Why Is Israel Being Blamed for the Hamas Massacre?

(Times of Israel) Yossi Klein Halevi - How is it possible that, in much of the international community, there is "understanding" for the mass atrocities of Oct. 7? That in certain circles there is greater outrage against Israel's response to the Hamas massacre than to the massacre itself? That those who feel most vulnerable on liberal American campuses are not Hamas supporters but Jews? This moment fits the historical pattern of antisemitism in the ease with which much of the world has, over the last decades, erased the Israeli understanding of the conflict. A systematic and astonishingly successful campaign has negated the Israeli historical and political narrative. The Jewish state has been transformed into an irredeemably evil society that has lost its right to exist, let alone defend itself. Hamas is not working for the creation of a Palestinian mini-state on the West Bank and Gaza, but for the destruction of Israel. For Hamas, all of Israel is "occupied," and no two-state solution would end its war against the Jewish state. In 1995, at the height of the Oslo peace process, Hamas launched its first wave of suicide bombings. The communities decimated on Oct. 7 were, in Hamas terminology, "settlements," though they are within Israel's internationally recognized borders. The sadistic frenzy of Oct. 7 was not an expression of political frustration, but one of primal Jew-hatred. But the Jews today are no longer helpless. We can defend ourselves, and we can strike back against those whose vision of a better world depends on our disappearance. Oct. 7 was a reminder of the necessity of Jewish power. In a world in which genocidal enemies persist, powerlessness for the Jewish people is a sin. The writer is a senior fellow at the Shalom Hartman Institute.

2023-10-26 00:00:00

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