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November 6, 2014 10:44 am

Now the World Fiddles as Gaza Cries

avatar by Moshe Phillips and Benyamin Korn

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The Israel Defense Forces Artillery Corps fires shells at Gaza on July 18, 2014, after Israeli forces began a ground invasion into northern Gaza amid Operation Protective Edge. Following the operation, Hamas continues to control Gaza and openly considers any truce with Israel as a time to re-arm for the next conflict. Photo: Miriam Alster/Flash90.

Once more, Gaza’s border is in flames.

Civilians are being evicted from their homes, a curfew has been imposed, and a crossing that enables Gazans to leave has been closed. Yet the world is silent. Isn’t that strange?

Hundreds of residents along one of Gaza’s borders have suddenly been ordered to evacuate, on just two days’ notice. Their homes are to be demolished. There is no talk of compensation. Why isn’t the United Nations Security Council denouncing this outrage?

Because it is Egypt, and not Israel, that is doing the evicting. (See the New York Times, October 28 edition.)

The Egyptians have decided they need a buffer zone along their border with Gaza. They don’t trust the Hamas regime, which they say has been assisting terrorists who have been attacking Egyptian soldiers in the Sinai. Apparently Cairo does not accept the Obama Administration scripted fiction that the new Hamas-PA government is run by “technocrats.” Egypt understands that a Hamas-appointed “technocrat” is, first and foremost, a functionary of Hamas.

So the bulldozers are rumbling in Rafah. As a result of the Israel-Egypt peace treaty of 1979, the city of Rafah was split in half. Part of it is on the Gaza side of the border. Residents in the “Egyptian” part of town are now being evicted willy-nilly, in order to make room for a buffer zone that will be nine miles long, and with water-filled trenches that will be more than 500 yards wide — that’s half a kilometer, or five football fields.

Yet nary a word of protest from the White House, nor any suggestion of delaying any U.S. arms deliveries to Egypt.

That’s not all. In response to the recent attacks in Sinai, the Egyptians have imposed a dawn-to-dusk curfew all along the Egypt-Gaza border. In other words, no resident of Rafah can leave his or her home after dark, for any reason.

Yet Thomas Friedman has not written any columns in the New York Times with heart-rending stories about Rafah  women being forced to give birth in unsanitary conditions because they can’t travel to the local hospital after sundown.

Egypt has also shut down the only crossing along the Egyptian side of the Gaza border. With the passageway closed, no Gazan can get out.

So where are the snarky political cartoonists depicting Gaza as a Holocaust-era ghetto? Nor is Secretary of State John Kerry warning of Egypt becoming ostracized and isolated in the world. Western academics are not threatening to boycott their Egyptian counterparts. J Street is not lobbying for U.S. intervention against this new assault on Arab civilians.

Could the hypocrisy of the international community be any more blatant?

Evidently, if they genuinely cared about the well-being of the residents of Rafah, the White House would be holding up arms to Egypt — exactly as it held up Hellfire missiles to Israel. If he were sincerely concerned about Arab lives, Thomas Friedman would be blasting the Egyptians on the op-ed page of the New York Times. If they truly wanted to help the evacuees, J Street’s lobbyists would be working overtime to get the Obama Administration to intervene against Cairo.

But the truth is that they don’t really care about the welfare of Arab civilians at all, unless there is an opportunity to bash Israel. When Arabs are mistreated by their fellow-Arabs, the State Department and the pundits and the “peace camp” fall silent.

So let’s all learn an important lesson from this experience. Israel and its supporters should stop worrying about the latest Thomas Friedman diatribe or the latest J Street conference or the latest unfriendly remarks by the Obama White House and the State Department. They will go on blaming Israel — and excusing Egypt and other Arab countries — no matter what. Nothing Israel does will ever satisfy them — so there’s no point in trying.

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that the Egyptian evacuations were taking place on the Gazan side of the Rafah border.

Moshe Phillips and Benyamin Korn are members of the board of the Religious Zionists of America.

