Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Inside Hamas

What is the reality of daily life in Gaza under Hamas and can a militant religious organisation move from international pariah to meaningful political player? David Rosenberg explores the issues. ‘A man once jumped from the top floor of a burning building in which many members of his family had already perished. He managed to save his life; but as he was falling he hit a person standing down below and broke that person's legs and arms. The jumping man had no choice; yet to the man with the broken limbs he was the cause of his misfortune... The injured man blames the other for his misery and swears to make him pay for it.

The other, afraid of the crippled man's revenge, insults him, kicks him and beats him up whenever they meet.’ The Polish Jewish writer, Isaac Deutscher, used this analogy to illustrate the tragedy of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the basis on which it would endure. Deutscher doesn’t state the nationality, ethnicity or religion of the man who jumped or of the passer-by. There were enough conflicts throughout the 20th century to show that no community or nation has a monopoly either of doing harm or of being victims. Every group is capable of trampling on the rights of another.

While the creation of Israel in 1948 promised a secure future for Jewish refugees who had survived the Holocaust, it inflicted a permanent injustice on the Palestinian people, most of whom were dispossessed and turned into refugees. The Palestinians call this the Nakba (catastrophe). They fled mainly to neighbouring Arab states and some later reached Europe and America. In further wars (1956 and 1967), Israel gained more territory – Gaza from the Egyptians and the West Bank from Jordan – and annexed East Jerusalem. Today around half the Palestinians in the world live under military occupation in the West Bank, or under Israeli rule in East Jerusalem, or confined in Gaza – a narrow strip of land 40km by 5km along the Mediterranean, home to 1.5 million people, which Israel has evacuated while keeping the population there dependent on it for essential supplies.


Simmons said...

Wow, I suppose the military police's conduct is not that unexpected but really. I still don't have a clear view of what the problem is or really whats going on. I'll watch it again maybe.

Simmons said...

I did some research, I think I've got it now. Palestinean people used to live where Isrial is now, they are mad because they were driven from their land, which both parties claim rights to. I might be ignorant for saying this, but why not simply kick the palesitines out of gaza strip so they can't shoot rockets and won't be so tempted to attempt to kill their neighbours? Out of sight, out of mind?

mu said...

Why didn't Britain just kick all the Catholics out of Northern Ireland? Why not kick the Israelis out of Israel? Why don't the Chinese kick the Tibetans out of Tibet?

The Palestine situation is far from simple so there won't be any simple solutions. Having both sides filled with violent bloodthirsty monsters certainly doesn't help.

You also might want to have a look at the age distribution in Gaza. Gaza is full of kids and teenagers with little in the way of adult supervision, anyone that expects rational behavior from a bunch of testosterone filled teenagers is being completely unrealistic.

cinndave said...

There is no sense in Israel negotiating with Hamas, because "Death to Israel" is their sworn mission. They will never quit their cruel campaign until they drive the Jews into the sea.

The reason for the so-called "catastrophe" where they were expelled happened because the government at the time rejected the accord with Britain, who was setting aside a piece of its empire for a Jewish state so displaced Holocaust survivors could have a place to settle. Probably motivated by anti-semitism, the Palestinians rejected them, and 6 Arab nations chose to go to war with the new state. They all lost the war.

I totally don't feel sorry for Palestinians who made their lot worse by willingly supporting Hamas. If anybody thinks Israel is evil, wait 'til the Palestinian terrorists are running the show. Life after the 2006 elections is just a sample of how things will get worse.

And don't look forward to a two-state solution either. If Israel handed over the land it seized to a Palestinian state, 70% of Israel would be in range of artillary, fired from Palestine with impunity, and there will be nothing Israel can do to stop it. That's why Israel is hanging on to the land it took in the 6-day war.

Rebels fire rockets indiscriminately & inhumanely targeting Israeli civilians. Israel tries to stop it by striking back, but since I.J. and Hamas deliberately fire from dense areas to increase the civilian death toll, more Palestinians die. Golda Meir was right: The Palestinians will never know peace until they learn to love their own children more than they hate the Jews.

cinndave said...

mu is right about the age distribution. Countries all over the Arabic-speaking world are mostly under 25. You can really see the teen angst in this video. They probably listen to Korn lol.

Anonymous said...

Yeah lets face it how can you feel sorry for a displaced people who are in effect living in the worlds largest prison camp, where aid is trestricted to just 100 truck loads a day (illegal in the eyes of the UN). Those poor Israelis with there state of the art war machine as supplied by the US (not to mention only nuclear power in the region and 4th largest/strongest army in the world) being targeted by home made rockets with no guidance systems. Maybe you people should research the issue beyond this video and the CNN / FOX news sound bites. A good starting point would be a Noam Chomsky talk on the Gaza situation on Google Video and then do your own research on the topics and issues he mentions and then you will see its less a case of Israel being the victim - more a case of being the most favoured and original US military base in the region. Violence is never justified - but one can see the desperation when all dignity is taken away from you and your family. And anyone who says this is an anti-semetic rant is at best ignorant of the issues - and taking the poor mans way out, or at worst a moron. The facts are facts (including the ones not reported or glossed over) and to call a spade a spade does not make anyone anti-semetic.