Tuesday, October 17, 2023

Don't Condemn "Suffering": Condemn Hamas!

"When Jewish children hide in a protected room and their anguished parents pray that they won't cry, so that the marauders won't come in and set the house on fire, it's a Shoah [Holocaust]."--Ben Caspit

A crisis reveals people for who they really are. In normal times, cowards can hide and heroes may be invisible, but during a crisis people are forced to show their true natures. 

In the wake of Hamas' barbaric surprise attack on Israel during which Hamas raped, tortured, and killed young and old alike while taking an unknown number of hostages, I have read and heard many vague expressions of sympathy for those who are "suffering." 

This is not about some generic "suffering." This is about a mass slaughter in Israel committed by the terrorist organization Hamas, whose official charter states (Article 7) "The time [Judgment Day] will not come until Muslims fight the Jews and kill them, and until the Jew hides behind the rocks and trees, and [then] the rocks and trees will say: 'Oh Muslim, there is a Jew hiding [behind me], come and kill him...'" Hamas' stated goal is to kill Jews around the world, and that stated goal is the motivation behind Hamas' attack last weekend. This is not about justice for Palestinian Arabs or forming another Palestinian Arab state (one Palestinian Arab state already exists: Jordan), but about killing as many Jews as possible. 

Period, point blank, end of discussion.

I am outraged by blaring headlines bemoaning the "humanitarian crisis" in Gaza, because those headlines are attempting to arouse sympathy for the aggressor and are not referring to the hundreds of innocent people (including babies and the elderly) who are being held captive by Hamas in contravention of international law. 

I am outraged by corporations, institutions of higher learning, and other public organizations that seem puzzled about the right message to deliver.

The message is simple: "Hamas is a terrorist organization dedicated to destroying the Jewish people. We condemn Hamas' terrorist attack against Israel. We demand that Hamas immediately release all hostages, and that Hamas pay reparations for the people who Hamas killed and wounded."

If you are unwilling to deliver that message without equivocation then I don't want to buy your products and I don't want to hear your pontifications on any issue. Add Starbucks to the list of companies that will not receive a penny from me.

Let's be very clear about the overall Gaza situation. The citizens of Gaza received warnings from Israel to evacuate--warnings that reveal Israel's attack plans and could cause Israel to suffer additional casualties. Hamas issued no such warnings to Israel. Gaza's citizens elected Hamas to govern Gaza, Gaza's citizens celebrate in the streets every time America or Israel is attacked, and Hamas squandered several billions of dollars of international aid by spending those funds to implement their evil plans to indiscriminately kill Jews. 

It is not Israel's responsibility to protect Gaza; it is Israel's responsibility to protect her own citizens. Imagine how ludicrous it would have sounded during World War II for any media outlet or corporation to assert that the United States should provide humanitarian relief to Germany or Japan. The United States decided to implement the Marshall Plan to rebuild Europe only after the Axis Powers surrendered unconditionally. During World War II, the United States bombed Germany and Japan into submission, and had every right to do so: the fate of the free world was at stake.

Hamas can save Gaza's civilians by unconditionally releasing all hostages, and by unconditionally surrendering.

There is way too much talk about alleged Palestinian Arab rights, and not nearly enough talk about Hamas' responsibilities. Hamas is responsible for every person that they killed, for every person that they injured, for every hostage that they are holding, and for the fate of every Gazan who they are governing. Anyone who blames Israel for Hamas' evildoing is at best a fool, and at worst an active supporter of genocidal terrorism--and, yes, Hamas' actions fit the legal definition of genocide, which consists of two elements:  

  1. A mental element: the "intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such"; and
  2. A physical element, which includes the following five acts, enumerated exhaustively:
    • Killing members of the group
    • Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group
    • Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part
    • Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group
    • Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group

The intent is the most difficult element to determine. To constitute genocide, there must be a proven intent on the part of perpetrators to physically destroy a national, ethnical, racial or religious group. Cultural destruction does not suffice, nor does an intention to simply disperse a group. It is this special intent, or dolus specialis, that makes the crime of genocide so unique. In addition, case law has associated intent with the existence of a State or organizational plan or policy, even if the definition of genocide in international law does not include that element.

The humanitarian crisis in the Mideast has two components, neither of which are controlled by Israel or are Israel's fault. Those two components are (1) The stubborn refusal of large elements of the Arab/Muslim world to accept that the Jewish people and the Jewish State of Israel have a right to exist, and (2) the stubborn refusal of the Arab/Muslim world to build modern, 21st century countries with democratic elections, basic freedoms, and a market economy. From Morocco to Pakistan, the map is dotted with one failed Arab/Islamic state after another: most of the countries in the region are economically poor, educationally backward, and lack the most basic freedoms--and the few countries that are not poor use their money not to constructively build a modern, open society but to finance global terrorist organizations. 

