much if any concessions, and now Hamas uses it as a base to launch rocket attacks to terrorize Israelis.
#15173009
Israel didn't "give" the gaza strip back as a gesture of goodwill. It was done unilaterally without any discussion with the Palestinians. It was done because Sharon knew keeping them was completely untenable - 8000 I think settlers in a population of over 1 million. But more importantly it was done (and sold to the Israeli public) with a specific view towards consolidating and strengthening the settler presence in the West Bank.

As to your oversimplistic summary of moral responsibility, if I had access to twitter I'd post a pretty neat tweet by someone of an image illustrating on one side the media commentary saying "it started when Hamas fired rockets" - but on the other side shows a long list of Israeli acts of aggression that all happened before any rockets were fired. Not for one minute excusing the rockets, and also not saying Israel can't defend itself against those rockets. But there is a deeper context that is too often overlooked. As I said to wat0n yesterday, the current status quo cycle of violence is absolutely 100% down to the choices Israel - as the pre-eminent economic and military power in the region - has made: Her choice to not accommodate or even countenance any long term solution for the Palestinians to live in self determination; her choice to just be content with continuing the siege of Gaza in perpetuity; and her choice to continue ramping up settlement expansion in the west bank and forcing the natives to suffer for it. And as I argued yesterday, these choices are almost without consequence: Palestinians don't fight back in any meaningful way, and the international community largely gives them a free pass.

Currently I can't access previous pages because my work computer is blocking the content - apparently the key word "weapon" has been found :p So I can't respond to anything thats been said before this page.
#15173030
GandalfTheGrey wrote:Israel didn't "give" the gaza strip back as a gesture of goodwill. It was done unilaterally without any discussion with the Palestinians. It was done because Sharon knew keeping them was completely untenable - 8000 I think settlers in a population of over 1 million. But more importantly it was done (and sold to the Israeli public) with a specific view towards consolidating and strengthening the settler presence in the West Bank

Israel didn't have to "give" Gaza back to them. They were occupied territories. Israel voluntarily left. Nobody forced them to.

Not for one minute excusing the rockets, and also not saying Israel can't defend itself against those rockets. But there is a deeper context that is too often overlooked. As I said to wat0n yesterday, the current status quo cycle of violence is absolutely 100% down to the choices Israel - as the pre-eminent economic and military power in the region - has made: Her choice to not accommodate or even countenance any long term solution for the Palestinians to live in self determination;

100%? Lol. Israel gave them back Gaza and Palestinians have used it as a base to launch indiscriminate rockets with the purpose to terrorize the Israeli civilian population. That's a key reason why they don't have self-determination: when Hamas in Gaza is doing everything it can to ship in weapons to fire at Israeli civilians one can expect Israel to inspect shipments/boats etc going into Gaza and other restrictions. My hope is for Palestinians to have self-determination and statehood but I understand Israel have concerns also, given the times they've been attacked by other Arab states and Gazans.

Her choice to just be content with continuing the siege of Gaza in perpetuity;

See above. It's far more complicated than a "siege".

and her choice to continue ramping up settlement expansion in the west bank and forcing the natives to suffer for it.

I agree I don't agree with the illegal settlements, yes that's a provocation.

I argued yesterday, these choices are almost without consequence: Palestinians don't fight back in any meaningful way,

They just fired thousands of rockets into Israel, and certainly not the first time. How many Israelis/Jews do you think they'd murder if they had the chance? That goes for just about any Muslim country in the middle east. How many Arabs live in Israel vs how many Jews live in any Muslim majority country? Jews are banned everywhere. History tells us Palestinians aren't pacifists.

The reality is that it's a complicated conflict where both sides have done very wrong things to each other. I really don't side with either ultimately. The people I feel bad for are the civilians on who just want to live. But I'm also aware that many Muslims in the region would murder every single Jew if they could get away with it and many surrounding Muslim states would bomb every one of them into the ocean if they could get away with it, and Israel has to defend itself from that. I'm also aware that Netanyahu is a total a-hole for continuing to build the settlements and this plays into his current political problems perfectly.

