Hamas is the problem

An excess of emotion appears to dominate recent discussion of the Israeli blockade of Hamas. Actually, Israel lives in peace with both Jordan and Egypt. There is no active belligerence with any of its other sovereign neighbors.

Both portions of the future state of Palestine were parts of other sovereign countries. The West Bank was Jordanian; Gaza was part of Egypt. The recognized administration of Palestine is the Palestinian Authority (PA). This is basically a descendant of the Palestine Liberation Organization. They made an informal peace with Israel, and there was no blockade of the PA.

Hamas, with funding and logistical support from Syria, Iran and some non-state enemies of the Jewish state, has had control of Gaza and has ceased behaving as a government at peace. Hamas does little to build its country or to enrich the lives of its subjects but expends its treasure and energy in belligerency.

Israel has no choice but to continue to inspect everything that is to be imported into the territory controlled by Hamas. Israelis are not a paranoid people. They are realistic. They know that even those neighboring countries with whom they are at peace would be at least as happy if all the Jews suddenly abandoned the land they have improved for over a century. A land that now has five times more trees than a hundred years ago, with farms that thrive in the desert, with respected universities and hospitals, with laws that allow non-Jewish minorities in Israel to study, worship as they please, serve in government jobs and private enterprise, and own property and businesses.

Hamas would not respect any inspection regime. Sadly, no Arab country would wholeheartedly, even with United Nations sanction, enforce any such scheme.

Israelis would love to let their neighbors live in peace. Hamas is obligated to conform to the laws of reality that say no government may comfort and shelter those who stage attacks across their borders, in either direction. Let Hamas dedicate itself to peace through law enforcement, by halting ad hoc rocketry and cross border forays into Israel, and perhaps by ceasing the teaching of hatred and intolerance to children in their schools, then the blockade of sea ports will be no longer justified.

Jeffrey Klein, Glen Burnie

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