The ‘Hudna’ Hoodwink
Vol: 87 Issue: 30 Tuesday, December 30, 2008
The assault on Gaza entered its fourth day amid widening demands for Israel accept an externally imposed cease-fire. Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak told reporters during a tour of Palestinian missile damage in Ashkelon that military action against Hamas would continue until all goals are met.
Rather than accept another ceasefire, Barak promised the operation would intensify “as much as needed to meet the goals we set for ourselves, to bring quiet to the South.”
The operation also aims “to strike a severe blow to Hamas,” he said, “in order to bring about an end to firing and other operations against Israeli civilians and IDF soldiers.”
Barak seized the opportunity to brace his nation for what is yet to come, saying ominously; “We expect more difficult days ahead which will test civilians’ endurance.”
Whether or not the rest of Israel is prepared to live up to Barak’s tough talk or his ominous warning is yet to be seen.
Hamas is nowhere nearly beaten — it hasn’t even begun seriously demanding a cease-fire yet. It’s 15,000-strong armed force is largely untouched. Rockets continue to rain down from Gaza into Israel.
The UN and various media focused on the few dozen civilian fatalities of the operation so far — Hamas is trying to draw Israel into a propaganda trap in which Israel so soils itself in the eyes of the international community that Hamas wins by default.
There remain hundreds of weapons factories, arms caches, missile silos, etc., untouched because of their proximity to civilian population centers.
Israel Today reported this morning that Channel One News reported on Monday evening that Hamas is hiding its most potent missiles under Gaza City’s main hospital. Israeli officials are reportedly discussing how to destroy the massive cache of Grad missiles.
And this is the problem facing Israel many times over. Gaza is tiny in area, but it is also one of the most densely populated areas on earth. Hamas has no compunction about using its own population as human shields.
Although the use of human shields is a certifiable international war crime under every international convention and treaty, the UN reserves war criminal status to Israel by default. It is a fact of history that war crimes are only charged against the losing side.
Here is the usual formula for conflicts involving Israel. As long as Israel is the victim the UN is silent. The moment that Israel begins to win, the UN demands an immediate ceasefire.
In 2005, Israel unilaterally surrendered to Hamas’ demands to end the ‘occupation’ of Gaza. Israel withdrew without conditions. Hamas immediately began using Gaza as a military staging area and artillery base from which to launch rocket attacks into Israel.
Rather than ‘scorched earth’ the withdrawing Israelis left the settlements largely intact, to give the Palestinians the raw materials to build from. The Palestinians scorched the earth themselves, then set up rocket launchers in the ruins. Why?
To ‘end the occupation’.
Now to the $64,000.00 question that nobody at the UN seems interested in answering. What ‘occupation’? Israel withdrew totally from Gaza. So . . what ‘occupation’? According to Hamas, the ‘occupation’ it will fight to the death to end is Israel’s occupation of Israel.
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon condemned Israel’s offensive as excessive and demanded an immediate cease-fire. He said key international and regional players – including foreign ministers of the Arab League nations holding an emergency meeting Wednesday – must “act swiftly and decisively to bring an early end to this impasse.”
Impasse? The ‘impasse’ has been the past three years, during which Hamas as fired more that six THOUSAND rockets into Israel.
SIX THOUSAND. And thanks to the UN, with almost complete impunity.
The ‘impasse’ broke when Israel began the current operation, designed to end the rocket threat to Israeli cities and towns.
The United Nations CANNOT feign ignorance of the facts — so they ignore them openly. The same can be said for the European Union, the Russians, the Chinese, etc. Israel’s president, Shimon Peres, is one of the architects of Oslo and an outspoken Israeli ‘dove’.
Peres characterized the operation in Gaza as one against a “terror group that had raised the banner of violence and undermined the stability of the region.”
Boilerplate stuff. But then, he nailed it, saying, “There is no one in the world that understands why Hamas is continuing to fire rockets at Israel,” he continued. “The firing defies reason and logic, and it doesn’t stand a chance.”
Maybe. Maybe not. There isn’t a diplomat among them that doesn’t know that Hamas will never give up as long as Israel survives. Not one of them is ignorant of what a ‘hudna’ really means.
A ‘hudna’ is a ceasefire negotiated for the express purpose of allowing the weaker side to regroup and rearm before resuming the conflict later. The last ‘hudna’ was set for six months. When it ended, Hamas resumed the attack.
What kind of lunatic would agree to a ceasefire expressly to give his opponent time to rest? But beyond that, what kind of ‘peacemaker’ would demand such a sure-fire arrangement for the continuation of war?
Every time that Hamas begins to falter, it demands a ‘hudna’. There are no guarantees. None. The purpose of the ceasefire is to take the pressure off Hamas, Islamic Jihad, etc., to allow them to rearm, reequip and regroup for the next round.
The question is whether or not Israel will be forced into accepting one this time.
With Israeli troops and tanks massing on the Gaza border, Defense Minister Ehud Barak told parliament he wanted to strike a devastating blow against Hamas.
However, later he indicated a ground assault was not inevitable, issuing a warning that he was giving Hamas a last chance to stop firing rockets into Israel.
One last chance. A last, last chance? Or maybe a last, next-to-last chance? What other country on earth would extend this many last, last chances to an enemy so dedicated to her destruction?
(How many last chances would we give al-Qaeda — while they were still firing at us?)
And were this anywhere else on earth, the Palestinians would be rebels, or insurgents, or terrorists, but since their enemy is Israel, they are ‘militants’ at worst, ‘freedom fighters’ at best, and there is no crime too heinous to be justifiable, provided the victims are Jews.
“And say unto the people of the land, Thus saith the Lord GOD of the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and of the land of Israel; They shall eat their bread with carefulness, and drink their water with astonishment, that her land may be desolate from all that is therein, because of the violence of all them that dwell therein.” (Ezekiel 12:19)
The word translated ‘violence’ in the above verse is chamac which is pronounced in English as ‘Hamas’.
“And when these things BEGIN to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads, for your redemption draweth nigh.” (Luke 21:28)