Dienstag, 6. Januar 2009

Stimme aus Israel

Liebe Leser,

in den vergangenen Tagen haben wir uns um Einschätzungen von Freunden aus Palästina und Israel zur Situation im Gaza-Streifen und in Südisrael bemüht. Hier nun ein erster Brief eines Freundes vom 3.1. Die Person ist Mitglied der links-zionistischen Meretz-Partei und seit Jahrzehnten engagierter Aktivist für den Friedensprozess.


Dear Christoph,


you asked me what I think of the present situation here. I know that the present situation is, in my eyes at least, very bad indeed, if you ask me how to get out of it, the answer is I do not know.

You know my political views but I do not hesitate to tell you that when Jamus Oron, the leader of the leftist-zionist Meretz party, on the day of the Israeli air strike, issued a statement supporting the action I fully agreed with it. There is no point, again in my Israeli eyes, to look at a situation as it was on the day of the attack without looking at what led up to it. The so called "cease fire" between Israel and Hamas was about to come to an end. I call it "so called" because during all this time an average of at least eight rockets were fired at Sderot and other towns/villages every day. Towards the end, when Israel was willing to extend the cease fire, Hamas increased the daily dosage and range in the hope of getting better terms, partly unacceptable to Israel. Before that cease fire, ever since the withdrawal of Israel from the Gaza strip eight years ago, the rockets came daily and Israel practically did nothing (neither did the world). And that because there were no mass casualties. "Only" a person killed here or there, some badly injured. I myself often had a bad conscience when I encouraged that policy of restraint. Here I was living in safe Jerusalem abandoning the population in the south to their fate for years. These were not settlers in the occupied areas with whom I have little sympathy. These were Israelis like me. Parts of the population fled, others who could not stayed, had their business and livelyhood ruined and their children growing up with all sorts of problems as a result of living in daily fear and having to hide under the table in school a number of times a week. For eight years.
And all that after the withdrawal, thank the Lord, from the Gaza strip, at no small political cost to the government. The agricultural infrastructure left behind to the World Bank to enable the resettlement of Palestinian refugees was burned by them and the area is used as a base for rocket attacks ever since. The fact that Israel did not act, except for an occasional commando raid, was seen as weakness and resulted in Hamas increasing its demands and the intensity of its attacks.


There are statements claiming that the attack is connected to the oncoming elections. If the government had not taken action perhaps this might have increased the chances of Bibi Nataniahu winning the elections. Would that have been good for the future of the Middle East? Even so I am very much afraid he may come out top. You have no idea what influence the affair of the Israeli soldier (Gilad Shalit), who has been prisoner of Hamas has on public opinion here. Three years without news, three years without the Red Cross or anybody else having any contact with him "and the government (and the world) doing nothing". Unfortunately the majority of Israelis are not members of Merez. It is no crime in a Democratic country for the government to be influenced by public opinion. I did not see that the government, under the
circumstances, had any option but the use of force.
What happened after the first few days is another story. Actually the usual story for which Israel is as much to blame as anybody else and perhaps even more so. This stupid policy of not talking to the other side, not trying any other way than the use of force and not knowing when to stop using force. Even here, I admit, my criticism is more concerned with not talking enough to Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian Authority than with not negotiating with Hamas to whom most of the world was not talking to and talking to them meant weakening the Palestinian Authority.

I was just intercepted by a call telling me that the ground forces have started to enter Gaza. I had hoped this would not happen. With Hamas showing that it had the capability of sending its rockets to Beer Sheva and Ashdod and not hesitating to do so, I am afraid that from an Israel point of view this move was unpreventable. As to the public opinion war, this there is no chance of winning. I appreciated the Prime Minister of Turkey calling the Israeli action a "crime against humanity". Compared with what Turkey has and is been doing to the Kurds in Turkey and ouside its borders, the Gaza action is small beer indeed. No, I am afraid that Hamas "asked" for it. But that does not make the situation in Gaza any less tragic.

I hope I have not disappointed you too much by being such an Israeli patriot. If I like it or not I have to agree that the security of Israel and its inhabitants is the first consideration any government has to take intoaccount. I think that the attack on Gaza was under the circumstances unavoidable. That after that we tend to "overkill" and try not to use political means with the same vigour as we fight, is unfortunately also often true.
Now I can only hope that the ground actions will only be a matter of daysand not drag on once again with even more tragic results…



Kommentare:

Anonym hat gesagt…

Help!

"I call it "so called" because during all this time an average of at least eight rockets were fired at Sderot and other towns/villages every day."

Can anybody verify these numbers? Anybody knows a source?

"Before that cease fire, ever since the withdrawal of Israel from the Gaza strip eight years ago, the rockets came daily and Israel practically did nothing (neither did the world)."

Again: have rockets come daily since the withdrawl?
Has the writer ever heard of the operation summer rain in the summer 2006?

"The agricultural infrastructure left behind to the World Bank to enable the resettlement of Palestinian refugees was burned by them and the area is used as a base for rocket attacks ever since."

Is that true or rather Israeli media propaganda?
As a matter of fact 90% of the greenhouses were handed over to the Palestinian Trade Center (later the Palestinian Economic Development (PED)) after the withdrawl. The greenhouses were supposed to employ 3000 working forces and generate up to 50 million revenues per year.The success depends on the possibility of export. Since Israel prevented the construction of an airport, a shipping port and mostly closed the borders only a tiny amount of the crop yields could be exported. Some numbers: The scheduled 400 truck loads of crop exports were never reached in 2007. The highest amount was 60...

