EDITORIAL: It’s plausibly argued by every man and woman of conscience in the world that the situation in Gaza is not just a humanitarian crisis, it’s a crisis of humanity in the world’s largest open air concentration camp.
That Israeli government’s response to Hamas’ October 7 attacks in which the Palestinian organisation allegedly killed more than 1,400 people and took more than 220 people captive is profoundly disproportionate, to say the least, as it has killed nearly 12,000 Palestinians since October 7.
The Zionist state has been bombing Gaza relentlessly day in, day out. Protest marches across the globe have been calling for a Gaza ceasefire.
Unfortunately, however, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu is showing no signs of suspending hostilities against Palestinians. The far-right government that Netanyahu heads is not even responding to the plight of the families of hostages who have been regularly holding protests in the Israeli capital, Tel Aviv, in particular, with a view to forcing it to take steps, including the announcement of a ceasefirey, aimed at securing the release of their loved ones.
Israel’s Haaretz newspaper, which is widely known for its independence and objectivity, too, seems to have been greatly disappointed by the growing belligerence of Netanyahu whose ambivalence with regard to the hostage crisis has only deepened in recent days to the sheer chagrin of his country’s foes and friends alike.
In its editorial “Israel must put the fate of the hostages first”, the newspaper has said, among other things, that “The Israeli government, headed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, has to bring the hostages home. It owes it to the hostages themselves – approximately 240 men, women, children, infants, and elderly – civilians and soldiers who have been held captive by Hamas for 40 days at this point.
It also owes it to their families, whose lives have become hell on earth, a nightmare from which they can’t wake up. They’re beside themselves with worry, longing for their loved ones”.
A look at the chain of events since October 7 clearly shows that Israel’s army has made a lot of headway in Gaza, but Hamas’ surrender is far from imminent. But the problem is that Netanyahu is showing no inclination to pay attention to sane voices, which articulate the pain of Palestinians and highlight his narcissism.
Noted American political scientist Ian Bremmer is one such voice. Bremmer has said he strongly believes that the current Middle East conflict doesn’t jeopardise Israel’s existence, pointing out risks if the ground war goes on for too long.
Although Bremmer’s views are spot on, he seems to have ignored the fact that the government in Israel under Netanyahu, according to Nicholas Goldberg, a columnist for Los Angeles Times, “is belligerent, provocative and beyond the pale”.
No doubt, the conduct of Israel’s prime minister is certainly outside the bounds of acceptable behaviour, as he appears to be fully prepared to sacrifice the lives of all the hostages at the altar of political expediency by not heeding to the calls for a ceasefire.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2023