Rabbibrian's Blog

A Voice for Justice and Peace in Israel/Palestine

Gaza

Posted by rabbibrian on November 18, 2012

I am just horrified by the latest Israeli assault on Gaza.   This attack by one of the most powerful armies in the world against a people living in the most densely populated area in the world is a moral outrage.  It is just sickening to hear our President offering his full support for the right of Israel to “defend itself” by dropping bombs on a civilian population that is living under Israeli siege.  Will this assault provide security for the residents of Israel?    Statements by rabbis, Jewish leaders and Jewish organizations expressing their unconditional support for this assault are also frightening. Have these leaders and organizations seen the photos of the eleventh month old Palestinian child killed in this attack?  How will the death of this infant and over 30 Palestinian civilians, so far, ensure the safety of Israelis?  Rabbi Yoffie, the former leader of Reform Jews, calls on progressive Jews to support the war but most progressive Jews understand that this war is totally immoral and we will do everything we can to end it.

The inhabitants of Gaza are mostly refugees and descendants of refugees from the Nakba of 1947-49.  They will continue to launch rockets against Israel as long as they live under siege and as long as the human rights of the Palestinian people are denied.   The only real way to end this cycle of violence is through a political negotiation that ensures the human rights of all, Israeli Jews and Palestinians.   Israel has avoided such a resolution to the conflict from before the creation of the State.

The Zionist movement made a decision  before the creation of the State of Israel   to impose its will on the Palestinian people, to expel as many of them as possible, to wipe out their villages, to steal their land, and to establish an exclusively Jewish state on the ruins of their villages.  It also decided not to allow any of the 750,000 refugees to return and has refused even to acknowledge the reality of their expulsion. Since 1967 Israel has continued the policy of the Nakba on the West Bank.   The goal of the systematic discrimination and oppression of Palestinians on the West Bank is to encourage them to leave.  The explicit transfer of the Palestinian population on the land that became the State of Israel in 1948 continues with the policy of silent transfer of Palestinians on the West Bank from 1967 till today.

Two years ago, on one of the Fast for Gaza conference calls,  a guest from the Israeli organization, Gisha, suggested that the reality in Gaza is what Israel is planning for the West Bank: isolating the maximum number of Palestinians in the minimum amount of space, totally controlled by Israel but with minimum Israeli responsibility.  Maximum control, minimal responsibility.  Israel claims it withdrew from Gaza and it assumes no responsibility for its inhabitants,  ignoring the siege that they have imposed on Gaza transforming it into an open air prison.

This latest military assault can only be understood in the the context of Israeli policy from 1947.

It is time for us to call on our President to end his support for this immoral military assault that is only made possible by American military support.  It is time for us to go to the streets to demand an end to US support for the war.

Please read my colleague, Rabbi Brant Rosen’s powerful post.  Four years ago we co-founded Taanit Tzedek-Jewish Fast for Gaza in response to Operation Cast Lead.  Now we are witness to another ferocious Israeli assault.  Until Israel acknowledges the Nakba and addresses the underlying legitimate grievances of the Palestinian people,  the the cycle of violence will continue with tragic loss of life for both Israelis and Palestinians.

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4 Responses to “Gaza”

  1. I disagree, there is no moral outrage and if there is an moral outrage it should be directed towards the Arabs states and Hamas. In 1917 the Balfour Declaration was proposed creating a Jewish State Israel and a Palestinian State. The First Zion Congress accepted it but the Arab states rejected it. It was not until the UN declaring Israel was a state that it became clear, the Arab states where set on destroying Israel. From 1948 until 1973 many wars were started by the Arab states in order to destroy Israel but every time Israel won plus they were able to take more territory.

    To some it may seem like an outrage that Israel gained territory from the origin 1948 UN declaration. However, the US gained territory from fighting the Spanish and Indians. Plus many European borders changed due to the wars. No one has asked the US or European countries to return territory captured, so why should Israel?

    For some it may appear that Israel is trying to strong-arm Gaza. However Hamas has refused to recognize Israel and has vowed to destroy Israel. In essence, Hamas is continuing the fight of destroying Israel and refusing to live in peace. Israel has the right as a sovereign country to defend itself and protect its citizens. Personally I would prefer Israel to enter Gaza, topple the Hamas led terrorist government, and reclaim Gaza in order to secure peace for itself.

  2. Mary said

    I think you sound do more research before taking a side in this conflict. Did you know that 400 missiles have been launched at Israel this year? Most of them have been destroyed before causing any harm. Israel has to act or it will never stop. You can’t just look at the deaths and base your opinion on that. So many attempts for peace have been neglected by the palestinians, all they want to do is take israel for themselves (4 million jews were killed to have that land given to them from the UN). If palestine would just stop attacking, israel would stop to. You see Israel as the offence and palestine is just defending themselves, its actually the other way around.

  3. The death toll says a lot about the power imbalances between Gaza and Israel. From 2001 to 2011 around 25 Israelis were killed by Hamas missiles, over 4500 Palestinians in Gaza were killed by Israel. In the West Bank, the PA is stopping Palestinians from peacefully demonstrating and tortures Hamas representatives, a prime example of political submissiveness. What did the PA get in exchange? More illegal Jewish settlements, more house demolitions etc. As long as Israelis do not see the indigenous population, the Palestinians, as rightful owners of the land they live on, there will be no peace. Unless it’s the peace of the graveyard.

  4. Humaira said

    Griwung up I have always been taught that Jews &Muslims are cousins, we share the same root. We were sharing the land without borders or aggression and protected each other. It’s truly unforgivable and unfortunate that so many innocent people have died on both sides. I pray that people open their eyes and realize more oppression equals increased hatred and plants more seeds of hatred, free Palestine, lift trade so they can start rebuilding, get food, and medication. Stop the genocide, stop this slow Holocaust

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