The opinions presented by Algemeiner bloggers are solely theirs and do not represent those of The Algemeiner, its publishers or editors. If you would like to share your views with a blog post on The Algemeiner, please be in touch through our Contact page.

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  • Jackson

    I support Egypt’s right to defend itself, just as I support Israel’s right to defend itself. Everyone freaks out when Israel does because its a “religious war,” but when Egypt does, its just like black-on-black violence in the States, nobody (meaning politicians) cares as long as they don’t have to get their hands dirty. Sad but its the truth. Welcome to the real world.

  • N Mann

    Where’s the outrage and Obama action to condemn? Over 40 school children are reported slaughtered in Mexico, today report of suicide attack on Nigerian school killing almost 40 school kids, 400 Nigerian girls kidnapped almost one year ago with Obama sending special team to find them and story dies a slow death without any real anger from world. But let small fraction of children put in harms way by their own leaders killed in Gaza or Israel with extreme sorrow by Israeli government for accident and clearly with no evidenced of deliberate action as in the above cases, the world press goes viral in condemning action.

    Today a report of Obama sending Clapper to rescue Americas held in North Korean prison, gets N. Korea to free them, with no admission of price US paid if any, and Obama sat by as Mexico held sick ex American Marine with brutish care and president did nothing.

    Obama set up grand publicity announcement of SSgt. Bergdahl swap as Obama with hands around Bergdahl’s announcement and projected a sad family present, and since freedom Bergdahl has not even had reunion with parents. It’s a topsy turvey world.


    80 U.S. troops in Chad will aid search for abducted Nigerian …
    – – U.S. Forming ‘Coordination Cell’ in Nigeria to Find Abducted ……/missing-nigeria-schoolgirls/u-s-for…
    – Remains could be 43 missing Mexican students –
    2 days ago – Official: Three men arrested in connection with the disappearance of Mexican students in Iguala, Mexico, have admitted to killing many people.

    U.S. Marine Jailed in Mexico | Live Coverage – Fox News…/marine-jailed-in-mexico/?...
    Fox News Channel

  • Jon

    Further correction – according to Aswat Masriya (Egyptian news source), some evicted residents have received compensation, and an additional 500M Egyptian pounds have been allocated for compensation, so the statement that “There is no talk of compensation” is not accurate.

  • I am a nobody

    Why do Palestinians continue to support Hamas despite such devastating losses? Palestinians needs better friends.It’s not so much that, Arabs lie, but that they believe their lies is the problem,

  • jalo

    Unclear on: “CORRECTION: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that the Egyptian evacuations were taking place on the Gazan side of the Rafah border.” what are the implications? they are evacuating Gazans from the Egyptian side of the border?

    • Jon

      jalo – the original version said that egypt is evicting gazans from their homes on the gazan side of the border. in truth, egypt is evicting egyptians from their homes on the egyptian side of the border. the implication is that it marginally weakens the argument being made here, as the only “crime” that egypt might be accused of committing which should be expected to draw criticism from the international community (if they were consistent with their criticism of israel) would be closing off the gazan border, not the evictions.
      as i’ve noted, the article also claims that no compensation is being made to such residents, which is not true, though this isn’t really relevant anymore once you realize that the evictions are of egyptians and not gazans.

  • instead of blaming everyone for a problem that has spand centuries. The Palestinians ( Arabs) and t the Jews are geneticlly about 80 percent the same. Gome up with a solution instead of just complaint and blaming others. Obama didn’t create this.

    • j

      Hello biology… ALL humans are 99.9% genetically identical.

      • Koala Bear

        Nowadays, it’s not the hardware, it’s software that matters the most.

  • Shouldn’t that be dusk-to-dawn curfew, not dawn-to-dusk?

  • Joe
  • Rachelle Langer

    We all know that Israel is the #1 target of the UN and, of course, the media at large.

    I think, though, that this writer is wrong on the facts.

