Tag: gaza

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A stylized photo of the al-Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza, with English and Arabic text on its arch, before the explosion.

Why Israel Hinges Its Identity on the Gaza Hospital Attack

Yesterday, the al-Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza was hit by an IDF airstrike or a “failed rocket” launched by Palestinian militants. In some ways, this felt like an existential moment for Israel—much more so than even the Hamas massacres on Israeli territory two weeks prior. That’s because despite America’s claims of an “existential threat” from terrorism in 2001, or Israel’s perceived security needs in keeping a stateless population at bay, terrorism rarely poses serious (i.e., existential) danger to nations, and most terror campaigns fail. Of course, there are exceptions. Jewish terrorism in Mandatory Palestine forced Britain to disengage in the midst of hotel bombings, political assassinations, and kidnappings, for which Israel was awarded the legal right to statehood. Palestinians soon adopted these tactics, yet lacked the strength, and, until recently, sufficient public opinion to achieve their aims. In the meantime, Israel has become a nuclear-tipped hegemon with an identity crisis. Many young Jews want nothing to do with what the UN and human rights groups call an apartheid state, while Israel itself has become increasingly corrupt, right-wing, and religious. So when news broke of (yet another) potential war crime in Gaza, Israel needed to respond—and quickly. […]