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GAZA, ISRAEL & HOLOCAUST SURVIVORS

PA President Mahmoud Abbas

  Who really bears responsibility for the killing of some 2,100 Palestinians, in the fighting between Hamas and Israel that ended on August 26 (1,100 Palestinian civilians and 1,000 terrorists)? Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has actually blamed Hamas for starting the war by escalating the rocketing of the Jewish state and then rejecting numerous Egyptian ceasefire proposals that Israel accepted. Interviewed on Palestinian TV, Abbas vented his anger: 'It was possible for us to avoid all that, the 2,000 martyrs, 10,000 injured and 50,000 houses that were damaged or destroyed (by Israeli counter strikes)'. Abbas, who recently signed a unity government agreement with Hamas, also criticized Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal for starting the war without consulting him. And Abbas added that if Hamas ever did it again, they would go it alone. The Palestinian President played an influential role in persuading Hamas to accept the ceasefire after Israel refused to give in to Hamas demands.

...Hamas, like Israel, must agree to an unlimited ceasefire, and only then would the sides negotiate their demands in Cairo later this month.

  Earlier, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia also lambasted Hamas for attacking Israel and wreaking destruction on the Palestinians of Gaza, saying: 'It is shameful and disgraceful that these terrorists are doing this in the name of Allah, killing the people, whose killing, Allah has forbidden, and being proud of it'. Add to this the refusal of Egyptian President, Abdel Fattah al Sisi, to support the Hamas position, and insisting that Hamas, like Israel, must agree to an unlimited ceasefire, and only then would the sides negotiate their demands in Cairo later this month. The silence of the rest of the moderate Sunni Arab states also indicated what they thought of Hamas.

 

 So, in light of the evidence, and the threat of other radical Islamist organizations, such as Islamic State and the Muslim Brotherhood, Palestinian President Abbas and most Sunni Arab states have pointed an accusing finger at Hamas. And despite the torrent of criticism being heaped on Israel in some quarters, Western leaders know they would have also acted forcefully, if their own people were being attacked by Muslim fanatics (even if they were using their own women and children as human shields).

 

 "Of all the wonders that I yet have heard, It seems to me most strange…" - Shakespeare

 

Open letter published in NYT, signed by 40 Holocaust survivors.

 Amid the diatribes against Israel, the condemnation by those forty Jewish Holocaust survivors in the U.S. is most puzzling of all. Everyone is entitled to express his or her opinion in the New York Times, if it's fit to print, but how come these survivors show no empathy for their fellow Holocaust survivors in Israel, all 193,000 of them, who are also targeted for annihilation by Hamas? And granted, they were 'only' Israeli children who have been under rocket attack for the past fourteen years, but did this not remind them of their own childhoods when they were being hunted down by the Nazis with no one to protect them. Today Holocaust survivors in Israel have a brave Jewish army to defend them? So how come, if Arab leaders in the Middle East are defending Israel, some Holocaust survivors in America are condemning it?

 

How come, if Arab leaders in the Middle East are defending Israel, some Holocaust survivors in America are condemning it?

 True, 1,100 or so innocent Palestinian children, women, and men were killed, and many more were seriously injured in the fifty-day battle, but if the IDF had not taken precautionary steps to avert innocent Palestinian casualties, the numbers would have been enormously higher. (For anyone that is interested in the facts, they can check out the comparable number of civilian casualties resulting from the U.S. and NATO military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan).

 

Jon Stewart

 Jon Stewart's take on the Gaza war is a different story altogether. 'You are what you do', and Stewart is a brilliant comedian who will do just about anything for a laugh - that's what comedians do. Good or bad taste is irrelevant. What was he to do - make jokes about Israeli kids and elderly Holocaust survivors rushing to their bomb shelters? Or of the octogenarian survivors having nightmares in which they relived the threats to their lives, as they did seventy years ago? But is it fair to compare Hamas with Nazis? Well, just look at the Hamas Covenant: "The Day of Judgment will not come until Muslims fight Jews and kill them. Then the Jews will hide behind rocks and trees and the rocks and tree will cry out: 'O' Muslim, there is a Jew hiding behind me, come and kill him'."

 

Shahar was a decorated paratrooper who died of wounds he sustained in the explosion of an IED...

 This should ring an alarm bell for Holocaust survivors everywhere. Does it not recall the ranting in Mein Kampf that was also ignored by most of European Jewry? The Jews of Israel have no intention of making that mistake again. In addition to the forty Holocaust survivors, 287 of their descendants also signed the ad which called for the boycotts, divestments and sanctions (BDS) of the Jewish state. Apparently, some of them were grandchildren of the Holocaust survivors, and of the same age as twenty-year-old IDF Sgt. Shahar Shalev, the sixty-sixth Israeli soldier who fell in Gaza. Alas, Israeli soldiers are trained to defend civilians, not to hide behind them as Hamas does. Shahar was a decorated paratrooper who died of wounds he sustained in the explosion of an IED while searching for Hamas tunnels built under the border, meant for mounting surprise raids on Israeli villages - the goal was to kill and kidnap Israeli civilians, possibly on the Eve of the Jewish New Year, on September 24.

 

Sgt. Shahar Shalev (z"l)

 In Israel, the falling of every soldier is mourned as a personal loss for most citizens in the sense of 'All My Sons'. I do not know of Shahar's family history, but without doubt, the vast majority of Holocaust survivors living in Israel, and I suspect in the U.S. and around the world, are immensely proud of their grandsons who serve in the Israel Defense Forces.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 David Essing

 

 

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