Letter ignored the role of Hamas

A letter written by Kate Gould appeared in the Tidings on July 26. She'd lived in Gaza for eight months. I've never lived in Gaza. I have spent time in Israel. I don't know whether Ms. Gould has been in Israel.

She writes about the unfortunate circumstances of people in Gaza. She makes no mention of the events which created those conditions other than to blame Israel. Nor does she make any comments about what Hamas refuses to do to ameliorate those conditions.

She's silent about all the years Hamas murdered hundreds of Israelis on buses, in markets, at weddings and any place they thought they could murder Jews. She's silent too about all the years Hamas, which rules Gaza, attacked Israel daily with rockets until Israeli suffering caused Israel to retaliate in defense of its people. Hamas deliberately provoked Israel into responding, knowing it would mean death and destruction for Gaza and its people. But that didn't matter to Hamas. All that mattered to Hamas was that the Israeli attack would create worldwide condemnation of Israel.

Most of the aid that goes to Gaza ends up in the pockets of Hamas officials. Because of their successful propaganda machine, the more Hamas can create suffering in Gaza, the more the world condemns Israel.

In Israel there are Israeli Jews who think as Ms. Gould does and they express their views openly and without fear. In Gaza, no one would dare express a view not approved by Hamas.

Ms. Gould fails to mention that the goal of Hamas is to destroy Israel and that Hamas refuses to make peace with Israel or agree to its right to exist. Nor does she mention that in the schools she wants to build, a major part of the curriculum teaches hatred of Israel in particular and Jews in general. Arab children are carefully taught to hate. That's true in perhaps all Arab countries. I've read much of that material.

Israel is the only country in the Middle East where Arabs have freedom of speech. Muslims can and do build mosques in Israel. Jews cannot build synagogues in Arab countries or even live in Arab countries.

How does one ameliorate the suffering Hamas forces on its people, except for a privileged few? Hamas could express a desire for peace. It could concede Israel's right to exist and it could stop teaching its people to hate. It's amazing what wonderful benefits would accrue to the people of Gaza if the goal of Hamas was peace and prosperity for its people instead of death and destruction of Israel.

Maynard Telpner


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