War’s One Truth

By Shoshana Rubin, November 15, 2012

 Wars One Truth“War is hell.”

There has never been and never will be a more apt description.  War is ugly.  It is bloody.  It is shameless.  It is unconscionable.

And, sometimes, war is necessary.

We cannot avoid war when our enemies pursue it so relentlessly and that is a shame.  Hamas has launched hundreds of rockets at Israel.  For a long time, Israel did not reply except to shoot down the most dangerous rockets.  But this was a situation that could not last forever.  Israel warned Hamas repeatedly that the attacks had to stop, but Hamas and its sister group, Islamic Jihad, continued to fire rockets from Gaza.  Israel warned Hamas that they may target military leaders for assassination, but Hamas continued on its course.

Now Hamas is paying the piper.  It’s natural for any supporter of Israel to be relieved: though the rocket attacks continue Hamas is clearly shooting its last bolt.  The man most responsible for planning these attacks is dead, killed in an amazing precision airstrike.  Do not be deceived, though.  This is war and it is far from over.

We will see some ugly images over the next few days and weeks.  Children will die.  They will die horrifically.  Israeli children will die because it pleases Hamas that they do.  Palestinian children will die because Hamas and Islamic Jihad fighters hide amongst civilians.  They do this so that any Israeli defense appears to be disproportionately violent.  Israeli soldiers wear uniforms; terrorists do not.

Israel has warned Hamas and the people of Gaza time and again that there will be consequences for their actions.  Those warnings have gone unheeded.  Israel takes care not to hurt innocent civilians, but how can the IDF be sure to protect innocents when villains hide amongst them?  More innocents will die.  It’s unavoidable.  In military parlance this is sometimes referred to as “collateral damage.”  Let’s not dismiss the innocent so callously.  Innocents, both Arab and Israeli, will die, because Hamas wants it to be so.  The only way for it to stop is to end Hamas.  So in this conflict, as the innocent and the not-so-innocent die, let’s acknowledge the unfair and ugly truth: war is hell.

And, sometimes, war is necessary.

Shoshana Rubin

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