January 19, 2009

The political timing in the Gaza conflict

Israel decided to start a military offensive in Gaza just in time, exactly in the last days of the Bush administration, which has been a sponsor of any type of interventionism with the excuse of fighting terrorism. Hamas isn't any victim here, but the power of the Israeli Army and the technology it has, makes any type of armed confrontation between the two factions completely unequal and with a result of much more civilian deaths in the Palestinian side, as it has happened. The figures show that since the start of the conflict in the last days of December, around 1200 Palestinians have died, while only 13 Israelis have perished. But it's not just that, as thousands of Palestinians are now homeless, and most of the population has very limited access to the most basic resources for survival. The Israelis have even bombed a UN building in Gaza, mosques and many other non-military targets. As I've said, it's not a coincidence that the operation took place on the last days of Bush's administration, as it would have been much more difficult for Israel to start such an operation with a new American president, whose main concern internationally is to responsibly end two irresponsible wars. I'm not saying that Obama's administration won't be a very close ally to Israel, but the political timing made this the perfect moment for the Israelis to strike against Hamas. The ceasefire won't solve the problem of the thousands who are now displaced, traumatized and who have lost their beloved ones. So let's see if Israel's position remains the same after Obama's inauguration.

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