Before dawn on Saturday 17, Israel started one the most ferocious and massive ground war on Gaza following rocket attacks from Hamas militants.
And the story will automatically repeat as follows:
The Israeli IA discovers an imminent rocket attack from Gaza. The IDF takes precaution by leading airstrikes towards suspicious spots. These spots – often filled with Hamas militants – will respond to the air menace by launching more rockets. The IDF then proceeds by responding in a catastrophic way via land, sea and air, to make sure that no other rocket will ever reach Israeli soil again.
– Palestinian death toll as of today: over 150 (many children) dead, 850 injured.
– Israel death toll as of today: over 10 dead, 51 injured.
The asymmetry and disproportion of power is obvious, and as always again, this turn of events has been presented to Israelis as if they had no other choice but to start an extermination for the sake of Safety. Every nation has the right to defend itself, but it would be wise to ask them if they’re able to envisage another way to achieve this goal.
And about that, what is the goal of this bloody massacre? Here are a few possibilities:
A- The war is a diversion from what Israel has often named it the biggest fear it has: Iran. And probably a way to test how much the US is willing to support Israel in adverse situations.
B- Mr. Netanyahu’s popularity in and out of Israel makes him not so sure that he will the upcoming elections in January 2013, so he could use a “crisis to solve” to regain popularity.
C- As Mr. Abbas has been rallying for the Palestinian recognition bid to the UN since last year, on November 29 he will submit his petition, if nothing prevents him from doing so. This even though it seems like it won’t change much. One thing we can’t forget: if the goal is the recognition and acceptance of a Palestinian State then the first thing that is absolutely necessary is the unification between West Bank and Gaza so they can advance together with a common cause to be presented in a more meaningful way. So far there isn’t much progress to that end, but the goal appears to be getting more feasible.
I would tick all the above and more if there are.
Israelis and Palestinians are bound to the same roots, they belong to the same history, and to the same events that preceded 1948, the year that marked the proximity between Arabs and Jews (I say Jews instead of Israelis because I’m also referring to the period prior the birth of the State of Israel).
But times have changed since Camp David in 1979, and now Israel finds itself in a more difficult situation: the Arab Spring is now spread everywhere, the once-allies are shaky, Jordan is facing its own internal revolutions and is facing a possible Cairo-Tunis future, Egypt led by the Muslim Brothers are closer to Hamas than to PLO, Syria is under fire and instability, and if this wasn’t enough Iran has offered military support to Gaza.
Will they stop and reflect about it now?