Israel at War
“If we don’t learn from history, we are bound to repeat it.” That statement seems to sum up the latest war between Israel and the Palestinians. How can the groundwork for establishing two states living side by side in peace be put in place when the leadership of one of the participants [Hamas in Gaza] will not recognize Israel’s right to exist? In fact, Hamas has as its two major goals the destruction of Israel and its replacement with a hard-line Islamic state.
So how does Israel negotiate with Fatah and its leader Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank [who used to supposedly speak for all Palestinians] when Hamas, who speak for the rest of the Palestinians only wants to see Israel vanish from the face of the earth?
This has been a similar problem during the Arafat years … all talk, no action, and no peace.
After the so called “ceasefire” between Israel and Hamas ended on December 19,2008 over 170 rockets and mortars were fired at Israeli citizens including 80 on December 24th alone which continued to make Israeli’s lives a living hell. There is no country in the world that would allow that to happen without immediate retaliation and/or a call for all out war.
Israel gave Gaza its chance to determine its own fate in 2005 when it unilaterally and completely withdrew all of its troops from that territory. Since then over 6300 rockets and mortars have been fired into Israel. It must surely be true that no good deed goes unpunished.
Less than six months ago, President-elect Barack Obama said during a visit to Sderot, “If somebody was sending rockets into my house where my two daughters sleep at night, I would do everything to stop that, and would expect Israel to do the same thing.”
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice said, “We strongly condemn the repeated rocket and mortar attacks against Israel and hold Hamas responsible for breaking the ceasefire and for the renewal of violence there.”
The United Nations only knows how to condemn Israel. It never denounces with the same virulence and consistency those parties that perpetrate the terror attacks against Israel that led to a necessary response. These kinds of actions render that body a political cesspool not worthy of respect or attention.
Israel has no choice but to defend its citizens and make its country safe from attacks and bombings. It must fight. It must defeat any group that attempts to kill its citizens. It should enter into negotiations only with legitimate entities that deal with them in an honest and honorable manner. At the very least this means recognizing its right to exist.
What follow are photos of the war which will be updated as new events unfold.
Click on photos to enlarge