Everyone should read Lisa Goldman’s post

And yes, BY EVERYBODY I mean YOU, even if you are Pro the War or supporting Hamas, read it! Consider it an alternative prespective worth considering, if you will!

Comments

  1. Jonathan Levy says:

    Sandmonkey – the link appears to be broken, at least for me.

  2. Jonathan Levy says:

    Ah, I see you fixed it before I managed to post :)

  3. Excellent!!!! Lisa is an amazing young woman.

  4. It is a wonderful article, I agree.

  5. I do not agree. Lisa states what horrible thugs Hamas are and still she would want them to be immune from any Israeli reprisal because they use Palestinian civilians as human shields. This means not only abandonning the Israeli South to Hamas’ mercy but the Gaza population as well. There is no way of letting organisations like Hamas be as we found out for one year and a halg. They just up the ante and that’s that.

    The moral equivalence between Hamas targeting civilians and Israel not being able to avoid collateral damage (see the bit about human shields) is despiceable!

  6. Roman Kalik says:

    Ruth, personally, the one issue that truly bothers me in Lisa’s post is the premise that if military action cannot produce immediate results, then we must “bite the bullet”, so to speak, and do nothing other than humanitarian gestures.

    Lisa has a decidedly short-term and emotional view in this case, little better than the very people she derides – and seemingly likes to paint with the same brush, in the way that all the counter-protesters she mentioned somehow became stupid nationalist racists by association, simply because *some* of them were.

    Lisa wants the pain to stop, because it pains her when innocent bystanders in Gaza suffer, and it pains her when innocent bystanders in Israel suffer. In that, she is entirely sincere and worthy of respect. But her belief that military action should be avoided because it isn’t a magic-wand kind of solution, and instead focuses on further “minimizing the suffering” in the short term without looking for the long term…

    Because the long term is yet more suffering. Hamas enjoys the popular support, and as long as Gazans are in a good *enough* situation, Hamas will direct what other ire Gazans have toward Israel.

    What we had, ever since Hamas gained power, was a closed loop of suffering. Hamas attacked freely enough below a certain “red line”, steadily moving said line up as people supposedly get used to the escalated suffering cycle, and by Lisa’s view… Israel should do nothing in the military sphere beyond very pinpoint actions of return fire – if and when Hamas happen to fire out of open fields, of course…

    And that cycle never ends, because Hamas has so far been strengthening its hold of Gaza, arming itself to the hilt with long-range weaponry, and not wavering in its fanaticism. In the long term, this cycle of suffering only grows and become worse.

    Which is one of the reasons for why Israel broke the cycle, for now. The purpose was never even to break Hamas utterly – just to break enough of it. To loosen its hold on Gaza for someone else to even try and step in, to take away its increasing stockpile of military-grade arms to prevent a much blacker scenario in the future, and setting a reality in which Hamas will have a much harder time to regain its previous power and arms by forcing better control over the Gaza-Egypt border.

    And Lisa also conveniently forgets another issue that doesn’t really mesh with her internationalist world view – the fact that when individual citizens within a state feel that the state’s legal or armed representatives, police and military, fail in doing their duty to protect their rights and lives… said people take matters into their own hands, sooner or later. They form militias. They get armed. They become vigilantes and criminals.

    Does Lisa prefer anarchy in Israel if it means less suffering for Palestinians? I hope not. I honestly think that she doesn’t see the possible consequences of letting the military sit idly on its hands when it is failing in its duty. I think she holds a much better view of humanity in general and Israelis and Palestinians in particular than they rightly deserve… the Average Bloke on the Street isn’t always nice, and “showing how the other side is human” and trying to show how much people have in common only works if people are listening to you in the first place.

    Sometimes, they’re too deafened by explosions. Or don’t think that “being a person” is enough of a criteria to not try and kill said person.

    And that’s when one should start building very tall walls…

  7. Actually, Ruth and Roman, I take a decidedly long term look at the situation. As in: who will replace Hamas? Do you really want a lawless, Somalia-like state led by armed clans located 500 meters from Sderot?

    And, secondly, think of all those future militants we are creating with this military campaign. Kill one father of 10, create 10 future suicide bombers.

    And Roman, if you are going to question my intelligence, then at least have the courtesy to send me a personal email. You have my address.

  8. Roman Kalik says:

    As in: who will replace Hamas?

    A defense often uttered for the world’s worst dictators. Sometimes, stability is another way of building up institutionalized crime and mass-murder.

    Do you really want a lawless, Somalia-like state led by armed clans located 500 meters from Sderot?

    Honestly? I find them preferable to Hamas. Agreements can be reached with clan leaders, because clans have a more down-to-earth approach to the immediate safety and well-being of the people who make up the clan. The clans tend to care, as Iraq had proven – for better and for worse. It’s certainly a lot safer today because the US started making agreements with the clans rather than relying constantly on a corrupt and ineffectual central government.

    And for our neck of woods… ever hear of Sheikhs Abu Khader Jabri and Haj Abu Ahram Abu Sneina?

    Read up on them, the former in particular, when you get the chance. And ask yourself why our political establishment never really went as far as to try and find out more about them as well, or others like them.

    Because they, like most of us with Western origins or cultural upbringing, have long ago forgotten them. We have long relied on nation-state level solutions, which is why we ended up going to extreme lengths to turn a terrorist leader into a petty regional dictator. Otherwise known as the Oslo Accords. We wanted stability, but we went to the wrong place to look for it.

    Somalia? Unlikely. And frankly… we’re been there before, only on a political/militia level rather than the hamoula level. We had various militias running all over the place, once. The difference being – they had no reason to care for the average citizen.