You also don't get to launch rockets at civilians from schools and hospitals and then call yourself a victim when Israel defends itself. The international outrage over civilian losses is exactly what Hamas's strategy is because it uses human shields. So Israel's choice is to either not respond to stop the attacks and continue getting fired at, or respond to protect its civilians and look like jerks for killing civilians. So they're screwed either way. And Hamas' choice is to use human shields or don't use them and get their rockets easily destroyed and let Israel get away with anything. Therefore, we have the status quo.
Last edited by Unthinking Majority on 18 May 2021 22:23, edited 1 time in total.
#15173090
JohnRawls wrote:They are not missing, Iron dome is shooting them down. That is irrelevant though. Israel notifies the other side when it does it strikes at least when civilians are involved. Hamas just fires thousands of them every day at civilians.

Jon Stewart put it best , when commenting on this very thing , back in 2015 , if I recall correctly .
#15173137
Unthinking Majority wrote:100%? Lol. Israel gave them back Gaza and Palestinians have used it as a base to launch indiscriminate rockets with the purpose to terrorize the Israeli civilian population. That's a key reason why they don't have self-determination: when Hamas in Gaza is doing everything it can to ship in weapons to fire at Israeli civilians one can expect Israel to inspect shipments/boats etc going into Gaza and other restrictions. My hope is for Palestinians to have self-determination and statehood but I understand Israel have concerns also, given the times they've been attacked by other Arab states and Gazans.


Firstly, to say Israel "gave them back Gaza" is a bit of a joke given they maintain full control over their skies, their coastal waters, who comes in and out and significant buffer zones around the borders which obviously cuts into a huge amount of their territory - including key farming land. You effectively contradicted this claim yourself when you conceded they don't have self determination.

Look, I don't really have much beef with Israel defending itself from attack, and I certainly don't argue that Hamas is entitled to maintain their ability to threaten Israeli lives. And honestly, I wish the debate would move on from the stale one we see over and over in the media - that is only concerned about the here and now - where one side rages against Hamas rockets, and the other side rages about disproportionate retaliatory strikes by Israel. The fact is, when you have a populated territory existing as shittily as gaza is, then this sort of conflict is inevitable. But who talks about that? I frankly don't care about discussing who is being the biggest a-hole within these inevitable conflicts, I want to talk about how to end the shitty existence of gaza. And I won't apologise for speaking the simple truth that Israel - as the occupier and pre-eminent economic and military power is 100% responsible for achieving this. There I said it. It won't be popular I know, but it really is indisputable: those who create, control and benefit from military and economic suppression and occupation of another people (however justified it may be) - are the ones responsible for bringing an end to it. Really no one who looks at this objectively can refute that.

So what *HAS* Israel actually done to this end? As far as I can tell, bugger all. And really, as I've argued in previous posts, what incentive to they have to do so? And no, don't tell me the threat of rockets - it is insignificant, and pales compared to the weekly suicide bombings they were experiencing at one point during the 90s. I reckon if the Israeli rulers sat down and contemplated what sort of threat to their own citizens would they be willing to accept in return for maintaining a brutal and crippling suppression of the Palestinian people and continuing to deny them self determination - then the current situation of having nothing but oversized fire crackers intermittently flying overhead mostly harmlessly - would be pretty close to it. I mean they can't realistically expect nothing right? As I said to wat0n with my boiling pot of water analogy - periodically bombing gaza into smitherenes, while accepting a handful of Israeli casualties in return, is really a pretty small price to pay for not having to deal with the headache of allowing Palestinians to have dignity and self-determination.

