More Israeli reactions

03.22.04

I know I’ve been incessantly linking to Allison lately. But I can’t recommend her blog enough, especially while she keeps writing posts like this one:

They see that when we try to make nice and compromise we get terror attacks. And when we’re tough and aggressive we get terror attacks. Nothing we do seems to lower the motivation to slaughter Israeli civilians — men, women, or children — and in the case of Hamas, to see the state of Israel destroyed. So since there’s absolutely nothing to lose by getting Yassin, and something to possibly gain — at least temporarily derailing the Hamas leadership structure, and hopefully weakening it long-term — so why not go ahead and do it?

It’s a similar equation as the fence. Yes, building this fence is pissing off the Palestinians big-time. But does anyone think that if we stopped building it, they would be so happy and grateful, terror attacks would stop? No. No fence equals attempts at terror attacks, and a fence equals attempts at terror attacks. So why in the world shouldn’t we support building a fence in the hopes of foiling a number of these attacks?

With nothing left to lose, let’s try to do what we can to protect ourselves. That’s the sentiment of the man on the street.

Harry disagrees:

I’m reading a lot of non-Israeli bloggers who are touting this as some huge victory for Israel and the best thing to happen since Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley made out at the MTV awards. It’s not. Yes, the man is evil. Does he deserve to die? Yes, of course. But could the security cabinet have really really thought about the consequences of this? I mean really?

Seeing as how I’m one of those “non-Israeli bloggers” that Harry accurately chastised for not being close enough to the situation to be able to fully appreciate the sentiments of Israelis, I won’t comment, except to say that somehow, I get the sense that Allison’s reaction is closer to the grim reality.

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

1 harry 11.30.-1 at 12:00 AM

Sari, I didn’t mean to chastise anyone and apologize if that is the impression I gave. It’s just that some blogs I had read (I hadn’t gotten to yours yet!) were a bit too overjoyed about the assassination. I think in the end its a good thing but the consequences should be considered. The head of the Shin Bet even said it wasn’t the best idea.
I guess I am scared. And I don’t think that there is anything wrong with that.

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2 Otter 03.22.04 at 8:17 PM

My (non-Israeli) impression:

If this is part of a coherent plan to send Hamas a message before saying, “OK, _now_ we’re pulling out of Gaza.”, I’d say it’s pretty shrewd. (Assuming the pullout actually happens.)

If it’s part of the usual random slewing from plan to plan (we’ll build the fence, no, we’ll kill Arafat, no, we’ll leave Gaza) and there’s no long-term good that’s intended to be created out of it — that’s bad. And the government is now claiming the latter, although who knows if it’s true.

I see Alison’s point but even Hamas and Jihad Islami were opeating within some constraints: not hitting schools, not hitting religious ceremonies since the Passover massacre. For Israel to hit a cleric coming out of prayer, beyond being at least a bit distasteful no matter how loathsome the guy, is an invitation to expand the target pool a bit.

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3 segacs 03.22.04 at 8:48 PM

even Hamas and Jihad Islami were opeating within some constraints: not hitting schools

Not for lack of trying.

Don’t kid yourself into thinking that they have boundaries or scruples. Given the opportunity, they’d stoop to the lowest possible level.

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4 Josh 03.22.04 at 9:29 PM

If only Allison’s opinion were the consensus. Many Israelis have been conditioned by their anti-patriotic media to worry about hitting back at the enemy. Since 6am this morning, more time has been given to the expected ‘fallout'(?!) than to the actual killing of one of the heads of the serpent. Most ‘talking heads’ here are talking about the ‘price’ we will pay for this ‘targeted killing’ as if the price we’ve paid until now was not enough.
The media tells us that we live in a time in which we ‘talk’ and not fight, so the logic is that fighting back is primitive and more harmful to us simple folks who will pay the price for killing he who was killing us.
There is hope that Israel will finally start feeling that we are allowed to fight back, that the land of Israel is ours, that there are still things that are worth dying for but most of us have lost since faith in our leaders who have no faith.

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5 harry 03.22.04 at 10:45 PM

Just two months ago a good friend of mine barely escaped the Number 19 bus in Jerusalem with his life. I have also indirectly known people killed in Hamas bombings. Malki Roth was the daughter of my old boss was killed in the Sbarro bombing. Also, I had met Ben Blutstein on several occassions before he was murdered at Hebrew University. I have too many friends who have witnessed shootings and bombings and many more who have had near misses. I have a close friend who lost nearly his entire unit in Lebanon six years ago and a friend who was shot at Erez crossing while serving in the reserves.

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6 harry 03.22.04 at 10:46 PM

I serve in a combat unit in the reserves and frankly the last thing I want right now is to be driving a tank through Gaza city. The thought of it scares the shit out of me. I was shot at when I served in the army as a full time soldier and even light combat is not something I would like to experience again. It’s just a really scary situation. Ultimately, its us over here who are going to be going to work in Jerusalem tomorrow, doing our errands all while looking over our shoulders but knowing in the back of our minds that we are powerless.

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7 segacs 03.22.04 at 10:57 PM

Harry, I’m sorry if I gave the impression of being too “overjoyed”. Indeed, my first reaction on hearing the news was fear for retaliations… fear for friends and relatives in Israel… fear at what this might mean.

And like you said, I am “chutz la’aretz” and I have no business making judgements.

But ultimately, I don’t really think that Hamas would have attacked any LESS if Yassin wasn’t assassinated. Hamas is committed to destroying Israel, and nothing Israel does – or doesn’t do – will really change that.

That’s my thinking at the moment, and I hope it makes sense to you.

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8 harry 03.23.04 at 9:49 PM

I agree with what you are saying. Hamas will do whatever they can to elimate Israel. This is obviously not going to change that.

It was just an emotionally exhausting day for me yesterday and was annoyed by some comments of bloggers who have never even been to Israel before. It had nothing to do with what you wrote. 🙂

harry

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9 segacs 03.23.04 at 10:04 PM

Thanks Harry. And be safe!

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