Posted by: Liza Rosenberg | March 2, 2008

Nothing says Global Unity like Hanging Israel Out to Dry

Crude (Adjective)

  1. Not carefully or expertly made; “managed to make a crude splint”; “a crude cabin of logs with bark still on them”; “rough carpentry”
  2. Conspicuously and tastelessly indecent; “coarse language”; “a crude joke”; “crude behavior”; “an earthy sense of humor”; “a revoltingly gross expletive”; “a vulgar gesture”; “full of language so vulgar it should have been edited”
  3. Not refined or processed; “unrefined ore”; “crude oil” [syn: unrefined] [ant: processed]
  4. Belonging to an early stage of technical development; characterized by simplicity and (often) crudeness; “the crude weapons and rude agricultural implements of early man”; “primitive movies of the 1890s”; “primitive living conditions in the Appalachian mountains”
  5. Devoid of any qualifications or disguise or adornment; “the blunt truth”; “the crude facts”; “facing the stark reality of the deadline” [syn: blunt]
  6. Not processed or subjected to analysis; “raw data”; “the raw cost of production”; “only the crude vital statistics”

Ineffective (Adjective)

  1. Not producing an intended effect; “an ineffective teacher”; “ineffective legislation” [ant: effective]
  2. Lacking in power or forcefulness; “an ineffectual ruler”; “like an unable phoenix in hot ashes”
  3. Lacking the ability or skill to perform effectively; inadequate; “an ineffective administration”; “inefficient workers”

Primitive (Adjective)

  1. Belonging to an early stage of technical development; characterized by simplicity and (often) crudeness; “the crude weapons and rude agricultural implements of early man”; “primitive movies of the 1890s”; “primitive living conditions in the Appalachian mountains” [syn: crude]
  2. Little evolved from or characteristic of an earlier ancestral type; “archaic forms of life”; “primitive mammals”; “the okapi is a short-necked primitive cousin of the giraffe” [syn: archaic]
  3. Used of preliterate or tribal or nonindustrial societies; “primitive societies”
  4. Of or created by one without formal training; simple or naive in style; “primitive art such as that by Grandma Moses is often colorful and striking”

I found these definitions online at Dictionary.com. I was hoping to find definitions that correlated with the description that’s been used ad nauseum whenever Qassams are mentioned (such as in this BBC article, or this News Blaze article) in order to justify either the casual dismissal of ongoing rocket attacks in Southern Israel or the usual banter about disproportionate responses, but I just couldn’t seem to find any definitions that said “crude, yet effective, and frequently with devastating results”. When up to 94% of children in Sderot are exhibiting symptoms of PTSD, when little boys are losing limbs, when a father of four loses his life, terms like “crude”, “ineffective”, and “primitive” seem rather trivial and irrelevant.

And yet, the world at large falls into the same trap time and time again. Hamas and other local terror groups fire rockets into Israel, and world leaders call for Israel to exercise restraint. More and more rockets are fired; damage is heavy and children are traumatized, but because the rockets are “crude” and “primitive”, they apparently don’t count. How many rockets must be fired before we are allowed to respond? And as long as we’re discussing this issue, just so that we’ll have a better idea, what exactly would be an appropriate response to the thousands of rockets that have been fired into our southern cities and towns during the past eight years, not to mention the occasional cross-border sniper attacks, hmmm? We acquiesce to global pressure and continue to “show restraint”, though not without the Prime Minister or one of his henchmen making some silly comment that “we will find the perpetrators of these attacks”, or that “no terrorist will be safe”, or “we reserve the right to respond to these attacks on our citizens, and will do so when the time is right” (which of course hasn’t really happened, given that Knesset members all seem far too busy squabbling over the diversion of funds to protect the inhabitants of Sderot without actually taking any action on the matter).

When the situation escalates to the point of being intolerable (though clearly, the definition of intolerable seems to differ whether one is based in Sderot or in the Knesset), Israel finally takes action. EU and UN personnel are roused out of the long slumber they were clearly enjoying while rockets rained down and Israel did nothing, and suddenly, 8000 rockets later, the world is incensed that Israel has the audacity to retaliate. With sad predictability, we are reviled and demonized for daring to try to protect ourselves, and Hamas scores extra credit points for managing to chip away at the remaining shreds of support among left-leaning Israelis who can no longer be bothered to summon up the energy to care. It’s just too difficult to feel sympathy for the other side’s losses anymore when the world can’t seem to summon up the energy to care about us when we sit back and allow ourselves to be relentlessly pounded.

I guess nothing says global unity like hanging Israel out to dry…

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Responses

  1. I was in Sderot Friday and experienced two Code Reds (just two)….I simply cannot imagine going through that for seven years.

    I would love to take some BBC reporters and force them to spend a few weeks in Sderot. Crude? Perhaps, but betcha it would work.

  2. Hi Liza,

    A) That was an excellent piece; the minimizing of rocket attacks through adjectives like “crude” and “ineffective” in so many media outlets is something that drives me crazy, too. I once read a quotation by a security expert in an article about Qassams – he mentioned that even if the rockets might be inaccurate, it’s not for lack of trying. The intent to kill is there, and plenty of damage is caused by the rockets as they are, not to mention that they are getting more accurate and dangerous by the month. I completely forget where I read that quotation, which is a shame – because it was the only time I’ve ever read a fair assessment of Qassams in a non-Israeli media outlet.

    B) Thanks for reading (and linking to) my blog! It’s always great to meet another OTZMAnik.

    Best,

    Sol

  3. […] these numbers will continue to rise. The blood will be on the hands of Hamas, who knowingly and repeatedly chose to sacrifice their […]

  4. […] these numbers will continue to rise. The blood will be on the hands of Hamas, who knowingly and repeatedly chose to sacrifice their […]


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