Israel and its allies are not behind the tears of Palestine. The real enemy is inside its territory, masquerading as the savior.
They say that the Promised Land lies on the other end of the wilderness. In the middle-east, the Promised Land is the wilderness. The wilderness has turned into madness from time to time. This time, this madness propelled the militant wing of Hamas on the morning of Eid to march with the young Palestinian men on the ground full of land mines, bringing knives to the gunfight.
If that isn’t suicidal, what else is?
A famous saying about war is “only the dead have seen the end of the war”- and who knows it better than Israel and Palestine? Yet, these are the countries that, since Israel’s inception, have fought eight massive wars, two Palestinian intifadas, and countless military conflicts almost every day and still not a speck of solution in sight.
Two neighboring nations that spare no mercy yet again confront each other, hellbent on turning cities to ashes. On the one hand, it is the nation with the most powerful military in the middle east and one of the most powerful in the world, which is being used to thrash the Geneva Convention to dust.
On the other hand, it is the country whose 80% population lives below the poverty line but would rather splurge money on war.
The question “who is to be blamed” is as complicated to answer as the history of Israel, Palestine, and the surrounding neighbors.
Netizens and people of the world displayed no delay in picking the sides as soon as the violence erupted at the Al Aqsa mosque or the Temple Mount. The world is standing up with Palestine as the situations develop for the third intifada. However, nothing is as simple as it appears in the middle-east.
So instead of asking questions that have no answers nither the solution, let’s switch to asking the real-time question, which might also highlight the solutions that are right before Palestine and still choose to ignore.
“Does anybody really care about Palestinians, including their own militant forces?”
The most famous excuse for wars is the love for the people and the country. But let’s not forget that it’s not militaries that start the war, but politicians. The battleground is often laid by the obsession with power, expansion, and supremacy.
Let’s talk about Hamas. The radical militant group of Palestine refuses to upgrade from its age-old tactics to bring Israel to its knees. The first rule of war is to avoid it at all costs or to engage in it on your own terms. Unfortunately, this chief principle of battle sounds fictitious in Hamas’ dictionary. While scuffling against an army that can crush yours with just a fist, the best bet is not to fight because you lack the footing to lay your terms.
Despite having fought almost a dozen wars and allies against the singled-out Israel in the past and being defeated in every, Hamas still chooses to go on a war. Diplomacy is Palestine’s best alternative to a military war.
But it is not happening because Hamas has other agendas on its list- To gain a political foothold in the West Bank and Ramallah. And for the radical militant group who wraps extreme nationalist sentiments into a parcel of missiles and slaughter, there is no bet other than a war to win the elections of Palestine.
There are a few facts one should know about Hamas that will paint a clear picture of what it is trying to achieve from reigniting wars over the course of history.
Originally started in the 1920s in Egypt, Hamas was legally registered in Israel in 1978 by Sheikh Ahmed Yassin. The country now shares firm ties with other nations of the Arabic league like Syria and Iran.
Under its charter, the motto of this militant group is to “destroy Israel.” It says to quote-unquote, “there is no solution for the Palestinian question except through jihad (holy war).” It is hard to imagine peace when the driving forces bear banners that spell bloodshed.
This militant group warns the Arabs of Palestine that any Muslim who leaves “the circle of struggle with Zionism” would be guilty of “high treason” and, therefore, punished. As a result, Palestinians are struggling to survive the wars, but they are also struggling to break free from the domestic extremism which has taken away their freedom.
This is the organization supported by other Arabic countries in the region, for example, Turkey. The countries whose presidents and prime ministers never even whispered to object to the persecution of Uighur Muslims in China but are as loud as trumpets when it comes to the matter of Israel and Palestine.
Apart from being the face of the two intifadas, Hamas has indulged in countless wars in the region with the Israeli forces, upholding its motto.
The original tactic to maintain an upper hand on Palestine through armed resistance against Israel came to a halt when in 2005, Israel withdrew its settlers and troops from Gaza, which they annexed during the end of the second Intifada. This was when the forces of Hamas started exploring their political alternatives to the power and regime on the land that has witnessed innumerable tragedies.
Despite gaining a landslide political victory in Gaza, Hamas didn’t stop pursuing its militant ambitions against Israel.
Every time the two countries go on a war against each other, thousands of Palestinians lost their lives and homes. But it never compels Hamas to rethink its ways before taking arms against a country with unparallel military power.
If hijacking the sentiments of helpless Palestinians for the votes was not on the top of Hamas’s list, maybe it would.
Maybe it would shed a tear on the tragic lives of Palestinian Arabs and swear never to retake the same route that caused massive bloodshed of their own brothers and sisters.
Maybe it would take the route of efficient diplomacy and stop sacrificing its people for political power.
Maybe it would try to build ties with powers like the U.K., the U.S., and others instead of losing their faith by launching more than a thousand rockets in the territories of its neighbor within a single day.
Maybe it would adopt a diplomatic road to protect its people.
But the truth is, it won’t.