The World’s Misunderstanding of Israel

Imagine 2,000 rockets launched from Mexico showering down on Texas or, better yet, imagine Canada digging cross border tunnels from Vancouver to Seattle to carry out attacks on innocent Americans.  Now imagine what the United States’ response would be.  Would the United States agree to an unconditional ceasefire?  I don’t think so!  The United States is not the only country that has continuously criticized Israel since the start of its offensive (or should I say defensive).  Many countries, such as Turkey, France, England and Bolivia have either been dominated by anti-Semitic protests and have spoken outright and condemned the actions of Israel.


The United States seems to flip flop vis-a-vis its opinion on Israel’s Operation Protective Edge. On the one hand, the United States will argue that it has done everything in its power to put an end to the Middle East conflict that Hamas initiated.  It is true that President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry have tried relentlessly to broker several humanitarian ceasefires over the past couple of weeks, while Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and other terrorist factions have broken ceasefires on every single occasion. Although Kerry and Obama have constantly spoken out against Israel regarding “the rising number of civilian casualties and internally displaced families” in the Gaza Strip, it is important to note that the U.S. was responsible for the deaths of over approximately 12,000 Iraqi civilians each year during the Iraqi war.  If that does not constitute hypocrisy, what does?  Furthermore, very rarely does the United States, or any other nation for that matter, condemn Hamas’ building of tunnels for the sole purpose of carrying out terrorist attacks, and its rocket fire on heavily populated Israeli cities and even its airport.  Not only does the U.S. adamantly suggest a ceasefire, the ceasefire proposed by Kerry was one-sided and favored Hamas, suggesting that Israel uplift the Gaza blockade. What do you think the United States would do if a neighboring country was controlled by a terrorist group whose main objective and goal was to destroy them?  They would feel differently and surely would act in the same way as Israel has.

Israel does not oppress the people of Gaza, nor blatantly target them.  Despite what the world may think, Israel blocks Gaza as a security measure only because it is absolutely necessary.  Even Egypt, which is a Muslim-dominated country, sides with Israel and blocked the Rafah border because it is aware that Hamas will use it as a means of smuggling weapons.  Moreover, Israel is doing everything in its power to reduce the number of civilian casualties in the Gaza Strip.  Israel uses a “knock on the roof approach,” meaning that Israeli soldiers fire a harmless flare at the roof of a building that they are about to strike, in order to give tenants an adequate amount of time to evacuate safely and seek shelter.   But what do the civilians in Gaza do?  They gather up on the roof to create a human shield for the wanted Hamas operative in an attempt to thwart the attack and then, after they die, the world criticizes Israel, asserting that it violated international law by targeting civilians.  It is absolutely ludicrous to insinuate that Israel preys on the Palestinian people when they are warned ahead of time to prevent being the victims of an airstrike.  Israel not only uses mitigates its risks of harming innocent civilians when performing an airstrike, but it also goes out of its way to accommodate the people in Gaza, unlike Hamas who knowingly targets the civilians in Israel more than its army personnel. Meanwhile, Israel is constantly enduring castigation by the international community despite its humanitarian efforts, while Hamas gains sympathy from the world as it targets innocent lives.  According to international law, Israel is under no obligation to warn civilians of incoming airstrikes, but it chooses to do so anyways.  Let the record reflect that Israel has one of the most powerful militaries in the world and has the capability of wiping out the entire Gaza Strip, but refrains from doing so for the simple fact that innocent lives will be lost. In fact, Israel believes that all life is valuable.  Israel led a ground invasion into Gaza which resulted in many IDF soldiers being killed, sacrificing its own soldiers’ lives as to not take away many innocent lives from the Palestinian side.  That is how much Israel values life.  Hamas, on the other hand, deliberately targets heavily populated areas in Israel, seeking to fulfill its mission of taking away innocent Jewish lives.  Hamas’ actions are unacceptable, unwarranted, and completely indefensible.  If Hamas was in Israel’s position, they would kill every single Israeli; there is no doubt about it.  That is why it is imperative that Israel successfully completes its military objectives and not only destroy Hamas infrastructure, but also make sure that Gaza is returned to the supervision of the Palestinian Authority under Fatah’s watch.

Hamas is not the only one who openly condemns Israel’s existence and criticizes Israel to no avail. All across the world, Jewish people have been targeted and attacked, as evidenced by violent protests that have broken out all across Europe and the Americas.  Jewish people are no safer in other countries than they are in Israel.  Where is the humanity in the world?  Just recently, a Belgian doctor refused to treat a Jewish woman for the mere fact that she was Jewish.  When the woman’s son called the doctor to explain that his mother was sick and in need of medical attention, the doctor simply said, “tell your mother to go to Gaza for a few hours and the pain will go away.” Not long after, a shoe storeowner in Antwerp refused to sell a woman a pair of shoes because she was Jewish.  The governments in Europe are not doing much to prevent anti-Semitic attacks.  A group of protesters in Paris attacked a whole congregation of Jews and locked them inside of a synagogue.  The Bolivian government even went so far as to labeling Israel a terrorist state. This is comparable to the events that led up to the Holocaust about seventy years ago.  It is truly frightening to read about these deplorable events taking place around the globe.

The world needs to comprehend that Israel is in a terrible predicament.  Its citizens are being targeted by terrorist factions on a daily basis, and when they defend themselves against the terrorists who make sure that rockets pour down on Israel, they are chastised for putting Palestinian civilians in harm’s way.  The same countries that criticize Israel have to come to the realization that Israel is only doing what any sane nation would do, protect its citizens.  Instead of demonstrating against Israel for legitimately defending itself, which is outright absurd, the entire international community has an obligation to stand up for humanity and protest the use of human shields by Hamas.  The world is giving Hamas, a declared terrorist organization, a license to kill innocent people by shifting the blame on Israel.

About the Author
Alexander Greene is currently a 21 year old full-time student living in New York City, while attending City University of New York, pursuing a B.A. in Political Science.
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