Israelis In The U.S. Mobilize Against Gaza Conflict
Last month, we started discussing strategies for countering the policies of the Israeli government, which we believe has become increasingly dangerous for its citizens. We wanted to communicate our concerns to Americans with longstanding connections to Israel. Little did we expect the urgency of the moment.
By killing Hamas leader Ahmad Jabari on November 14, the Israeli government intentionally escalated the military struggle with Hamas. For a long time now, both sides have been using indiscriminate military measures – Hamas shooting rockets on Israeli civilians and Israel imposing different levels of siege. However, the recent assassination has made the threat of a new war immediate.
This renewed conflict has already cost civilian lives on both sides, and the death toll is constantly rising. Such casualties are a foreseeable result of war, and might have been considered inevitable if Israel was truly defending itself. But the Gaza campaign is by no means a measure of defense. It reflects a unilateralism and isolationism that is likely to deepen the insecurity of all of us for years to come.
Starting in the summer of 2011, a wave of protest put debates on social justice and civic equality at center stage. With ongoing unrest all over the country, the legitimacy of the government was called into question. As others have pointed out, generating a military crisis is a convenient way of diverting attention from civic equality. In a traditionally militarized Israel, this is truly the oldest trick in the book: “security” measures ensure that employment security or pension security are overlooked.