Letters to Editor, Opinion

LETTER: Israel is acting responsibly

Yesterday’s editorial (‘A Call for Peace,’ Jan. 15) does not seem to focus on discussing peace and avoids many realities on the ground.

Since the conclusion of the Six Day War in 1967, Israel has offered numerous opportunities for the Palestinians to exchange land to be used as a country for peace. Not a single offer has been accepted. Throughout this time, Hamas and other Palestinian terrorist groups have been fighting for a free state of Palestine. In 1979, Israel returned the Sinai Peninsula to Egypt, resulting in peace and normal diplomatic relations until recently. In 2005, Israel unilaterally uprooted 8,000 of its own citizens to encourage a civil society that would live peacefully next to Israel, acting as a precursor to a Palestinian state.

While every civilian casualty on either side is tragic, Hamas has been encouraging children to stand on rooftops so that the houses on which they are standing, containing whole arsenals, are not destroyed. Hamas officials have been told to remove their uniforms and hide in hospitals to deter attack. Israeli pilots have aborted missiles upon seeing children on top of buildings. This is an example of how Israel has been ‘keeping civilian deaths to a minimum.’ This is how Hamas uses Israel’s sense of humanity against it.

The idea that ‘Israel does not want others to see what is taking place in Gaza’ is completely not true. The Israel Defense Forces has been posting videos of the war onto YouTube (find the ‘idfnadesk’ channel). In the 2006 Lebanon war, the Israeli military embedded journalists within its units and there were several fatalities due to the journalists’ lack of training.

To its credit, the editorial is correct in saying that Hamas was elected to ‘combat the economic issues facing its constituents.’ It is unfortunate that the same elected officials took their constituents hostage and are using them as human shields. I agree, ‘Israel has to fight by the rules,’ but at the risk of sounding like a 5- year-old: Hamas shot first, and they are using dirty tactics. Israel, therefore, has to use unfortunate tactics ‘-‘- albeit with excruciating care to minimize civilian casualties ‘-‘- to protect its civilians as well.

The Israeli military does not attack civilians for the fun of it; soldiers have the highest regard for human life. It is not about Israel making a point by demonstrating its ability to crush Hamas, but rather by destroying the weapons and terrorists that Hamas uses to target Israel’s southern citizens. It would be irresponsible for them to stop until their operation is complete.

Dan Hazony

CAS ’09

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One Comment

  1. Hamas wants Israel destroyed. Needless to say, this Hamas objective will not occur; consequently, many innocent lives have been lost -- including women and children -- because of these senseless Hamas rocket attacks!

    George Patsourakos<br/>Israel really had no choice, but to respond with force against the Hamas, because of their unprovoked rocket firings on Israel. Failure by the Israelis to respond would only have encouraged the Hamas to fire more rockets. There is only one reason for the Hamas rocket firings