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Sunday, November 25, 2012

The Muslim view of war and the 'cease fire'

Israel's leaders still don't get it. If the Obama administration gets it, they're even more conniving than most of us have given them credit for being. As far as Hamas and the residents of Gaza are concerned they won last week's war. The proof is that they dictated the terms of surrender.
How would ibn Hazm, the great Muslim theorist on war, understand the ceasefire between Israel and Hamas? He probably would have believed -- as, most likely, do his modern day co-religionists -- that the Israelis were afraid to destroy Hamas's leadership.
Ibn Hazm wrote: "When at war, show your enemy no mercy, but when you have him at your mercy, you must give him breathing room but you dictate the terms." The loser has no say in the terms; only the victor has.
The terms of this agreement allow Hamas to live another day, re-arm and fight again. To the Muslims, this is a sign that Israel does not have either the ability or the will to make them surrender. Israel and its allies have thus proven to the Arabs, Turks, Iranians, and other Muslims, that Israel is weak and, for whatever reason, is incapable or unwilling to do what is necessary to subdue its enemies.
The current agreement emboldens Israel's and America's enemies. It gives them the emotional fortitude to fight on. Unless Israel destroys Hamas's leadership once and for all, it can expect many more years of terrorists showering death and destruction on its population. These Islamic terrorists are consequently inspired to think that America and other Western allies are easier targets for more Islamic fundamentalist terror.
Where does America fit into this picture? Muslims have a deep belief that all non-Muslims are united against the Muslims; people are either Muslims or non-Muslims. According to a classic Arabo-Islamic principle: "Unbelief is one nation". That means that all Muslims belong to one "nation" and all non-Muslims belong to another, united against the Muslims. Many Muslims therefore have difficulty making a distinction between Americans and Israelis, both members of the same non-Muslim people.
Many Muslims also believe that America pressured Israel to accept this ceasefire. In Muslim eyes, this means that non-Muslim America did not stand by its natural non-Muslim ally, Israel. America as an ally is therefore unreliable. If America would not even support its fellow non-Muslim ally, how can Muslims, such as, say, the Sunni Saudis, rely on the US to protect them from their existential enemy, Shi'ite Iran? The Saudis can only conclude that they have no alternative other than to seek different, less feckless, allies such as China or Russia to protect them from the Iranian regime. America, they likely recall, refused to support its ally, the Shah, against Khomeini, and thus America lost Iran as a great ally. It also quickly abandoned its ally Egyptian President Mubarak. Will America lose the Saudis as well?
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At 11:05 AM, Blogger Eliana said...

"Regardless of the ceasefire agreement, we will attack and destroy any shipment of arms to Gaza once we have spotted it," an Israeli defense source said. (Ynet News)


Israel has been attacking arms shipments meant for Gaza for years now. There's no reason why Israel will have to stop doing this.

If it breaks the cease fire, then so what?

Why is it necessary for so many pro-Israel people to go from one theory to another theory to another theory to another theory about the cease fire (with each theory being more insulting to Israel than the last)?

Israel has not surrendered to Hamas or Egypt's newest dictator who has thrown democracy out the window after using it to be elected.

At 5:00 PM, Blogger michael said...

We must remember that Israel is utterly dependent on the USA and highly dependant on the EU. Thus Israel has NEVER been able to "dictate" terms. Not in 49, 56, 73, 82 nor the more recent actions in Lebenon and Gaza. By avoiding the ground campaign, Israel retained the good will of the governments and peoples of the USA, UK, Canada, Australia and Germany (remember those subs). There are thus pressures on Bibi and the government that we civilians don't have to worry about. I too oppose this "hudna". But I understand what was behind it.


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