Don’t blame all people in Gaza, but do hold the terrorists to account
I believe I was the first to point out that Chamas firing rockets at cities was a war crime. Three years later, everyone wrote that. I thought there were a couple of more at the pogrom. I researched it and found 15 types!
Each of these forms of war crimes by Hamas has been confirmed.
Instead of bickering if these murderers and rapists are terrorists and not ‘militants’ or ‘resistance/freedom fighters,’ we should clarify they are war criminals, which they are. The world knows those to be evil and revolting.
So, the issue is not violence, barbarism, or terrorism, but war crimes.
Since Chamas terrorists self-identify as Muslims, like ISIS, the Arab World should be told to distance themselves from them, for they put Islam and humanity to shame, to rebuild its dignity and pride, as the Germans largely did, and much of the West, after the WW II, to reject everything Nazi.
What is Proportional or Collateral Damage?
Before we go on to specify different types of war crimes, one thing should be clarified. Military action being ‘proportional’ has nothing to do with ‘getting even fairly’ or revenge. A military strike is disproportional when it aims at a military target but a disproportional number of non-combatants or civil structures are hurt. This excludes targeting civilians and civilian structures, which is beyond disproportional, a war crime. And this excludes mistakes and accidents, which happen especially in a war. Minimizing civil casualties among the enemy goes a long way toward proportionality or appropriate collateral damage. While all death is terrible, especially when caused by humans, there is a difference between an accident and murder.
The current war is not between Hamas and Israel but between humanity and war crimes, including genocide on the Jews. Join the humanity side!
These also are war crimes in an armed conflict not officially declared a war or by combatants who are not regular soldiers sent by a proper State.
What makes the Chamas pogrom even more heinous are the pictures and witness declarations that the mass murderers and rapists did this smiling.
Grouping some crimes together, here they are in no particular order:
During WW II, this was still ‘normal.’ Nazi-Germany bombing Rotterdam and London, the Allies bombing Dresden but not Auschwitz, the US nuking Japan, etc. Only after WW II, a ban on targeting civilians was established.
Purposely firing rockets at cities and villages trying to kill is a war crime.
Israeli governments have countered them, telling the world that no nation would accept missile attacks on its cities without saying it’s a war crime. The world has largely stood by as if this was simply the cost of war.
Invading Jewish villages and cities in Israel from Gaza to kill is a war crime.
Targeting and Destroying Civilian Infrastructure
Purposely firing rockets trying to destroy cities and villages is a war crime. Invading villages to burn them down is a war crime.
While Israel does its very best, while striking the enemy, to limit collateral damage (see above) as much as possible, Hamas does the very opposite by targeting civilians and non-military structures as their aim is genocide.
Using Human Shields
This has several sections.
Hiding between the Gaza population, under hospitals, and in Mosques is a war crime.
Firing rockets from populated areas in Gaza is a war crime.
Stopping the Gaza population from leaving the battlefield is a war crime.
Trying to maximize civilian deaths in Gaza (to ‘prove’ the enemy fights dirty) is a war crime.
In broad daylight, they took hostage soldiers and civilians, dead, wounded, and alive, Israeli and foreigner, Jews and Gentiles, babies, children, young adults, grownups, and the elderly, some demented, which is a war crime.
Captured Chamas terrorists have confessed that Chamas promised for every hostage delivered a house and $ 10,000.
Negotiating hostage release instead of unconditionally and immediately releasing them is not humane but an attempt to exploit a war crime.
Even before their pogrom, Chamas held Israelis hostage dead and alive.
Not Protecting Civilians
War crimes are also to only build shelters for combatants and not the population, and only stock up on water, electricity generators, food, and medicine for combatants, depriving civilians, including the sick and infirm.
Not caring that 20% of all rockets fired at Israel fail and fall still in Gaza, causing much damage, illness, and death (and tallying them as victims of Israeli aggression against the Gazan population) is a war crime.
Torturing Suspected Informants
For years, they have arrested, tortured, and killed Gazans truly or falsely accused of being informants of Israel. This is a war crime.
Producing and Stockpiling Chemical Weapons
Traces on corpses of Hamas terrorists of arsenic and instructions on how to disperse it show they created chemical weapons, which is a war crime.
Using IDF Uniforms
It is a war crime to dress up in enemy fatigue to confuse the enemy and invaded population, which they did, causing much confusion and death.
Stealing Humanitarian Aid from the Population
Hamas has shown total disregard for the interests of the civilians they rule in Gaza, except for their own families. For years and counting, they stole millions and millions of humanitarian aid, which is a war crime.
Mutilations and Torture
On Simchat Torah, they gruesomely mutilated and tortured civilians and were instructed and actually mutilated corpses, especially by beheadings, dismembering, removing organs like heart and liver, which are war crimes.
Rape, Sexual Slavery
They raped women and kids, dead and alive, and took and paraded young women bleeding from their crotches through Gaza, which are war crimes.
Training Children Under Fifteen as Combatants
They have trained their infants from the cradle to the warped ideal to kill Jews and happily die a martyr doing so. This is a war crime. This may be such a widespread war crime among Muslim populations around (but not in) Israel that these populations might be as not innocent, as the German People, that was complicit in its broad support of Hitler until his death.
Plundering and Pillaging
After the first wave of 1,500 killers, a second wave of 1,000 non-combatants entered the site of the massacre to plunder. They stole anything they could carry, from credit cards to televisions, which is a war crime. Some of them also have committed some of the other war crimes.
There are many reports that Chamas terrorists killed people while they were tending to the wounded, which is a war crime.
The deeper ‘ideal’ of the pogrom was to help exterminate the Jewish People. They never made any secret about that. Genocide is a war crime.
War is always ugly, but war too has rules. What proper, beneficial surgery, despite all the bloodshed, is to murder, war is to war crimes.
For the record and comparison, the State of Israel has not committed one real case (let alone type) of war crimes in this war (yet), call me partial. The only mistake Israeli leaders made was they didn’t see it coming.
See also my blog post Worse than the Nazis.
Many current, false charges against Israel and Jews make sense since they are meant to drown out the factual Chamas war crimes.
All who breached the security fence on October 7 (or tried to evade it by sea) are collectively guilty of the war crimes. Yet, estimates are that 1,500 armed men and 1,000 non-combatants did so, leaving 1,400 dead and 4,500 maimed. There are reports of individuals murdering a dozen or more people, especially at the music festival. Simple math shows that, on average, each killed less than 1 person, showing that many didn’t dare to murder any. Some are as guilty for driving pickup trucks with six men with machine guns mowing down revelers. But it can be assumed that, even after all the preparations, many were too scared to kill at the pogrom.
Since the UN is hostile to Israel and its International Criminal Court even more so, Israel, with other democracies and countries interested, should set a trial comparable to the Nuremberg Trials to determine for posterity what happened on October 7, 2023, even when most perpetrators will be dead by then. It will be proper to have museums around the world, and especially in the Arab world, to document what crimes were committed. May this help the Arab World to feel the shame and indignation that was felt in the West after Nuremberg, to create a safer world for everyone.
Actually documenting the many instances of many of these crimes goes beyond this blog post. Most of my hyperlinks focus on the latest news.