Something must be done for the ordinary Palestinian residents of Gaza who find themselves caught between an out-of-control Hamas and the unconscionable Israeli response to Hamas’ rocket attacks. While I agree that Israel cannot let Hamas’ attacks go unanswered, not even “an eye for an eye” can possibly justify the massive Israeli response that has killed or wounded hundreds of innocent Palestinian men, women and children.
The problem with retributive justice is that it tends to propagate itself endlessly. The modern world looks most favorably on restraint, and Israel has, until eight years ago, been encouraged by the United States to occupy that moral high ground. But, for the past eight years, the United States has taken a laissez-faire stance toward Israeli aggression. We have been occupied with our own unjustified war in Iraq.
President Bush will leave office soon. It would appear that the Israelis are intent on inflicting the maximum punishment in Gaza that they can in the weeks before Barack Obama takes office and Hillary Clinton takes over as secretary of state.
John Van Horn
It is absolutely essential that we Americans stand up and demand a cease to the attacks of Israel on Palestinian citizens. We can no longer support a government that openly practices crimes against humanity and creates humanitarian crises by starving and killing innocents. Israel must be held accountable, and the United States must be the equitable broker of negotiations.
Israel is only creating more problems for itself by bombing Palestine, and the United States will be hated more by the rest of the Muslim world for allowing this behavior. We must not allow Israel to continue this path of killing.
While I certainly hold Gazan militants and Hamas accountable for their actions that helped provoke this atrocity, I am outraged at the disproportionate response Israel has taken. This bombardment was delivered in broad daylight, apparently for maximum casualties, right at the time school lets out. For those who defend Israel no matter what, I think it is important to get some perspective.
The Palestinians have lived in apartheid conditions for multiple generations. The suffering of these people is unimaginable. They have some culpability in this recent escalation of violence, no doubt, but please consider the horrific conditions they have endured for decades — conditions no humans should ever have to suffer.
We need an immediate cease-fire and a new U.S. policy in the region that is much more even-handed and cognizant of historical realities.