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Why should I love Hamas? Israel's enemies have plumbed the depths of evil

Daniel Leal/AFP/Getty

Daniel Leal/AFP/Getty


October 11, 2023   4 mins

“Love your enemies,” a holy Jew said, a long time ago. But I am not sure I am quite ready for that. Not today at least. I am neither Jewish nor Israeli, but my wife is both, as are my two small boys. They all have Israeli citizenship. And explaining to my little ones what is happening over in their other home has felt so important, and yet completely impossible.

Why is granny hiding in a bomb shelter? Why do they want to murder people like us? I want to protect them from all of this and just let them play with their PokĂ©mon cards. But children have an instinctive knowledge that something is not right. And their questions keep on piling up. For today, my love is reserved for creating a loving bubble around my family. Making tea, piano practice, keeping the house tidy, sharing cuddles. I don’t even like them leaving the house at the moment.

I tried to say a few words about what is happening in Israel at church on Sunday. I thought I would be ok to just ask people for their prayers. I speak in front of my parishioners all the time. But I underestimated the distress I was suppressing. I had, foolishly, spent too long scrolling through social media in search of information. And so I have seen things that cannot be unseen. The fear in the eyes of those who have been taken, the wild hatred of those parading the semi-naked bodies of murdered young people, their twisted limbs. When I stood up to speak, the words wouldn’t come. The simple mechanics of speech abandoned me. Only dumb tears.

And for today at least, I have no time for those who want to “both sides” the situation. This was a massacre, hideously reminiscent of the Shoah. They beheaded children. I do not want to hear those whose first sentence expresses condolences, and whose second sentence begins with a “But”. Nor do I want to hear your little pet theories about the politics of the Middle East, not when the world outside feels such a threatening place for my family. As Amos Oz explained in his excellent book, How to Cure a Fanatic, Arabs and Jews typically understand each other far better than we Europeans understand either of them. Cost-free wisdom from Western liberals is so often pathetically ill-informed and bathing in self-righteousness. Look at those riding their cars up and down the Edgware Road, beeping their horns in delight, Palestinians flags flying from their windows. And those B-list academics who preach decolonisation and celebrate the slaughter of innocents as some sort of noble justifiable resistance. Little wonder London’s Jewish Free School has just made the wearing of their school blazer optional for students on the way to and from school. Those who have created a culture where all this is deemed acceptable have lost any sort of contact with moral reality.

I’m not sure I have even got properly angry yet, though this will inevitably follow. Not just anger, but blazing fury. Then I will have to reckon with those impossible words: “Love your enemy.” Then I will need most to remind myself of the humanity of those who want to do my children harm. Yes, that they have children too. And that their children are now under the most enormous threat.

It was 19 years ago last week, that I first visited Gaza. We went to a primary school in Khan Yunis, right at the southern end of the Gaza Strip. Before lessons, the children had to throw balls at the wall to expend all their frustration. Without that, they were unable to concentrate on their lessons. As the children were showing me where their houses used to be, houses which had been demolished by Israeli bulldozers, a machine gun from the border emptied its load in our direction. Bullets kicked up dust all around us. Children of seven and eight — the same age as my boy — ran behind a wall like they’d done it before.

I remember we played football and ate ice cream. And I tried to recall some of their faces and I will need to think of them when my own anger wells up within me. They would be in their late 20s now, of course. It was a disturbing thought, inviting a depressing conjecture: perhaps some of them were now in Hamas; perhaps some broke through the border on Saturday, going house to house, murdering Israelis. Or perhaps some of them never made it to adulthood.

The situation is, of course, now going to get so much worse. And so, not only do I find “love your enemies” hard to conjure, but I find hope even harder. I’m not much of a Christian, I know. Surely a ground war is coming, with soldiers venturing into the most dangerous of places to try and rescue terrified captives who are now tied up in cellars, subject to the Isis-like cruelty of their captors. There will be those who will inevitably cast this response as revenge. But retrieving prisoners from the depths of such a desperate evil is the only thing that the Israeli army can possibly do. Those who try to draw some sort of moral equivalence between a rescue mission and the deliberate and gleeful murder of the innocent have totally lost their moral bearings. They have become the useful idiots of rapists and murderers. So for now, the only words of hope I have to stand alongside are those from the Israeli National Anthem, Hatikvah. “Our hope is not yet lost. It is 2,000 years old. To be a people free in our land.”

I pray that captives will be found and released — prayers being the only thing available to some of us. What good will they do, asks the sceptic? Even that question misunderstands how prayer works. Prayer is my category for the most important of things that I cannot and do not know how to solve. Like tears, it is a bubbling up of something impossible to silence. It’s not a way of getting something done in the world; I’m not escalating stuff to the almighty. And anyway, He and I are going to have words when this is over. I have more than a few questions — and in the silence of my prayers, they won’t be gently put. But neither can I get through all of this without Him.


Giles Fraser is a journalist, broadcaster and Vicar of St Anne’s, Kew.

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Ian Baugh
Ian Baugh
9 months ago

I don’t know how to thank Giles for attempting to express what’s surely intolerable for all of us but personal to him and his family.

RM Parker
RM Parker
9 months ago
Reply to  Ian Baugh

Well said. My thanks and, for what little they’re worth, my best wishes to you and your family, Giles.

Michael Smith
Michael Smith
9 months ago
Reply to  Ian Baugh

Agreed. Well worth my subscription. (How awful that sounds now I’ve written it.)

Gayle Rosenthal
Gayle Rosenthal
9 months ago
Reply to  Ian Baugh

Actually, “love your neighbor” is a Christian thing. Jews say “v’ahavta l’reaha kamocha” – love your friend as yourself. It’s not likely Jesus actually said that. Christians in an effort to supercede and distinguish themselves from Jews massaged the Torah into their version of scripture. When it comes to enemies,… Amalek …. Jews are enjoined to wipe the memory off the earth.
Yes Jews do understand Arabs and Muslims better than Christians do because Christians are hamstrung with their own faith culture. Muslims are trapped in hatred of the kafir, and Christians are trapped in the injunction to forgive. It’s too bad that Christianity and Islam both took derivative pathways. If Judaism were the predominate religion in the world, it would be a far better place, not because Jews are better, but because their framework for operating in the world is far healthier.
What Israel needs to do now is focus on justice. Treat the Gazan men like the Shechemites and put the women and children on boats to Iran. The entire place is poisoned. Kill Hamas and exile the rest of them. The whole place put Hamas in power. They are all guilty.

Andrew D
Andrew D
9 months ago

Collective guilt eh? I would have thought that had awkward historical resonances for Jewish people

Mark Kennedy
Mark Kennedy
9 months ago
Reply to  Andrew D

My reaction echoes yours. The principle underlying the verdicts delivered in the war crimes trials at Nuremberg was unambiguous: the notion of collective guilt or innocence is incoherent: each individual is responsible for making his/her own ethical way in the world, and this responsibility can’t be delegated to one’s neighbours, the law, or the state.

james elliott
james elliott
9 months ago
Reply to  Andrew D

The ‘Palestinians’ elected Hamas, they sustain them in power – and most of them indulged in wild celebrations over this.

So, yes, they need to be removed – and every single member of Hamas needs to be dead.

Jeremy Bray
Jeremy Bray
9 months ago
Reply to  james elliott

I think it is more accurate to say a majority of Palestinians from Gaza elected Hamas in the hope that they might be more successful in alleviating the daily frustrations of life in Gaza and they have sustained their power by ruthless suppression of any dissent.

Of course many of them will have foolishly celebrated a blow against those they regard as their Israeli oppressors. In seeing the slaughter and capture of Israeli civilians they will remember the more technologically efficient slaughter of their own relatives and children by the Israeli army. Would they not be human not to feel some satisfaction that the killers of their own children and parents will suffer grief in return. Not a noble or wise sentiment but a human sentiment not one of “animals” as some Israelis have it.

Moreover, those who do not share the sentiment and can see that the slaughter of Israelis will bring only further devastation to their own community again will scarcely be likely to voice their thought in public and oppose the ruthlessness of Hamas risking a more targeted response than Israel can achieve.

Collective punishment was the tactic of the German occupation forces in WW2 and has been widely condemned. When the IRA slaughtered the innocent and caused many in Northern Ireland to feel unsafe would we have achieved a better outcome by flattening Catholic areas and hunting down and seeking to kill IRA members and their families because of widespread Catholic support for the cause of the IRA?

Carlos Danger
Carlos Danger
9 months ago
Reply to  Jeremy Bray

Isn’t this rather like a teenage boy who has been bullied at school and takes up a gun to slaughter children and teachers in the school?
Israelis have their faults. but they seek to live in peace with the Palestinians. Their excesses come in defense, not aggression. Or in the case of their illegal settlements, in greed and hubris.
The Gazas, and especially Hamas, do not. And nothing is an excuse for the crimes against humanity that they committed last week. They were deliberately barbaric, and must be condemned for their terrorism.

Charles Hedges
Charles Hedges
8 months ago
Reply to  Jeremy Bray

From 1951 to 2016 The Palestinians have killed or alienated fellow Arabs who have helped their cause: from killing King Abdullah in 1951 to be so corrupt and incompetent, the Saudis withdrdrew their funding.
Perhaps it is time the Palestinians asked the question why arab countries have withdrawn their support.

Fiona Hook
Fiona Hook
8 months ago
Reply to  Charles Hedges

And why no one wants them as refugees?

Samuel Ross
Samuel Ross
9 months ago
Reply to  Andrew D

Who supports terrorists is a terrorist. The man who shelters the killer is no better than he.