    Egypt is, indeed, creating a buffer zone between Gaza and itself – but not in Gaza. From what I have read, the area is in the Sinai peninsula where thousands of their OWN people are being displaced.

    What they have done to hurt the Gazans is close the Rafah Border Crossing.

    This decision was made after dozens of Egyptian soldiers were murdered in the area.

    • Rachelle Langer

      Please do not publish my previous comments.

      Although most sources did report the demolition in the Sinai only, I just did some more research and it seems that they actually destroyed homes within the Gaza side of the border.

      But, of course, since it’s not Israel doing it the media just turns a blind eye.

      • Rob

        I find it ironic that you would criticize the media while at the same time writing an Op-Ed based on clearly inaccurate information.

        I agree our media sucks because they’re beholden to their advertisers. But publishing an Op-Ed based on misinformation in my opinion is worse. And putting “CORRECTION” at the bottom of the article while keeping the context and basis of the argument intact is a slap in the face of real journalism.

  • Just maybe, everyone feels that Israel should be the most ethical country in the region. Since her neighbors have no morals. So when Israel picks on the poor Palestinians, who
    instigated the trouble first, Israel should turn the other cheek.
    Arabs it is assumed, will kill each other. We see it in Syria and Iraq. And now the Egyptians are doing it in Gaza, no fuss, because it is understood Arabs kill Arabs.
    Israel has the right to do whatever it takes to protect herself!

    • Joe smith

      i agree, we must continue to take affirmative action and elimate positions of threat. No more negotiations, Muslims will now fear our wrath!

  • Brian Sacks

    Actually, it is the Egyptians who are being evicted, with the promise of rehousing and compensation. Look up all the related news stories, including the New York Times, Oct. 28 edition cited.

  • Paul

    The real battle is fought on the political and media front. And we are being badly beaten there. To say the lesson is that we should just ignore ALL criticism is childish and dangerous.
    The steps being taken by the Egyptians are welcomed by all those who oppose the Hamas grip on Gaza. Why bash it?
    The US did not criticize Israeli action in Gaza – they criticized our building more homes across the ’67 border instead of utilizing the opportunity to make reach for a regional peace settlement. they didn’t stop Hellfire Missile supply because of Israeli actions – they discovered that sensitive munitions were being supplied at a very sensitive time WITHOUT reasonable administration authorization, and they continued to supply these during the operation after a brief delay – DESPITE the criticism this drew on the US.
    This article is one long list of illogical, bleating, dangerous distortions of the truth, leading to a ridiculous conclusion.

  • Doc Smith

    This article is spot on…..soooooo..why does Israel
    still play the PC game….if they are rocketed by 1
    rocket from Gaza..send back 100…..enough….
    enough….enough….how many lives already lost
    over the years?….how many conferences and “peace”
    agreements?….how much AID money has been spent
    (and a majority on the continued conflict toward
    rockets and tunnels, etc. AND to line the pockets of
    council members of hamas ,Fatah,pal,etc.?), Israel
    cannot do business with the USA because of labor
    boycotts, police are on alert for violent demonstrations
    in the streets (not to mention how this activity strains
    already tight budgets), copy cat killings by mentally
    challenged individuals here and in Canada, how many
    threats by jihadists to THIS nation?….on and on and
    sickenly ON! ENOUGH!!!!!……WHO benefits from all
    this?? Gaza is going to receive millions of American
    money…….WHY?……the politicians look good to their
    constituents meeting this nation and that trying to
    work out some “peaceful” solution to the problem…..
    after all money is easily printed, its only paper!….
    ….and reelection is a MUST regardless how much is
    spent and how many lives are lost to this continued
    idiotic war…..and On and On and On it goes……
    WHAT do We The People say???? IIsn’t it time we
    tell ALL politicians what WE The People want in
    a voice LOUD enough to be heard….regardless
    Democrat or Republican or Lib. or whatever stripe
    …….Listen To The People or OUT you go!

