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WATCH: Hamas rocket brings out best - but mostly worst - in Israelis

I remember breathing a sigh of relief last week as I heard the news about the ceasefire. But that feeling was immediately followed by despair, knowing that nothing has changed and nothing will.

I think that feeling really hit me hard after watching this item by Shai Gal, on Channel 2, last Friday. It actually brought a lump to my throat.

Because the “operation” is over, the politicians are all back in election-mode, but on the streets, the hatred runs so deep. So deep, it makes you wonder how anyone, anywhere in this land, can be optimistic about the future.

I’m not.

(Translation and subtitles: Ami Kaufman)

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    1. sh

      Oh the tinkly piano behind the pathos of the grave-toned reporter… and the hutzpah of dragging in Yafa Yarkoni, shunned for the last years of her life for having dared to criticise the occupation, for the grand finale. Wonderfully illustrates why I stopped watching TV.

      Mind you, if you hadn’t posted this clip, Ami, I’d never have known that the likes of Sigal Moskowitz was out there too, bless her.

      Reply to Comment
    2. JKNoReally

      You don’t see how anyone, anywhere in Israel can be optimistic about the future of their relatively prosperous, modern state because of these statements? I think you might want to walk that back a little bit. Many, many ignorant people in the developed world spout hateful nonsense about wiping out Jews (and Arabs) on a regular basis.

      Reply to Comment
    3. A Jew

      Ami you should not expect anything less than “hatred” though this is just emotion and the ceasefire just went into effect. You should learn Arabic, too, since Palestinian anti-semitism is rampant though not all of course. You can say that the Jews are wrong, but what would you have Israel do after 13,000 rockets in 12 years? Yes the IDF bombed Ghaza in that time, too and killed many, no denying it. What is your answer then?

      Reply to Comment
      • aristeides

        What is it about Israeli apologism that renders its mouthpieces incapable of independent thought?

        Do you actually suppose there can be someone on Earth who hasn’t heard that line about 65 zillion times in the last year?

        Reply to Comment
    4. Danny

      The truly sad thing about these people is that their frustrations are so misdirected. They don’t seem to recognize the universal truth that for every action there is a reaction. They seem to live in a universe in which their fabled army has a solution to every problem, while completely ignoring the fact that it has not won a war since 1967. They are frustrated – as they should be; but their frustration should be with their shitty leadership that has been lying to them since 1948, and continues to lie to them to this day.
      The time has come for new and courageous leadership to emerge to tell the people the cold, hard and sobering truth about their state and its disfunctional and unsustainable relationship with the rest of the region.

      Reply to Comment
      • The Trespasser

        People like you probably won’t be ever able to comprehend that Jewish violence towards Palestinian Arabs is merely a reaction to Arab’s violence toward Jews.

        I suppose it’s because realizing something that simple would cause you permanent cognitive dissonance and a brain death as an inevitable outcome, so your mechanism of self-preservation carefully protects that pink little universe of yours.

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        • aristeides

          In the US, people like Tresspasser wear white sheets and declare that their violence against blacks is merely their reaction to the violence of blacks against whites – being violently uppity, looking violently at their wimmin, etc.

          It’s wellknown that the oppressor always hates those he oppresses, for reminding him of the evil in his acts.

          Reply to Comment
          • Vadim

            The amount of self-righteousness in this article is too damn high.

            Never mind that this is an edited piece, which shows only what the editors of Channel 2 wanted to show – how bad Israelis are. Never mind that you’re filming civilian population upset because a Terror organization has shot a missile in the attempt to kill as many Jews as possible. Never mind that we are in conflict for almost 100 years now and there is an understandable hostility between the populations. Never mind that people from any other country would probably express the same emotions in the same scenario. Never mind that regardless of the rhetoric, I’m willing to bet all of the people shown would welcome and accept a peace (in the sense of normalization and end of conflict, not in the perverted sense Hamas sees it).

            Hatred only runs deep in your eyes, in your shallow perception of how people you don’t agree with think and in the eyes of those looking for something bad to say about Israel.

            Given the circumstances – I’m surprised how little real hatred there is…

            Reply to Comment
          • aristeides

            If you want to deheat the rhetoric, Vadim, you might look to your own words.

            “a Terror organization has shot a missile in the attempt to kill as many Jews as possible”

            The rockets that militants fire from Gaza are a very poor means for “killing as many Jews as possible.”

            Why don’t you say, “militants firing rockets attempting to free their territory from a crippling siege.”

            Or might that be bringing too much rebias to the situation?

            Reply to Comment
          • Vadim

            I see my reply was misplaced. I was replying to Ami. Never mind.

            They use the best means they have to kill Jews. In my book that’s trying to kill as many Jews as they can. If they had more powerful weapons – they’d sure as hell use them. They did just that when they moved from mortars to rockets. They did just that when they moved from knives to suicide bombings and sniper rifles.

            You ask why I don’t say –

            “militants firing rockets attempting to free their territory from a crippling siege”


            Basically because it’s complete nonsense and one has to be a complete fool to believe it.

