isreal vs gaza
Debate Rounds (3)
The Pro states that Hamas launches rockets at "isreali" civilians. Let's begin by acknowledging the fact that, ironically, "isreal" is not real. IsRAEL, however, is a real place and we can only assume that is what the Pro meant.
That aside, the Pro contends that these rockets are being launched at Israel are "aimed at Israeli civilians", however, these rockets are not exactly aimed at Israeli civilians or the Israeli military for that matter. These rockets, the majority of which are homemade Qassam Rockets, which are unguided rockets propelled by a mixture of sugar and fertilizer. They are notoriously inaccurate and clumsy. Often they fail to detonate on impact, or even land inside the Gaza strip or explode on the launch pad. Rockets which land and detonate in Israel usually land in the desert, far from populated areas. This is not to defend the rocket attacks, but to simply state the facts.
The Pro then claims that these rocket attacks are killing Israeli children. However in a ten year period from June 2004 to July 2014, the number of civilians in Israel killed by Rockets fired from Gaza totaled 26, with only 4 of them being minors. Given that in the time period over 7,000 rockets were fired by Palestinian militants, plus more than 3,000 mortars, to say that Palestinian rocket fire posed a great risk to Israeli children would be a gross distortion of the facts.
The Pro then tells me to tell Hamas to stop "throwing rockets", however, there are several problems with this. For starters, the rockets are not being launched by Hamas itself, but rather by its armed wing, the Al-Qassam Brigades, which has a considerable amount of independence from its parent organization, making it very hard to control. The second issue is that the Al-Qassam Brigades are not the only group which fires rockets. The Al-Aqsa Martyrs, the PFLP, Majlis Shura Al-Mujahideen, Tawhid al-Jihad, the Popular Resistance Committees and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad all take part in rocket attacks as well. The PIJ is the most prolific attacker, responsible for the bulk of Rocket Attacks since Operation Pillar of Defense in 2012 (not including Rockets fired during the 50 Day War in 2014). Furthermore, I do not know anyone in the leadership of Hamas or anyone in Hamas at all, and thus, I cannot tell them what to do.
The Pro then presents a strawman argument, claiming I do not believe Israel should exist. This is false. I am a supporter of a two-state solution, specifically the plan proposed in the Arab Peace initiative. The argument presented by the Pro cites the adoption of Resolution 181(II) by the UN in 1947. This resolution, however, did not give Israel the whole of the British Mandate of Palestine and partitioned the area between Jews and Arabs. The 1967 Borders were the border established in 1948 after the first Arab Israeli War, and under UN Resolution 242, are the sole borders of the state of Israel. As to the argument about annexation, under the 4th Geneva Convention and Resolution 242, the occupation and attempted annexation of the territories taken in 1947 is illegal.
The argument presented by the pro does not align with the facts nor does it add up to any justification for the continued occupation of and war against the people of Palestine.
The pro accuses me of saying Israel has no right to exist. This is simply false and a wild accusation that has no basis in reality. What I did say is there is no place called isreal, but there is a place called Israel. If you look at the title of this debate, you will see it says there is a place called "isreal".
The second statement by the con is that I claimed that the rockets don't do any harm. This is false as well. If one of these homemade Qassam Rockets were to land near you and explode, it would most certainly harm you, and possibly kill you, as I acknowledged when I stated the death toll from rocket attacks. What I did argue is that the threat from these rockets is overstated, as demonstrated by their lack of efficacy, and their notorious inaccuracy.
The pro then goes into how he "knows people in the west bank who run to shelters when Hamas fires rockets." This is blatantly false, as the West Bank is well out of range of even the most advanced rockets used by Palestinian militants, and there have been no successful rocket attacks which were launched from the West Bank. He then says he has seen the damage to a 5-year old's bedroom, and uses this as justification as to why we cannot say that these rockets are ineffective and inaccurate. Yet again this does not contradict the facts, which are the rockets used by Palestinian militant groups are ineffective and inaccurate, and when given the probability of being killed in a rocket attack are one in 575 (rough calculations), it is clear that the pro is overstating the danger they pose.
The pro then says the Israeli attacks on Gaza are retaliation for rocket attacks, however in the most recent operation, Operation Protective Edge aka the 50 Day War, the operation was launched as a response to the Reconciliation Agreement between Fatah and Hamas, which had resulted in the creation of a new government, and as retaliation for the murder of three Israeli settlers in the West Bank. It also played into a larger strategy used by Israel called mowing the grass. This is the strategy of launching attacks on Gaza sporadically with the intention of making it impossible for Palestinians to build up their infrastructure or economy and keep the administration in Gaza unable to operate with the Palestinian National Authority in the West Bank.
The con then critiques the fact that Hamas is not the only faction in Gaza, saying "when Israel agree to a ceasefire with Hamas all the sudden the rocket stop going into Israel." This argument glosses over the fact that the ceasefire was not only reached with Hamas leaders, but with leaders of the other factions in Gaza as well.
