Wednesday 7 January 2009

Gaza Update; and viewpoint: a perspective; and some statistics

(Social Justice South Africa; Scripturelink voters Guide)

Article by Marc Aupiais

Israel claims that Hamas is a terrorist group. This is easily verifiable: any group, which is not a Nation, which takes a territory from a legitimate government, chases away observers, and both fires rockets on civilians, killing indiscriminately, and willfully: injures noncombatants: well: it sounds like a terrorist grouping.

It is claimed that there are large civilian casualties. As verified on the ground, by a Canadian Newspaper; this seems true, as with what they claim: that there are militants in the areas. The UN, however, claims that the attack on the UN school: is unjustified: and denies claims of militants in the area. The UN; being UN representation. Certain representatives of the UN, have periodically done things which are classified as Genocide by the Nations represented in it, again, it has a voice, but International journalists, and an investigation needs to be conducted, before clear facts are established.

Israel is stopping bombing of Gaza for three hours a day: to allow humanitarian aid in. It is thought by some to be due to pressure.

Israel's claims of minimization of Civilian casualties? Well: again; Gaza is densely populated, and Israel claims that Hamas is attempting to get cover from shooting from civilian areas, basically using Palestinians as Human Shields: and at Israeli civilians.

Hamas seems to have the goal of wiping Israel off the map; and does not recognize Israel as a state. A bit of Insider Information, from the anti-apartheid campaign: when someone is arrested: you make as much noise as possible: as it is how to get them out. The same goes for any political source. Exactly what is occuring: is still doubtful: as often: both sides will get as much support as possible from any side viable. In South Africa we have seen organizations supporting "human Rights"; as within the UN itself: being utterly partisan, and seemingly ignoring abuses of such. The UN recently awarded two high level pro-abortion campaigners: awards for their "contribution" to humanity. The UN, is not infallible, and is as partisan as its local structures.

Israel: has of course pointed to other wars, of Western Nations: including that in Afghanistan; and in Iraq: and the what sounded like the Falklands: in attempting to justify attacks.

They still claim: that the moment Israel is safe from rocket-fire: is the moment they withdraw. Their battle is increasingly gaining bad press in some nations: due to a lapse in publicity campaigns: and their propaganda war. When America invaded Iraq: their propaganda war was highly successful: papers across the world: aired their propaganda about "Weapons of Mass Destruction" in Iraq. Israel could have made wiser decisions: the 72 hour truce suggested: to allow in humanitarian aid: an allowance of the BBC or the like of EuroNews: into Gaza: may have done much: maintaining only air-strikes: could also have been more politically wise.

Some politicians: in Israel: desire the annihilation of Hamas from the scene, but the largely "moderate" government in power: still: is only claiming to be attempting to stop rocket fire.

The fact remains: Hamas; is not a government, not democratically elected, not a state, and not sovereign. They have seized the Gaza Strip: by force: from a legitimate government. They have smuggled in weapons, and are attacking civilians daily. An Israeli infant has been reported as a casualty of a terrorist strike. Hamas has chased away international observers, which were meant to watch smuggling: and consistently there is propaganda spewed throughout the Gaza Strip.

Israel itself, either out of distrust, or as they claim: for their safety; or to cover up what is happening: is not allowing in International Journalists.

Israel, has decided to invade a highly populated area: choosing war: rather than sanctions; and limited tactical bombings, or Police work; with Egypt, which could have aided the situation.

This could be partly due to the unfair partisan way in which many nations have treated Israel: this attack: could well be giving them the same press: as sanctions would have had: in many nations.

If Hamas is a terrorist group which they are, and if they are holding the people of Gaza, as media material, or "Human Shields", then this situation, is much the same: as though terrorists had taken a school: how do governments deal with this: via negotiations; via snipers, via tactical force: which is sure: not to hit civilians, if possible, or via arrests, and court appearances, if possible.

I know of; indirectly (I would be ashamed if they were my friends): many people, including South African politicians: who went to Iraq to be human shields, during the Second Gulf War. It is still the duty, of a civilized authority, not to hit human shields: if viable; at least: I don't think they are combatants: even if they are extremely foolish; after all: companies can't saw environmentalists chained to trees apart.

None the less: an immediate ceasefire by Israel: may be impractical, if not politically impossible to achieve.

Diplomacy and a desire to impress, has seen Israel allow humanitarian aid in, has created suggestions of three hour breaks daily, and has resulted in America largely ignoring the current war. This same desire to impress: is being followed by authorities: which were seen as too weak in their positions on Hamas; and have now regained some "credibility", with their constituencies: something which cannot be ruled out: as a cause of their invasion: their counterstrike.

Until an international non-partisan, independent force is allowed to investigate this situation: it is impossible to know where, when or if each side is breaking international law. Yes, direct terrorist attacks do break the law: Hamas: is a terrorist group: but Israel, is like the owner of the house which is attacked: they too, can be justly arrested if they abuse burglars.

An international tribunal needs to do something about Hamas, they must be Isolated, funding must be cut off, they must be disbanded and arrested. They are the cause of this situation: but if Israel, has mistreated the little child Hamas has brought with: to rob their house: then something must be done. There is no question that what Hamas is doing is both illegal, and terrorism, and unjustifiable evil. Only groups, like South Africa's Communist Affiliated: ANC controlled: government can ignore this. The question is: how legitimate are Israeli claims, that they are acting either as best as possible in extenuating circumstances: or obeying international law.

The real question is not whether Hamas is justified: they are not. The question, is whether or not Israel is obeying international law: and how Israel can act in the right way to sort this situation out. Hamas cannot be expected to do so: they are terrorists, and criminals: if we understand international law. The question: is not whether or not Israel has the right to defend themselves: there is always muttering about them: even when they do something good: the question: is as to their choice of methods in doing so.

A way to withdraw from this war: pride intact: must be given to Israel: or at least, a manner in which some victory (I am not speaking of military, but in general)may be won, by the group. Either, a win-win situation must be gained, or a win-lose: where the loser thinks they have also achieved what they can. Israel: is only doing so, in evidence of how sick the Israeli people are of living in war, in terror.

In the same way: as police brutality is something which is lamented: Israel; could be abusing its position, and going beyond the rights which the International Community gives them, but while any rational person should express worry over statistics; until the fog of war clears, it is unclear what we are dealing with at all.

It was just as unclear in the Russia-Georgia conflict recently; where it is now though by many: that both nations had broken international law.

As it is, the high casualties experienced: must be investigated: and leaving the situation, as is: can no longer be tolerated: the International Community: must force through, even quietly: a way for permanent peace.

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