Have Hamas atrocities coming out of Gaza made an impact on Israeli leftist NGOs?
I believe we should know what those who disagree with us say so that we are not taken by surprise. How have Israeli left wing NGOs responded publicly to the horrific evil we have witnessed in the past two days? It should surprise no one, but it is extremely disheartening that among our own are those who do not seem to reflect upon the evil that they see in the actions of Hamas terrorists who infiltrated Israel, massacred over 700 (and still counting), abducted over 100 women, children and elderly (and still counting), terrorized a group of about 1000 young people at a rave, murdering at least 260 of them, held people hostage in their own homes , , ,
While Nas Daily is a controversial figure and has in the past blamed the “Israeli occupation” for violence against her, he did undergo a change after having seen what happened in these past two days. In a new post on “X,” he wrote that among the dead were Arabs killed by Arabs, not just Jews.
And I do not want to live under a Palestinian government. Which means I only have one home, even if I’m not Jewish: Israel. That’s where all my family lives. That’s where I grew up. That’s the country I want to see continue to exist so I can exist.
So from today forward, I view myself as an “Israeli-Palestinian”. Israeli first. Palestinian second. Sometimes it takes a shock like this to see so clearly.
This raises the question: if no Arabs had been killed by Hamas, only Jews, would he still have changed his mind about where his safety lies? But we will leave that for another day.
In any case, the so-called pro-peace NGO leaders apparently had no such awakening. Five NGOs — among 13 whose FB pages I reviewed — suddenly became silent. At the time of writing this piece (15:30 on 9 October) these organizations had not put up a single post condemning the massacre and abductions. These are: The Parents’ Forum, Combatants for Peace, B’Tselem, Adalah, and Zazim. Nothing.
Here are the eight that did post about it and you can judge for yourselves what you make of them.
1. Yesh Din: Five days ago, before the war broke out, they posted:
People continue to make a distinction between soldiers and settlers. But really there is no difference between them. They are one and the same thing.
and one hour ago, they posted:
These are difficult and painful days in Israel, in Gaza, and on the west bank. In spite of the horrific events and the deep shock, and in light of reports of attacks on many palestinians on the west bank, Yesh Din calls the army [that they said five days ago is no different from the settlers] to carry out its duty and protect the palestinian citizens in the west bank [who are not citizens of Israel, as they know], including against Israeli settler attacks.
What can one say to this?
2. Rabbis for Human Rights: On 6 Oct, one day before the infiltration of Hamas into Israel, their director made a speech about the “importance of sustained activism in the occupied territories and the strategic use of non-violence as a means of resistance.” Apparently he does not know that the Arabs consider ALL of Israel to be occupied territory. I guess Hamas did not hear that they were supposed to use non-violence strategically against us.
One day after the war began, their CEO Avi Dabush survived being locked in his home shelter in the Gaza region as terrorist roamed his kibbutz. He says that “Without a vision, the fighting will not end” and he still maintains the belief that “our vision must include being based on mutual success [ours and theirs].”
Unfortunately, Hamas considers their success in humiliating and killing Jews. Later that same day they write:
Security is not a privilege – it is a fundamental right that every individual is entitled to, simply by virtue of being human. Yet, it is also the thing that has been stolen from all the inhabitants of this land, both Israelis and Palestinians, for far too many years, leaving behind a trail of blood. This cycle must come to an end. . . .
And he asks if we will start down a new path:
a path that will ensure not only our peace but also theirs, our future alongside theirs, our dignity standing shoulder to shoulder with theirs.
Dignity? Our future alongside theirs?
5. Ir Amim: The day after the massacre and kidnappings began, Ir Amim at least expressed “profound grief over the carnage.” But then they, too, talk about “violence begets violence” and that harming the civilian population “for either side” is not the answer.
6. ACRI was also “deeply horrified” and “strongly condemns the atrocities.” But then they say:
It is the Israeli government’s responsibility to take immediate action for the prompt release of those who have been abducted. . .
It is unclear how ACRI thinks Israel can get them out, but in any case, the government does not need ACRI to tell it that the hostages must be saved. Then, they also end their piece with a note about the “cycle of violence.”
7. Doctors for Human Rights: After referring correctly to Hamas’ actions as crimes against humanity, they write a long spiel that includes this:
If we do not understand yesterday’s events against the background of a brutal 15-year siege on a population of two million, half of whom are children, most of them refugees, sons of refugees and grandchildren of refugees, we will commit a sin in our souls. The armed men [armed men? not terrorists] who infiltrated the south yesterday were born into a reality of a constant humanitarian crisis, bombings from the air without protection, death and injury in every family and zero hope. Pain leads to pain leads to pain. The government’s statements from yesterday indicate that it is blind to the reality it shares, and raise great concern about what is expected in the Gaza Strip in the days ahead.
In other words, it is Israel’s fault that terrorists commit crimes against humanity. Not a word about the Hamas covenent that views all of Israel as occupied territory that must be cleansed of Jews.
8. Breaking the Silence: They write about “unspeakable events” and being “heartbroken” and then [edited for brevity]:
We could go on and on about their [Hamas’] cruel and criminal actions, or focus on how our Jewish-supremacist government brought us to this point.
Successive Israeli governments insist on round after round of violence as if any of it will make a difference. They talk about “security”, “deterrence”, “changing the equation”.
All of these are code words for bombing the Gaza Strip to a pulp, always justified as targeting terrorists, yet always with heavy civilian casualties. In between these rounds of violence we make life impossible for Gazans, and then act surprised when it all boils over.
Then they talk about the “unfathomable violation of human rights, we’ve created a massive security liability for our own citizens” that Israel hopes the world will not notice as they negotiate normalization with Arab countries. And:
Our country decided – decades ago – that it’s willing to forfeit the security of its citizens in our towns and cities, in favor of maintaining control over an occupied civilian population of millions, all for the sake of a settler-messianic agenda.
Again, it is all Israel’s fault.
I wish it was Israel’s fault. It would be good if it was all Israel’s fault, because if it was, we would be able to do something other than die to satisfy what Hamas needs in order for there to be peace.
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