Assault on Gaza Border

On April 27, hundreds of Palestinians, urged on by a Hamas leader, mounted a coordinated assault on a security barrier at Gaza City and tried to cross into Israel. Dozens made it through, using wire cutters, hooks and winches. The assailants who breached the fence threw firebombs and rolled burning tires at the fence to try to melt it. Some carried pistols. After a massive barrage of tear gas did not deter many attackers, Israeli troops responded with rubber bullets and live ammunition, killing three people and wounding others.

The Palestinians who staged this assault are no mere protesters. They are potential infiltrators who declare Israel has no right to exist. Their March of Return is intended to abolish the Jewish state, expel all Jews from Israel, replace Jews with Palestinians as the rightful residents, and rename the land Palestine.

Israel respectfully disagrees. Israelis selfishly affirm their right to live in their Jewish state. When verbal and written warnings fail to deter assaults on their borders, the Israelis defend them with every means at their disposal. How many other nations behave differently? How many other nations have to defend their right to exist?

Where were the courageous leaders of Hamas during this synchronized assault which they encouraged? Were they at the front of the violent crowd leading the onslaught? No, they were far away, safely hidden, as they urged their followers to vainly sacrifice their lives to be mourned as martyrs.

About the Author
Ted Sheskin is a professor emeritus of industrial engineering at Cleveland State University, and the author of a textbook, Markov Chains and Decision Processes for Engineers and Managers. He has published peer-reviewed papers on engineering systems and mathematical algorithms. His letters to editors addressing politics, economic policy, and issues facing Israel and American Jews have appeared in the NY Times, Daily News, Cleveland Plain Dealer, Cleveland Jewish News, Jewish Week, the Forward, and Jewish Voice.
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