Please note in terms of best journalistic practises, we will seek to carry both sides of this almost century long dispute, if dated from the Balfour
In the morning hours of 7 October 2023, the terrorist organizations Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) initiated a new war against Israel: bloodthirsty squads of Palestinian terrorists breached the border fence from the Gaza Strip to Israel, carrying out barbaric pogroms in the streets and houses of the Israeli villages and towns along the border, massacring indiscriminately of gender and age any Israeli crossing their way. At the same time, the same organizations launched a massive firing offensive of thousands of rockets and missiles aimed at population centers, from Be’er Sheva through Tel Aviv up to Jerusalem.
As of this writing, the number of Israeli victims, mostly civilians, stands at over 900 dead and close to 2600 wounded, while more than 130 of Israeli citizens have been abducted and taken hostage inside the Gaza Strip. Footage of the terrorists who go on their barbarous rampage, murdering and looting, are distributed on social media, alongside pictures of Palestinians in Gaza as in the West Bank handing out candies and expressing their joy in the face of the heinous crimes.
That same beautiful sunny Saturday was supposed to start for the people of Israel with the celebration of Simchat Torah, the last holy day of the Sukkot festival. The hundreds of thousands of Israelis living in the pastoral countryside surrounding the Gaza Strip were caught in shock by the dreadful Palestinian raid on their way to pray in the synagogues or to spend the weekend with friends or family. Hundreds of innocent people celebrating a musical nature party, strolling in the street or simply resting quietly in their homes were cold-bloodedly slaughtered by bestial jihadi terrorists motivated by the same heinous ideology as the Islamic state. What should have been a day of joy turned into a day of sorrow and mourning.
Exactly 50 years after the surprise attack of Arab armies on the State of Israel in the 1973 Yom Kippur War, Israel again finds itself under attack by hate filled enemies who despise international law or humanitarian standards and who display willingness to commit the worst war crimes. Hamas spares no means to carry out its destructive plans. Because indeed this attack was planned in advance and is not connected to any pretext whatsoever. The extent of the means that the Hamas and PIJ invest in their war effort proves that this is where they invest the bulk of the economic support they receive. Their outspoken priority is not the welfare of the residents of Gaza, but the destruction of Israel. Meanwhile, it is precisely Israel that has tried in recent times to alleviate the plight of the civilian population of the Gaza Strip and to foster economic and humanitarian aid. Alas, for Hamas, the lives of the citizens of Gaza are just cheap pawns to use for the destruction of the lives of Israeli citizens. The terrorist organizations operate deliberately from within densely populated areas and adjacent to humanitarian institutions in Gaza. They commit thus double war crimes by indiscriminately shooting at Israeli civilians while using the residents of the Gaza Strip as human shields.
Hamas’ attack on Israel could not have been realized without the active support, both financial and military, of the Iranian Ayatollah regime, which works tirelessly to destabilize the region and the world in order to expand its control over the Middle East and promote its Islamic revolution. Iran operates through its proxies, now Hamas and the PIJ, as well as the Hezbollah in Lebanon, the Houthis in Yemen and the Shiite militias in Iraq.
The solidarity and our right to self-defense has been acknowledged by the many friends in the international community, who do not want the obscurantist forces to succeed and endanger further the endeavors for peace and stability.
- H.E. Itai Bar-Dov
- Ambassador of Israel to Barbados