The Gaza crisis
Publish Date: Jul 30, 2014
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By Charles Okecha

The current Gaza conflict between Hamas and the Israelis is a puzzling scene that the Christendom prefers to stay mute about.

What does God say about this conflict?  During the Exodus, Joshua and the Israelites had an encounter with an angelic being and posed a question, “Are you for us or for our adversaries?”

The angel replied “Neither”, but I come to execute God’s commandment (Joshua 5:13-14). The ideal viewpoint should be reconciliation or the UN to sanction a wall or no-conflict belt between the two sides.

There is a distinctive difference between the divine decree at the time of the Israelite Exodus and that of the current dispensation.

The idolatrous nations of Canaan indulged in many abominable practices which included child sacrifice to demons, they attacked and subdued weaker nations, slaying the young and old and ceasing plunder.

In fact according to (Deut 9:4-6) God said to Israel, it was not because of their righteousness that he let them conquer the land. 

But because those nations were wicked and to keep the promise that he made to their ancestors, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob by His foreknowledge.

The Israelites were mandated by God to be His witnesses and teach the nations of the world true worship, fear of God, love for God and fellow humans.

After failing to do so and lured into idolatry, they were subsequently taken into captivity by the Assyrian, Babylonian, Persian and Grecian empires till in 70 AD when Rome destroyed Jerusalem and scattered them to all nations. 

After suffering the dreadful holocaust, the UN felt it prudent to bring them back to their ancestral homeland and in 1948 the nation of Israel was formed.

The occupants of the land of Palestine at that time and the neighbouring lands hitherto have not welcomed the UN mandate that created the nation of Israel.  Several wars have been fought to annihilate it, and Israel remains at tenterhooks.

The cost of their survival provokes brutality considering that each Iron Dome rocket interceptor costs at least $600,000, let alone fighter planes, tanks, bomb shelters and other weaponry.

Although the Palestinians in Gaza may desire to live peacefully with the Israelis, proxies of hostile nations intermingled amongst them dedicate whatsoever resources available towards the destruction of Israel.

The settlement of the conflict between Israel, the Palestinians and the Arab world first of all requires acknowledgement of the rights each of them has to exist. This is difficult at a time when much of the Middle East is engulfed in conflict. 

Indigenous communities that have lived together like the Sunnis, Shiites, Alawites, Kurds, Yemenis, Iraqis, Egyptians, among others destroy each other under the guise of political exclusion and religious extremism.

Much less shall they heed the behest of the UN, or other authority to lay down their arms, shun militancy, suicide bombing, and embrace democratic governance and peaceful co-existence.

A century after the World War I started after  an assassination,  the death of four teenagers, three of whom Israelis and one a Palestinian is  causing unfathomable bloodshed and stirring up protests all over the world.

Grisly images of Gaza children slain during Israel bombardments portray a ruthless Israel yet without the Iron Dome project, the extent of destruction caused by rockets fired would perhaps be at the same scale.

The Russian and US invasions of Chechnya, Afghanistan and Iraq respectively with the consequent perpetual destruction caused suggest the inevitable when nations come under attack. 

The UN should establish a wall or no-conflict belt between Israel and Gaza as suitable barricade against future conflict.

The writer is with St. Paul’s College, Mbale.

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