The following is an excerpt from a Facebook conversation I had recently. It has been edited slightly for clarity and heavily for grammar (but you’ll probably still find some typos).
In fact, about 15 years ago if you had asked my opinion on the Israel/Palestine matter I would have likely sided with the Palestinians. Why? Because they have excellent propaganda. However, since that time I have traveled to Israel over ten times and have educated myself on this very small piece of land that the world is obsessed with. I’ve looked with my own eyes at the situation and drawn my own conclusions. I’ve witnessed events here, and then watched the news story the following day. Just like they did with COVID, the media is lying to you. I find it interesting that you accuse me of believing the media at face value, yet you are obviously the one following CBC, CNN and the lot with regards to Israel. Let’s just take a step back and look at a few facts. Who does the media support, Israel or the Palestinians? It’s certainly not Israel.
The media is always quick to point out when Israel attacks Gaza, yet they fail to mention the Hamas rockets fired into Israel just days before that forced the Jewish nation to defend themselves. They frame Israel as the aggressor, when they are only acting in self defense. Am I saying that Israel is blameless and perfect? No, not at all. They have made plenty of mistakes and they will continue to make more, simply because they are humans. However their intent is protecting their homeland and their citizens in the most humane way possible – in fact it’s to a fault. If Hamas had attacked any other country the way they attacked Israel, Hamas would have been wiped off the map years ago, just like ISIS was, and just like the Nazi’s were.
Here’s another interesting fact that you won’t see on the news. Israel has a security fence. They have bomb shelters. They have billion dollar defense projects like the Iron Dome and David’s Sling. What do the Palestinians have? Nothing. They have no defensive strategy. The reasons why are simple, Jews are not attacking them. I am aware that there are exceptions to this statement, but they are just that, exceptions outside the norm. Again, these are things I’ve seen personally and experienced.
Actually, let’s take a moment to look at these Jewish offenses since Biden has specifically condemned them recently, even going so far as to claim that they have increased in Judea and Samaria (West Bank). From Oct 7, 2023 – Nov 7,2023 there were 173 incidences of illegal activity attributed to Jews in Judea and Samaria. Compared to that same time period 1 year ago, there were 360 offenses. That’s roughly half. Keep in mind that these stats include agricultural vandalism, which while certainly not something to condone, really shouldn’t be something that the president of the United States need to be concerned about. So of the 173 offenses, 97 were agricultural vandalism and of the 360 offenses, 184 were agricultural vandalism leaving us with 76 and 176 respectively.
So if we remove agricultural vandalism from the tally (since it’s not considered a violent crime), it puts us at 76 incidents. Population statistics are notoriously difficult to calculate in Judea and Samaria (West Bank) but in 2017 it was estimated to be around 2.9 million people. Of that, about half a million are Jews. So we are looking at 76 violent incidents from a population of 500,000. That’s 15 incidents per every 100,000 Jews. I’ll leave it to you to look up the stats for some other countries but let’s just say the USA shouldn’t be pointing any fingers.
Now of course, Israel is currently attacking Gaza, but again, this is a defensive operation in response to the Oct 7 attacks. However, before most air strikes the IAF (Israeli Air Force) will actually drop leaflets warning the civilians to flee the area because they are going to bomb it. That’s a terrible offensive strategy, but again, Israel is trying to avoid civilian casualties – to a fault. In fact, Israel told the people of Gaza to move to the southern part of the strip out of harm’s way before they entered Gaza. Hamas actually blocked the people from listening to Israel and forced many of them to stay in the northern part.
Going back to the bomb shelters, where are they in Gaza? They aren’t. Why not? Because Hamas steals the humanitarian aid and instead builds terror tunnels. Hamas cares nothing for the people of Gaza. The only value they have to Hamas is as human shields and as propaganda footage on the news when Israel is forced to kill them. They are pawns in a horrible game that Hamas is playing. Their lives were significantly better before Israel withdrew from Gaza in 2005 and hopefully they will be able to build a better future for themselves when Hamas is gone.
On the topic of civilian casualties, let’s consider a few things. First, I am opposed to all civilian deaths. However oftentimes in war they are unavoidable, especially when a terrorist entity is breaking international law and embedding themselves in a civilian population – like Hamas is. That said, the civilians that are being killed in Gaza are being killed primarily as a result of targeted bombing. Not that they are the target, but Hamas has built its rocket launching sites, its command centers, and its weapon stores inside schools, inside hospitals, inside mosques and apartment complexes. These are the targets that Israel is bombing, not the civilians. When we look at the Israeli civilian casualties, there is a stark contrast. It is babies burnt alive in ovens, pregnant mother’s stomachs cut open, elderly persons beaten and decapitated. This is not the same. These are not accidental civilian deaths, they were intentionally targeted as civilians and they CAN NOT be put in the same category as the civilian deaths in Gaza.
Anyways, all that to say, come to Israel and experience the situation first hand. It may take a while, but if you are truly open to the facts you will soon understand why I stand with Israel.