Global response to Gaza
As the Palestinian Hamas movement and Israel continue to wage their bloody struggle, the global community is smelling the stench of blood to welcome in the new year. More than 430 people in the Palestinian Gaza Strip, governed by Hamas, were killed by Israel’s onslaught last week, also resulting in a large number of civilian casualties and a death toll for children amounting to 70 lives.
The number of casualties is expected to snowball as Israel decided to precede any ground attack with a massive aerial bombardment Saturday, on the eighth day of its aerial attack. The global community as well as the United Nations and the European Union expressed their deep concern that Israel is poised to launch a major ground offensive into Gaza, which will pose a serious threat to the safety of civilians, and have called for an immediate cease-fire.
There cannot be a strong enough reason to go to war, when the war kills and maims innocent people indiscriminately. Israel and Hamas should accept the recommendation of international society and cease all military actions.
Unfortunately, both sides are not prepared to obediently accept the cease-fire plan. Israel is on the lookout for an opportunity to strike a devastating blow against the Hamas’ rocket launching facility that has traumatized southern Israel. It seems intent on destroying Hamas this time, as it prepares all that is necessary to wage a long-term war by mobilizing a huge number of reserve units.
Hamas is showing its fighting spirit, saying, “We will make Gaza a tomb for Israeli soldiers.” They don’t seem genuinely worried about the dangers to innocent civilians including children. Israel rather criticized Hamas, “Stop using civilians as human shields.”
It is high time that the global community actively engages itself in an effort to stop more human sacrifices. The U.S. should clarify its position on an immediate and unconditional cease-fire. The UN Security Council on Safety held an emergency meeting last Saturday but failed to release a statement calling for an immediate cease-fire, as the U.S. was insisting that Hamas should stop their rocket attacks before agreeing on a cease-fire.
The U.K., Germany and Japan, America’s traditional allies, have not clarified their official positions, while European countries as well as Arab nations are censuring the Israeli invasion. If the global community is divided over such an intense conflict, we will never stop the gunfire in the Gaza Strip.