Maybe he is not a reporter but this guy [nydailynews.com] is an American on al-Qaeda's side.
There is a huge difference between a fundamentalist terrorist nut and two law-abiding respected citizens of a nation that write for a major news outlet. I can't believe I have to explain that. This is your best counterexample? Really?
Sorry but the opinions if two biased people don't make what they say true.
Sure, they are "biased." And in my opinion, you are "biased." You can't just dismiss someone else's opinion as biased; you have to prove why it is wrong. Besides, if there is anyone who is likely to be biased in favor of a nation on the international stage, it would be two people who are residents of said nation.
They have not been told to leave all of the Gaza Strip. They have been told to leave certain areas where operations will be held.
I assume you are referring to knock on the roof warnings? Read this:
"Imagine you are in Gaza and there are airstrikes everywhere, and many families are in the bottom floor of their home," Abu Rahma added. "Families miss the sound of the 'warning' missile because it sounds like just another explosion."
But even in an era of precision targeting, the impact of missiles can't be restricted to one house in such a densely-populated area. Many of those injured in the strike on the al-Batsh compound were hit by shrapnel as they left an adjacent mosque. And the United Nations says some 70% of those killed in the current conflict have been civilians.
On July 8, eight civilians -- all members of the Kaware family -- were killed when their home in Khan Yunis was hit. According to the IDF, the family left the house after a phone warning but had returned home prematurely after a "knock on the roof." Perhaps they mistook it for the explosive missile.
You go to your mosque for daily prayer. No one warns you because the mosque itself is not the target for a bombing, but as you exit the mosque, you are killed by shrapnel from the next building. If you can be killed in this way, it is clear that remaining in Gaza is not safe. You cannot always avoid the places that will be bombed because you do not always know the places that will be bombed. The only safe thing would be to leave the city entirely. If the IDF really cared about minimizing civilian casualties, they would have allowed this. But they did not want to allow Hamas agents to slip into Egypt, so civilians be damned. Strategically, it would be better to strike empty military infrastructure in an abandoned city than what is happening now. Sure, because the IDF did not allow evactuation, 200 Hamas fighters are dead, but 200 is not enough to put a stopper on Hamas or even to inconvenience them very much.
So if Fatah is a sham then any coalition between Hamas and Fatah is also a sham. You can not have it both ways.
I never said anything about a coalition between Hamas and Fatah, but I agree. Any coalition between Hamas and Fatah is also a sham. The Palestinians don't have any "real" options on the table. They have a sham government (Fatah) or terrorists (Hamas). Israel allowed Palestinians to have a real option, they wouldn't vote for Hamas.
It is common law that any contract signed under duress is null and void. I would say "Sign or we keep your soldier" would be considered duress.
Then you have a very poor understanding of common law. Duress applies to individuals, not to governments. If the Palestinians has Netanyahu locked in a room with a gun to his head and said "sign this or we will kill you," that would have been null and void over duress. But when two countries are meeting at a civilized dialogue over a prisoner exchange, it is pretty much understood that not signing the agreement means that both sides will keep their prisoners. I mean are kidding me? Threatening to keep hold of a prisoner during prisoner exchange talks is putting someone under duress? Do you expect me to believe that Israel was going to release all the Palestinian prisoners even if the Palestinians didn't sign the agreement? Oh wait, no they wouldn't. Because even after both sides signed the agreement they rearrested the men anyway.
I see no problem with that. If the Palestinians vote for Hamas they are voting for more rocket attacks and more Israeli retaliation. If they vote for a terrorist organization bent on the destruction of Israel they deserve to bear the consequences of that vote. Showing those consequences is not a bad thing.
So in your opinion, violence and intimidation against those who vote for the opposition are legitimate components of a democracy? That is exactly what is happening in Egypt right now, and that's what you call a democracy? That's what I call a military dictatorship. Look, I don't want Palestinians to vote for Hamas either, but Israel has no right to try to control the Palestinian populace through fear. In no circumstance is it okay to seek vengeance for the crimes of a government by attacking its people.
And arms and rockets into Gaza. They will also be used, as Hamas has stated and is doing now, to strike at Israel.
You totally missed my point. Sure, those tunnels are being used to funnel rockets into Gaza now but they were originally built because the residents of Gaza were literally dying of thirst thanks to draconian Israeli policies. Those tunnels would never have existed if the Israeli government had treated the residents like Gaza like people instead of animals. In a pattern that has been repeating itself since the 80s, Israel creates its own worst enemy by subjugating the Palestinians, and when that enemy festers and grows (into something like Hamas or the tunnel network that they are using) they punish Palestinian civilians for the thing that they themselves (Israel) forced the creation of.
There is no doubt in my mind that Hamas is a terrorist organization and should be treated as such. But just as France and the UK created their worst enemy in Germany when they demanded enormous reparations at Versailles in 1919, and just as the US created its worst enemy in Afghanistan when it left the Northern Alliance to fend for itself against the Taliban in the 1990s, Israel created Hamas through years of subverting Fatah. If the Israeli government had allowed Palestinians an outlet to express their political views peacefully through Fatah, they wouldn't have been so desperate as to elect Hamas in 2006. But Likud refused to give the PLC even a single inch, so they began a systematic oppression of the Palestinian political apparatus. If Likud hadn't strong-armed Fatah on every issue, if the Israeli government hadn't forced Palestinians to stick to three "Safe Passages" while allowing Israelis to wander the West Bank as they please, if Sharon hadn't supported the increased construction of settlements in the West Bank, if Netanyahu hadn't sabotaged the Oslo accords, then Hamas would have no power.
Now don't get me wrong, I am not blaming Israelis for these issues. First, there are some fundamentalist Arab agitators who seem to be in love with the idea of violence for its own sake. Second, even in those areas where Israel is at fault, a very small minority of Israelis (the extreme right of Likud) are the driving force.
I also don't think that the injustices against Palestinians justify the violence of Hamas. Nothing justifies terrorism. But Israel has to understand that Hamas isn't going to stop just because Israel has the moral high ground. Hamas will continue to have power as long as they have support of the Palestinian people, and they will have the support of the Palestinian people as long as Palestinians are treated as second-class citizens with a farce of a democracy. Some people would like to paint the conflict as Israel versus the terrorists, but it isn't that simple. It wasn't that simple in Nicaragua, it wasn't that simple in the Somalia, it wasn't that simple in Afghanistan, and it isn't that simple in Palestine. It never is.