March 27, 2024

3 responses to critics of Israel's war

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by Susanna Hoffman

Are you struggling to respond to anti-Israel criticism?

Read these responses to common criticisms of Israel’s ongoing war with Hamas to help navigate difficult conversations.

1. “It is wrong for Israel to finish its campaign in Gaza.”

Response: Hamas launched a war with Israel on 10/7 when it sent at least 1,500 terrorists, including official Hamas members and many “civilians,” to invade Israel. They executed a carefully planned massacre of 1,200 civilians and captured 229 hostages—134 of whom remain in captivity (or have been killed without official documentation).

Israel is a sovereign country and is obligated to defend its citizens when attacked in a state of war. In this case, adequate defense means eliminating the existential threat Hamas poses to Israel.

Arguing for a ceasefire before the hostages are released and Hamas is eliminated is a double standard.

No one questioned Ukraine when they responded to Russia’s invasion. Instead, companies and celebrities throughout the West changed their social media icons to Ukrainian flags or recast their logos in yellow and blue.

A country has a right to defend itself when its borders are breached in an act of war–especially when that breach comes at the hands of a terrorist organization whose official documents call for genocide.

2. “Israel is targeting civilians, or at least demonstrating flagrant disregard for their lives.”

Response: Even if you take Hamas at its word (read from Tablet Magazine why you shouldn’t) Israel has achieved one of the most accurate military campaigns in history. Israel has killed at least 12,000 confirmed Hamas terrorists in its counter-campaign. This doesn’t include people like those who crossed the border on 10/7 and engaged in the terror activities in civilian clothes.

Someone who participated in rape, murder, kidnapping, and torture on 10/7 but isn’t an official member of Hamas can be considered a “civilian.”

The Hamas-run Ministry of Health claims there have been 30,000 casualties since the start of the war. Even if this were true, that would be a rate of 2.5 civilians for every terrorist— which is a better ratio than what is seen in most modern wars.

3. “Israel targets hospitals and other civilian infrastructure which is a violation of international law.”

Response: It is a well-established fact that Hamas conducts its operations out of hospitals, schools, mosques, and other civilian infrastructure making them legitimate military targets (read from WSJ).

Article 19(2) of the First Geneva Convention, states that medical facilities “shall not be used in an attempt to shield military objectives from attack” or “to shield, favour or impede military operations.” Article 21 of the First Geneva Convention states that such facilities can become legitimate targets when they “are used to commit, outside their humanitarian duties, acts harmful to the enemy.” (Read from the International Red Cross Committee)

Thus, Hamas’ use of these facilities as a base for military strikes, storing weapons, holding hostages, or other military acts is a violation of international law and voids protected status.

Despite all of this, Israel has conducted its operations with immense care and strategic planning to minimize collateral damage (Read from Newsweek).


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