January 6th, 2009
05:00 PM ET

Both sides wrong in Gaza

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/WORLD/meast/01/06/israel.gaza/art.burial.afp.gi.jpg caption="Palestinians prepare Tuesday to bury members of a family they said died in an Israeli airstrike in Gaza City."]

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Arsalan Iftikhar
Special to CNN

The recent carnage in Gaza has left little doubt that within the tortured dynamic of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, both the chicken and the egg have completely and utterly lost their minds.

Regardless of who's to blame for the origins of the conflict, shame on both Hamas and Israel for their recent violations of international law that have led to a humanitarian inferno in Gaza and southern Israel.

Hamas is to be blamed for its sophomoric provocation of its neighbor's military wrath by firing missiles into southern Israel. Israel also should be condemned for its disproportionately inhumane onslaught in Gaza, which has currently left 555 people dead and 2,750 injured, according to Palestinian medical sources cited by CNN. The United Nations estimates that at least 25 percent of Palestinians killed have been civilians.

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Filed under: Israel • Palestine
soundoff (10 Responses)
  1. RIME

    IT really is a great article what was told here is all true and i love where you wrote if that abraham david and mohammad and jesus and moses were alive they would shed a tear but i think that they would cry RIVERS were all from the same ROOTS were all the SAME but no one gets that . WE ALL JUST THROW BLAME !!What I belive is we all have the same GOD and we all belive in HEVEN and HELL we make our own choices and who we support.I SUPPORT THE RIGHT TO LIVE AND THE RIGHT OF FREEDOM FOR EVERYONE!!!!

    January 6, 2009 at 9:06 pm |
  2. Jim

    I do not accept any comparison between the actions of Israel and Hamas. The situation in Gaza was created by the selfish actions of the Hamas. The Hamas is hiding behind the women and children, in mosques and hospitals. Todays sad and unfortunant bombing near a UN school was as a result of Hamas firing rockets from withing the school's territory. Though Israel is using the most advanced guided weaponary, there is nothing to do when the Hamas uses its own people as human shields.
    Hamas did not just "provoke" Israel, it had heavily disturb the lifes of almost 1 milion Israelis. I suggest that you first study international law before blaming Israel in these kind of crimes; It is against international law to target civilian population, firing from public areas, using human shields, and using hospitals and schools for offencive military purposes. THE HAMAS IS DOING JUST THAT.

    January 6, 2009 at 9:02 pm |
  3. CaseyJ - Palm Springs, CA

    "shame on both Hamas and Israel for their recent violations of international law "

    Please explain what are the specific violations, so we can all understand. I don;t get how you compare Israel (a recognized country) to Hamas (a recognized terrorist organization). That's the same as compairing the U.S. to Al-Qaeda, isn't it?. It doesn't make any sense. Surely a country has the right to defend itself, or even take action, against a subversive terrorist organization that poses an on-going threat.

    January 6, 2009 at 8:42 pm |
  4. kaye in Vancouver

    Great article, I agree that both sides are at fault and I also agree that the proportionality of the strike by Israel defies any reason, even self defense. It is like some one slaps you in the face and you take a knife and cut his throat, sounds horrible but that is the same kind of act Israel is justifying as self defense. Hamas does provoke and is narrow-minded in its belief and pursuit of their goal but Israel's acts in the past and especially this time around is war crimes and crimes against humanity. The fascinating thing about this is how the support for Israel is unwavering and unchanged regardless of their actions. They have banned reporters from the region, blocked humanitarian aid, bombing schools and homes, killing children and yet the US is still seeing it as "self defense". If this is their approach to ending extremism in the Middle East, I believe they just started planting the seeds of hate towards Israel and US in the hearts and minds of the young children who are watching their family, friends and neighbor die in front of them.

    January 6, 2009 at 8:01 pm |
  5. Dave

    In a place as densely populated as Gaza, the casualties would easily be 10 times what they are if Israel was truly 'targetting' civilians in a form of collective punishment. In no other conflict are nations expected to allow in tons of humanitarian supplies, but Israel has let in 100s of trucks worth and has even taken in ill and injured civilians to be treated in Israel.
    Israel is genuine in its efforts to avoid Civilian casualties, therefore your simplistic claim of disproportion is flawed. while every civilian life is equally important, proportionality is not a simple mathematical equation.
    lastly, the same Arab nations criticizing Israel, were brutal in their collective and disproportionate squashing of their own internal opposition groups. The double standard is getting old and is the reason Israel is barring foreign press.

    January 6, 2009 at 7:36 pm |
  6. Moki

    It sounds like neither side is willing to let the truth be known via free access to outside observing and reporting.

    January 6, 2009 at 7:08 pm |
  7. earle,florida

    The solution ,"United States" foreign aid dispersment. Does it make sense to sandwich "Gaza" by two heavily subsidized allies of America? Israel,and Egypt each recieving $3 Billion,and $2.7 Billion respectively, annually getting the "Lion's Share"(approx. 30% of the $20 Billion) a disproportion amount. Now,to match the striking paralels,let's look at "Gaza/Palestine" foreign aid package? These people recieved approx. $250 Million last year ,dependent upon how co-operative they our as neighbors to Israel,and Egypt. I'd like to make a generalization about Israel,a very important point about the Israelites. The population is made up of a large percentage of visiting jews, vacationing,or nesting travelers looking at purchasing a second home when they retire. Now, for the raw facts folks? The people of Gaza/Palestine are a slave work force for the two adjoining nations surrounding them. They have no-hope,but to live in desparation,period! The status-quo of living under sub-humane conditions,should I pray will eventually open the worlds eye's to this rather easy to fix situation with equidable fairness. PS. I mean no disrespect in my comment toward others, just to resolve the issue for the most helpless/vunerable,...

    January 6, 2009 at 7:06 pm |
  8. Annie Kate

    Thank you for sharing your very thoughtful views on what is going on in Gaza and Israel. I do have a question though – if Hamas is a terrorist organization as listed on the US terrorist group list, then what is to stop Hamas from firing rockets at Israel from Gaza after a cease fire is brokered? Israel would probably be glad to stop its military action given some assurances that Hamas would stop theirs and not start them again once the noise dies down.

    January 6, 2009 at 6:10 pm |
  9. jim Fallbrook

    Arsalan Iftikhar is wrong . Israel has the right to attack the Hamas terrorists in the Gaza Strip. What he doesn't understand is Hamas started this by firing rockets into Israel a long time before Israel responded. I never heard any protests. What Arsalan Iftikhar has to understand is that 85% of muslims are not civilized. Negotiations with muslims never worked. History proves that. Trying talks or to negotiate with muslims is like talking to a brick wall. I grew up with muslims in Detroit Michigan. I know muslims like I know the back of my hand. They only understand brute force. How do you think Saddam Hussein stayed inpower for over 40 years? It is unfortunate that there are innocent civilians being killed. They were probably killed due to Hamas has been known to use them as human shields.

    January 6, 2009 at 5:55 pm |
  10. Cindy

    I totally agree with this article! Both Israel and Hamas have done things wrong that they should be ashamed of. Hamas should not have been trying to kill the Israeli people and egging them on to a war by lobbing rockets at them. And Israel has shown excessive force in their retaliation to those attacks. They both need to grow up and stop acting like little children! They need to stop fighting and deal with their differences humanely and stop killing or trying to kill innocent people.


    January 6, 2009 at 5:31 pm |