This Israeli incursion into the Gaza Strip is just yet another installment of a very difficult situation. I mean difficult for me to sort out; I realize that people on each side of the issue see it as clear-cut but I find that the truth is usually not so neat.
Sometimes I find myself cursing Hamas for their cowardice and violence and willingness to hurt innocent humans. Sometimes I curse the Israelis for their seeming inability to realize that the long term results of these kinds of wars are not positive and that a year from now, nothing concrete will have changed, most likely, except that there will be more embittered Palestinians willing to join Hamas and throw more rockets into Israeli homes as the only way they can feel power and salve their resentment.
But then if you ask “Ok, then what’s the answer?” I find that the more I explore it, the less I seem to understand, or when I do figure something out, the less hopeful I am. Hamas apparently gets most of its funding and weapons and support from Iran and I believe Syria. Ok, then if Iran would stop supporting them this would probably end, more or less. But how to do that? If we pull the plug on Iran via sanctions, won’t Russia and China fill the gaps? Gladly? Gleefully? When I follow this line of thought, what I eventually come to is the thought that a lot of men are in fact evil, that much of humankind is either evil or greedy enough to do evil things, or pissed off enough at least. If this is the case, how can you keep angry putzes from lobbing crude missiles over the fence at some neighbor they profess to hate? I think maybe you can’t, is the answer.
It is very terrible, all of it.
I am not a professing Christian, or anything else for that matter. But having grown up hearing the words of Jesus, the country Rabbi from Nazareth, I cannot help but go back to his admonition to turn the other cheek, else you beastially poke out each other’s eyes for eternity like vicious bobbleheads. I can’t help but think that if aggrieved people, Israel for example, could grit their teeth and curb to their desire for revenge, then eventually the hatred on the other side would run out of gas. Problem is, it would take years and years, maybe a hundred, and we humans are not built that way, most of us. And, when the murder is state-sponsored, as the crummy little rockets of Hamas are, then it becomes more abstract and more revenge-worthy. But who loses? The people. Who wins? Nobody, damn nobody. Except the big-time bastards, the Arafat’s and Cheney’s of this world who enjoy it, who feed off it like gore-besmirched devil hyenas and grin with our blood dripping from their slit-eyed faces while we wail in agony. If anybody needs a rocket up the ass, those kinds of guys do, but they are usually the last to go, sitting in deep insulated bunkers watching the death on a screen. I would mention Bush, but he is so stupid and careless that I don’t even know how to think about him anymore, like you stop worrying about a cyst on your foot after a few years. His evil is the evil of self-absorption. See this week’s Frank Rich in the NYT for some serious thinking about that little butthole.
Meanwhile, the killing continues all around this beautiful planet…