Alan Osband
Alan Osband
9 months ago
Reply to  Samuel Ross

In the case of Menachem Begin the Israelis made a terrorist their Prime Minister . Does that make all Israelis terrorists ?

Md. Rashidul Islam Rusel
Md. Rashidul Islam Rusel
9 months ago
Reply to  Samuel Ross

By the same logic, the people who have fun in the form of a music festival in an occupied land should also be considered occupiers, not innocent civilians anymore. Right?

Last edited 9 months ago by Md. Rashidul Islam Rusel
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
9 months ago

You sound like a member of Hamas

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
9 months ago

???

Loco Parentis
Loco Parentis
9 months ago

“If Judaism were the predominate religion in the world, it would be a far better place, not because Jews are better, but because their framework for operating in the world is far healthier.”
ï»żWay to make friends with everyone out there!

Tony Buck
Tony Buck
9 months ago

“Love your neighbor” is Jewish (Leviticus 19:18). I think you’re referring to Jesus’s command “Love your enemies”

And it’s stone-cold certain that Jesus DID say it, since it’s the pivot of all His preaching and example.

Judaism is by its very nature the religion of just one ethnos. Thus incapable of effective missionary work.

In any case, it was (in human terms) the Jews who started off all this God business ! They can hardly disown Christianity or Islam. And in brute practical terms, must choose to support one or the other.

There is a universally accepted difference between Justice and Revenge. The former will help Israel, the latter will worsen its plight; and probably lead to a world war in which Jews will be prominent among the casualties.

Your plan for Justice looks very much like Revenge.

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
9 months ago

“If Judaism were the predominate religion in the world”
I know it’s a difficult truth to accept after recent events and given the centuries of oppression, not to forget WW2….
But you forget that the Jews themselves were the original fundamentalist jihadis, in a pre Christian / islamic world where wars were common but persecution based on religion, or because someone else followed some other book, was practically unknown (at least relative to modern standards).

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
9 months ago

The whole of Israel has elected politicians whose policies have contributed to the situation the Palestinians are angry with, therefore does this collective guilt also apply to those Israelis recently murdered? I’d have thought collective guilt and punishment would be a sore spot for the Jews, especially after the events of the Second World War?

Bret Larson
Bret Larson
9 months ago

I think the idea is to love your enemies so that hate doesn’t grow inside of you. So that you can be who you are and are not just the residual of what people have done to you. That doesn’t mean I’d think twice about putting down a rabid dog, but I wouldn’t do it by justifying it in a manner that harms who I want to be.

Last edited 9 months ago by Bret Larson
Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Bret Larson

What does a rabid dog have to do with anything?

Bret Larson
Bret Larson
9 months ago
Reply to  Clare Knight

If I were to psychoanalysis myself I think it might have to do with when my brother was attacked by a rabid dog in Egypt. Really I just mean applying good neighbour fences to people in my life.

Stevie K
Stevie K
9 months ago
Reply to  Bret Larson

Thank you for pointing out that important distinction. Very beautifully and powerfully expressed.

Martin Tuite
Martin Tuite
9 months ago

Many Muslims admire Hitler. So it’s no surprise that Hamas acts like the SS. More than 100,000 Muslims fought in the European division of the Waffen-SS.Hasan al-Banna, the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood admired the Nazis, and during the war he worked to establish a formal alliance with Hitler and Mussolini.
During World War II, members of the Muslim Brotherhood fought for Hitler as Nazi troops in two specially formed Muslim Waffen-SS divisions.
In 1987 the Muslim Brotherhood in Israel created Hamas, whose members still use the Nazi salute and read Hitler’s Mein Kampf, which the Muslim Brotherhood had re-titled, My Jihad, and translated into Arabic in the 1930s (Mein Kampf remains a best-seller in the Muslim world).
Hamas does not recognize Israel’s right to exist and has the goal of destroying Israel through Jihad. The 1988 Hamas Charter states “Islam will obliterate Israel”.
The present aim of Hamas is two-fold, to drive Israel “from the river into the sea”, and to spark-off a world war between Muslim nations and democratic Western ones, primarily the USA.
Senior Hamas official Mahmoud Al-Zahar said on Al-Masirah TV last December: “This (conflict) is not about land, not just Palestine. “The entire planet will be under our law, there will be no more Jews or Christian traitors.”
And in 2008 Younis Astal, Hamas, MP stated: “Soon, Allah willing, Rome will be conquered, like Constantinople was conquered, according to the prophecy of our prophet Muhammad. Their capital will be the first post of the Islamic conquests that will spread all over Europe then it will turn to the two Americas and even to Eastern Europe.” 
 
 

james elliott
james elliott
9 months ago

Agreed.

Michael Cavanaugh
Michael Cavanaugh
9 months ago

“They are all guilty.” Well, no. Guilty of putting Hamas in power; guilty of beheading children. Not the same thing. But Israel has to hit back; and since it must be nearly impossible to single out and apprehend the ones who actually beheaded children, undiscriminating ethnic cleansing of the sort advocated here is bound to occur. (By the way why just the men but not the women?)

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago

Plus Jews belive that life begins at birth so they’ve got my vote.

M. Jamieson
M. Jamieson
9 months ago
Reply to  Clare Knight

I doubt that, it’s scientifically illiterate.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  M. Jamieson

You doubt what?

Judy Johnson
Judy Johnson
9 months ago

Gayle, Christianity is Jewish.

Walter Schwager
Walter Schwager
8 months ago

Don’t be stupid – do you want to put a million women and boats to Iran? What have you been smoking?

Mark M Breza
Mark M Breza
9 months ago
Reply to  Ian Baugh

Sure let’s kill all the bad people in the world .
Great solution ?

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
9 months ago

Not even one day. The haters couldn’t even wait one day to march down the streets, carrying flags and shouting worn out slogans. They couldn’t let go of the petty politics for even 24 hours, to respect those who have suffered one of the greatest indignities in decades. There is something seriously wrong with these people.

Andrew H
Andrew H
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

Well said, Jim. It’s sickening.

Mike Downing
Mike Downing
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

I agree.

Maybe the ‘West’s ‘ vision of the Orient as lascivious and barbaric, lambasted by Edward Said, like all stereotypes, was founded on at least a partial truth.

The moral duplicity of the ‘moral equivalence’ brigade, the BBC (they’re militants not terrorists dontchaknow) and even a self-deprecating ‘friendly leftie’ like dear old Yannis Varoufakis is truly sickening.

Why is it, I wonder, after seeing years of this, that the ‘liberation movements’ beloved by the left and the young generally, always end up being criminal organisations far worse than the ‘corrupt, colonial yada yada’ that they were set up to replace ? Still cheered on by the well-meaning useful idiots in the West ?

But then I was a lefty once, so maybe I should hang my head in shame.

Claire D
Claire D
9 months ago
Reply to  Mike Downing

There’s the youthful, idealistic, ignorant leftiness is’nt there ? which perhaps many of us went through, but the mature adult, moral relative kind, there is no excuse for that at such a time as this, if ever.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
9 months ago
Reply to  Mike Downing

Would you say that applied to the French Resistance as well? ..or are we being selective? How about Polish Resistance? Russian? American Resistance? Indian Resistance? Congo Resistance? Kenyan? South African? Cuban? Chinese? Vietnamese? ..oh wait, Afghan Resistance.. yep, you got me on that one!

Caty Gonzales
Caty Gonzales
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Repulsive. Have you no shame?

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
9 months ago
Reply to  Caty Gonzales

I am as appalled as you by these scenes over the past days.
But just like it’s shameless and repulsive to try and blame Israel or excuse Hamas for these crimes against humanity, it is also repulsive to use the attacks to justify racist tropes such as “vision of the Orient as lascivious and barbaric”.

There is an issue about the barbarism of certain middle Eastern countries and that one religion, agreed.
But when Western Christian countries were oppressing Jews for centuries, there were also large settlements of Jews who were tolerated, given religious freedom, and never ever persecuted…..in India.

Even today, it’s in the “civilised” West, not the “Orient”, where so many politicians, media, universities are struggling to unequivocally condemn these attacks.

Its like the so called “Asian” gangs.
If you don’t have the guts to call out the “religion of peace”, then don’t badmouth all “Asians” or “Orientals” to cover up your cowardice

Mark Turner
Mark Turner
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Jesus, cant you just piss off?

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Mark Turner

Oh, I thought for a moment you were telling Jesus to piss off! I was going to up tick you.

Warren Trees
Warren Trees
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

One very big difference. Resistance to a ruling government is one thing. Beheading children, raping women in public and murdering families in their homes, all completely innocent, is another thing completely. If anyone fails to understand the difference, I have no more words to offer.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
9 months ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

Is it any real difference between families being shot in their homes, or being killed by bombs dropped on their homes from above? This attack by Hamas was disgusting, however I’ll wager there will be many more dead Palestinian civilians by the end of hostilities than Israeli ones. So does the Israeli government deserve the same level of criticism for their policy of collective punishment?

Brendan O'Leary
Brendan O'Leary
9 months ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Hamas made the same wager as you. They don’t care about Palestinian lives.

Last edited 9 months ago by nadnadnerb
Billy Bob
Billy Bob
9 months ago

Neither does the IDF though. Do you think an Israeli child’s life is worth more than a Palestinians? Or why is it bad to shoot a family but ok to drop bombs on them?

