Gaza is being punished because Gaza is a constant reminder to Israel and the world of the original sin of the ethnic cleansing of Palestine and the creation of a so-called Jewish state. Even though Palestinian resistance has never presented a military threat to Israel, it has always been portrayed as an existential threat to the state.
Moshe Dayan, the famed Israeli general with the eyepatch, described this in a speech in April 1956. He spoke in Kibbutz Nahal Oz, an Israeli settlement on the boundary of the Gaza Strip where Israeli tanks park each time there is a ground invasion of Gaza.
“Beyond the furrow of this border, there surges a sea of hatred and revenge,” Dayan said then. Ironically, when six months later Israel had occupied Gaza and my father was appointed its military governor, he said that he saw “no hatred or desire for vengeance but a people eager to live and work together for a better future.”
Still, today, Israeli commanders and politicians say pretty much the same: Israel is destined to live by the sword and must strike Gaza whenever possible. Never mind the fact that Palestinians have never posed a military challenge, much less a threat to Israel.
After all, Palestinians have never possessed as much as a tank, a warship or a fighter jet, not to say a regular army.
So why the fear? Why the constant, six-decade-long campaign against Gaza? Because Palestinians in Gaza, more so than anywhere else, pose a threat to Israel’s legitimacy.
Israel is an illegitimate creation brought about by a union between racism and colonialism. The refugees who make up the majority of the population in the Gaza Strip are a constant reminder of this.
They are a reminder (as long as they exist they expose the Zionist narrative as false if anyone looks into it) of the crime of ethnic cleansing upon which Israel was established. The poverty, lack of resources and lack of freedom stand in stark contrast to the abundance, freedom and power that exist in Israel and that rightfully belongs to Palestinians.