And I reject the notion that there is nothing Israel can do - mostly based on the fact that the 2 state solution is probably dead. There are things that can be done if Israel was serious about it. Here's some general ideas - though of course Brookings is reluctant to explicitly acknowledge that only Israel can make such things work in practice:
https://www.brookings.edu/blog/order-fr ... -fix-gaza/

The sad fact is though, not only does Israel make no meaningful effort, the international community (read: the US) has no intention of pressuring it to do so.
#15173140
GandalfTheGrey wrote:So what *HAS* Israel actually done to this end? As far as I can tell, bugger all. And really, as I've argued in previous posts, what incentive to they have to do so? And no, don't tell me the threat of rockets - it is insignificant, and pales compared to the weekly suicide bombings they were experiencing at one point during the 90s. I reckon if the Israeli rulers sat down and contemplated what sort of threat to their own citizens would they be willing to accept in return for maintaining a brutal and crippling suppression of the Palestinian people and continuing to deny them self determination - then the current situation of having nothing but oversized fire crackers intermittently flying overhead mostly harmlessly - would be pretty close to it. I mean they can't realistically expect nothing right? As I said to wat0n with my boiling pot of water analogy - periodically bombing gaza into smitherenes, while accepting a handful of Israeli casualties in return, is really a pretty small price to pay for not having to deal with the headache of allowing Palestinians to have dignity and self-determination.


Hold on there. Are you saying that (say) Israel leaving the West Bank and ending the blockade of Gaza would lead to more casualties within Israel proper? Even despite signing an agreement?

I mean, if you think so then you got your answer. I think it would not if the international community temporarily puts boots on the ground and Israel allows them to have an army after a ~15 years of stability have been achieved, tensions have been diminished and mutual trust has been built.
#15173147
Hold on there. Are you saying that (say) Israel leaving the West Bank and ending the blockade of Gaza would lead to more casualties within Israel proper? Even despite signing an agreement?


I don't think so.

In fact I haven't even addressed the issue of Israel leaving the WB and ending the siege of gaza. What I am saying is that Israel and Israel alone has the ability to work towards a solution - as the pre-eminent economic and military power in the region, and the very power that is enforcing the occupatoin/siege. Yet we have this absurd situation where the mainstream media, as well as western politicians, are pretending that it has to be an Israeli-Palestinian joint effort. I mean imagine during Indonesia's occupation of East Timor, or Saddam's occupation of Kuwait - how ridiculous we would consider it if the western world stood up and said "ok, occupied and oppressed East Timor and Kuwait - time for you to do your bit to to end the suffering of your people - its not just the responsibility of the occupiers who oppress you you know!"

Does that mean Israel should end the occupation and siege tomorrow? No. But it does mean they have to a) acknowledge they are the only party who can end it when the time comes, and b) acknowledge that ending it is the key to stopping the cycle of violence.

Imagine if an Israeli leader stood up and actually said the words that we (the Israeli nation) are ultimately responsible for stopping this conflict, and that the key to that is ending our occupation and blockade. Sure they can quickly add to this that it cannot be rushed, doing this cannot be done under the threat of violence, that our security has to be guaranteed etc etc - but gee whiz, what an historic moment that would be! And are you Israeli supporters seriously going to contend that in response to such an historic acknowledgement, the Palestinians would simply become emboldened, see it as a sign of weakness and up the ante even more with their attacks? As opposed to what most human beings would do and grab the opportunity for ending the suffering, self-determination and peace through coexistence? If anyone insists (without evidence - since remember no such scenario has ever before occurred, not really) on the former, then you are simply baselessly and prejudicially assuming the worst of a group of people for no good reason at all.
#15173171
GandalfTheGrey wrote:I don't think so.

In fact I haven't even addressed the issue of Israel leaving the WB and ending the siege of gaza. What I am saying is that Israel and Israel alone has the ability to work towards a solution - as the pre-eminent economic and military power in the region, and the very power that is enforcing the occupatoin/siege. Yet we have this absurd situation where the mainstream media, as well as western politicians, are pretending that it has to be an Israeli-Palestinian joint effort. I mean imagine during Indonesia's occupation of East Timor, or Saddam's occupation of Kuwait - how ridiculous we would consider it if the western world stood up and said "ok, occupied and oppressed East Timor and Kuwait - time for you to do your bit to to end the suffering of your people - its not just the responsibility of the occupiers who oppress you you know!"

Does that mean Israel should end the occupation and siege tomorrow? No. But it does mean they have to a) acknowledge they are the only party who can end it when the time comes, and b) acknowledge that ending it is the key to stopping the cycle of violence.

