Monday, January 19, 2009
Gaza and the Madman Theory
As the Palestinians weep in the ruins of Gaza.
“I couldn't save anything,” said the elderly teacher, with tears in his eyes. “We have nothing left — no money, no food. We have nowhere else to go.”
“In my worst dreams I didn't think it would be this bad,” she sobbed. “This was the house of my children. All the pictures of my children, my diaries, my wedding ring are gone. The Israelis have wiped out my future and my past.”
The Israelis explain the madman theory.
The Israeli theory of what it tried to do here is summed up in a Hebrew phrase heard across Israel and throughout the military in the past weeks: “baal habayit hishtageya,” or “the boss has lost it.” It evokes the image of a madman who cannot be controlled.
“This phrase means that if our civilians are attacked by you, we are not going to respond in proportion but will use all means we have to cause you such damage that you will think twice in the future,” said Giora Eiland, a former national security adviser.
And all I can say is I'm just glad the killing has stopped. I hope the world can help the poor people of Gaza rebuild their shattered lives. I hope the Israelis can learn the difference between being strong and being brutal.
And of course, madness, madness.
The poor little children.
What a cruel world...