Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has made a solemn vow to destroy all the tunnels through which the Hamas terrorists transport weapons to use against Israeli citizens.
The completion of that mission is not to be negotiated, he said, to which I only can add: You go, Mr. Prime Minister.
Netanyahu’s mission is to destroy Hamas. How in a sane world can anyone dispute that goal? Hamas started the fight that has exploded into all-out war between Israel and the terror organization that has vowed to destroy Israel — as in wipe it off the map. To think that some folks, say, in the United Nations and even the White House believe Hamas is worthy of holding a place at a negotiating table is laughable on its face.
The Israelis see it differently, and with good reason.
The Israel Defense Force has responded with overwhelming power against Hamas. No one should accept the death of innocent victims. The Israelis say they are not targeting civilians. Yet the cost in civilian lives has been too great and no one should want to see it continue.
Hamas’s role as instigator, in my view, places the responsibility for the carnage on that organization. Hamas can end this conflict simply by standing down, by dismantling its rocket batteries and by ending its assault on Israeli neighborhoods.
And then it should renounce its intention to eradicate Israel.
As for the tunnels, they need to be destroyed. It is through those underground passage ways that Hamas is bringing its destructive weapons.
I cannot pretend to be an expert on this conflict. I have, however, been to the sites of previous attacks launched by Hamas against Israelis living near the Gaza border. The people of Sderot and Ashkelon allowed us to look at homes damaged by rocket fire in late 2008 and early 2009. I’ve heard testimony from Israelis who told my traveling party and me about building codes that require every home in Israel to be furnished with reinforced bunkers that protect residents against future attacks.
Well, those future attacks have arrived.
Netanyahu and the Israeli military are getting hammered by critics who equate their response to what Hamas has started. They are wrong.
I wish for the fighting to stop as much as anyone else. However, let’s be sure to put the responsibility for it squarely where it belongs: on the terrorists who started this bloodshed in the first place.