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Violence and Lies: What, Exactly, is Israel's Mission?

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Better Believe It Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-29-08 12:43 PM
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Violence and Lies: What, Exactly, is Israel's Mission?
December 29, 2008

Violence and Lies
What, Exactly, is Israel's Mission?
Neve Gordon teaches in the Department of Politics and Government at Ben-Gurion University, Israel. He has been a visiting scholar at the University of California, Berkeley, the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and the Watson Institute at Brown University. During the first intifada, he was the director of Physicians for Human Rights Israel. Gordon is the co-editor of Torture: Human Rights, Medical Ethics and the Case of Israel, the editor of From the Margins of Globalization: Critical Perspectives on Human Rights, and most recently the author of Israel's Occupation. His writings have appeared in numerous scholarly journals as well as in publications like The Guardian, The Nation, Chicago Tribune, The Boston Globe, Chronicle of Higher Education and The National Catholic Reporter.


The first is the destruction of Hamas, a totally unrealistic goal. Even though the loss of hundreds of cadres and some key leaders will no doubt hurt the organization, Hamas is a robust political movement with widespread grassroots support, and it is unlikely to surrender or capitulate to Israeli demands following a military assault. Ironically, Israels attempt to destroy Hamas using military force has always ended up strengthening the organization, thus corroborating the notion that power produces its own vulnerability.

The second objective has to do with Israels upcoming elections. The assault on Gaza is also being carried out to help Kadima and Labor defeat Likud and its leader Benjamin Netanyhu, who is currently ahead in the polls. It is not coincidental that Netanyahus two main competitors, Livni and Barak, were invited to the press conference since, after the assault, it will be more difficult for Netanyahu to characterize them as soft on the Palestinians. Whether or not the devastation in Gaza will help Livni defeat Netanyhu or help Barak gain votes in the February elections is difficult to say, but the strategy of competing with a warmonger like Netanyhu by beating the drums of war says a great deal about all three major contenders.

The third objective involves the Israeli military. After its notable humiliation in Lebanon during the summer of 2006, the IDF has been looking for opportunities to reestablish its global standing. Last Spring it used Syria as its laboratory and now it has decided to focus on Gaza. Emphasizing the mere three minutes and forty seconds it took to bomb fifty sites is just one the ways the Israeli military aims to restore its international reputation.

Finally, Hamas and Fatah have not yet reached an agreement regarding how to proceed when Mahmoud Abbas ends his official term as President of the Palestinian National Authority on January 9th, 2009. One of the outcomes of this assault is that Abbas will remain in power for a while longer since Hamas will be unable to mobilize its supporters in order to force him to resign.

What is clearly missing from this list of Israeli objectives is the attempt to halt the firing of Qassam rockets into Israels southern towns. Unlike the objectives I mentioned, which are not discussed by government officials, this one is presented by the government as the operations primary objective. Yet, the government is actively misleading the public, since Israel could have put an end to the rockets a long time ago. Indeed, there was relative quiet during the six-months truce with Hamas, a quiet that was broken most often as a reaction to Israeli violence: that is, following the extra-judicial execution of a militant or the imposition of a total blockade which prevented basic goods, like food stuff and medicine, from entering the Gaza Strip. Rather than continuing the truce, the Israeli government has once again chosen to adopt strategies of violence that are tragically akin to the ones deployed by Hamas, only the Israeli ones are much more lethal.

Please read the full article at:

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Dennis Donovan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-29-08 12:45 PM
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1. Recommended.
Edited on Mon Dec-29-08 01:15 PM by Dennis Donovan

As effective as the Mossad is, can't they infiltrate Eastern Gaza and take out the Qassam rockets WITHOUT killing hundreds of civilians in Gaza City? :shrug:

On edit - off to the dungeon THIS thread went, eh? :eyes:
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methinks2 Donating Member (894 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-29-08 12:51 PM
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2. Analogy on NPR
I heard a great analogy on NPR this morning. It compared bombing and military action in a heavily populated area like Gaza to like action in Manhattan. That does make you wonder if the Israeli war machine has any cosideration for the value of human life. It seems that if you're not one of them (Israeli) then your life has no value.

"We will not learn how to live together in peace by killing each other's children." Jimmy Carter

"When good does evil in its struggle against evil, it becomes indistinguishable from its enemy." T.S. Elliot
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bunnies Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-29-08 12:53 PM
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3. There goes the "protecting the citizens" argument.
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anndash Donating Member (70 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-29-08 12:58 PM
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4. And, yet again, the world sits by
while Israel gets away with murder.
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-29-08 01:04 PM
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5. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
thewiseguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-29-08 01:04 PM
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6. K&R
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bdamomma Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-29-08 02:26 PM
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7. does Israel have an alternative plan of escalating this conflict??
to the point of getting Iran involved? just asking.
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