The recent Hamas/Israel events, and the world’s reaction to them, really perplex me. I have more than a basic understanding of the ages long Israel/Palestinian conflict, so I don’t think it’s my ignorance of the complexity surrounding it. I think it’s just that people are behaving in ways that don’t make sense.
Beginning with the attack itself. Who thought that was a good idea? What kind of response was that expected to provoke? Whose sympathies were supposed to shift to the side of Palestine? Whose popularity and election campaign is going to be improved?
One possibility might have been that the attack was planned and carried out by a bunch of idiot neanderthals who were just angry and wanted revenge. However, a military commander in chief claimed responsibility on behalf of Hamas. It would appear that this was done with more or less the full support of the Hamas party.
Then there is the social media reaction. Everyone I see is unequivocally supporting Israel in this, which makes sense, given the nature of the attack. However, many of them act as if they are arguing with others on social media. With whom? I don’t see anyone speaking for Hamas or Palestinians.
Furthermore, there is a common sentiment that it is important to pick a side. Is it important? Setting aside that no one involved is innocent, recently or for decades, what use is being on a side? Is Israel going to win because you’re on their side? Or because the majority of the world is on their side? Are you going to vote? For what? For whom? For the same people you always vote for? Are you going to send your twenty-five dollars to humanitarian relief efforts? No, your position on the matter is going to have no net effect. At best, it is just another way for politicians and media entities at home to manipulate you.
So far as I can tell, the only part of this that makes sense is the response by Israel. It is awful, but it is logical, and it is consistent with their long-standing policy. Respond so harshly and to such an escalated degree that no one wants to fuck with you. Except for the fact that Israel’s endless oppression of Palestinians is what makes Palestinians want to fuck with them in the first place.