Carlos Danger
Carlos Danger
9 months ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

The Israeli government doesn’t have a policy of collective punishment. They make every effort to avoid civilian casualties, announcing their targets in advance. They are targeting military targets, and Hamas is using civilians as shields.
Israel left Gaza to the Gazans decades ago. They would like nothing better than not to drop bombs. When you are fighting terrorists, who observe no rules and do not hesitate to commit war crimes, what else can you do?
If the Gazans chose peace, they would get peace. They chose war and terror, so they give Israel no choice but to defend itself against that.

B Stern
B Stern
9 months ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Remember that everything the IDF does this week and next week they could have done last year and the year before. But they didn’t. Hamas couldn’t do what they did last week last year or the year before.
Nobody wants to live next to a terrorist enclave but also nobody wants to send their young men to die extirpating the terrorists. Until they have to. The IDF will not be driving up and down the streets shooting at women and children or raping women or beheading toddlers.
If you know of a better way to remove the terrorists than sending in the military you can tell us all what it is.

Grace Goodman
Grace Goodman
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Terrorism is not “resistance.”

Paul Beardsell
Paul Beardsell
8 months ago
Reply to  Grace Goodman

That is not a general truth.

Christopher Darlington
Christopher Darlington
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

I concur. The hypocrisy on here is frankly astounding.

John Tyler
John Tyler
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Hamas are NOT resisting anything. They don’t give a toss for the people of Gaza, only for the fulfilment of their warped dream of an Islamic global theocracy.

Gorka Sillero
Gorka Sillero
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

You truly are the Master of horrible takes, sir. Have you joined any progroms recently by any chance?

Warren Trees
Warren Trees
9 months ago
Reply to  Mike Downing
Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
9 months ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

How do you square that with Churchill, Lindemann and Harris’s campaign of ‘area bombing’ to de-house the German civilian population on a previously unheard of scale?

Last edited 9 months ago by Charles Stanhope
L Brady
L Brady
9 months ago

The bombing you refer to was to end a regime that was firing rockets into London, a regime starving Dutch and Belgium civilians, a regime murdering MILLIONS of Jewish people. You defend a NAZI regime? Shameful.

Kevin Godwin
Kevin Godwin
9 months ago

Easy to square. It was ‘total war’ and was almost the only way the allies on the ‘western front’ could fight back untill ‘boots on the ground’ in June 1944. As you well know!

Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
9 months ago

FAFO

Charles Hedges
Charles Hedges
8 months ago

Someone said in WW2 , ten million people were being killed per year. The quickest way to stop the slaughter was to win the war. There was the fear of the Nazis obtaining the atom bomb and with Heisenberg and Schrodinger plus Bohr in Denmark, they had the scientific skills they would develop it first.

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
9 months ago
Reply to  Mike Downing

“But then I was a lefty once…”
Does that mean you are on a register somewhere?

Keith Merrick
Keith Merrick
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

These people are depraved and have completely lost their moral bearings, just as Giles wrote. But would it have been any better had they waited 24 hours before celebrating? This was an eruption of evil by evil people and asking them to suppress their glee and postpone their celebrations for a day out of a sense of decency seems to me to have misunderstood who and what these people are.

David L
David L
9 months ago
Reply to  Keith Merrick

Every day Europe imports thousands more of these useless barbaric people.

Walter Schwager
Walter Schwager
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

You are talking about Palestinians suffering indignities since 1947, right?

Shrunken Genepool
Shrunken Genepool
9 months ago

with a leadership that has refused every possible settlement. They have had billions directed at them….The west bank could have been a Dubai by now. And the Hamas leaders live in luxury. Don’t give us that moral equivalence bullshit. It’s despicable

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

The haters are on both sides.. I’m in touch with a Gazan friend almost daily.. for years. I never heard a word of hatred from him.. not once! But a neighbour of mine, a retired IDF degenerate, boasts out loud about the many Palestinian children he has murdered! ..his only regret being he didn’t murder many more! The most hateful, sad excuse for a human being I ever encountered in my 73 years.
Those are but two examples but personally I have no experience of any other beyond what I see with my own eyes on TV.. almost daily bombing of innocent civilians perpetrated by one of the most powerful armies in the world. It is state terrorism, little better than Germany’s in the 1940s.

Steve Farrell
Steve Farrell
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Neither of those people exist, do they?

Alan Osband
Alan Osband
9 months ago
Reply to  Steve Farrell

Do you think Liam is really Ivan ? Name sounds a bit too parodic Irish to be real

Last edited 9 months ago by Alan Osband
james elliott
james elliott
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Nobody believes you.

Sally Owen
Sally Owen
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

I absolutely agreeJim! This is absolutely soul destroying, there are no words that can explain the sheer immorality and ignorant stupidity of these people. There are very dark things at play!

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

Meanwhile, elsewhere in the world Muslim Azerbaijan is ethnically cleansing Christians using weapons many of which have been supplied by Israel and there are hundreds dead.
There is little to no media coverage and no handwringing.
If the had souls those now out demonstrating in the UK and elsewhere would have been out streets demanding that their co-religionist stop.

Last edited 9 months ago by Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
9 months ago

I’ve pointed this out many times about America’s very selective protection of democracies. The Armenians have been failed by many many nations that proclaim to support democracy.

Oliver Nicholson
Oliver Nicholson
9 months ago

Thank you for drawing to our attention the 120,000 Christian Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh now driven from their homes. There is information in the October 5th number of a magazine called The New Humanitarian: https://www.thenewhumanitarian.org/news/2023/10/05/armenian-exodus-nagorno-karabakh

Tony Buck
Tony Buck
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

The haters are caught in a hate loop.

They’re hateful and scary, but pitiful too – for what are they doing to their own souls ?

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

The problem, Jim, is that “they” have gotten used to a world where they, who hate every other religion, put in place fundamentalist regimes and oppress minorities when they are in a majority, repeatedly carry out hideous crimes and genocides, readily indulge in violence in the West when they or their prophet is “insulted”….
But can still plead victim status for themselves, and shut down any criticism of their religion.

They genuinely don’t understand why this time is different. And can you blame them?

I see, for instance, a Pakistani national cricketer openly express support for “Palestine”, an Indian muslim try to gaslight those outraged by the ghastly pictures of that poor girl, a US politician openly flaunt the Palestine flag….

There was little sanction for Turks when got rid of Armenians, Pakistan were actually supported by the West in 1971, hundreds joined ISIS from the West with little open criticism for their religion….and Israel’s neighbours have been threatening genocide even before Israel was formed.

They must be really confused by the outrage now.

james elliott
james elliott
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

The Far Left are evil, it’s as simple as that. Jihadis likewise.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  james elliott

As is the far right. Extremists of any persuasion are problematic.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

They’re misguided, ignorant and have an “us against them, good versus bad” mentality. Everything has to be either black or white, there are no gray areas where reason lies. They crave certainty because uncertainty causes them anxiety. They’re fear based so dogma makes them feel safe.

David McKee
David McKee
9 months ago

This is a very human response to a barbarism we can scarcely imagine. It is deeply impressive.

And “Love your enemies”? Jesus talked the talk, and walked the walk. He died, slowly and horribly. The resurrection is not just our route back to God. It’s the final, irrevocable triumph of love over hate. It is our confident hope for the future, that in the final sum of things it will be a happy ending.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  David McKee

Have you looked around you? The climate is changing faster than we are.

N Satori
N Satori
9 months ago

I’m not sure I have even got properly angry yet, though this will inevitably follow. Not just anger, but blazing fury.

Yes, Giles Fraser, but so what?
Inevitably commentators will strain (somewhat narcissistically) to find the right attitude, to feel a finely tuned emotion appropriate for their self-image, Their compassion must be displayed, readers must be shown how much the writer deplores violence, how he always prefers that difficult ‘peaceful solution’.
When will the commentariat wake up and face the fact that the third world is filled with peoples who have little interest in those precious Western goals of peace and prosperity. Driven by an urge for conquest, yearning to crush their chosen enemies – never able to reconcile themselves to the humiliation of defeat and the ensuing loss of status. Overwhelming military power is the only ‘peaceful solution’ they will ever respect.

Last edited 9 months ago by N Satori
Katalin Kish
Katalin Kish
9 months ago
Reply to  N Satori

Except that people don’t know they classify as “the enemy” until they are forced to experience flaunted, heinous crimes committed in a Melbourne suburb of million $ homes – repeatedly. Without any risk of prosecution.

Australia never had functional law-enforcement, crime statistics are managed via silencing crime witnesses and victims.

Urges for conquest and to crush effigies designated as the enemy of the day play out across Australia in unpunished crimes where:

– Two young women were abducted, publicly gang-raped, tortured over several days and then bludgeoned to death*.

Police ignored multiple in-progress crime-reporting attempts.

No one was ever punished.

Many of the men committing these crimes lived to old age in peace and respect, and died of natural causes.

– Ivan MILAT** hunted hitch-hikers because he could 1989-1992.

One of his intended victims escaped in 1990 and tried to report his experience to police.

His reporting attempt was ignored.

Ivan MILAT remained able to keep hunting and killing hitch-hikers for two more years. No one knows how many he killed. Ivan MILAT died of natural causes having a blast at what he got away with.

No police officer was ever punished for enabling these heinous crimes.

Being traumatised and brutalised by ongoing crimes I am not looking for stories that normalise my experience: I could not avoid these two stories, and I must share them.

I never even dated the stalker ex-coworker, never chose to have anything to do with any of the criminals freely committing devastating crimes against me since 2009 either.

Last incident was about 11 hours ago in my own million $ home which I have owned in leafy inner-Melbourne 2001.

I had exhausted all legal avenues to stop crimes against me prior to starting my public interest disclosures on every possible forum.

