The last time I wrote about Gaza and Hamas was 13 years ago, in 2010.
The point of the column was the striking contrast between how Israelis deal with life’s challenges and how Hamas leads its Palestinian constituents in Gaza.
Israel withdrew from Gaza in 2005 and turned it over to the Palestinian Authority. Within two years, with local elections, Hamas was in charge.
Hamas claims their wish is to build an independent Palestinian state. They could have started the process then 15 years ago. But they did not because although they say the words, their priority is not a state for their people but the destruction of their Israeli neighbors to the north.
In that column in 2010, I related the story of Israeli settlers who were uprooted from their homes in the Gaza region when Israel pulled out. There was resistance and protests from these families that they should be forced to abandon their homes, but they had no choice.
I quoted the late television personality Art Linkletter, who observed, “Things turn out best for the people who make the best out of the way things turn out.”
This defines the Israeli mindset. It is a culture of life, of faith, of going on and building despite life’s often devastating challenges.
Most know how Israel emerged from the ashes of the Holocaust, with Jews returning from the four corners of the globe to build a state in their ancient homeland.
Starting from nothing except their own human capital and commitment to build anew, a modern state was built, which now has a per capita GDP higher than most European countries.
Regarding the Israeli families that were moved from Gaza, I related how they moved inland to a barren patch of desert and built a new agricultural settlement. They piped in desalinated water from the Mediterranean, irrigated the desert and started planting.
Within five years they were exporting $50 million a year of organic potatoes, carrots and peppers.
Now this community, Halutza, boasts a medical center and dental clinic and grows 75 different varieties of fruits of vegetable, with exports worldwide.
Meanwhile, in Gaza, under Hamas leadership, zero has been accomplished. Things are exactly as they were 20 years ago.
Their only accomplishments have been the casualties, Palestinian and Israeli, as a result of the never-ending state of war, totally the result of Hamas refusing to recognize Israel and vowing its destruction.
They have wasted their sovereignty growing hate rather than a state and an economy.
When I wrote the column back in 2010, Israel’s per capita GDP was $31,267. By 2022, it was up to $54,660.
Per Daniel Pipes, president of the Middle East Forum, the Palestinians living under the Hamas totalitarian regime are not happy, but expressing opposition amounts to a death sentence.
Polls, per Pipes, show that the local population supports the statement “Palestinians should push harder to replace their own political leaders with more effective and less corrupt ones.”
He notes that since Hamas took over, “an estimated 250,000 to 350,000 young adults” have left Gaza.
The horrors and atrocities committed by these purveyors of death have been captured on video for all to see. Women, children and elderly civilians murdered in cold blood. Corpses desecrated.
Unfortunately, now, young Israelis are pulled out of universities and places of work and mobilized once again to fight. More parents will lose their children; more young wives will become widows.
Israelis fight in order to survive. Hamas fights because they want to kill.
For the sake of Israel, for the sake of the Palestinian people, for the sake of the world, we must pray that this time is the last time that Israeli and Palestinian lives are lost because of this evil regime.
The status quo is no longer an option. Hamas must be removed for good, once and for all.
Star Parker is president of the Center for Urban Renewal and Education and host of the weekly television show “Cure America with Star Parker.” Her recent book, “What Is the CURE for America?” is available now. To find out more about Star Parker and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.
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