Michael Jackson

Guiltless in Gaza   

Are there guiltless folk in Gaza?  We search for the guiltless Gazans among the living and the dead (currently 34,000 and increasing inexorably).

Some Israelis and their American Jewish rightist choir (mainly Orthodox) have stated that all Gazans are guilty.  Were all Israelis and non-Israelis murdered and taken hostage on October 7th guiltless?  Guilty Gazans and innocent Israelis;  fine alliteratively, but unreal morally.   If you regard a 1-year-old Gazan toddler as guilty then you are a racist, an immoralist, and a bigot. We can safely say all under 8-year-old Gazans are also innocent (we could raise the age of 8 by a few years, but let’s start there).  Conservatively, at least 5,000 under-8-year-olds guiltless Gazans have been killed.

Now let’s consider the guilty in Gaza.  Those guilty whole or part for the October 7th atrocity and previous terrorist acts.  For starters, the 3,000 plus invaders on October 7th are guilty, whether or not an individual invader murdered, raped, or took hostages.  Equally, all who aided them in Gaza in planning and organizing the invasion and atrocities are also guilty.  Since Hamas is an organization with murderous intent towards Jews, all members of Hamas are guilty.  Some non-Hamas members employed by Hamas in building tunnels and working on military infrastructure and weaponry are also guilty.  Hamas employed lawyers, doctors, mail people, teachers, nurses, traffic engineers, clerks, and many others in civilian operations to maintain the urban environment of Gaza.  Are they guilty or guiltless?  I believe most of them are guiltless.  Given the unemployment levels in Gaza, most women ages 25 to 40 are unemployed mothers and can bear no responsibility for the actions on October 7th.  Men over 60, aside from ex-Hamas operatives, would also fall into the guiltless category.

Given the extremely young age pyramid in Gaza, 35% of Gazans are under 14.  Half the rest are women, another 33% of the total population.  Adding in elderly men, and other men not part of nor involved in Hamas, well over 75% of Gaza’s inhabitants are guiltless.  But being guiltless in Gaza gives no immunity as 22,000-plus guiltless dead silently testify.

Israel is tracking, chasing, hunting, and killing the guilty, perhaps 12,000 Hamas fighters so far.  Israel can never kill or capture all of them.  The horror, suffering, starvation, fear, and displacement of tens of thousands of younger Gazans will amply replenish the ranks of the Gazan guilty,

Meanwhile, some West Bank settlers are pogromists who act with blanket immunity against the local Arab population.  The current Israeli government, which includes some fascistic, racist ministers, endorses the concept of innocent Israelis and guilty Gazans.  The world rightly rejects this hypocrisy.  Sadly, Israel has morally lowered itself by embracing settler expansionist ideology, overt racism, and flagrant discrimination as its core policies.

The title was lightly appropriated from Aldous Huxley’s 1936 novel “Eyeless in Gaza”.  Apologies to Aldous.

About the Author
Born in London in 1949. Studied Maths at Warwick University. Came to Israel (WUJS program at Arad) in 1971. I became a citizen and served in the army in 1973. Returned to the UK in 1974. Worked in Information Systems. Married an American Orthodox woman in 1977 and moved to America. For a few years I have led a retiree philosophy class.