You are witnessing my awkward attempt at – failure? – fighting overwhelming barbaric sadism. Bestiality evidently exists, and it is easily woken up when opportunities arise amidst seemingly opulent harmony like on the leafy streets of inner-Melbourne, Australia.


*
https://www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/the-murder-victims-seen-by-many-but-helped-by-none/news-story/deea91936b2c70ff9570544c27f32f5c

**
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-48346543

Last edited 9 months ago by Katalin Kish
Michael Askew
Michael Askew
9 months ago
Reply to  Katalin Kish

What you describe is horrible but what is the connection with the massacres in Israel?

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Katalin Kish

Oh god not Katalin again! This woman is obsessed with these “crimes”.

Keith Merrick
Keith Merrick
9 months ago
Reply to  N Satori

Trying to love Hamas so that your feelings align with your Christian beliefs strikes me as odd. I’d be more inclined to ask myself if my beliefs weren’t wrong.

Tony Buck
Tony Buck
9 months ago
Reply to  Keith Merrick

Why renounce the Christian faith ?

Why be so very foolish as to think that Jesus was mistaken ?

Jesus is the ONLY hope for the world.

Jesus is, as He said, “the Light of this dark world.”

And it’s getting very dark indeed.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Tony Buck

Religion is divisive. The kingdom of god is within you, better to stop looking outside yourself and learn to trust yourself because that’s all you’ve got.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Tony Buck

Yeah, so what has he been waiting for?Promises, promises. He’s a major procrastinator.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Keith Merrick

If you know something is a fact you don’t need to believe.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
9 months ago
Reply to  N Satori

If you read back over your rant you will see that, historically and currently what you ascribe to the “heinous others” rightly belongs, far, far more to the West… Conquest, slaughter, slavery, famine, wanton destruction and pitiless exploitation are the hallmarks of the West, and always were.

N Satori
N Satori
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Conquest? Everybody does that – or tries to at least. The conquered of course will alway complain and try to play innocent. Not really a hallmark if it is so universal. By the way, unless you fetishise and romanticise the primitive, conquest of a backward people often makes room for progress.
Slaughter? Everybody does that – some more effectively than others. All part of the means of conquest. Show me a nation of pacifists and I’ll show you a nation of losers and underachievers. Once again, not really a hallmark
Slavery? Need I say again that everybody does that. Many continue to do to this day in fact. Again, not really a hallmark
Famine? Not sure about that one but I would say that the history of 20th Century communism is rife with examples of famine used as a weapon. That hallmark belongs to the shameless communists.
Wanton destruction and pitiless exploitation? Now the communists can really lay claim to that one. Particularly bad as they like to see themselves as creating a more just world.
Normal destruction and normal exploitation? Everybody does that. Exploiters and the exploited will always be with us. The only place you won’t find it is an SJW fantasy egalitarian utopia – probably a goal not even worth struggling for.
If you’re looking to sell guilt don’t waste your (doubtless valuable) time knocking on my door.
By the way, your name suggests you are Irish. Are you aware of the highly exploitive behaviour of the Irish settlers in America? The Irish dominated Tammany Hall has long since been a byword for political corruption. Or perhaps those are not the Westerners you had in mind.

Last edited 9 months ago by N Satori
Samir Iker
Samir Iker
9 months ago
Reply to  N Satori

I agree that it’s unfair to single out the West.
Question is, though, if your response to Western colonialism, genocides, plunder, slavery is “everyone did it”,
How do you reconcile that with your original statement
“third world is filled with peoples who have little interest in those precious Western goals of peace and prosperity. ”
Those who murdered six million Jews or started two world wars out if feelings of vengeance, instead of going for “peace and prosperity”, were not exactly in the third world, were they?
The “urge for conquest, yearning to crush their chosen enemies” in Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, the contempt for innocents being butchered, that was the third world, was it?

The attacks we have seen this week are disgusting. But while there is no excuse for such revolting inhumanity, try staying off that moral high horse on behalf of some random continent.

N Satori
N Satori
9 months ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

How do I reconcile that with my original statement?
Well, time for one thing. In the past the West had plenty of nations more interested in prosperity than peace. We have developed in terms of morality and intelligence.
The two world wars were driven by two nations, Germany and Japan, both determined to create new empires for themselves. Japan possessed an intense martial spirit of conquest augmented by newly acquired industrial power. Their methods were notoriously cruel. They picked the fight and their chosen enemies were the United States and the British Empire.
Germany was, in a sense, reverting to the primitive following a the humiliation of World War One and the attempt to dominate all of Europe. They sought to invoke a mythical past of Teutonic glory and a primitive belief in their own racial superiority. Their methods too were notoriously cruel. They too picked the fight and their chosen enemies were ‘weak and decadent’ Europe and the USSR.
Overwhelming military power was the only ‘peaceful solution they respected. By 1945 the allies had learned an important lesson. The defeated nations were not left crushed, humiliated and longing for revenge. They were given the help and means to recover and rebuild – as long as they remained peaceful they could become prosperous.
As for the moral high horse: I think Liam O’Mahony has ridden off on that one.

Alan Osband
Alan Osband
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Oh yes Putin was saying something similar recently . Have you ever met him ?

Charles Hedges
Charles Hedges
8 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Attila the Hun, Genghis Khan and The Mongols, Timur the Lame, Mao, Stalin, Pol Plot – how many killed?
The Agricultural and Industrial Revolutions, Legal system free from bias from religion, race an language; democracy, modern medicine and the Green Revolution of the 1960s started by Norman Borlaug;Founding the UN. Until recently peope were only two bad harvests away from famine until modern western technology developed agriculture.
Of course the West has it faults, however a World ruled by Attila, Genghis, Timur, Stalin, Mao or Pol plot would be far worse.

Cantab Man
Cantab Man
9 months ago

The utterly depraved mass-torture-and-extinction event carried out against innocent civilians – men, women, boys, girls, and babies – proves to the world that the duly-elected Palestinian government (aka Hamas) wants nothing more than to enact an End-Game Holocaust against the Jewish people. Hamas is committed to Hitler’s Third Reich ideology.
Because of this, the Israeli government has only one viable option to protect its citizens: Destroy Hamas, remove all of their military capabilities, and place a very wide military buffer between Israel and the people who selected this murderous Hamas regime as their government.
Trust can no longer be offered to this deadly stranger who squawks to the world for sympathy concerning their life’s plight. This same stranger used trust and sympathy to get close, pull out a knife, lunge with a wicked smile, and slit the neck of their unsuspecting neighbors.
In short: ‘Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.’
One cannot negotiate or take half-measures with certifiably-deranged terrorists who are so self-assured in the delusion that their evil acts are fulfilling the desire of their God. A God who – if real – will unquestionably damn their souls to eternal Hell.

Last edited 9 months ago by Cantab Man
Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
9 months ago
Reply to  Cantab Man

It is more constructive; far, far more constructive to seek a peaceful resolution. Yes, even if your hatred is unbridled, for purely selfish reasons, you must know that the typically savage IDF revenge attacks will simply forment yet more hatred, yet more bloodshed – maybe even your own or that of your family and friends at some point in the future.
What future is there in such Godless revenge? This heinous, hate filled attack, appalling though it was, arose from decades of evil, hate filled, crushing, murderous, inhuman treatment of the indigenous people.. While that may be very gratifying to hate filled Zionists it does nothing to protect innocent Israelis. All it does is sign future death warrants on yet more innocent lives. An eye for an eye leaves both sides blind. With all the weapons, apartheid, bombing of homes, schools and hospitals, Israel cannot win. When America abandons Israel (which it will) Israel won’t have a friend in the world. It is time for peace and reconciliation, justice and equality while there is still time.. the other way is the way to Hell!

Last edited 9 months ago by Liam O'Mahony
Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Simple question here: What does your peaceful solution look like? Under it would the Palestinians, collectively, have the power to start a civil war, win it with the help of Hamas, Hezbollah, and the Iranian army, and expel the surviving Jews? If they had that power, what would keep them from using it? I am very much for peace, but there does not seem to be a functioning compromise here. Maybe the only choice is which side we want to help win.

Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

What makes you think that the US will EVER “abandon Israel” Liam?
Given the current stranglehold ‘Kosher Nostra’ exerts on the US Banking world, the Media world, and the Entertainment world, I think that is highly unlikely in the near or even distant future.

Last edited 9 months ago by Charles Stanhope
Billy Bob
Billy Bob
9 months ago

I think America will become less pro Israeli as the population demographics change over time. With much more immigration from Asia, the Subcontinent and Latin America, the Evangelicals (who are often the loudest supporters of Zionism) will become a smaller percentage of the population, and thus less influential. If the American political parties decide that there’s more votes to be had by keeping their distance then that’s what they’ll do

Michael Cavanaugh
Michael Cavanaugh
9 months ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Does it matter that lots of Latin emigrants are also pre-millennialists and/or Pentecostals? (Doing politics as demographic attrition can be trickier than it seems.)

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
9 months ago

There are some, but the vast majority are Catholic

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Apparently they’re becoming evangelicals in large numbers.

