By Harvey Oberfeld
July 30, 2014
War IS hell ! It is brutal; it is ugly; it takes the greatest toll on civilians; but, sometimes it IS necessary.
Each Nov. 11th, on Remembrance Day, we applaud our beloved hero veterans. And when you look into the eyes of far too many, you can still see the pain because you know many of them have seen and experienced a thousand Gazas … terrible realities, all in the defence of democracy and freedom.
As I watch the conflagration between Israel and Gaza, I can’t help think back to OUR own great fight in the First and Second World Wars, the Korean War, Bosnia and Afghanistan.
And yes, we killed civilians.
In fact, WE (the Allies) killed more than 50,000 civilians in the bombing of Berlin alone.
We did not drop leaflets advising civilians to flee or where to seek safety; we certainly didn’t phone homes in each area to be bombed and urge civilians to leave.
We bombed, and bombed, and bombed and bombed Berlin …. trying to target military objectives, but also devastating residential areas, schools, churches etc. … and THAT was just the softening up for what was to follow on the ground.
It was awful … but we beat them!
We also bombed Dresden … even though it had no strategic importance … and again we gave no advance warning for the elderly, women and children to get away: in fact, we even used incendiary bombs to create a firestorm that destroyed the city … and took the lives of 25,000 Germans … by far most of them civilians.
And much of the rest of Germany suffered a similar fate. It was war: it was horrific, but we supported our troops and were proud to do so.
Can you imagine what it would have been like if, during that period, as we do now, had DAILY video on-the-ground reports from Germany delivered into our homes … full of close-ups of all the dead and wounded women and children resulting from OUR military’s actions! Would WE have stopped, pulled back and let the Nazis survive in power? No.
We probably would have arrested the reporters who dared to show us the true, ugly side of war and the consequences of our soldiers’ actions … especially if they emphasized civilian suffering as a result of our attacks.
War IS truly ugly …. but did we regret it?
Not I !
I THANK OUR VETERANS …. after what the Germans (and the Japanese) wrought on the world …. for SAVING our freedom and democracy, even at the overall cost of 30 million CIVILIAN lives.
Like so many others, I am devastated by the daily devastation of Gaza and the horrific pictures of victims served up to the world media by Hamas and imbedded Western media …. although I have noticed Hamas DOES NOT allow the media to show pictures of Hamas fighters hit or destroyed or active rocket launch locations.
It’s ALL civilian victims, all the time. Horrific!
But let’s keep it real: EVERYONE who supports democracy, freedom should pray for an Israeli win against the terrorists of Hamas and their Jihadi buddies. They ultimately want YOU dead too, unless YOU convert and submit to radical Islam.
Yes, it’s ugly; yes, it’s brutal and yes, Gazan civilians are paying a terrible price … but remember, they voted for Hamas, just like the Germans voted for the Nazis.
What did they expect?
Hamas is VERY CLEAR in its Charter, which you can read by clicking here:
It SAYS it will accept NOTHING LESS than the complete obliteration of Israel; it endorses the killing of Jews anywhere in the world; and, it calls for a TOTALLY ISLAMIC Middle East … devoid of ANY Christians and other non-Muslims. And their worldwide actions have shown they ARE quite serious about achieving their goals … by violence!
We must not forget that Israel HAS established peace treaties with Egypt and Jordan and would also likely already have a peace deal worked out with Lebanon, if it was not for the Hesbollah Islamic terrorists who seized southern Lebanon and now have it in a stranglehold.
And in dealing with the Palestinians, it was Israel that withdrew all its forces from Lebanon, pulled its settlers out of Gaza, released more than a thousand Palestinian prisoners … and is much closer to a deal with Fatah/PLO on the West Bank than many realize, once land swaps and the future of Jerusalem can be worked out.
Israel withdrew ALL its settlers and ALL its troops from inside Gaza in 2005. Peace and open borders WERE within reach, had Hamas wanted it. But Hamas chose to pursue their Charter instead.
So rather than build housing, offices, trade schools, hotels, shopping malls, seaside resorts with the hundreds of millions of dollars Hamas received in foreign aid and support, Hamas used the money to acquire more than 10,000 OFFENSIVE missiles, rockets and mortars, and build more than 30 underground tunnels INTO Israel … not to bring in food and supplies … but so they could to carry out terrorist attacks.
I shudder to even think of what weapons Hamas would have imported from Iran if they had their own unmonitored port … as those naive flotilla terrorist allies had their way!
Even their tunnels from Gaza to Egypt were used to import …. not food and goods and medicines (which they already get and are still getting even during the war in great abundance through the Erez crossing into Israel!) … but smuggled missiles, mortars and weapons from Iran.
And they’ve used ISRAELI cement along with wiring and steel imported through Israel to build those tunnels and their entire violence-centred infrastructure …. with no other aim than to kill as many Israelis INSIDE ISRAEL as possible, soldiers, women, children and elderly included.
Many here believe the current conflict began with the murder of those three Israeli teenagers and the revenge murder of a Palestinian teen. That is simply NOT true.
In 2013, more than 50 rockets were fired from Gaza into Israel, in a DELIBERATE ATTEMPT TO KILL CIVILIANS; then this year, even before the teens’ killing, there were 184 more rockets fired into Israel from Gaza, again trying to kill civilians.
How many rockets would YOU accept fired towards YOUR home, YOUR workplace, YOUR kids’ schools before YOU would demand the government go after them?
For me, the answer would be ONE.
But Israel waited and waited … at the behest of the “international” community and the U.N. … hoping things would quiet down.
This July Hamas and the Jihadis have fired 2,600 missiles into Israel … out of their estimated stockpile of 10,000 (Some blockade they’ve suffering under!). And almost 8 million Israelis (lots of women and children there too!) live and work every day and try to sleep every night within range of those rockets.
Adding to the horror on both sides, many of those Hamas rockets HAVE now been proven to have been fired from schools, mosques, office buildings and homes. (In case you missed it, a THIRD U.N. school was discovered Tuesday hiding Hamas missiles … and once more, the UN allowed Hamas to cart them away!)
The Israelis MUST finish the job in Gaza: wipe out Hamas’ arsenal of missiles and rockets; and, destroy EVERY single tunnel built INTO Israel from Gaza’s homes, offices, mosques and beside hospitals.
It’s only AFTER Gaza is demilitarized and its terrorist infrastructure is wiped out that any REAL opening of its borders …under international supervision … can be seriously adopted. Anything less will just lead to another re-arming of Hamas by Iran, Qatar and Turkey and another war in a year or two.
Yes, war is ugly and, in this the tv age, we get to see every close-up detail of it we never saw daily in World War Two.
But Premier Christy Clark got it right in publicly declaring this week her support for Israel in its fight to stop Hamas’ missiles and destroy those tunnels.
This should NOT be a partisan issue … EVERYONE who cherishes freedom and democracy should support Israel’s fight against the terrorist group/regime Hamas and its Jihadi allies.
Until a fair and just long-term SECURE peace can be negotiated.
Calgary For Israel Rally Info HERE