Norman Finkelstein on Gaza (3)

November 22 2012

The Israeli notion of “deterrence capacity” is manifestly subjective. 

 

It denotes not to how many buildings you destroyed or how many people you killed—however much fun this might be–but whether you have instilled in the enemy sufficient fear that they will do whatever you say.

 

Israel proclaimed at the inception of its latest murderous rampage that its goal was to restore its deterrence capacity in Gaza. 

 

The natives were getting restless, the locals were getting too uppity.

 

It was time to take out the big club to remind them who was in charge.

 

Last night the people of Gaza poured into the streets and erupted in spontaneous celebration, while Hamas leader Khaled Meshal acquitted himself with Christiane Amanpour as if he were a Head of State.

 

Now, here’s a simple question:

 

Were Gaza’s people and leaders celebrating the fact that they were now more terrified of Israel than before Israel’s murderous assault began?

 

 

It might appear absurd even to ask this question, yet to read the “expert” analysts in Israeli papers this morning, the only possible conclusion is that Palestinians were celebrating their renewed dread of the mighty Israel.

 

One of these experts wrote:

 

“From [Ehud Barak’s] point of view, Operation Pillar of Defense could not have turned out any better. It was a swift military success for Israel that for once didn’t get bogged down or lead to a diplomatic setback. Swift and sophisticated is how Defense Minister Ehud Barak likes to do things.”

 

Another wrote:

 

“But to achieve this quiet [in Gaza], the top officials ordered the Israel Defense Forces to draw up a precise, cautious and calculated operational plan. Last week the IDF carried out the plan with impressive success…. And so it turns out, surprisingly, that even under the difficult conditions of the new Middle East it is possible to terrify the Gaza Strip.”

 

For their sake and ours, let us hope and pray that Israel’s “thinkers” haven’t reached this point of terminal lunacy, and are just trying to put a good face on a historic defeat.




Norman Finkelstein