Cantab Man
Cantab Man
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

I appreciate your reply and effort to debate on this topic, Liam. That said, I would suggest that your use of projected ad hominem attacks (“your hated”) weakens your position.
As for the rest of your post, I would merely sigh and say:
“..ah, yes, the rustlings of vague theory, waxing eloquent and pontificating on the topic of ‘giving peace a chance’ that seem to arrive immediately after the utterly inhuman, barbaric, and purposeful slaughter of innocent civilians.”
Theory is nice…until it shatters against the immovable stone called reality. The reality that was demonstrated this past week is as follows: The duly-elected Palestinian Government carried out a mass-torture-and-extinction event upon innocent civilians in Israel…and then the Palestinian Government celebrated after their crimes-against-humanity were complete.
My recommendation above has precedent in (probably) every country in the world. I’ll repost a comment made on another article for you to ponder and reply to:
When we have a high school (or other) mass-casualty shooting in the US, the first step of the democratically-elected government is to remove the threat as fast as possible via state-sanctioned force. Police SWAT teams waste no time in coordinating, descending upon, and eliminating the threat on the spot or wherever the shooter may flee to after the shooting. 
This action is executed immediately (long before courts and lawyers get involved) and will continue for as long as it takes to remove the threat (see: ‘manhunt’).
Furthermore, the average citizens living within the vicinity of an active shooter (or, in this case, the Israeli citizens drastically impacted by Hamas’s terrorist actions in Israel) really don’t care about the opinions of faraway navel-gazing intelligentsia. These intelligentsia safely hide within their ivory towers and get paid filthy lucre – or receive payment in the form of popularity – for slinging philosophically-inane suppositions that the killers were really the ‘victims’ and the innocent women and children lying dead on the ground were really the ‘bullies’ that deserved a bullet in the skull.
—-
When a public and brutal show-of-force from a mass-casualty shooter is not met with an overpowering show-of-force by the elected government and its police force, the citizenry start to lose confidence in the enforceability of their society’s laws and rules. And, like dominos, once this confidence is lost, so is any allegiance to the State that failed in its fundamental and primary purpose: Keeping its citizens safe. 
In short: Just as the citizens of any country in the world have every right to use their government to eliminate the threat posed by an active on-the-loose mass-casualty shooter, Israel has every right to eliminate Hamas to the extent that it so chooses. Hamas proudly chose this path of killing innocent civilians to publicly destabilize a country. And they will rightly pay the utmost price at a time and place of Israel’s choosing.
—–
There is no emotion or hate in my posts. I merely call your attention to facts and reality.
Think about the events over the past few days – the Palestinian Government gladly beheaded innocent babies and killed their innocent parents. They raped innocent women next to their dead friends who were all attending a Peace Festival. Most attendees of the Peace Festival were likely following your approach of ‘giving peace a chance!’…and then reality arrived in the air with machine guns. These peace-loving attendees were mowed down by the savages.
In your response, you suggest that any response by Israel will “..simply foment more rage….”
But from what we saw, the Palestinian Government cannot stoop any further. Rage has already consumed them.  Their inhumanity is complete. Pure evil.
The only thing the Palestinian Government lacked was not rage…they were only missing sufficient resources and capabilities to carry out the complete eradication and extinction of the Jewish People.
Israel must completely address this stated and acted-upon threat.

Last edited 9 months ago by Cantab Man
Samir Iker
Samir Iker
9 months ago
Reply to  Cantab Man

A stitch in time, comes to mind.
It is true that there seems to be no peaceful resolution possible with Hamas, and they clearly will settle for nothing less than extermination of Israel if they could.
But its a pity that the more secular, peaceful parts of the islamic world – Iran, Iraq, Syria, Libya, even the PLO – have been undermined by the West itself, in one way or another.
Might have made sense at that time, from a short term perspective, but long term the whole region is done for.

Katharine Eyre
Katharine Eyre
9 months ago

Until now, I’ve kept out of discussions about Middle Eastern politics and the history of Israel and Palestine: I don’t know enough, and when you don’t know much about such a sensitive topic then keeping your trap firmly shut and your fingers well away from a keyboard really is the best option.
But I would just like to say how important this piece of writing is and how much I have appreciated reading it, even though it’s hard to comprehend and contemplate these dreadful events and what’s now coming at us down the pike.
I wish Giles and his family all the best and much strength: processing this inexcusable atrocity and finding a way forward in life and faith will not be easy.

Nik Jewell
Nik Jewell
9 months ago

I utterly condemn the actions of Hamas; they are unforgivable. I also condemn protestors rooting for Hamas or the destruction of Israel; they are contemptible.
Unequivocally, Hamas should immediately release all the hostages. Will that stop what is coming? No, Israel has already indicated that the hostages are expendable; the messaging has been that they want to enact something in Gaza that will prevent such an attack from ever happening again.
A few inconvenient thoughts:
1. Israel, including Netanyahu, largely created Hamas and allowed it to grow in influence to create a rift between the West Bank and Gaza.
2. Moderate Israelis have warned for years that something like this would be inevitable if Israel continued its policies towards Gaza.
3. Egyptian intelligence warned the Israelis that Hamas was about to attack.
4. Hamas has committed appalling atrocities. However, some of what you are being told is possibly ‘atrocity propaganda’.
5. 50% of the population of Gaza are children.
Two hundred sixty children have been reported dead in Gaza already in the last four days. There will be many, many more. Is that OK with you? Is it OK to kill children with bombs but not with knives or guns?
In a couple of months, when it is highly likely that thousands of Palestinian children are dead, will you still feel the same way that your justifiable anger and disgust make you feel now? Will you be able to justify the deaths of children as necessary? When will you say, ‘Enough children have died now; please stop’?
Do you feel that these deaths are the fault of Hamas, perhaps? Do you think they are using children as human shields because they don’t all gather in a single place and put a sign on the roof for the Israelis to take them out in one strike?
Where do we stop if one wants to trace the chain of causation here? The Nakba? What is the end game? If they kill every adult member of Hamas in Gaza, then there will be a new Hamas in a decade, built from their even angrier and more resentful children, and it will all happen again. Perhaps it would be better to finish the ethnic cleansing job with Nakba 2? Empty Gaza into the Sinai Desert (and thence to Europe)? I have seen that comment a few times in the past few days.
My heart goes out to both the Israelis and the Palestinians, two Semitic peoples locked together in a prolonged conflict over the same piece of land. Both sides feel existentially threatened.
Almost everybody commenting on this site seems to think there is a simple black/white, good/evil dichotomy here. I disagree; you can see the terrible actions of Hamas in front of your face right now, but you cannot understand any of this without knowledge of the long history. The best primer I have read is The Palestine-Israeli Conflict: A Beginner’s Guide by Dan Cohn-Sherbok & Dawoud El-Alami. It has the virtue of having two opposing authors arguing the case for each side and then debating each other’s arguments.
Downvote away, but do so in the knowledge that when children’s bodies pile up in Gaza, you may find it harder to justify doing so.

Sayantani Gupta
Sayantani Gupta
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Reading history will not help with Hamas-whose views are steeped in an ideology which is pre-modern and barbaric. They have no compunctions to use children and women even of their own ilk as cannon fodder, as long as it helps their “cause”.The earlier Western Progressives understand this, the better.
This is an existential conflict between value-systems where Hamas represents a code outside the pale of modernity. Unless you understand that there is no point discussing this issue.

Nik Jewell
Nik Jewell
9 months ago

My post is not about competing ideologies. Hamas has committed an atrocity. The IDF is well on the way to doing the same. The children of Gaza are not Hamas. Do you think they should die?

Sayantani Gupta
Sayantani Gupta
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

For Hamas it doesnot matter-they use them as shields.
Incidentally one of the reasons Israeli intelligence underestimated Hamas is in the same misguided belief they play by “rules”- thus throwing welfare funds to Gaza was considered a good way of “containment”.
It doesnot work that way-for a tribe whose clarion call is Jihad-by any means and purposes.

Last edited 9 months ago by Sayantani Gupta
Nik Jewell
Nik Jewell
9 months ago

That’s just bad luck for the children?

Sayantani Gupta
Sayantani Gupta
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

If you choose to cherry pick facts to suit your narrative of a moral equivalence between IDF and Hamas it is truly your problem.
Obviously you have never encountered or chosen to analyse a Jihadi mind.
Unfortunately I have- so it’s pointless arguing this anymore.
P.S Ask yourself why Hamas wins votes since 2005 in Gaza. Why Jordan doesn’t welcome Palestinians. Why Egypt shared intelligence against Hamas with Israel which the latter ignored.
Hamas is no different from ISIS or Al Qaeda or Lashkar Toiba.
These are just some recent examples. If you want to go further look up the Jordan Palestinian conflict of the early 1970s.

Last edited 9 months ago by Sayantani Gupta
Nik Jewell
Nik Jewell
9 months ago

50% of the inhabitants of Gaza are children. They did not vote for Hamas; they weren’t alive in the last election.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Incredible to think 3 demented souls think your comment to be worthy of rejection!
Do these innocent children not bleed when you cut them? Do they not scream in agony as their limbs are blown off? What kind of people are you??

Mike Wylde
Mike Wylde
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

They stop being children and stop being innocent when they pick up an AK-47 or an RPG launcher.
We’ll see what age that happens at very soon. My guess would be about 10 years of age, hopefully I’m wrong.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Mike Wylde

That’s because they live in abject poverty, have no future and get brainwashed into a violent religious cult.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Don’t be silly.

Helen Hughes
Helen Hughes
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Thank you for your words of sense. The discussions here are breaking my heart.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Of course we care about the children but it doesn’t seem that Hamas does.

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
9 months ago

… or any number of pogroms carried out in the Arab world since 1013 AD.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
9 months ago

Egypt, Syria, and Jordan kicked them out. Only Israel took them in, provided for them, allowed them representation in the Knesset, and, until this horror, gave Gaza power and water – for free. But no Israeli would be left alive were he or she to attempt living in Gaza. Then again, with all these brainless Ivy League indoctrinees who know no history as a form of academic planned obsolescence, there’s really no point in imbuing commenters like Nik with any truths he can’t, obviously, mentally absorb.