As for the argument against the 1967 borders, the pro claims that if Israel were to end its illegal occupation and attempts at annexation, of the West Bank, the Palestinians would kill all Israelis. He backs this up by stating Hamas said they would trade Gaza for peace, however this is simply untrue. The withdrawal from Gaza was a unilateral decision made by the Israeli government, it was not the result of negotiations with the Palestinians. Hamas, which at the time was still committed to a one state solution, a stance they have since changed, never made any promise. Furthermore the Pro is completely ignoring the fact that while the Troops and settlements may have left Gaza, Israel did not relinquish total control, as they then chose to implement a total blockade of Gaza turning it into what the UN has called an "open air prison", and the continued occupation of the West Bank, which people in Gaza oppose as well. By adopting the 1967 borders the basis of a peaceful settlement will be created. Nearly every proposed peace plan involves the 1967 Borders and UN Resolution 242.
I will begin my final argument by clarifying what I mean. I do believe that Israel has a right to exist as a state of all its citizens within the 1967 borders. However, there is no such nation as Isreal, as in Is and Real. This is what the title of this debate refers to and the Pro refers to this nonexistent nation throughout the debate as well as the State of Israel.
As to the rocket issue, I have never contended that the rockets are not dangerous, all I have contended is that only 1 in 575 rockets launched over a ten year period caused a fatality. And it is clear that such a minor threat does not warrant such a massive retaliation causing more casualties than these rockets could ever cause. During the 50 Day war, roughly 1,939 Palestinians were killed by the Israeli military, 1,700 of them are believed to be civilians. Meanwhile the number of deaths from rocket and mortar attacks for the entire year of 2014 was six. There is simply no justification for this at all, especially given that the actions taken by the State of Israel as “retaliation” amount to massive war crimes. While the rocket fire is itself also a war crime, it is a comparatively less serious war crime than the mass murder and targeting of civilian areas, the use of chemical weapons like white phosphorous and the collective punishment on citizens of Gaza. As to the issue of rocket attacks on the West Bank, while there are 3 known instances where rockets fired from Gaza landed in the West Bank, the number of rockets fired FROM the West Bank is zero, and this is what I referred to in my last argument.
The pro does acknowledge that the specific reasoning for the 50 Day War was the retaliation for the killing of three Israeli settlers in the West Bank, however he says that this is perfectly legitimate, when in fact it is not, as the kidnapping and murder took place in the WEST BANK, not in Gaza, which Israel attacked. There is simply no link which justifies this argument.
While it is true that there are, or rather were, tunnels from Gaza going into Egypt and a smaller number going into Israel, the characterization of these tunnels as “terror tunnels” is rather disingenuous. While it is true that the tunnels were used in the capture of Gilad Shalit in 2006, the only other time the tunnels were used to facilitate paramilitary operations was during the 50 Day War in 2014, and the attacks were all on Israeli military outposts, which, under the Geneva convention, are considered legitimate military targets. Therefore the Characterization of these tunnels as “Terror tunnels” does not align with the reality. The reality is that the main purpose of these tunnels is smuggling. Due to the Israeli blockade of Gaza, and the strict restrictions on anything going into Gaza, the tunnels have served as a way to bypass the blockade, allowing everything from toys to weapons to illegal drugs to enter Gaza. Prior to the 50 Day War, the tunnels were the only thing which allowed for the economy of Gaza to operate. Since then, the economy has been unable to recover as Israel has made it nearly impossible for building materials to enter Gaza, which in turn makes rebuilding efforts inside Gaza impossible.
The Pro mischaracterizes the situation in Gaza, stating that there are multiple groups who run gaza, this is false. While roughly a dozen armed paramilitary groups do operate inside the Gaza strip, there is still a political administration, run by members of Hamas who were elected during the 2007 election. There is a police force, and civil court system and other basic forms of civil authority. The issue is that due to the blockade, communication and coordination with the National government in the West Bank is impossible and thus no elections have been held since 2006. It is not the lack of political control that causes the poor state of the economy in Gaza, but the blockade which has made it impossible to conduct trade or business and thus it is difficult for many in Gaza to find work.
And while the blockade may have been formally implemented in 2006, prior to then Gaza was declared a “closed area” by the Israeli authorities, which meant that entry into Gaza was banned unless you were an Israeli soldier or settler. The firing of rockets had begun prior to the withdrawal from Gaza in 2006, but continued afterwards to fight back against the blockade, and as a part of a broader armed strategy to force Israel to leave the West Bank and East Jerusalem and allow for the creation of a Palestinian State.
In conclusion, in this debate I have demonstrated that the State of Israel is not justified in its actions against Gaza. The pro has contended that the rocket fire from Gaza justifies retaliation against Gaza, however these rockets seem to mostly harm strawmen, as the fact is that these rockets are not actually as dangerous as the Pro would like to have you think, especially when compared to the capabilities of the Israeli military. The Pro a case which lacks coherence, evidence and grammar, and is riddled with fallacies, inaccuracies, and statements which are plainly untrue. The pro tells you to google what he says, however you cannot go an entire debate without providing any evidence and then tell people to google your claims in order to give them legitimacy. I have provided sources throughout this debate, which support my claims and have relayed the facts provided by them to you along with analysis of these facts, as one is supposed to do in a debate. The fact is that the Pro’s case does not align with the facts and if he cannot provide evidence to support his claims they cannot meet the burden of proof.
Thank you and Vote Con.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Ragnar 3 months ago
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Reasons for voting decision: RFD in comments.
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