Israel is a tiny, democratic country surrounded by hostile, non-democratic countries. 

Israel deserves unconditional support in her war against Hamas and Hamas' sponsor states Iran and Qatar. Hamas deserves condemnation that far too many people and organizations are hesitant to deliver.


  1. Hamas is despicable in all of the ways that you described and needs to be wiped out. It is bizarre, however, that you are so triggered by concern that people have expressed about the death and suffering of innocent Palestinians. Not every Palestinian resident of Gaza voted for Hamas or supports Hamas. About half of the residents of Gaza are children, for crying out loud. Are Palestinians and Hamas the same thing in your view?

  2. Anonymous:

    I am not "triggered" by expressions of concern about the suffering of innocent people. I am outraged by vague, general statements that do not explicitly condemn Hamas without equivocation, and I am outraged that anyone would blame Israel for anything that is happening in Gaza. Hamas created the situation in Gaza, Hamas declared that its fundamental reason to exist is to destroy the Jewish people, and thus Hamas bears full responsibility for everything that happens in Gaza; this is no different than saying that Nazi Germany bore full responsibility for everything that happened in Germany during World War II, and that Imperial Japan bore full responsibility for everything that happened in Japan during World War II. The proposed Congressional resolution seeking a ceasefire--which would only serve to shelter Hamas from being destroyed by Israel--is precisely the kind of perverse thinking that outrages me. The same people who incited violence against Jews now want to protect Hamas.

    I don't know what percentage of Gazans voted for Hamas or supports Hamas, but I know that every time a Jew is killed the Gazans dance and celebrate in the streets--and if there is organized, official Muslim condemnation of that abhorrent behavior I have yet to see it.

    Yet, despite the fact that Gazans train their children to be suicide bombers and to torture Jews, Israel is still bending over backwards--and risking the lives of her soldiers--to conduct this war in a way that minimizes Gazan casualties. Hamas specializes in killing unarmed babies and elderly and then hiding behind their own civilians, but they don't seem to have much taste for open combat with armed men. If Hamas wants total war with Israel and really believes that Allah supports their cause then they should stop hiding behind women's dresses, hospital beds, and children's nurseries. Even the delusional Left in Israel seems to have lost patience with living in bomb shelters now that Hamas has proven that killing "only" a few Jews with rockets is not enough to satisfy their blood lust, and that they prefer torturing Jewish children before killing them while their parents watch. If it is true that a conservative is a liberal who has been mugged, then we will find out what happens to an Israeli liberal who watched Hamas commit mass murder of defenseless civilians.

    So, I can't say for sure whether or not Palestinians and Hamas are the same thing, but I can say for sure that Israel must destroy Hamas and that it is Hamas' responsibility if innocent civilians are harmed while Hamas hides behind innocent civilians. Media coverage focusing on Gaza is not going to help Israel win and is not going to protect the West from Hamas.

  3. You concluded with: "So, I can't say for sure whether or not Palestinians and Hamas are the same thing". If that is the conclusion that you have arrived at, it is really sad. Should we just examine each ethnic/religious group of people, look at its worst representatives, and essentially suggest that those bad characters represent the entire group? Where will that get us as a society? When we stop seeing the humanity in entire groups of people, where will that lead us? You seem like a thoughtful person in general, but there are many things that you have said that are shocking and sad.

  4. Anonymous:

    Feel free to present evidence that Hamas does not speak for and represent a large number--if not a majority of Palestinian Arabs. I will remind you that (1) the Palestinian Arabs in Gaza voted for Hamas to govern them, (2) Hamas enjoys broad support throughout the Arab/Muslim world, and (3) the number of Arab/Muslim leaders who will publicly condemn Hamas' atrocities is exceedingly small. So, I did not conclude that Palestinians and Hamas are the same thing, but I also can't conclude that they are not, based on the evidence in front of me--and I could add that it is understood that one reason the Palestinian Authority does not hold elections in Judea/Samaria (the so-called "West Bank") is that the PA knows that Hamas would win. It is up to Palestinians to prove that Hamas does not speak for them and does not represent them.

    I understand why some of what I have written in the past week or so may seem shocking to anyone who is not familiar with the root causes of what is happening, and I agree with you 100% that what I have written is sad. The situation is tragic, and there is little reason to believe that it will improve any time soon. Hamas is committed not only to destroying Israel but to killing Jews anywhere, and it is indeed quite sad that the civilized world seems to struggle so much to figure out that Hamas is evil.


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