World’s unease over Gaza

Bright is wrestling with a phony dilemma. When every allowance has been made about Israel’s right to defend itself, the notion that there could be a middle ground of opinion about the humanitarian catastrophe it has precipitated in Gaza taxes credulity. Jewish opinion would be outraged were anyone to suggest that he or she was struggling to decide what to think and say about any comparable persecution of Jews, or indeed about persecution of Jews of any description.

What grounds are there for agonizing about how to react to Israel’s crippling economic blockade of Gaza and the mass killing of Gazans by its rampaging army last year? Such agonizing seems all the more gratuitous in the light of the authoritative UN Goldstone Report documenting Israeli atrocities in Gaza. To equivocate about the issue is akin to someone having equivocated in the late 1930s about what line to take on Guernica, the obscene aerial destruction of the Basque town of that name by Nazi and Italian warplanes during the Spanish Civil War, which thanks to Picasso’s famous painting, became the defining image of fascist military brutality.

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