Israel gets a lot of bad press. I’ve heard many people complain about the blockade on Gaza. The IDF blog has a post on Gaza from a somewhat different perspective to what we’re used to seeing in the press. Some of the commentators on the IDF blog think this is propaganda. I think their minds have been warped by the daily propaganda they see on news sites throughout the world.
Here are some of the key points of the IDF post:
The Gaza Strip is ruled by Hamas, a terrorist group that is sworn to Israel’s destruction. Rockets fired from the strip routinely strike southern Israel. With these simple facts in mind, it is easy to understand why the IDF cannot allow imports into Gaza without first inspecting the contents and ensuring that there are no weapons.
Every day, the IDF facilitates the transfer of thousands of tons of goods and gas into the Gaza Strip. These products are delivered to international aid organizations, such as UNRWA or the Red Cross.
All items can go in, even dual-use items — those that can be used for both civilian and military purposes, like certain fertilizers that can be used to build rockets. This policy is in accordance with the Wassenaar Arrangement, the international legal protocol on export controls. Dual-use items merely require an extra security check to make sure they’ll reach the right hands (UNRWA, Red Cross), and not those of Hamas or the other terror groups in Gaza.
Here’s a picture you don’t see every day. It’s a picture of the Central Library of Gaza:
I’ve never seen a picture like this of Gaza from a news site and I don’t think many of us have. The usual images are those of destroyed buildings, but life isn’t as terrible as others would have us imagine.
I’m sure life in Gaza isn’t great with Hamas in control. There are areas of Gaza that have been destroyed by war. In 2008, there was a three week war. Before the war thousands of rockets were being fired into Israel. Israeli cities were under attack daily. Israel was successful in killing many terrorists and the rocket attacks from Gaza dropped dramatically after the war (although the attacks have begun to escalate in recent weeks). The majority of the casualties were terrorists, but civilians were also killed during the war. Of course, there are civilians that perish in any war. Israel tried her utmost to keep civilian casualties to a minimum, but inevitably there were casualties. Civilian casualties were also inevitable due to Hamas using civilians as human shields.
I hope that one day we can live in peace, but sadly that day seems to be a long way away. It is impossible for Israel to make peace with a people that wants it destroyed and wiped off the map. But I have faith that that day will one day come:
כִּי עוֹד חָזוֹן לַמּוֹעֵד, וְיָפֵחַ לַקֵּץ וְלֹא יְכַזֵּב; אִם-יִתְמַהְמָהּ, חַכֵּה-לוֹ–כִּי-בֹא יָבֹא, לֹא יְאַחֵר
For the vision is yet for the appointed time, and it declareth of the end, and doth not lie; though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not delay. (Chavakuk 2:3)