Saturday, May 19, 2018

Don't be fooled by Hamas

From the JC, 17 May 2018, by Richard Kemp*:

...Those who claim the IDF should have acted differently are ignorant or malign — or both
The IDF patrolling the Israeli side of the border with Gaza on Monday (Photo: Getty)
The IDF patrolling the Israeli side of the border with Gaza on Monday (Photo: Getty)

It’s hard for people in Britain and Europe to understand what has been happening on the Gaza border. Most can recognise rockets fired at civilian communities and attack tunnels dug into kibbutzim for mass murder as acts of war by Hamas terrorists — even those whose default setting is to blame the Jewish state.

But Hamas has succeeded in portraying their latest aggression against Israel as peaceful demonstrations in support of a so-called ‘right of return’ and the world has been horrified by what they’ve been told is an Israeli massacre of innocents.

Don’t be fooled. Like the rockets and the tunnels, these mobs — including armed terrorists — have been mobilised by Hamas for one purpose: to force the IDF to respond with lethal force, killing as many Palestinians as possible.

The reason? To bring down upon the State of Israel international outrage, condemnation and isolation — exactly the same as in the last three Gaza conflicts.

Those who claim the IDF should have acted differently are ignorant or malign — or both.

This week I was on the border with IDF commanders, snipers and observers. As the British Army would in such circumstances, they used graduated force, including non-lethal weapons, and only as a last resort opened fire.

I was a soldier for 30 years, commanding troops in combat zones around the world. Watching the IDF in action I dug deep into my military knowledge and experience to find another answer to the horrific challenge they faced.

There isn’t one that would work.

And none of the politicians or armchair experts in human rights groups, the UN, EU or the media have come up with any viable solution despite their vehement criticism from air conditioned offices of the men facing the heat on the front line thousands of miles away.

The Hamas-organised crowds were hell-bent on breaking through the border fence. Had the IDF allowed the fence to be breached, they would have surged through in their thousands. Using their Google maps showing routes from the border, they would have dashed for pre-designated villages, intent on mass slaughter.

Yes, the IDF would have stopped them — but to do so they would have had to kill many times more than have been killed already.

The Jewish community in Britain must not succumb to the hysteria demanded by Hamas and stoked by a predominantly anti-Israel media which has the world howling in outrage as the Gaza terrorists again and again jerk the strings.

Of course, we can only be horrified by the heart-breaking death toll on the Gaza border in the last six weeks and especially on Monday. But those of us who remain sober know this has been directly caused by Hamas and their Iranian paymasters.

At the Gaza border, I met five officers and four soldiers from North London. With their brothers in arms from Israel and around the world, these young people were risking death every minute of the day to stand between innocent men, women and children in villages like Nahal Oz and the bloodthirsty hordes desperate to butcher them.

These fine, courageous soldiers are your brothers and sisters, sons and daughters. They would no more indulge in an orgy of unnecessary killing than you or I would. Do not believe the lies that are told about them.

There is another reason you must stick up for them and the Jewish state in this dark hour. Those who falsely condemn Israel play into Hamas’s hands, fuel their terrorism, encourage their use of human shields and contribute to the death and bloodshed.

Standing up for the IDF is also standing up for innocent Palestinian civilians so betrayed, exploited and sacrificed by their leaders.

If the Jews won’t find the courage to do that, who will?

*Retired colonel Richard Kemp commanded British armed forces in Northern Ireland, Iraq, Afghanistan and the Balkans.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Hamas Incited Riots Leave Dozens Dead in Deadliest Day in Gaza Since 2014

From The Israel Project, 15 May 2018:

Over 50,000 Gazans participated in Hamas-led riots along the Israeli-Gaza border on Monday. In the chaos of events, and in response to blatant violations of Israel’s sovereignty, Israel was forced to defend her border, resulting in the deaths of dozens of Palestinian rioters. The death toll rose to 60 overnight, of which 24 so far have been confirmed as members of known terrorist organizations.
It was the deadliest day since the start of the weeks-long Palestinian riots and coincided with the inauguration of the new U.S. embassy in Jerusalem.
During the riots, which took place on 13 different locations along the border, rioters hurled firebombs and stones at Israeli troops, set hundreds of tires ablaze, and tried to carry out bombing and shooting attacks under the cover of the riots. The Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) released videos and images showing rioters setting fire to the border fence, shooting at soldiers, and trying to breach the fence to infiltrate into Israeli territory.
Israel was bracing for a second day of violent riots as Palestinians commemorate “Nakba Day” to mark the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948. Riots, however, dwindled down on Tuesday with only 4,000 participants gathering at the border.
The full responsibility for the deaths that occurred lies solely with Hamas, the terrorist group which exercises complete control over the Gaza Strip.
At an emergency meeting at the U.N. on Tuesday, U.S. ambassador Nikki Haley said the riots at the border had nothing to do with inauguration of the new U.S. embassy in Jerusalem: 
“...the violence comes from those who reject the existence of the state of Israel in any location,” Haley said.
Joshua S. Block, CEO and President of the Israel Project said: 
“Hamas is a cynical, murderous terror organization, bent on Israel's complete annihilation at the expense of their own civilian population. Hamas leaders are inciting the population – which deserves clean water, adequate health care, plenty of electrical energy, and a bright future – against the IDF and gets them killed.” He added: “True peace is only possible if the Palestinian leadership cedes, once and for all, its incitement and support for terrorism.”
Hamas sees the riots as an opportunity to deflect from its crushing failures in Gaza and redirect anger within the coastal enclave towards the border with Israel.
White House Backs Israel’s Response to Gaza Riots, Blames Violence on Hamas
The White House has blamed Hamas, the terrorist organization that exercises complete political and military control over the Gaza Strip, for the deadly clashes along the Israeli-Gaza border on Monday, The Times of Israel reported.
The Trump administration fully backed Israel’s response to the riots, describing the deaths of 52 Palestinian rioters as “tragic”, but said that, ultimately, the responsibility lies with Hamas
White House Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah speaks during the daily press briefing at the White House, on May 14, 2018. (AFP Photo/Saul Loeb)
White House Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah speaks during the daily press briefing at the White House, on May 14, 2018. (AFP Photo/Saul Loeb)
“We’re aware of the reports of continued violence in Gaza today. The responsibility for these tragic deaths rests squarely with Hamas,” said Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah.
“Hamas is intentionally and cynically provoking this response and, as the secretary of state said, Israel has the right to defend itself...” he added...
Jason Greenblatt, the White House’s lead negotiatorwrote in an op-ed published in The Jerusalem Post on Sunday that 
“Hamas continues to exploit protests to foment violence against Israel... Hamas has managed to bring the people of Gaza, a people with a proud history and great potential, nearly back to the Stone Age... What an embarrassment, what a desolation, what a failure.”
Greenblatt called on the international community to “get real about this – Hamas, and its enablers, such as Iran, are squarely to blame for the desperate situation in Gaza. Hamas has consistently put its own destructive priorities above those of Gaza’s weary and increasingly desperate population.” ...
Follow this link to the Times of Israel, 15 May 2018, to read the full report.