You don’t know squat about Gaza


That’s the premise of two op-eds published this week which, quite frankly, deserve each other.

First, Rosa Brooks, writing in the Los Angeles Times, tells all the parties to the conflict why they’re a bunch of idiots. Here’s a sample from her takedown of Hamas (fear not, Israel and the Bush administration come in for a drubbing too.)

Keep that cycle of violence going! The Israelis killed a Palestinian? Quick, fire a barrage of rockets toward Israel. You know they’ll respond with even greater force. Be stubborn and keep up those rocket attacks! Israeli bombs can’t tell the difference between your fighters and Gaza’s schoolchildren. Let the civilians pay the price for your "brave" resistance.

Slightly more seriously, Columbia prof Rashid Khalidi does some debunking of Gaza myths in the Times yesterday. Here’s a snippet that ought to get some pro-Israel folks riled up (though there’s plenty to do that in the Times this week: see here and here.)

Israel is still widely considered to be an occupying power, even though it removed its troops and settlers from the strip in 2005. Israel still controls access to the area, imports and exports, and the movement of people in and out. Israel has control over Gaza’s air space and sea coast, and its forces enter the area at will. As the occupying power, Israel has the responsibility under the Fourth Geneva Convention to see to the welfare of the civilian population of the Gaza Strip.

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