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Gaza is not in a war

Israel has been describing its battle with Hamas as a war. No, it is an asymmetric annihilation of a peoples for its own power.

To be called a war, there has to be some parity between the opposing forces. The situation in Gaza is nowhere near that. Gaza is effectively a prison in which the only real offence of the inmates is to be the descendants of the 750,000 expelled from their homes in the Nakba. Israel officially controls all that goes in and out of Gaza. While arms may be smuggled in, they amount to almost nothing compared to what Israel can bring to bear upon Gaza, as they have demonstrated many times in recent years. At only 1.3% of the Gaza population, that makes Hammas more like a prison gang than an army.

Israel has created conditions in Gaza that can only lead to some attempts to resist, even if in ultimately futile ways, much like happened with the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising in WWII, where Jews faced with deportation to death camps decided upon armed resistance before being ruthlessly crushed by the vastly superior Nazi forces. Nobody doubts the latter's legitimacy in fighting back, yet governments around the world are denying that to Gazans who are being threatened with the same level of ruthlessness by Israel, some of whom are descendants of those from the Warsaw uprising.

In a misrepresentation of reality akin to Russia calling their invasion of Ukraine a special military operation, Israel is calling their attempt to eradicate Palestinians in Gaza a war to garner support from those who would otherwise be radically opposed to such genocide. A few rockets and inmates breaking out with small arms and PRGs is not really a credible threat to Israel's massively mobilised IDF that is fed by forced conscription from a population fed from birth by propaganda posing non-Jews as less than human.

Israel engaging in overwhelming armed oppression of half of its greater population who they either imprisoned in Gaza or deny political or economic freedom to cannot be seen as a war, except in the way the so-called wars on drugs and terror were no more than thinly disguised attempts to enforce hegemony over other peoples by invading and destroying their cultures. These have all resulted in what they were supposed to be fighting only becoming stronger with more entrenched and widespread opposition while producing military escalation that severely reduced their citizens' security and freedom.

To illustrate the asymmetry of this ongoing conflict, Israeli has dropped over 6000 bombs on Gaza since the Hamas attack. Hamas often repurposes unexploded ordinance to make rockets, so a 2000lb bomb can be used in over a 1000 rockets. Hamas is estimated to have had only 20,000 rockets, so 20 2000lb bombs could have been used for those. That 20 is less than 0.3% of what has been dropped in the current conflict. A 300:1 advantage in destructive power is nowhere near anything like an even match, and that is not including tanks and helicopters with Hellfire missiles.[1]

But this is the result of allowing psychopath-led governments to engage in excessive militarisation, which only leads to less security and a greater fearfulness in their populations. But creating unnecessary fears is what such governments want, as it allows their leaders to continue to create suffering and hardship and thus increase their control over their populations. This is what such personality types crave, and which we must resist at all levels of government and societies, otherwise we will never have peace.

Israeli citizens are constantly fed that their security relies upon the suppression – read genocide – of half of their population on the false premise that they are out to destroy them and so must be destroyed. Meanwhile, they live in a military state, forced to serve in the IDF and somehow accept this state of fear as reasonable. Israel has created all of its own problems by being created as a racist genocide state on a land already occupied by others, some or whom were Jewish, and not in conflict until rapid and expansive settler-colonialism was attempted during the early 1900s.

The whole situation is compounded by the plethora of Western nations that are willing to supply Israel with money and arms that is mainly used on suppression and genocide. These actions make those countries also guilty of genocide, which is true even if they deny the genocide is happening. But those nations all have histories filled with their own settler-colonial projects that resulted in genocide, or installing their own preferred dictators in nations they wanted to exploit, who then went on decades-long rampages of torture and murder of their own people.

Too much is called war when it is purely attempts to overwhelm and dominate other peoples or countries. The rhetoric then tries to frame those who resist as terrorists and the resulting actions against them as wars, even when there was the same overwhelming imbalance in the military capabilities of each side as there is in Israel. We have to stop supporting those who cry war when they just want to kill the weak, because if we don't, we will be next. UN resolutions have recognised the right of the oppressed to resist.

For example, Article 7 of the Definition of Aggression, United Nations General Assembly Resolution 3314 (XXIX) states (emphasis is mine):

Nothing in this Definition, and in particular article 3, could in any way prejudice the right to self-determination, freedom and independence, as derived from the Charter, of peoples forcibly deprived of that right and referred to in the Declaration on Principles of International Law concerning Friendly Relations and Cooperation among States in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations, particularly peoples under colonial and racist regimes or other forms of alien domination: nor the right of these peoples to struggle to that end and to seek and receive support, in accordance with the principles of the Charter and in conformity with the above-mentioned Declaration.

Israelis have been having mass protests about the government restricting the powers of the supreme court, yet don't seem to see that such increases of power can only lead to the type of abuses that now befall Palestinians reigning down on them. Such blindness is what all the anti-Palestinian propaganda is meant to create, as it blinds people to their own future demise while seeming to support them. Psychopaths operate by marginalising others to minimise empathy for them, then using the resulting selfishness and lack of empathy to marginalise more of the society, leading to a dictatorship.

Watch Daniel Maté's video, Daniel Maté's RESPONSE to Brené Brown on Gaza, for how wrong-headedly much of the discourse around this genocide is being framed. So much has been influenced by cultures that are built upon the exploitation and violence against the weak that enabled their empires to flourish, and those in them to be blind to their own pasts that is the source of the affluence and relative social stability they assume is their right.

It is telling that the supporters of Israel are largely countries that have either been settler-colonial exploiters in their past, or are descendants of them as a result of their almost complete extermination of their native populations, whereas the supporters of the Palestinian people are countries largely colonised by those countries, but managed to obtain their independence before complete loss of their native populations' agency.

We can fight back by not listening to propaganda, searching for the truth behind it, and not standing with psychopaths. We can change the world, and not only for us, if we seek truth and true freedom for all.

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