Nik Jewell
Nik Jewell
9 months ago

I think you’ll find that if you check your history, the Palestinians rather think that it is their land which has been taken from them. This goes on to this day in the occupied West Bank with illegal settlements.
If you want to understand Gaza, try any of the books by Israeli authors Norman Finkelstein, Gideon Levy or Ilan Pappe on this open-air prison.

Susie Bell
Susie Bell
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

How far do you want ownership to go back? Two thousand years ago Israel was the land of the Jewish nation and for three thousand years before that.

Nik Jewell
Nik Jewell
9 months ago
Reply to  Susie Bell

That is the very point I made in my OP. I do not have a position, I am merely pointing out the Palestinian view on the matter.

Shrunken Genepool
Shrunken Genepool
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

I’m done with the Palestinian view

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago

There’s a difference between Palestines and Hamas.

Shrunken Genepool
Shrunken Genepool
9 months ago
Reply to  Clare Knight

There was a difference between the Nazis and average Germans – doctors, teachers, nurses….who for the most part still went along with genocide….in a rather banal way (Arendt I think) and we still had to bomb the shit out of them. And plenty of innocent Germans were killed – and it was awful. The Islamicists are the new Nazis along with every single person who joined pro-Palestine/Hamas demonstrations in the West….. They should be deported. All of them. And the Israelis with our help will have to bomb the shit out of them. The reason is because Nazis are not after a rational settlement they want to Kill Jews (the Muslim Nazis) and destroy the west (the Muslim NAzis and all the woke ideologues). There are plenty of Muslims who just want to get on…..They have to do much much more to clean up their own house, disown the ideologues and sign up actively to modern, peaceful coexistence. Those women pulling down pictures of kidnapped children …..despicable. I would deport them tomorrow.

Guillermo Torres
Guillermo Torres
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Nik:
“Almost everybody commenting on this site seems to think there is a simple black/white, good/evil dichotomy here. I disagree…”
Also Nik:
“The Palestinian view on the matter.”

Nik Jewell
Nik Jewell
9 months ago

You’ve lost me there?

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Exactly!

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago

What?!

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Playing the devils advocate? You should have made that clear.

Mike Wylde
Mike Wylde
9 months ago
Reply to  Susie Bell

Before the escape from Egypt a good part of it belonged to the caanites. The old testament is full of those leaving Egypt conquering the peoples of what is now Israel
There’s always someone older until you get back to the stone age and possibly even then.
Going to fast back is totally unproductive, modern Israel has been in existence for 80 years or so, no point in going back further than that.

Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
9 months ago
Reply to  Susie Bell

That is simply preposterous!
No serious scholar would claim that anything like an independent Jewish state existed in 3000 BC!*

By making such a claim you only invalidate your case.

Unless you believe the Bible is infallible the best guess for a possible Jewish state is circa 800 -600 BC, so I gather.

((* About 500 years BEFORE the Great Pyramid of Giza.)

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago

Nevertheless it’s better to be well informed. I think we all know Hamas and other Islamic terrorists are ruthless, barbaric and beyond reason. But there is still a history behind the Conflict between Israel and Palestine that I for one want to try to understand. Ignorance is not bliss.

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

I think it’s contemptible (of all sides) to keep citing children, in the way you’re doing.

Nik Jewell
Nik Jewell
9 months ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Shall we talk about women instead? 230 of them were reported dead this morning. Nearly 3000 women and children are injured. These are non-combatants.

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

No, because women, children and men are all human beings of equal value. It happens across all media and comments.
The BBC (and others) also cite the number of Britons killed, not just in this conflict but in many other conflicts or natural disasters. Why? Why would anyone think that’s of special interest, as opposed to number of Europeans, number of Americans, etc? Or to the point, number of human beings.
And yes, we all know they’re non-combatants. We don’t need it throwing at us, as you’ve done.

Nik Jewell
Nik Jewell
9 months ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

You all know they are non-combatants, but I don’t see many of you calling this out as a war crime. If I saw other people posting about this, then I wouldn’t need to. How many “human beings of equal value” have to die before you say ‘that’s enough now’? When they get up to the usual ~20:1 kill ratio of recent decades?
Israel has a right to defend itself against terrorism, but it has no right to cut off water, food, fuel, power and medical supplies to a civilian population. Israel knows it is killing and injuring civilians.
Two terrible wrongs don’t make a right or provide a solution.

Shrunken Genepool
Shrunken Genepool
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Because it’s not a war crime. They were not targeted you moron

Nik Jewell
Nik Jewell
9 months ago

Article 33, 4th Geneva Protocol

Guillermo Torres
Guillermo Torres
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Israel has no responsibility to provide water, food, fuel, power, and medical supplies to Gaza.
There are not “two terrible wrongs.” There is one terrible wrong, perpetrated by Hamas. The consequent events are still part of that one, terrible wrong.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
9 months ago

When it has enacted a blockade, then it does surely? Otherwise the civilians would starve, which would be a war crime

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

True.

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

the usual ~20:1 kill ratio

A long-debunked fiction.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

But what’s to be done?

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
9 months ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

But you do.. you do need it to be “thrown at you” ..again and again until you finally realise what an appalling, disgusting crime it is!

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

But people tend to forget there’s a difference between the average Palestinian and Hamas. Palestinian childern are born innocent (like all children) but because they have no future and get brainwashed by religious zealots,they become terrorists. They don’t have much choice in life.

Last edited 9 months ago by Clare Knight
Paul Nathanson
Paul Nathanson
9 months ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Thank you so very much, Steve, for having the courage to say that. Some readers have already accused you of trivializing war itself, including this one, because many people are killed despite their equal value as humans. You do no such thing.
From my point of view, as distinct from that of Hamas, no one deserves to be killed in a war. But some are, even in wars of self-defense, and every death is tragic. This applies to the victims in both Israel and Gaza.
Assigning blame for the war, however, is another matter entirely. You’ve said nothing about that. As for me, I don’t blame everyone in Gaza, even though most of them voted for Hamas after Israel withdrew in 2005, because many or most of them might well have come to yearn for liberation from Hamas. I blame the leaders of Hamas and other organizations that have rejected every offer to live in peace with Israel and boast of their plan to kill Jews (both soldiers and civilians). In the end, for that very reason, many people in Gaza (both soldiers, or terrorists, and civilians) will be killed.

Last edited 9 months ago by Paul Nathanson
Mike Wylde
Mike Wylde
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

All of them? A subset certainly but definitely not all of them.

JĂŒrg Gassmann
JĂŒrg Gassmann
9 months ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

We are constantly being manipulated with heartwrenching images and lurid headlines – and it is manipulation because it is from one side only.
The images are being deliberately used to generate irrational reactions – hate, fury. To me, that is contemptible, not pointing out that the policy the Israeli government have announced will, and they know and at least accept that it will, once again, kill mostly civilians.

Benjamin Dyke
Benjamin Dyke
9 months ago

Take an example closer to home. If some men raped your daughter and killed your wife and took your son captive and then when the police went to arrest them they got shot at or had missiles fired at them and in that same house were the small children of the perpetrators would you advise the police to give it up! The pontifications of people like you are ridiculous. You’d be the first person to call the police and back an operation and to hell with the people who did that to you. Multiply that by the hundred and add in the fact that the perpetrators have a charter for your destruction and a personal intent to murder everyone like you and you’ve still not got half of Israel’s dilemmas on your doorstep

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
9 months ago
Reply to  Benjamin Dyke

Speak for yourself.. hatred is a poor advisor especially in a time of grief. The reason evil people use children as human shields is that they know civilised, decent, Christian people will NOT say “to hell with the innocent children” ..the IDF and most Zionists do but I’m talking about decent, civilized Christian people.. Big difference!

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Claiming to be “a Christian” is not proof of anything. Actions speak louder than words.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
9 months ago
Reply to  Benjamin Dyke

I would want the police to get those that did an appalling crime as you mentioned. What I wouldn’t want them to do is also kill the perpetrators family and burn down his neighbours house

Mary Belgrave
Mary Belgrave
9 months ago

I’ve upvoted you for this comment but for some reason it’s done the opposite

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Mary Belgrave

It happens. The voting system is screwy.

Warren Trees
Warren Trees
9 months ago

Do you mean the images that were posted by Hamas themselves, as they committed the atrocities?

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago

Indeed, but what’s to be done? Hamas knew this would happen. It was inevitable if they did what they did. It’s the never ending t*t for tat.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
9 months ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Why? ..don’t children matter? Please explain why this obvious fact is somehow irrelevant.. oh wait, no, it seems mentioning the inconvenient truth (that these innocent kids may die horribly at the hands of irrefutable state terrorism) is “contemptable”. Wash you mouth out!

Arthur G
Arthur G
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

It’s not state terrorism, it’s a legitimate act of war. Israel is targeting Hamas military forces. If Hamas hides behind their own women and children, then any deaths are their fault, not Israel’s. The civilian deaths in Japan in WW2 were the fault of the Japanese Gov’t for attacking the US, not the fault of the US for responding.

Shrunken Genepool
Shrunken Genepool
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Just as many died in WWII. Perhaps we should have left Hitler alone? What is your suggestion? What happens when the Iranians get a nuke? You seem to think that there MUST be a rational solution /agreement – that it must be possible. Is it conceivable that they simply mean what they say. They want to kill all jews and destroy Israel. Is that possible? Liam seriously …Is that possible? If it is possible, who are you to tell Israelis how to weigh up that moral and strategic dilemma?