            How can any moral person side with Hamas is beyond me. Even if is fighting Israel – it doesn’t change the basic fact – it’s an organization of murderers, driven by a hatred and religious fundamentalism. It has no place in the civilized world.

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          • aristeides

            It’s a bad sign, Vadim, when you reject truth as “complete nonsense.” Sclerosis of the brain.

            Reply to Comment
          • Vadim

            Aristeides, I don’t know if you will ever read this comment, but there are some things I’d still like to write:
            1. Implying someone has Sclerosis because he does not agree with you is immature and it doesn’t make you right.
            2. Calling something Truth doesn’t make it any more true.
            3. When you indiscriminately fire rockets into populated areas – you mean to kill civilians or you’re extremely stupid (and I don’t believe are neighbors are stupid) You can argue that this is done for some greater political goal. But the immediate purpose is to kill civilians, and people should take responsibility for their decisions. Please look at what’s going on in Syria (with an army indiscriminately firing into civilian areas) and here (where the IDF does not indiscriminately fire into civilian areas) – and tell me if you see a difference. I do.

            Reply to Comment
    5. The emotions viewed here happen in Gaza as well, at more locations because more is destroyed there. One’s own destruction is always the most important, and nationalism and race naturally equate self with others of same kind in stress (when an outside enemy exists); and this is true in Gaza as well. Similary one’s own child or children are naturally the most important that are, wherever parents exist.

      All of the people glimpsed herein have counterparts in Gaza, including Sigal Moskowitz. People there speak of “final solution” and “They brainwash their children. So we will too.” And, as well “we must talk [with them].”

      A third stand can be taken, that the suffering here has analogs in Gaza and conversely. That those living in both lands want this suffering in neither land. This stand will be attacked in both Gaza and Israel, and even by comments on this site. For those who want to monoploize righteousness need total war, even if slow motion; and no race has a monopoly on that, either.

      Children dying are children dying. Hope shattered is hope shattered. Everywhere the same. This fight is against the concpet of war as enacted here, now–not everywhere, at all times. Just here, now. Even to say this will enrage many on both sides of the boarder.

      Reply to Comment
    6. Yes, Israelis and Palestinians (and everyone else in the world)have the same infantile, egocentric reactions when they’re hurting – but when the fighting subsides, Israel is ruling the Palestinians while the Palestinians are not ruling Israel, which makes Israel the aggressor and the Palestinians the defenders, and which means the ball is in Israel’s court to end its aggression – its rule over the Palestinians – and offer peace instead. No Israeli leader has ever done that, and until one does, Israel is the guilty party in this war and the Palestinians are the innocent party. Ruler and ruled – they’re not equal.

      Reply to Comment
      • Actually, I think a piece on why Rabin late did not meet your peace offer test would be interesting; I would like to see your reasoning.

        A time of pronounced, extreme racial nationalism comes. I was trying to articulate a way where some might move to a common refusal of the present position without attacking Israel as such. Why not attack it as such? Because others will. That is, plurality of postion can expand future coalition. If nationalism against rockets as actualized prevents acceptance of an original sin position, can one have people see commonality across the barrier in some other way? Certainly such commonality would deny the present right nationalist policy. It is easier to say “the siege is wrong” if you can say first “they fear as I fear.”

        Reply to Comment
    7. Richard Witty

      When the darker skinned middle aged man spoke, I thought that the reporting had shifted to a seen in Gaza, and they were making the comparison of the common experience of the civilians in both places.

      Larry’s point is both right on and right off. It is off in functionally excusing Hamas (not the same as “the Palestinians”) of responsibility.

      Human beings are responsible, period. There is no “I’m oppressed” immunity from morality. And morality ALWAYS includes considering how one’s actions affect others.

      At a time, when the only possible basis of their international credibility is their control and responsibility, this argument holds them immune from responsibility.

      The critical times have been between the wars. That is the period of potential responsibility in which Israel has been most negligent, in failing to form channels of communication and basis of trust (even in the veracity of word, if not in kindness).

      I agree with Ami, that it appears to be lesson NOT in the process of being learned by either right-wing faction (hamas and likud), neither internally, nor in inter-community relations.

      Reply to Comment
    8. Carl

      Can someone who speaks Hebrew confirm if that guy is saying ‘final solution’ in the sense of ‘Holocaust’ or not.

      I’m hoping not.


      Reply to Comment
    9. Just curious: Do people in Israel regard climate-change as an on-rushing calamity which makes the I/P difficulties seem like a tea-party, or are they as ho-hum about climate-change as most Americans?

      People who talk as if they were concerned for the future of “the Jewish people” should, it would seem, be concerned for the future of the human race.

      It would be encouraging if Jews and Palestinians made common cause, taking leadership in the world, against the common threat.

      But, what expect and what I see, is the I/P folk carrying on their battles as if carrying on carrying on will be forever possible.

      (I should say that few besides myself raise climate-change on I/P threads. Not sure why I do, perhaps just to preserve some perspective.)

      Reply to Comment

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