Today I am not a bleeding heart
By Shlomo Gazit, General (ret.), former head of Military Intelligence
[Translation by IMRA. Originally appeared in Hebrew in "On the Left Side -
24 July 2014
for original Hebrew
Once the war started, I became a different person. My People and my country
are at war. All claims and criticisms I set aside until after the war.
I, as you know, am classified as a "leftist". I'm not ashamed of it. I
express my views and I have a clear conscience. If I am asked in the
future - in this world or the world to come - what I did to prevent the
catastrophe, then I have files full of clear things that I said - and very
frequently very fierce things.
I have a stomach full over the way we rolled into the war. In any event, at
some point we simply did not have a choice, and we rightly gave the IDF
command to enter.
I received an email - entitled "IDF spokesman admits war crime" - talking
about IDF forces shooting at a hospital in Gaza, risking patients who were
hospitalized there. I do not know the details of the case, and I didn't
investigate it. In my reply I even wrote that it doesn't interest me much.
Once the war began - I became a different person. My People and my country
are at war. All claims and criticisms I set aside until after the war. Today
I stand absolutely in support of our fighting forces.
I am ashamed of those who seek out war crimes of Israel in these
circumstances. We are fighting an enemy attacking us with countless mortar
and rockets, all of which - without exception - are aimed to kill us, the
citizens of Israel. Their weapons are aimed at our towns and cities. No one
is trying to convince me that these missile launchers in Gaza are trying not
to commit war crimes.
We learned that there are no clean wars. There is no war in which it is
possible to prevent - and avoid - tough measures and military operations
affecting civilians as well. What's more - often there are situations where
you seek revenge.
I watched the angry demonstrations condemning Israel in London. 70 years ago
it was Britain that sent the planes to destroy Dresden in response to the
German rockets being launched at London.
There is a moment that I, at least, cease to be "squeamish". Israel is at
war, and I am a loyal supporter of the fighting army.
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