Belen Fernandez: Ten years ago today, on December 27, 2008, Israel launched Operation Cast Lead against the Gaza Strip — a twenty-two-day affair that ultimately dispensed with some 1,400 Palestinian lives, among them more than three hundred children.
The name of the operation was inspired by a Hanukkah poem by H. N. Bialik, national poet of Israel. The Daily Beast mused at the time: “It might seem strange that Israel would name a military operation after a holiday associated with gifts and dreidels, but in Israel, the Hanukkah story celebrates national liberation.”
In other words, perhaps, the slaughter of innocents was not just fun and games — it was also crucial to Israel’s “liberation” from the people it had occupied and abused for no fewer than six decades, since the violent establishment of Israel on Palestinian land in 1948.
The Israeli fatality count from Cast Lead totaled three civilians and ten soldiers (four of them from friendly fire), which put the ratio of Palestinian civilian to Israeli civilian deaths at 400:1. Predictably, however, Israel unfurled its signature brand of criminal illogic to claim the role of victim, portraying itself as under attack from Hamas rockets despite the negligible damage inflicted.
[…] Now, with Israel preparing for its next big showdown, it appears even greater horrors are in store. The head of the IDF’s Homefront Command recently warned that any future war with Gaza or Lebanon might keep the residents of Tel Aviv from blissfully sipping coffees in their favorite cafés. But as we embark on this new decade of Israel’s “national liberation” — with anti-Palestinian savagery facilitated by billions of dollars in annual military aid from the US — it’s not just the Israelis who need to wake up. More here.