    They simply had political, or fanatical, ends.

    So find that particular option (of armed clans) a much safer wager than your own – that of Hamas stability. Though that is by far not the only possible future, really.

    We seem to be quite focused on propping up Fatah, us and the so-called international community, even when it represents little more than the thugs that make it up. And sometimes, not even that.

    And, secondly, think of all those future militants we are creating with this military campaign. Kill one father of 10, create 10 future suicide bombers.

    If a society is so utterly messed-up that revenge and suicide are the first choices to a bereaved relative, then having a stable government that encourages, teaches, and raises a population of that very viewpoint isn’t going to be very helpful.

    And when you can build a sniper rifle that can shoot tens of kilometers, with bullets that twist and turn and only hit the people they *should*, let me know. I honestly wish that such an item was possible.

    Or that the very discussion of its possible existence would be irrelevant.

    But we don’t live in a dream, now do we?

    And Roman, if you are going to question my intelligence, then at least have the courtesy to send me a personal email. You have my address.

    Intelligence? I questioned the degree of your emotional and idealistic involvement in the matter, issues that override intellect at times – for better and for worse.

    In this particular case, I believe that it is for the worse.

    And yes, I do indeed have your address. But when you make public statements and articles, expect public discussions about them, and the reasoning behind them.

    I prefer public discussions to private ones when possible. And if you feel that my previous reply touched on you personally, it is because of your own personal investment in the post that Sandmonkey kindly linked to. You’ve often displayed a personal, emotional, and idealistic involvement of one way or another, Lisa – sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse.

    The bottom line is that I simply don’t agree with your current reasoning.

    And if you don’t like your reasoning, or the way others view it, discussed publicly, then what on earth are you doing in the public sphere in the first place?

  9. Lisa,

    “And, secondly, think of all those future militants we are creating with this military campaign. Kill one father of 10, create 10 future suicide bombers.”

    I think you seriously underestimate the Palestinians’ intelligence. They should be able to realize that the current disaster was brought upon them by Hamas and Hamas taking hostages for human shields, killing “collaborators” and stealing humanitarian aid should help the realization.

    Funny that this never seems to happen with Israelis. Kill an Israeli parent in a suicide bombing, create so and so many Arab hating fanatics. Clearly there is another ingredient?

  10. Roman, my point was that your response to my rational arguments was reductive and simplistic. You presumed to have insight into my thoughts, “Lisa has a decidedly short-term and emotional view in this case”; and “Lisa also conveniently forgets…” and you misunderstood my reasons for presenting individual portraits. Given that you have, in the past, left intelligent, detached and perceptive comments on Kamangir’s blog and on this blog, I am disappointed.

  11. Roman Kalik says:

    You presumed to have insight into my thoughts, “Lisa has a decidedly short-term and emotional view in this case”; and “Lisa also conveniently forgets…”

    And that remains my opinion. You have written a post made up of snippets that, overall, lead to a single underlying “the war is bad” argument as the whole, which as I read it included no long-term considerations beyond that of attempting to portray the lack of them, purely in the military sense, in our current military operation, and while you have at times focused extensively on the pain of the Palestinian side and the possible consequences of that pain, I didn’t see much consideration of how it may affect the Israeli populace.

    You have often recognized that Israeli society has its flaws. Its dents and bumps along the road. Its nationalists and racists and downright idiots. But I think you don’t honestly realize that social order can truly disintegrate in our country, if enough people lose faith in the state and it’s institutions. How would our morality look like if everyone took matters into his or her hands?

    Given that you have, in the past, left intelligent, detached and perceptive comments on Kamangir’s blog and on this blog, I am disappointed.

    If you’ll recall, I also had semi-personal arguments with Kamangir on issues of religion, atheism, and so on. Back then I argued with Kamangir regarding how he perceives choice, and religious coercion. This also included my own insights and opinions into how I, the person on the other side, perceived Kamangir’s reasoning and the thought process that led to it.

    This is not about insult – or at least I did not intend it as such. This was about showing my perception of the issue, in more than just a set of collected facts.

    My opinion stands, Lisa. And if you have the time, I ask you to consider these perceptions, flawed as they might be. I’m no expert on anything save getting bits and bytes from one place to another.

    But consider them. There had been more than one such opinion of my own reasoning that allowed me to perceive how I think of an issue just a bit better.

  12. Lisa seems like a very nice, warm, human person with a natural revulsion to human suffering. I disagree with her solution to stop the war and try negotiation with Hamas. The most deadly wars are those which sputter on, delivering death in small batches over the long term inconclusively. The least deadly wars are those which fight pitched battles to a decisive conclusion.

    The lesson of Sep 11 for Americans is that you can not negotiate with Muslim terrorists. You have to smash them like bugs. You can not let them deliver their jihad to your country, but rather you must fight them in theirs. You must return their violence to their doorstop ten times over until they are persuaded that violence is not in their interest.

  13. OMG, you guys are worse than the Palestinians, you just can’t get along and agree on anything can you? No wonder Israeli politics is in a constant state of disarray with its recycled politicians. LOL the minister of health one minute, minister of defence or Mossad the next LOL. Just as bad if not worse than the Palestinians.

  14. Roman Kalik says:

    Just as bad if not worse than the Palestinians.

    Sure. After all, we blow each other up, kneecap and shoot and stab, and all the rest of it, as part of the Israeli political process. And when we don’t like a certain party, we throw all their members off the Azrieli Towers in Tel-Aviv.

    And *then* we go around hospitals and shoot the survivors in the face.