Thursday, June 3, 2010
Why can't we take Israel to task when they are acting the bully?
The never-ending conflict between Israel (the West, through osmosis) and the Palestinian territories took yet another ugly turn the other day when Israeli special forces attacked a flotilla filled with aid and aid workers. The Israelis government would have us believe that they had every right to attack the ship, that Gaza is under a naval blockade, therefore any ships sailing in the waters near Gaza are fair game. That and we are to believe that these were not aid workers, but political trouble makers, mostly from Turkey, their goal not humanitarian, but more to set a political trap. If so, it worked.
I will concede that Israel has the right to defend itself. If it felt genuinely threatened by this flotilla, Israel had the right to send weapons inspectors aboard to peacefully search the vessel. The problem, is not the fear, or even the blockade of Gaza (that is a subject for another day), the problem is Israel's gross overreaction. Israel (such is its style) attacked with all that it had. The footage was amazing, it was like watching Pirates of the Caribbean 2010. Special forces dropped from the heavens like swashbuckling ninjas. The folks on the flotilla had no idea what hit them. This is typical of how Israel deals with all its conflicts. It shoots first (with weapons a million times more frightening than its opponent), then asks questions later. Their opponents this time around, were not arms smuggling Hamas agents, they were aid workers (who might have been trying to make a political point), armed with 10,000 tons of humanitarian aid. It was hardly a fair fight.
It is hard here in the West to criticize Israel, you are either labeled an anti-Semite, or you are instantly thought to be soft on terrorism. Hamas, are bad folks, of course, but Israel still must be held accountable for its actions. They are the Superpower in the region, they are the one's with all the best weapons, they are the folks that have Uncle Sam forever in their corner. Israel is the spoiled rich kid who lives in the big house at the end of the street, yet still demands the smallest kid in class give them their lunch money. Why? Simply because they can. I was brought up to believe that the little guy needs to be protected from the bully. Israel is the bully in this case, so even at the risk of being called an anti-Semite or even pro-Hamas, I say shame on you Israel, pick on somebody your own size.