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Yes. The innocent of every age always suffer when those who run their world decide to sacrifice them.

Bernard Brothman
Bernard Brothman
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Hamas uses them as human shields and media fodder. Hamas puts its weapons, ammunition and missile launchers in residential neighborhoods knowing that an Israeli response will cause civilian death.
Perhaps you saw the video of Gazan children taunting captured Israeli kids. Perhaps that makes them fair game.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
9 months ago

So the IDF is no better than Hamas? If Hamas are using civilians as human shields, then the IDF is just as culpable for deciding those human shields don’t matter and carrying out the air strikes anyway

Shrunken Genepool
Shrunken Genepool
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Very bad luck that the people of the West Bank and Gaza keep voting for war and terrorism rather than peace and development. Keep your luxury virtue to yourself. This is not the time

Nik Jewell
Nik Jewell
9 months ago

The last vote in Gaza was in 2006.

Shrunken Genepool
Shrunken Genepool
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Then it’s up to the good people of Gaza to depose their vicious Hamas overlords – except that they basically support them

Stephanie Surface
Stephanie Surface
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

As a political leader would you have avoided the war with Germany, because children and innocent Germans, who never voted for the Nazi regime, would be killed in the burning cities of Germany.
In the end the reckoning came like a verse of the OldTestament and wiped away not only the murderous, inhuman evil regime, but millions of innocent lives.
The question is always what comes afterwards. Will wise men/women on both sides come to a peaceful solution and will there be a new beginning like after WWII? I am not optimistic


Last edited 9 months ago by Stephanie Surface
Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Multiple atrocities, including murdering their fellows who would seek a peaceful two-state solution.

m pathy
m pathy
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Who hides amongst the children? Who does not allow them safe passage out? Those are the ones responsible.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

What did Hamas think would happen after they did what they did. I doubt they were thinking about the children of Gaza. Helping the population of Gaza doesn’t seem to be their motivation. Hate is.

Jim Bocho
Jim Bocho
9 months ago

This isn’t an ‘existential conflict between value-systems’. It’s nothing but the age-old fight for land between two tribes.

Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Bocho

In an earlier ‘post’ you claimed erroneously, that one of these ‘tribes’ had been ejected from the land as far back as a 70 AD.
When such myths are freely accepted by an educated chap such your goodself, what hope is there?

Jim Bocho
Jim Bocho
9 months ago

There were definitely mass expulsions of Jews by the Romans in 70 AD. The point I was trying to make on that thread was that Palestine was not a Jewish country by the time of the Arab conquest and that it was not, therefore, the Arabs who exiled the Jews.
Let’s keep discussions confined to the relevant threads, please, or else it’s going to get very confusing. I did respond to your post there.

Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Bocho

I think sticking to the known fact does constitute keeping to the “relevant threads”.

Whatever Jewish sources may say they are NOT mirrored by ‘Roman’ sources.
Given the fact that the population of Judea may have been around the one million mark, depopulation on the scale you suggest would have been financially disastrous, logistically impossible, and was NOT Roman policy.

What we do know is that most of the male population of Jerusalem, a rather small city by regional standards, were killed or enslaved as a result of the siege of 70 AD. What happened to the population of Galilee, by far the most populous area, is unknown, but certainly didn’t involve deportation according to current archaeological evidence.

What maybe confusing you is the so called ‘Diaspora’, where Jews of their own volition sought commercial opportunities in the great cities of the East, such as Alexandria from as early as the second if not third century BC. By the time of the Revolt of 66-70/3 AD there were also substantial Jewish communities in Rome, Cyprus, Cyrenaica and elsewhere.

However the majority of the population of Judea remained Jewish, hence the next major revolt, that of Bar Kochba in 132/133. Even after this event when ALL Jews were banned* from the city of Jerusalem, now renamed Aeilia Capitolina, and the Province also renamed as Syria Palaestina the population were NOT deported.

Thus your assertion that the Province of Syria Palaestina/Judea was NOT Jewish at the time of the Arab Conquest by the Caliph Umar after the Battle of Yamouk in 636 AD is incorrect.

(* Except for one day of the year! Generous chaps those Romans!)

Last edited 9 months ago by Charles Stanhope
Jim Bocho
Jim Bocho
9 months ago

You’ve provided information until 133 AD. The Arab conquest was centuries later in 636 AD. That’s a gap of five centuries, but bizarrely you seem to think your point proved.
You also have an idiosyncratic understanding of ”relevant thread”. What is the point of hopping around from one thread to another when you could easily have responded to the original post?

Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Bocho

Can’t YOU stick to the point?
Please give me evidence that the majority of the Jewish population had vacated the place by the time of the Arab Conquest.
Incidentally, as you should know, there were further Jewish Revolts against Constantius Galus in 351-2 AD and against Heraclius in 614-15 AD, a mere 30 odd years BEFORE the Arabs turned up!

Jim Bocho
Jim Bocho
9 months ago

You’re sounding more like a zealot now than a scholar. You yourself have only provided unsubstantiated claims and non sequiturs.
I’ve done some reading about this topic. There were mass expulsions and killings of Jews by the Romans after both revolts in 70 AD and 123 AD. No hard data is available to show exactly how these changed the demographics of Palestine. However, most authors believe Palestine was no longer a Jewish majority country by the middle of the 3rd century AD.
The migration of Christians into Palestine as well as the conversion of pagans, Samaritans AND Jews to Christianity turned Palestine into a Christian majority country several centuries before the Arab conquest.
Most of the descendants of these pagan and Jewish converts to Christianity eventually converted to Islam. They are the Palestinians of the present day.

Last edited 9 months ago by Jim Bocho
Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Bocho

I don’t wish to be unkind but your claim to have “done some reading about the topic” does not NOT fill me with confidence that you know anything of substance about this subject. So far your assertions are regrettably little more than slightly ill tempered rant.

I have given you the facts about successive Jewish rebellions against Rome from 66 AD-614 AD, none of which involved “mass expulsions” for which you have singular failed to produced a single shred of evidence. For example who are the “most authors” who believe that “ Palestine was no longer a Jewish majority country by the middle of the 3rd century AD”? This despite the rebellions of 351-2 AD & 614-15 AD, plus the archaeological evidence of numerous Synagogues still being in existence during this period.

However by the Edict(s) of Theodosius in circa 380 AD, Christianity became sole religion of the Empire. How many Jews ‘converted’ st this stage is impossible to quantify, but very substantial numbers obviously still remained for the final rebellion of 614-15 AD.

Finally I do tend to agree with you that post the Islamic conquest of 636 AD, many Jews, perhaps even the majority did CONVERT to Islam. There were obvious tax advantages, and it was a very similar, albeit simpler, monotheistic religion that revered both Abraham and Jesus. It had almost identical Semitic cultural mores such as horror of nudity, male self mutilation*, contempt for women and numerous dietary restrictions. Thus it is highly likely that the Palestinians are, as you say, the direct descendants of these people, awkward as that maybe for many.

ps. I presume you meant 132 AD and NOT 123 AD?
I was amused by use of the word Zelot! I presume you know its origin?

(*Circumcision.)

Last edited 9 months ago by Charles Stanhope
Jim Bocho
Jim Bocho
9 months ago

Once again, nothing but unsubstantiated claims and non sequiturs. You seem to think I should accept you as an authority on the subject but you haven’t provided any credentials. I googled ‘Charles Stanhope’, assuming it’s your actual name. and all I found was ‘Charles Stanhope, 3rd Earl Stanhope’. Any relation?

Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Bocho

It is you sir who have provided NO facts whatsoever, and it also seems that you are, sadly, completely ignorant of most of the history.

Thus I think it pointless to continue such a sterile discussion.

Jim Bocho
Jim Bocho
9 months ago

Yes, let’s end it.

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Bocho

So were all the other pogroms carried out by Arab Muslims throughout history also about land? No, they were religiously mandated. We can’t hope for a solution to this problem if people keep lying about it.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

There is no solution.

Benjamin Dyke
Benjamin Dyke
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Bocho

Do you know anything at all about Islam, the Quran, Mohammed’s life, islamic nations and so on and how extremist beliefs play out vis a vis western values?

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Jim Bocho

It’s more than that.

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
9 months ago

Reading history will not help with Hamas

ï»żOn the contrary, reading history will demonstrate that Hamas belongs to a very long tradition. They are the direct ideological descendants of the Wahhabi missionaries whose preaching of Jew hatred led to the atrocities that took place all over the Arab world for a century before the Jewish state came into being.

Sayantani Gupta
Sayantani Gupta
9 months ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

I agree. What I meant is that Hamas doesn’t read history other than what’s in Sharia. And if that expounds that it’s all right to maim, kill and brutalize ” infidels” then so be it.
Incidentally Wahabism has created havoc in South Asia too.

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
9 months ago

Sorry – should have read your post more carefully.

Charles Hedges
Charles Hedges
9 months ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

Not sure that is true. Al Wahab was centred on Riyadh. The Muslim Brotherhood was founded in Egypt in 1924 as a result of the abolition of the Sultanate and a rejection of Western Culture. The MB created Hamas. I think Ibn Taymiyyah early 14 C may have been more influential on the MB.