Let me end with two question to the writer:
1) Since the withdrawl less than 20 Israeli civilians have been killed. In the last ten days more than 100 Palestinian civilians have been killed. Are they worth less? Is this a proportionate reaction?
2) Why are international journalists denied access to Gaza despite a ruling of the Israeli supreme court? You´re described as a supporter of peace. What do you do in these extreme days of war against civilians?

Marie-Anne Hollenz hat gesagt…

The Times published an article today about Israel firing phosphorus shells on Gaza. White Phosphorus is a chemical which can burn to the bone!

How can they justify using chemical weapons?

How can they still say they care about Palestinian civilians?

And how can the German Press not talk about it?

Here the Link to the article:
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/middle_east/article5447590.ece

Vergil J. hat gesagt…

@anonym

please read this about proportionate reaction:

http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1230456535626&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

Vergil J. hat gesagt…

@Marie-Anne Hollenz

“These explosions are fantastic looking, and produce a great deal of smoke that blinds the enemy so that our forces can move in,” said one Israeli security expert.

Geneva conventions ban the use of phosphorus as an offensive weapon against civilians, but its use as a smokescreen is not prohibited by international law

politruc hat gesagt…

Quote:
Help!

"I call it "so called" because during all this time an average of at least eight rockets were fired at Sderot and other towns/villages every day."

Can anybody verify these numbers? Anybody knows a source?

Comment:
No. Noone can do this, because it is plain and simply a lie. This demotivated me to read on.

Anonym hat gesagt…

@politruc:

Do you know about a source that has listed the rocket attacks during the truce?

cannon fodder hat gesagt…

Here is a source:

http://www.mfa.gov.il/MFA/Terrorism-+Obstacle+to+Peace/Palestinian+terror+since+2000/Missile+fire+from+Gaza+on+Israeli+civilian+targets+Aug+2007.htm

Anonym hat gesagt…

Thanks cannon fodder!

One of the stats of the Israeli mfa says that less than 4 rockets per month were fired from Gaza until November and not 8 per day as the author of the letter wrote.

politruc hat gesagt…

And this is even a source of the israeli govenement.

Vergil J. hat gesagt…

List of rocket and mortar attacks in Israel in 2008

List of Qassam rocket attacks from 2001 through 2007

Anonym hat gesagt…

What you are talking about?
DEo you hear yourself?
Does it mater how many rockets explode on israeli territory?
4 a month, 8 a week, it is a attack.
How would you feel when even just one Rocket would explode in your country? What would you do?
And Mr. Anonym
"1) Since the withdrawl less than 20 Israeli civilians have been killed. In the last ten days more than 100 Palestinian civilians have been killed."
It is not the fault from the Israelis that the Hamas rockets hit in israeli fields instead in houses.
Which interesst should israel has in Gaza, ecxept to defend?
And what interessts has the Hamas when they attack israel?
Please think on this.

Ruth hat gesagt…

Ihr habt eine ziemliche Klientel an Antisemiten, das ist Euch schon klar? Wie waer's, wenn Ihr dazu mal Stellung beziehen wuerdet?

C.Sydow hat gesagt…

Ich habe auch nach mehrmaligem Lesen keine antisemitischen Kommentare entdecken können.

R. Chatterjee hat gesagt…

liebe ruth,
vielleich magst du uns deine definition von antisemitismus kurz erläutern und uns mit konkreten beispielen aus den kommentaren deine vorwürfe belegen?

Ruth hat gesagt…

R. Chatterjee,

Du hast Recht, in diesem Thread kann ich beim Wiederlesen auch keine antisemitischen Toene entdecken. Ich war ueberempfindlich.

Ich liefere gern die Definiton, wann Kritik an Israel in Antisemitismus uebergeht. Da halte ich mich an Sharanskys drei Ds, Daemonisierung, doppelter Masstag, Delegitimation.

Den doppelten Masstab sehe ich, wenn pal. Angaben akzeptiert werden, aber israelischen Angaben prinzipiell misstraut wird, obwohl der Rekord der Palaestinenser um Laengen schlechter ist.

Heinz hat gesagt…

Jedes Schulkind in Israel lernt, dass das jüdische Volk vor langer, langer Zeit zweimal (jeweils nach einer Tempelzerstörung) aus “Eretz Israel” vertrieben wurde. Doch trotz der Deportationen und dem Leben im Exil hätten die Juden niemals die Hoffnung aufgegeben, in ihr „gelobtes Land” zurückzukehren, was ihnen ja auch nach 2000 Jahren gelungen sei.
Selbst in der Israelischen Unabhängigkeitserkärung wird dieser historische Bezug ausdrücklich erwähnt und er ist ja auch das stärkste Argument des Zionismus, der das Recht der Juden auf die „Heimkehr”, auf den Staat Israel als zentrales Thema seiner intensiven Lobbyarbeit weltweit etabliert hat.
Aber es gibt Historiker, die diesen Mythos nicht nur bezweifeln, sondern auch Studien betrieben haben um ihn zu widerlegen:http://die-welt-der-reichen.over-blog.de/pages/Der_Zionismus_eine_Ideologie_ethnischer_Uberlegenheit-1657087.html