There is enough blame to go around, and we will, no doubt, get there. But at the top of the list is the multi-generational indoctrination of Palestinians to hate Jews, kill Jews, and see their own death in bloody shreds as a high honor. Not all Palestinians, of course, took the bait – but enough did that the fantasy of a “negotiated settlement” or “two states for two people” died long ago.

Second is Iran, for capitalizing on the perversion, both ideologically and militarily.

The first PLO summer camps teaching children to hate and kill were exposed by Life Magazine in 1970, years before the Iranian revolution that brought the mullahs to power. If you were one of the cute kids on the cover, you were about seven years old. Fifty-three years later, your children and grandchildren have passed through a system of indoctrination that became evermore phantasmagorical as the PLO morphed into the Palestinian Authority (PA), with control of the education system, and Hamas, with its overlay of radical Islam. Now, it isn’t only a duty to kill and to die, but a holy mission. Read the crushing story of Layla and Ammar in Gaza.

But the more it became evident that the Arab States couldn’t destroy Israel – and increasingly didn’t want to – and the PLO with its hijackings and terror attacks in Israel and across Europe couldn’t destroy Israel, the more urgent it became to ignore the evidence and brainwash the kids into believing it was THEIR destiny.

I wrote last spring:

“Palestinian veneration of terrorists and joy at Jewish deaths have escalated to hysterical levels. Videos and photos of beautiful Palestinian boys carrying weapons announcing their intention to die, equally lovely schoolgirls calling for Palestinians to kill all the Jews, and uncontrolled dancing and singing over the bodies of terrorists are ubiquitous. After Israel eliminated the two terrorists in Nablus who killed (an Israeli) mother and her daughters, Palestinian news media aired a report by the mother of a terrorist who said, “The Jews are our enemies, we should fight them, devour them with our teeth.” Another fired a gun in the streets while a Palestinian sang.”

The disgusting videos this weekend on X – previously Twitter – are shattering to civilized people. Young girls at a “peace concert,” a grandmother in a wheelchair, children with their parents and stripped of their parents are murdered and tortured in the most heinous ways – by tormentors taking pleasure and pride in their repugnant actions.

“Nazi” isn’t a word to be used lightly – in fact, there is very little in the world like the organized and deliberate Nazi indoctrination of children coupled with Jew-hatred. But it is appropriate here. And Hitler didn’t have 53 years to make his point.

Iran took advantage. Along the progression, Iran, with its own fantasy about Shiite world domination – including the destruction of Sunni Islam, the United States, and Israel – latched on to the Palestinians as they did to Hezbollah, and Iraqi and Houthi militias. Iran used oil money to build its own weapons, invade and ethnically cleanse the Sunni center of Syria, shred Lebanon, occupy Iraq and steal its oil, foster the Houthi rebellion in Yemen, and provide weapons and ideology to Hamas. While the world had its eye on Iranian nuclear capability, Iran did damage conventionally.

Before the weekend, the biggest Hamas operation was the infiltration of Judea and Samaria with Iranian weapons and anti-Abbas, anti-PA militias. Israeli operations in Jenin and Nablus were to root out Hamas and keep the PA operative for a while longer – for the security of Israeli citizens – even as the Israeli government understood that there would be a an internecine war for Abbas’s succession.

The war is here. Hamas’s goal was to make itself the indisputable leader of the death-to-Israel Palestinian movement and implant itself on both sides of Israel.

The question will be how Israel copes with a new understanding about the nature of the enemy and the power it exercises over the people in its realm. The problem is more than 50 years old – and the failure to go to the root has only made it more lethal and less humane.

Israel will again do what it needs to do to secure its people. It will be ugly. And the “international community” will soon be demanding that Israel should keep things “proportional” and bewailing Palestinian civilian casualties.

Go with that thought for a moment – “proportionality” in international law is not about the equality of death or civilian suffering, or even about firepower returned being equal in sophistication or lethality to firepower received. Proportionality weighs the military necessity of an action against the suffering the action might cause to civilians in the vicinity.

The military necessity is unquestionable. Hamas is a disgusting, lethal, and implacable enemy. Iranian-armed and supported Hamas is an enemy that cannot be allowed to control the lives of Israeli civilians. Or the lives of Palestinian civilians.

Shoshana Bryen is Senior Director of The Jewish Policy Center and Editor of inFOCUS Quarterly.

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller News Foundation.

 

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