Hamas has made clear in its words and actions that it is committed to the genocide of the Jewish people, whether they live in Israel or not.
The crime of genocide is defined by the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide approved by U.N. General Assembly Resolution 260 A (III) of Dec. 9, 1948 and entered into force on Jan. 12, 1951. The crime of genocide requires the intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group. Hamas’ words and deeds clearly meet this requirement.
Thus, falsely accusing Israel of genocide in its current defensive war against Hamas is a particularly cruel and odious blood libel. After all, the crime of genocide was only recognized as a result of the Holocaust. The Nazis called their genocide the “final solution.” The hideous pro-Hamas chant there is “one solution, intifada revolution,” channels this horrific ambition.
Everyone, including the slanderers themselves, knows that Israel is not committing genocide in Gaza. Moreover, as the White House National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications, Adm. John Kirby, noted, “I heard this word ‘genocide’ tossed around. Hamas actually does have genocidal intentions against the people of Israel. They’d like to see it wiped off the map. They’ve said so on purpose. That’s what’s at stake here”
Israel is not committing “ethnic cleansing” either. There is no precise legal definition of ethnic cleansing under international law, but it was used to describe atrocities committed during the wars that followed the dissolution of Yugoslavia. The U.N.’s Office on Genocide Prevention and the Responsibility to Protect describes ethnic cleansing as “a purposeful policy designed by one ethnic or religious group to remove by violent or terror-inspiring means the civilian population of another ethnic or religious group from certain geographic areas.” Employing the term “ethnic cleansing” against Israel rather than Hamas is preposterous incitement.
Israel has not “cleansed” Gaza’s civilian population. It has warned them of impending combat and helped them flee to safety. It does so even though this alerts Hamas terrorists to where Israeli attacks are likely to occur. Adm. Kirby recently noted that American forces did not give such notice even in civilian areas of Iraq and Afghanistan.
Hamas’s genocidal intentions are well-known. If Hamas’s intention was peace and coexistence, then both would have been achieved the moment Israel withdrew from Gaza in 2005. As the late Charles Krauthammer wrote, “Israel evacuated Gaza completely. It declared the border between Israel and Gaza an international frontier. Gaza became the first independent Palestinian territory in history. Yet Gazans continued the war. … Why? Because occupation was a mere excuse to persuade gullible and historically ignorant Westerners to support the Arab cause against Israel. The issue is, and has always been, Israel’s existence. That is what is at stake.”
Hamas’s atrocities cannot be justified or excused by false claims that they are some kind of “defense” against genocide and ethnic cleansing. There is no genocide or ethnic cleansing. This war has come because Hamas is evil. Israel must continue to be unequivocally supported in its efforts to root out this evil and destroy it.