    • Rita

      Doc Smith, can you please ask that filthy moron of a president occupying the White House with his Muslim brotherhood as bodyguards ..WHY??

      • Marc

        That is a ridiculous characterization of Obama. Please don’t respond, this isn’t what the article is about.

  • David Goshen

    Its a pity that no one from the UN Secretary General downwards is calling for an investigation of the humanrights of Gaza residents who are suffering at the hands of the Hamas Government anfd their Malitias,clandestine interviews with Gaza residents tell a shocking story of a suppressed people with no rights to criticize the Government on fear of death or injury.The Gazans suffered in the recent war having been denied the entry into the tunnels and large underground
    military areas which would have cut losses of life to a minimum.In addition to the locals there tens of thousands
    of Fatah supporters who have been stuck in Gaza since 2007 bloody coup some of whom were liquidated by Hamas during the recent war claiming they were spying for Israel.They should be allowed to return to Ramallah at long last.Now Hamas does not want even to remember Arafat 10 years after his death.Peace is only possible if the PA will cut its links with Gaza .

  • T.C.

    Quite! just ignore it and keep praying. I’d rather have God as my heavenly Father any day. He doesn’t call evil good and good evil.

  • Could it be antisemitism? No! Never!

  • jackde

    It demonstrates quite clearly that their is no love for the Gazan’s/Palestinians but it’s there hatred of Israel…the Jews that motivates them. We are on our own..after 2000 years you would think that we would understand.

    • elvan

      Unfortunately I have to agree with you. I care about Gazans because I care everybody around the world this is my nature. .Saying that. I came to a conclusion none care about Gazans in Muslim nations. If they did , they would be talking about how to help them and how to solve their problems , logical help so on… Only people who cares about them are not even Arab .Some international community , filmmakers so on .

  • Forget how the UN and the world reacts. The BIGGEST difference is how the EGYPTIANS react. When Israel does it 1/3 of the Knesset and 2/3 of the press and media is decrying our ‘aggression’ and the Palestinian tragedy. The Egyptians know what and Egyptian is but bec. the Israelis have forgotten what a Jew is they think that we are the enemy.

  • Israel it’s your land, take it back!
    Why are the nations in an uproar?
    And why do the people mutter in vain?
    The kings of the earth stand up,
    And the rulers take counsel together,
    Against the Lord and his anointed..

    Be strong and courageous, do not be
    afraid for the Lord your God is with you..
    God bless Israel…!

  • Carl

    Yup. And Assad murders thousands of Palestinians in Syria with equal impunity.

  • Emmett

    I don’t see the Egyptians asking for permission or looking for acceptance from the world in order to protect their land & people. The problem is with Israel & their idol worshipping misleaders who don’t think twice about desecrating the Torah and sacrificing Jews for their own greedy self interests, not the well being of Israel.

  • citizenstat

    The authors’ points are spot on, and the Egyptian action is just the latest in a long string of events that illustrate the hyporacy of Western governments and NGOs. Israel should never acquiesce to pressure where it knows that to do so is contrary to its own best interests.

  • z

    “Nothing Israel does will ever satisfy them — so there’s no point in trying.”

    EVERYTHING Israel does satisfies them, because EVERYTHING Israel does is exactly as it is told to do. I’ve yet to see one thing on which Israel took an independent stance, EVER!

    ALL I see are empty words and empty gestures, too stupid to be “stupid”. NOTHING has EVER been done to remove or even slightly push back the Jihadistanis from Israel. ALL I see is continued support and sponsorship by Israel for their presence in Israel and around Israel.

    The whole thing is a sad joke and absurd theater.

  • Hasi

    There is no cry of outrage because the World correctly views Gazans as a tribe of stone aged cry babies. They are getting what they so richly deserve. On the other hand, the World decries the actions of the Israelis because they have the temerity to have taken the gift of a homeland made of swamps and desert, and turned it into a prosperous vibrant democracy. Imagine the nerve of this uppity Jews!