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Israeli aggression on Gaza 

Col (r) Ikram Ullah Khan

The recent attack on Israel by Hamaas comes as a reaction to the continued Israeli occupation of Gaza Strip and the West Bank coupled with unabated Israeli oppression and brutalities inflicted on Palestinians. The attack was triggered by the recent military raid by Israeli forces in the occupied West-Bank city of Jenin on January 26, 2023. 

The attack will be remembered as a historic blitzkrieg by Hamaas never experienced before in the history of warfare, far surpassing even the famous German blitz, a war strategy used by Germany in the first phase of World War-II. The attack took Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) and its intelligence agencies off guard, thus inflicting psychological shock and disorganization in Israeli forces through employment of surprise, speed and firepower thereby forcing Israeli military chief to confess a huge intelligence failure on the part of Israel. Hamaas successfully launched a massive missile and rocket attack on Israel killing hundreds of Israelis and destroying its key military installations. 

The history of armed uprising or revolt of Palestinians against Israeli occupation of West Bank and Gaza Strip can be traced back to 1987 which lasted for six years, i.e. 1987-1993 and is called the ‘First Intifada’ which in Arabic means rebellion or revolt. It refers to a legitimate uprising against oppression. The Second Intifada (armed uprising) occurred in 2000 after the Camp David Summit failed which was aimed at reaching a final agreement on the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.

Now, came the Third Intifada with the recent fatal attack by Hamaas which had become inevitable after the recent military raid by Israel on the West-Bank city of Jenin as mentioned above besides its continued illegitimate occupation of West Bank and Gaza Strip. 

Interestingly, the UN had waned in February this year that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was again reaching a boiling point and that the odds of a Third Intifada are very high, but it fell on deaf ears of the US, it’s Western allies and even the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), and no one bothered to take measures to stop it from happening. 

It may be mentioned here that prior to the six-day Arab-Israel War of 1967, governance of Palestinian territories was split between Egypt and Jordan, with the former having occupied the Gaza Strip and the latter occupying the West Bank. But both these territories were occupied by Israel after the Arab-Israel War of 1967. The UN and a number of human rights organizations continue to consider Israel as the occupying power of the West Bank and Gaza Strip due to its blockade of the territory. Under the resolutions of UN General Assembly and UN Security Council, the UN regards Gaza to be part of the occupied Palestinian territories. 

The Israeli bombardment began on October 7 as a retaliation to an unprecedented attack by Hamaas that governs the Gaza Strip. The relentless bombardments have reduced the buildings to rubble thus decimating the population and the injured being pulled out from the debris. 

The indiscriminate bombing has plunged the densely populated areas into humanitarian crisis. The latest reports including the reports of CNN suggest that the entire territory is under complete siege, cutting electricity and water, and blocking the entry of food, fuel and medicines to Gaza’s 2.1 million population, thus bringing about an impending humanitarian crisis. UN agencies have called up on Israel to lift the siege of Gaza so as to allow supply of food, fuel and medicines and other necessities of life to Gaza in order to stave off human catastrophe. 

According to latest reports coming from Al-Jazeerah and Western media, Gaza is being wiped out. More than 3,000 people in Gaza are said to have been killed by Israeli bombing and shelling since the fighting began and more than 6,000 including women and children have been injured. Gaza’s sole power plant has run out of fuel and shut down, internet connectivity has also been cut in most parts of the territory, water supply has been discontinued and hospitals are running critically low due to shortage of medical supplies and fuel to power backup Generators.

In such a grave humanitarian crisis, global response has remained lukewarm. However, the West is all out to support Israel and condemn Hamaas while there is a mute response from the Islamic world in support of Palestinian people. 

As regards OIC, it sounds a misnomer to call it Organization of Islamic Cooperation as there seems to be no cooperation and unity among the member countries. How unfortunate it is that the sole representative body of 57 Islamic countries is not ready to show that much concern which is expected from it about the ordeals the Palestinians are going through and which the situation demands, is deeply consumed with internal feuds and is reluctant to take practical steps in support of oppressed Palestinians and stands divided, each one having it’s own ax to grind. It feels content with issuing mere condemnatory statements about Israeli aggression just to appease the people of Palestine. However, Iran has turned out to be the only saving grace.

Conversely, the non-Muslim world spearheaded by the US stands united and has come forward openly with men and material not only declaring that it would stand by Israel and wouldn’t leave it in the lurch but has also taken practical steps to support Israel and bolster its fighting force by sending fighter jets and other fighting equipment. 

Moreover, the 40-countries’ Islamic military alliance called as the Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition (IMCTC) headed by Saudi Arabia finds it convenient to be a mere spectator. In such a dismal scenario, the only glimmer of hope comes from Iran who is fearlessly supporting Hamaas and has warned Israel that it could receive a tough response from Tehran’s allies and that the conflict could spiral into a regional/Middle East war. 


Also: A criminal silence.

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1 Comment
  1. Mir Wazir Khan says

    The United States and her allies including 28-member European Union is almost unanimous in supporting Israel; while no such assistance is coming to Palestinian factions including Hamas from the Muslim world. Several important Muslim countries have diplomatic relations with Israel while others seems on the line. This tragedy is going since 1948 and there’s no clue how and when the Palestinian will have their independent home land. The Muslim world stands bitterly divided and so are different Palestinian factions. The four Arab countries namely Syria, Libya, Iraq and South Yemen that once built some form of a united front against Israel have since been destroyed by Western military power and are now gasping for their own survival. In a situation like this defeating Israel seems difficult and Isareli military power supported by biggest military machines of the world is likely to destroy everything Palestinian. If the current disunity among Arab-Muslim countries continue then Israel is going to be more and more powerful and dangerous not only for Palestinians but to entire Arab-Islamic world.

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