Imagine if an Israeli leader stood up and actually said the words that we (the Israeli nation) are ultimately responsible for stopping this conflict, and that the key to that is ending our occupation and blockade. Sure they can quickly add to this that it cannot be rushed, doing this cannot be done under the threat of violence, that our security has to be guaranteed etc etc - but gee whiz, what an historic moment that would be! And are you Israeli supporters seriously going to contend that in response to such an historic acknowledgement, the Palestinians would simply become emboldened, see it as a sign of weakness and up the ante even more with their attacks? As opposed to what most human beings would do and grab the opportunity for ending the suffering, self-determination and peace through coexistence? If anyone insists (without evidence - since remember no such scenario has ever before occurred, not really) on the former, then you are simply baselessly and prejudicially assuming the worst of a group of people for no good reason at all.


I can imagine Hamas being under some pressure to do so, but yes I can imagine it shrugging it off just as it shrugs off other similar pressures to soften its positions on talking to Israel. Another problem is that I can imagine the PA claiming that Israel is strengthening Hamas by changing its position on Gaza, thereby cementing the divisions there.

However, I also think it may be worth a try if Israel and others (the US, for starters) decide Palestinian unity is not something that matters anymore. The problem, though, is that I can also imagine this causing further trouble down the road, when it comes to talk about the West Bank, which Hamas quite obviously has a claim to. How would you deal with this possibility, where if Israel talks to one will lead the other to pushback in some way (militarily, diplomatically, whatever)? Do you think Israel should quietly approach Hamas and offer it the West Bank in exchange for a peace deal? Because that's what it would take ultimately, and I'm not sure if it would be legitimate in the eyes of the Palestinian public.

This duality in Palestinian governance is also why this is not really the same as e.g. Kuwait. Of course, you may be cynical and say it benefits Israel (it does if you believe there is no solution to the conflict at least, it doesn't if you do believe there is a solution since it makes reaching an agreement harder) and particularly the Israeli right (because it reinforces that belief that this has no solution and makes diplomacy harder). Yet the fact remains that ultimately it's something Palestinians themselves have to figure out, not Israel, since they are the ones who have to reach their own consensus.
#15173460
B0ycey wrote:So Israel has bombed all its targets and decided it is now time for a truce...

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/world-middle-east-57183127

I could sense this was close given the amount of blitz missions they have been on in the last 48 hours.

This is good. But what exactly did Gaza militants hope to achieve by the rocket strikes? Other than getting a bunch of Gazans killed. That a judge will change its pending decision they hadn't even announced yet?

What has Israel achieved? Militants will think twice before launching rockets again, and Netanyahu might get a bump in support to save his own butt.
#15173461
Unthinking Majority wrote:This is good. But what exactly did Gaza militants hope to achieve by the rocket strikes? Other than getting a bunch of Gazans killed. That a judge will change its pending decision they hadn't even announced yet?

What has Israel achieved? Militants will think twice before launching rockets again, and Netanyahu might get a bump in support to save his own butt.


Hamas achieved two things:

1) It showed it can penetrate the Iron Dome and get people killed

2) It showed Israel will not want to do a land incursion
#15173465
Israel bombed all the targets it knows about or thinks it knows about from the air but their are plenty of other targets that can only be gotten by sending in infantry troops. In addition, Hamas still has plenty of rockets. Honestly, in my view, I don't think either side achieved anything other than get civilians killed. I also wouldn't assume that Israel is afraid to send in infantry troops to go after Hamas. I think it's very much a possibility that Israel could send in infantry troops to go after additional targets.

The problem with using air assets is that you can only go so far with hitting only certain specific targets and that has the added danger of accidentally killing civilians in the process which in turn those civilian deaths can be used as propaganda against Israel by Hamas. Given that is the case, that could increase the chances that Israel sends in infantry troops to go after specific targets while trying in minimize the loss of civilian casualties.

