• 7 Frequently heard “Yes, buts…” from Israel critics rectified

7 Frequently heard “Yes, buts…” from Israel critics rectified

Christiaan Verwoerd - 26 May 2021

You surely recognize this when someone who is rather critical about Israel is speaking with you: on almost every answer you give there is a “Yes, but…”. Sometimes you are at a loss. In this article I rectify seven such remarks.

  1. Yes, but Israeli air strikes on Gaza are disproportionate!

Hamas is considered to be a terrorist organization by the international community, and is currently ruling the Gaza strip. Hamas started firing hundreds of missiles at Israel. Every country has a legal right and a primary obligation to protect its own civilians. So, when hundreds of missiles are fired at Israeli cities with the aim to kill civilians, Israel must respond. Like any other country would do. Also, under the pressure of the Israeli population who desperately cry out for action.

  1. Yes, but why are they killing the innocent civilians of Gaza?!

Unfortunately Hamas is firing these missiles from residential areas, literally from schools, hospitals, et cetera. Hamas is hiding behind its civilians and sees his own civilian casualties as martyrs. Israel on the other hand, is doing everything it can to avoid civilian casualties in Gaza. Before they conduct a bombardment on a Hamas outpost, they warn them by phone, flyers or via a so-called “knock on the roof” to evacuate the population. What country goes this far in protecting the enemy’s population?

 Unfortunately, civilians will die during the bombardments. That is unprecedentedly tragic, something that unfortunately happens in every war.

It is also good to know that almost 20% of Hamas’ missiles lands in its own territory! According to Israel as a result of which many Gaza residents were killed. Those who (rightfully) care about Gaza, should condemn Hamas firstly. Be aware that Hamas’ prime goal is to destroy Israel. They are crystal clear about that themselves.

  1. Yes, but this is an unfair battle! Israel is much stronger, has air-raid shelters and Gaza has not!

That’s right! Israel could trample Gaza underground, but fortunately it doesn’t do that. Imagine Hamas doing the same to Israel…

And Israel has air-raid shelters, they saved a lot of lives. Hamas has no air-raid shelters. No, they do not invest their money (amongst others financed by Europe) in building Gaza, but mainly use it for building terror tunnels to Israeli territory, missiles and other forms of terror.

It is really quite simple, as is sometimes aptly said: “When the Arabs put down their weapons, there will be no more war. When Israel puts down its weapons, there will be no more Israel.”

  1. Yes, but Gazans are always locked in! They are fighting a battle for freedom!

Twenty-five years ago, when Israel was still involved in Gaza, Gaza was much more open, many Gazans were working in Israel and they could, in a manner of speaking, go from Gaza straight to the beach in Tel Aviv.

Under international pressure Israel forcefully removed and evacuated its own Jewish settlements in Gaza in 2005. Israel withdrew itself completely from Gaza and unfortunately got war in return. Since Hamas has complete control of Gaza, things have only gone downhill. If the violence would stop, Israel would gladly re-open its borders. If there is one nation that never again wants to live in a ghetto, surrounded by gated borders, it is the Jewish nation.

  1. Yes, but the main problem is the Israeli occupation of Palestine!

Who knows history, knows that there has never been a Palestinian people. Three thousand years ago the Land already belonged to the Kingdom of Israel under king David. “Palestine” (derived from Israel’s primal enemy the Philistines) is the name the Roman emperor Hadrian invented 1900 years ago for the area, after he expelled the Jews from the country. Since then, people started to call everyone who lived in the Land “Palestinians”. Thus, one hundred years ago there were Jewish Palestinians and Arab Palestinians.

Palestine was no more than just the name of that region. Only since the last fifty years the Israeli Arabs adopted this name as a nation/national name. But the fact remains that there never has been a Palestinian people. The people who are called Palestinians today often originally come from Jordan. It is also a fact that Jews have always lived in Palestine.

  1. Yes, but didn’t Israel conquer and occupy East Jerusalem and the Palestinian areas in 1967?!

That’s right. But conquered on whom? That part of the story is never mentioned. It is pretended that Israel took it from the Palestinians, but Israel conquered it on the Jordanians, after they attacked the Jewish state in 1967 together with Egypt and Syria. And Jordan conquered it in turn in 1948 and occupied it; an illegal occupation that was not even recognized by the Arab nations!

That is also something you never hear. Before that time (1948) Israel was part of the British mandate. So, Israel ended the illegal Jordanian occupation in 1967. And contrary to Jordan (that made the area immediately “Judenrein” in 1948 and destroyed all synagogues in the Old City of Jerusalem) Israel allows all inhabitants to live there, including Arabs.

  1. Yes, but why does Israel evict a Palestinian family from their home in Jerusalem?

The Jewish owners of these houses were expelled during the Jordanian occupation (1948-1967). They, or their legal predecessors, already owned this plot since 1875. The Palestinians who since 1948 started to live in these houses do not pay rent anymore since 1993. The judges ruled that not paying rent to the rightful owners is sufficient ground for eviction. Just as would be the case in any other country.

Furthermore, Israel wants to compensate all refugees. This should involve all refugees that arose during the foundation of Israel, in 1948. So, also the one million Jewish refugees from the Arabs countries. The Arab countries are not prepared to do so.

Many Arabs live in Israel (21% of the population). Jews no longer live in the Arab countries surrounding Israel, they are completely “Judenrein”. In Israel, Arabs and Jews can litigate land ownership. Under the rule of the Palestinian Authority it is illegal to sell land to Jews, punishable by life-long forced labour.

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