They accelerated after Hamas took power in , increasing dramatically in when Israel and the Palestinian Authority resolved to renew negotiations toward a two-state solution. For the sake of justice and peace, the world must stop applying a double standard to the nation-state of the Jewish people. In contrast, the United Nations Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict decided that Hamas was not guilty of deliberately and willfully using the civilian population as human shields. Following the tunnel attack and kidnapping, Israel attacked terrorist targets in Gaza and closed the Rafah Crossing. They had been identified by the large amounts of earth being removed to dig them. Even if it was an exaggeration, the tunnels certainly provided Hamas with the capability of wreaking havoc on Israeli citizens. Instead, it is fanatically committed to the destruction of Israel itself, a goal it pursues using weapons and funding it receives from the Islamic Republic of Iran, for which Hamas acts as a proxy and whose ambitions of regional domination it serves.
In contrast, the United Nations Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict decided that Hamas was not guilty of deliberately and willfully using the civilian population as human shields. And I would expect Israelis to do the same. At that point it would be too late to prevent the death squads from doing their damage. Indeed, the United States is now leading a coalition of nations in an effort to destroy ISIS, employing many of the same military tactics for which some of these nations blamed Israel. Hamas encourages this result, because it knows the media will focus more on the photographs of dead babies than on the cause of their death: Israelis and Palestinians have the same right to live in peace. Hamas and other organizations merely used the lull to rearm, however. As soon as I went down into the tunnel, I realized that Israel would have no choice but to take military action to destroy them. Hamas attacks Israel either by rockets or through tunnels, thereby forcing Israel to respond, as any democracy would do, to protect its citizens. In June of , presidential candidate Barak Obama visited Sderot, and after viewing the rocket residues and meeting with residents, this is what he said: I discussed these issues with Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu at a dinner in his home several days after my visit to the tunnel, and it became clear that the Israeli government had been concerned about the security threats posed by these terror tunnels ever since the tunnels were used to kidnap the young soldier Gilad Shalit and kill two of his compatriots. This only encourages Hamas to repeat its dead baby strategy following short cease-fires, during which they rearm and regroup. This criminal objective was explicitly decided upon by the highest levels of the Israeli government and military, and constitutes a deliberate and willful war crime. As one resident of Sderot put it: That decision, in turn, prompted the Quartet, and Israel, to cut off financial assistance to the Palestinian Authority, though Israel continued to supply electricity and water to Gaza. What Would the United States Do? And if it is indeed winning these wars—if its dead baby strategy is working—why not repeat it every few years? Even if it was an exaggeration, the tunnels certainly provided Hamas with the capability of wreaking havoc on Israeli citizens. Hamas quickly resumed its attacks. They continued even after Israel pulled its army and its settlements out of Gaza in Hamas and its fellow terror organizations deny that right, and disrupt every attempt to move the peace process forward. The first rocket attacks began in October , precisely when the world was most eager to create a viable Palestinian state. In December , Hamas unilaterally declared that it would resume its attacks with full force—and it promptly did so, forcing Israel to respond with Operation Cast Lead in late December of More than two thousand rockets and mortars were launched from Gaza into Israel in the first six months of But the two main Palestinian factions—Fatah, which controlled the executive, and Hamas, which controlled the legislature—began fighting openly with each other. The agreement was part of an effort to encourage trade and economic development in Gaza, and to increase the responsibilities of the Palestinian government for the welfare of the Palestinian people.
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