Tom Lewis
Tom Lewis
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

The only time the killing of children, and women, will stop, is when the people who see profit from putting children and women in the way of bullets and bombs are held to account. It is a war crime, as defined by the Geneva Convention, to deliberately put the lives of civilians at risk or make them a target. Only when the people doing so, starting at the top, are held to account by the UN or ICC will this change. The problem at the heart of which is systemic raise-ism, treating ‘others’ from the ‘Global South’ (or whatever euphemism you prefer) as if they are naughty children rather than adults who are fully responsible, and accountable, for their actions. The blood of a significant proportion of the women and children who will die, or be injured, in Gaza in the coming days, weeks and months, will be at the hands of this raise-ist, intellectual, double standard.
A pox on all their houses, I detest them.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
9 months ago
Reply to  Tom Lewis

The UN? That nest of vipers? This horror likely had their stamp of approval.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
9 months ago

Wash your mouth!

Michael Smith
Michael Smith
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

I’m not sure you’ve understood the article

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Moderate Israelis have warned for years that something like this would be inevitable if Israel continued its policies towards Gaza.
Similar things happened regularly in the Maghreb, Egypt, the Middle East and even supposedly ‘tolerant’ Andalucia for a thousand years before there was an Israeli government. It really has very little to do with Israeli policies, which are mostly reactive.

Michael Askew
Michael Askew
9 months ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

So if Israel operated a reasonable and humane policy towards Gaza, Hamas would accept the existence of the state of Israel and leave in peace with their neighbours?

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
9 months ago
Reply to  Michael Askew

Oh dear, I clearly haven’t expressed myself very well if you think that’s what I’m saying. My point ultimately is that Arabs have always treated Jews badly and always will, regardless of Israeli government policy, because their sky fairy says it’s OK.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
9 months ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

The whole appalling tragedy has EVERYTHING to do with Israeli policies! You reap what you sow!

Tony Freeman
Tony Freeman
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Of everything you’ve said in your posts today Liam, this one sentence proves conclusively you haven’t a clue what you are talking about.
Hamas’s own charter disproves your point. No matter what Israeli policies are, Hamas’s aim is to destroy the state of Israel and kill or deport every Jew. Period.
How much more proof do you need than a charter written in the cold light of day? Israeli policies didn’t cause the tragedy last weekend. Hate did; and that hate is cynically manufactured and then manipulated by millionaires’, nay, billionaires’ holed up in Qatar and Tehran who are laughing all the way to the bank.
I suspect you are sincere Liam in your views, but you are expressing breathtaking naivety.

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
9 months ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Have you ever read a book?

martin ordody
martin ordody
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Not Netanyahu but their hate rate agains Israel is what drives them.Until they declaring to kill all jews and destroy Israel, there is no reason to discuss with them. And all the funds going to Palestine ultimately end up with them to buy new weapons instead to give to them which should receive it, the people of Gaza.

Michael Askew
Michael Askew
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Hamas want to expel out of Israel or kill all Jews and they nurture the same genocidal aims as Hitler. They will never stop and I doubt they can be defeated.

Mark Kidel
Mark Kidel
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Thank you. At last a fellow UnHerd reader writing some sense. Thank you! And please, any of you wanting some historical ackground, listen to the excellent BBC radio 4 series “The Mandates”.

Abe Stamm
Abe Stamm
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

I pressed a “down thumb” vote, and it was registered as an up thumb. UnHerd, please be advised of this glitch. I’m not inferring that anything nefarious is afoot, but this hasn’t happened to me before.
That said, Hamas has controlled Gaza since 2005. There isn’t a single Israeli, a single Jew, a single IDF soldier residing in Gaza. This is NOT an occupied territory…and, the only prison guards in this supposed “open air prison” are Hamas, who like the Nazi party, were democratically elected by the Palestinian electorate of Gaza…this under the observation of the United Nations.
Before Israeli justifiably retaliated for the barbaric invasion of their country by Hamas terrorists, this is what the Gaza strip, again, that supposed “open air prison”, with borders so porous that 100’s of thousands of rockets could be imported, where countless armaments and munitions found their way in order to supply an invading Hamas army, looked like. Does this resemble a prison to you?
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Last edited 9 months ago by Abe Stamm
Sayantani Gupta
Sayantani Gupta
9 months ago
Reply to  Abe Stamm

Agree entirely. But you have to encounter Jihadist Islamists to understand this. Can’t see many pro- Hamas voices on UH carefully crafting their responses as ” humanitarian” to either be familiar with these unfortunate realities. Or to be deluded by the proto -Marxist garbage taught in ” liberal arts” departments of Western academy to believe that the IDF is as bad as Hamas.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Abe Stamm

Surely this is a matter of the haves and the have nots? There is another Palestine that we see pictures of. These photos must be the ruling class not the disenfranchised.

Charles Hedges
Charles Hedges
9 months ago
Reply to  Clare Knight

Arafat worth $500m at his death and wife living in luxury. The Saudis finally stopped funding the Palestinians due to corruption and incompetence. How much of the money given to the Palestinians has ended up in the leaders bank accounts?

Abe Stamm
Abe Stamm
9 months ago
Reply to  Abe Stamm

Yes, Clare, that’s the point of this comment, and a few others of mine in this multi-article Israeli/Hamas war thread. Take any dictatorship or authoritarian regime, of which there are an estimated 52 countries, the dictator(s) and their cadre live enriched lives, the rest don’t. The top Hamas, Hezbollah and Palestinian Authority leaders are at minimum centi-millionaires, while the very top of the pyramid are billionaires. Former Palestinian President (and PLO leader), Yasser Arafat, by the time he died in 2004, had accumulated between 1 to 3 billion dollars in diversified assets from stealing from the Palestinian people.

Last edited 9 months ago by Abe Stamm
Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Abe Stamm

Very sad. Such injustice. I understand some Palestinians go to America, make a ton of money and return to the west bank to build tasteless mansions in what has become known as the “Miami of Palestine”. They don’t care about the have nots.

esty welch
esty welch
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Reading your comments it is very clear that your heart does not go out ‘to both Palestinians and Israelis’, as you claim. When discussing Israel you are very cerebral, reserving all your sympathy for the Palestinians. Which is your right but why pretend otherwise?

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Fair enough, but what is your proposed solution? And why do you think it will work?

David Bell
David Bell
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Well written.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Thanks for the book referral, just what I’m looking for. I don’t know enough about this very complex situation.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

I bought the book you suggested,Nik, and am about to start reading. I understand that reading history will not help to understand the minds of religious fanatics, Sayantani, nevertheless, I do want to be more informed than I am on a complicated subject.

Sayantani Gupta
Sayantani Gupta
9 months ago
Reply to  Clare Knight

Of course you must. But I should suggest a wide book list of not just the local context but also of the contexts of the decline of the Ottoman Empire and the origins of World War One.
Preferably pre 1970s too when historiography wasn’t as Marxist as it subsequently became.
I read Peter Calvocoressi and J Robert Wegs as an undergrad many moons ago to get the broad narrative of international relations 20th century context.
Rory Stewart does a good take too on the latest pod of Rest is Politics despite ACs humbug interventions.

Bret Larson
Bret Larson
8 months ago
Reply to  Nik Jewell

Ok you convinced me. We should end the Gaza “occupation” right now.

“Crickets…”

Guess that didn’t work. I agree, the Palestinians are pawns in a game and we all know what happens to pawns. And it will go on until there is a just settlement in the middle east. And just settlements have only been made in world history through force of arms.
And its not just the people of Gaza who will bare the marks of this conflict. All those involved are tainted by this inhumanity.

Last edited 8 months ago by Bret Larson
hayden eastwood
hayden eastwood
9 months ago

Giles I am so sorry. I am neither Jewish nor Israeli but I am so appalled by the loss of innocent people and, as appalled by the sheer hatred spilling onto the streets in support of murderers.
That anyone can celebrate in the streets of London for people who have cut the heads off babies shows that the barbarians are storming Rome as we watch.
In brief moments such as this we see their true faces:
People who in one breath say Israel is killing their brothers but who have nothing to say about Uigars in China.
People who shout black lives matter over a single death in the USA, but who are silent when the same black lives are taken by beheadings of entire villages in Northern Mozambique.
People who say that words are violence, and who treat their own violence as though they are mere words.
Seeing the photos of the family of 5 who were butchered before each other’s eyes woke me in the night. I had to hug my son as I contemplated involuntarily what the final moments of that family must have been: “if someone burst through that door and killed me in front of my 3 year old, and then killed him…” I cannot even contemplate the horror of the final moments that each and every family member will have experienced. To think of it is to weep.

Last edited 9 months ago by hayden eastwood
Haotian 0
Haotian 0
9 months ago

There’s no need to love your enemies; however, there is a need to try to understand them lest they get the better of you.
Hamas’ decision to commit atrocities and take hostages into Gaza is presumably intended as bait for an Israeli ground assault on Gaza. So the question is what are they hoping to achieve by inviting destruction upon themselves?
It could well be that the attacks were intended to lead to such death and destruction in Gaza that it provides a casus belli for allies of Hamas to invade Israel on a different front, and an opportunity to win given that Israel’s military may be substantially committed in Gaza (a place whose Vietcong-like warren of tunnels has ‘trap’ written all over it.) The symbolic choice of the anniversary of the Yom Kippur War seems indicative that there might be a coalition of invaders involved, after all.
This is surely a time for cool heads in the face of plainly deliberate, plainly planned — and thus in some way strategic — provocation. And for focusing not on understanding your enemies’ motivation and their claimed justifications, but on what their actions may be intended to achieve.

Last edited 9 months ago by Haotian 0
Catherine Conroy
Catherine Conroy
9 months ago
Reply to  Haotian 0

I like your comments, although I expect for those emotionally involved, time is needed for heads to cool down. Giles’ outburst, although restrained, frankly, is understandable.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
9 months ago
Reply to  Haotian 0

Exactly! Well said. Hamas knew there would be brutal retaliation, as you say, so what’s their next move?