A three-year-old embargo on Hamas imposed by Israel and Egypt keeps nearly all factories shut and supplies away. Eighty percent of the population gets some form of assistance.Wait, Israel AND Egypt? Why Egypt?
Israel wants to isolate Hamas because the group rejects Israel’s existence. As Ayman Taha, a Hamas movement spokesman, said in an interview, “Our long-term strategy is the liberation of all of Palestine, but we would agree to a temporary solution involving a state in the 1967 borders with a truce of about 10 years, depending on the conditions of the truce.”Well, yeah, that and years of bombarding Israeli civilians with thhousands of rockets.
[Notice that though Hamas got its head handed to them by the IDF in January, they nevertheless assume they can dictate transparently disingenuous terms. Revealingly, they forever refer to everyone but themselves as "arrogant".].
Egypt rejects Hamas because of its affiliation with the Cairo-based Muslim Brotherhood.Which assassinated Anwar Sadat for making peace with Israel. The Muslim Brotherhood, of which Hamas is the Palestinian branch, also fought a lengthy and bloody terrorist campaign against the Egyptian regime for its corruption and secularism. At times this came close to civil war. The Mubarak regime won.
As with their wars with Israel, Muslims never accept that they have lost. So nothing is ever settled until one side or the other is dead, all of them. And both sides know that. Which is why their politics are so violent. An awful lot of Muslim Brotherhood people wound up very dead in Egyptian jails as a result.
So the terrible suffering in Gaza caused by the embargo is as much a product of the Egyptian embargo as of the Israeli embargo? That is poignant in several ways.
One is that the Egyptians, unlike the Jews, are the Palestinians' Arab and Muslim brothers. Another is that Egypt has imposed its embargo without years of rocket bombardment of Egyptian civilians from Gaza.
A third poignancy is that the Arabs, the UN, the Euro-left, the various American Israel-bashers, the Norwegians, the Rachel Corries of the world, the J Street liars, have all forgotten to condemn Egypt for its half of the embargo. No UN resolutions, no marches, no university boycotts, no divestment campaigns, no thundering from protestant pulpits. Not a peep.
Which leads to the fourth poignancy - that the Israel-bashers don't care about the embargo or the people of Gaza the least little bit, whether they live or die. They care only about the Gazans as they are able to use them to attack Israel. If they cared about Gaza they would oppose the Egyptian embargo and they don't. What does that leave?
Which leads to the fifth and final poignancy, the ironic one. It is that the enemies of Israel are thus using the people of Gaza collectively as a political human shield, just as Hamas uses them individually as military human shields, as human sacrifices.
An aptly ghoulish thought for Halloween Eve.