Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Israel’s response is ALWAYS disproportionate

Israel has long been accused of its ‘disproportionate response’, when confronting terror, or attacks on its populace

In Israel’s last war in Lebanon with Hezbollah, Israel was blasted for its disproportionate response when dealing with Hezbollah’s terror/military infrastructure

During Israel’s last incursion into Gaza to stop rocket fire into its territory, Israel was widely accused of using excessive force. The press, international community and ‘humanitarian’ organizations fell in love with the term: "disproportionate use of force"

Last week saw the Hamas release of Gilad Shalit, along Israel’s release of 1,027 Palestinians

Once again I witnessed Israel’s disproportionate response to violence and terror in the prisoner ‘exchange’ that took place

Gilad Shalit was taken captive while sitting on Israeli territory, defending Israeli lives. Many of the Palestinian prisoners were arrested after committing murder, or for plotting attacks on civilians. Attacks that included the bombing of restaurants, clubs and busses and the stabbing of teenagers.

Everyone now knows of Gilad Shalit. But what about Nasser Yataima who killed men, women and children in a bombing attack on a Netanya Hotel. Or Yussuf Dhib Hamed Abu Aadi and Na'el Barghouti who stabbed Israelis to death

Israel’s release of 1,027 prisoners for one Israeli is pretty darn disproportionate. But the figures are not the key driver of Israel’s (once again) disproportionate dealing with the situation

Calling the proceeding a prisoner ‘swap’ is a disservice. It was no ‘swap’. A swap is regarded as an exchange of equal value.

But in this situation, the value is indeed disproportionate.

A defender of human life was exchanged for takers of human life

This is not my twisted, right wing view of the situation. Israel and its enemies have disproportionate/unequal values, disproportionate/unequal ideologies and disproportionate/unequal world views

After a prisoner deal between Hezbollah and Israel, Hezbollah's Hassan Nasrallah said the following:

"We have discovered how to hit the Jews where they are the most vulnerable. The Jews love life, so that is what we shall take away from them. We are going to win, because they love life and we love death."

Chief Palestinian Authority cleric Mufti Sheikh Ikrimeh Sabri has stated:

"We tell them, in as much as you love life, the Muslim loves death and martyrdom. There is a great difference between he who loves the hereafter and he who loves this world. The Muslim loves death and [strives for] martyrdom."

I followed the prisoner exchange closely. I watched ‘Western’ channels – BBC, Fox, CNBC, France 24 and I watched ‘Arab/Islamic’ channels, including Al Jazeerah and Iran’s Press TV

It was clear from the all the interviews with Palestinian prisoners, the one with Gilad Shalit, as well as from all the footage, that once again, Israel showed it’s disproportionate response to terror and violence.

• Israel disproportionately fed the Palestinian prisoners – they looked nice and plump, vs Gilad’s gaunt look

• Israel disproportionately gave Palestinian prisoners access to sunlight – they looked good, vs Gilad’s deathly white complexion form the lack of exposure of sunlight

• Israel disproportionately gave the Palestinian prisoners access to humanitarian organizations – They had access to the Red Cross, Red Crescent and United Nations representatives, vs Gilad’s access to NONE OF THESE

• Israel disproportionately gave the Palestinian prisoners access to legal representations – vs Gilads’ access to NOTHING

• Israel disproportionately allowed the Palestinian prisoners to have contact with their families (even if only telephonic at times) – vs. Gilad’s contact with NOBODY

• Israel disproportionately gave the Palestinian prisoners access to education (in Arabic, their mother tongue), with many earning Masters and Doctoral Degrees while in prison – vs. Gilad’s periodic access to a radio and TV (also in Arabic, his captor’s mother tongue)

I’m reminded of Israel’s disproportionate response, following the devastation of the earthquake in Haiti.

At the time, Peggy Shapiro noted:

“Despite its small size, Israel sent a large contingent of highly-trained aid workers to quake-stricken Haiti. Two jumbo jets carrying more than 220 doctors, nurses, civil engineers, and other Israeli army personnel, including a rescue team and field hospital, were among the first rescue teams to arrive in Haiti. In fact, they were the first foreign backup team to set up medical treatment at the partially collapsed main hospital in Port-au-Prince.

The international agencies that condemn Israel for its "disproportionate response" when it is attacked are not mentioning Israel's disproportionate response to human suffering. The U.S. has pledged 100 million and sent supplies and personnel. The U.K. pledged $10 million and sent 64 firemen and 8 volunteers. China, a country with a population of 1,325,639,982 compared to Israel's 7.5 million sent 50 rescuers and seven journalists.

The 25 Arab League nations sent nothing.”

Israel continues to be regarded as a ‘rogue state’ and a ‘violator of human rights’ whose response to fighting terror is always regarded as ‘disproportionate’. This latest ‘prisoner swap’ has once again made it clear to me, that in an effort to achieve peace, Israel will always demonstrate its disproportionate value for human life and human dignity

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