Using infantry ground troops is less likely to cause civilian casualties than bombing from the air though it's not guaranteed. This would in turn possibly minimize the ability of Hamas to use civilian casualties as propaganda against Israel. However, sending in ground troops opens up a whole new dimension of the conflict and ground combat is very messy too.
#15173466
Politics_Observer wrote:Israel bombed all the targets it knows about or thinks it knows about from the air but their are plenty of other targets that can only be gotten by sending in infantry troops. In addition, Hamas still has plenty of rockets. Honestly, in my view, I don't think either side achieved anything other than get civilians killed. I also wouldn't assume that Israel is afraid to send in infantry troops to go after Hamas. I think it's very much a possibility that Israel could send in infantry troops to go after additional targets.

The problem with using air assets is that you can only go so far with hitting only certain specific topics and that has the added danger of accidentally killing civilians in the process which in turn those civilian deaths can be used as propaganda against Israel. Given that is the case, that could increase the chances that Israel sends in infantry troops to go after specific targets while trying in minimize the loss of civilian casualties. This would in turn possibly minimize the ability of Hamas to use civilian casualties as propaganda against Israel. However, sending in ground troops opens up a whole new dimension of the conflict and ground combat is very messy too.


Indeed, a ground war would likely end up in worse civilian casualties than what we saw these last few days.

I think Israel would of course still go for a land incursion if it really needed to - but it seems to have really preferred to avoid it. I understand why, but making this clear is a political win for Hamas I think.
#15173467
@wat0n

wat0n wrote:I think Israel would of course still go for a land incursion if it really needed to - but it seems to have really preferred to avoid it. I understand why, but making this clear is a political win for Hamas I think.


I agree that Israel is willing to use ground troops if necessary but would prefer not to, which I totally understand Israel's reluctance. But I don't think Hamas or Israel achieved much of anything. I don't see it as a win politically or militarily for any side. I just see a bunch of senseless violence that could have been prevented. I think Biden was behind this cease fire in my view.
#15173468
Politics_Observer wrote:@wat0n



I agree that Israel is willing to use ground troops if necessary but would prefer not to, which I totally understand Israel's reluctance. But I don't think Hamas or Israel achieved much of anything. I don't see it as a win politically or militarily for any side. I just see a bunch of senseless violence that could have been prevented. I think Biden was behind this cease fire in my view.


I think showing it can deter Israel from some actions is still a win for Hamas. Restoring deterrence and eroding Hamas' capabilities to an unknown extent is a win for Israel.

But yes, it doesn't really go much beyond this. None seem to be permanent, even if these may last for a while. Some years maybe?
#15173471
Unthinking Majority wrote:This is good. But what exactly did Gaza militants hope to achieve by the rocket strikes? Other than getting a bunch of Gazans killed. That a judge will change its pending decision they hadn't even announced yet?

What has Israel achieved? Militants will think twice before launching rockets again, and Netanyahu might get a bump in support to save his own butt.


Hamas achieved their primary objectives.

1. Provoking a massive response from the IDF, killing civilian Palestinians and militants alike. Every civilian killed works in favour of Hamas leading to more recruits and strengthening their position in Palestinian society.

2. Further isolating Israel on the world stage. Even the US was eventually forced to try curtail their ally.

The Israeli right wing will be strengthened as well and any calls for reconciliation with the Palestinians will in the short term be viewed as treason.
#15173484
We all know this fighting was a response to the Mount Moriah assault by the Israeli Police and the tension concerning that eviction dispute.

God forbid we ever see a fire or even earthquake damage the Dome of the Rock or the Mosque in our lifetimes. If it can happen to Notre-Dame it can happen to Al Aqsa too.
#15173490
colliric wrote:We all know this fighting was a response to the Mount Moriah assault by the Israeli Police and the tension concerning that eviction dispute.

God forbid we ever see a fire or even earthquake damage the Dome of the Rock or the Mosque in our lifetimes. If it can happen to Notre-Dame it can happen to Al Aqsa too.



It may also solve an Israeli problem. Refuse to issue any permits for repairs. Wall off the Temple Mount. Then engage in endless talks.
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