Another outbreak of the Arab-Israeli conflict, which has been smoldering for decades, more and more resembles a full-scale war that threatens to blow up the entire region.
The escalation that began with the clashes at the mosque in Jerusalem, in which each side blames the other, quickly turned into a hot phase – with mutual shelling, violent pogroms and chaos.
Arabs and Jews go wall to wall, crowds throw stones at each other. Meanwhile, children are dying on both sides.
The Israeli army talks about preparing the first ground operation in the past seven years amid the exchange of strikes that Tel Aviv and the Gaza Strip, where the Palestinian movement Hamas is located, have been exchanging for several days.
Most of the hundreds of missiles fired by the Palestinians were intercepted by the Iron Dome air defense system. At the same time, Israeli planes hit hundreds of targets in Gaza, destroying high-rise buildings. A special situation has been declared in Israel. In Palestine, there are dozens of deaths.
“Strana” tells what is happening in the hot spot and what the forecasts are.
“We were laughing and having fun – and then they suddenly began to bomb us.”
Although Israel says it warns civilians before strikes to evacuate, Palestinian doctors report civilian casualties. According to them, at least 67 people were killed in Gaza, including 17 children, and hundreds more were injured.
According to Agence France-Presse, five members of a Palestinian family were killed in one strike from Israel.
“We were laughing and having fun – and then they suddenly started bombing us. Everything around was on fire,” says 14-year-old Ibrahim, one of the survivors, with tears.
Seven people were killed on the Israeli side, including a six-year-old boy and a soldier.
In the Arab regions of Israel there are clashes with the police, cars are burning. Arabs attack Jews. And the Jews are trying to lynch the Arabs.
Old-timers say: they don’t remember such a hell for how long they live.
On Wednesday evening, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu described the situation in Israeli cities as “unbearable.”
“We will not tolerate anarchy,” the head of government said in a video message quoted by the Times of Israel. “It is completely unacceptable when crowds of Arabs attack Jews or when crowds of Jews attack Arabs.”
The actions of Hamas and the Islamic Jihad, which fire rockets at Israel, are regarded by the country’s authorities as an act of terror and promise that it will not remain without retaliation.
In turn, the Palestinian Authority called Israel’s actions “military aggression”, which “traumatizes two million people who are already in a desperate situation.”
Particularly violent clashes took place in the city of Lod, which is located near the main international airport Ben Gurion. A state of emergency was declared there.
There are reports of clashes between Arab protesters and police in the city of Haifa. There are also reports of new clashes in East Jerusalem and in several cities on the west bank of the Jordan River.
The thugs lynched an Arab driver who turned out to be a Jew
At the same time, there are more and more reports of attacks by Jews on Arabs, the scene of which has become Israeli cities with a mixed population (the Arab minority is about 20%, the majority has Israeli citizenship, and Arabic is the official language of Israel).
Jewish rioters lynched an Arab driver in Bat Yam. However, according to the Wall Street Journal, he turned out to be not an Arab, but a Jew, and he was beaten by mistake.
In Haifa, in the Moshav Germanit area, the Israelis attacked Arab cars and tried to lynch a passer-by, who was taken to hospital in a state of moderate severity. In Tiberias, a Jewish rally escalated into a pogrom with an attack on an Arab driver and the destruction of several restaurants. According to an eyewitness, “chaos reigned here, they broke the windows in the” Hummus Isa “and” King of the Hookahs “belonging to the Arabs. They pulled the Arabs out of the cars and attacked them.” In Bat Yam, a crowd of Israelis headed towards the Arab neighborhoods to wreak havoc, but were stopped by the police.
Israelis recount how millions of people are forced to hide in bomb shelters after every siren, and those without shelters in their homes sleep in stairwells.
Jerusalem Post correspondent Anna Aronheim told the BBC that she had to spend Tuesday evening in a shelter with her five-month-old baby. “It was very scary to hear hundreds of missiles being intercepted and some falling near us,” she says.
Others say that many Arabs and Jews have long lived side by side and did not expect such an outbreak of violence.
“I’m shooting on the Bat Yam embankment. The photo shows the Victoria cafe, where I once ate ice cream with my children. Everything is shattered, the Arab owner says: 21 years in one place, paid taxes regularly, was friends with everyone. I know that we didn’t start, but how did we get to this point. I have a feeling that I woke up in another country. I saw a picture of a brutal crowd trampling on a guy, some pizza delivery guy just got in the way. Today I was really scared. For some reason, Ali’s nurse, who brought me sandwiches for chemotherapy. We stood there for 73 years, because we did not turn into cattle. We dragged Syrian children across the border and treated them. How did it happen, what happened? ” – writes on his Facebook page Sergei Auslender, editor-in-chief of the site “Crime News of Israel”.
The thugs destroy everything in their path. Photo: Sergey Auslender, Facebook
“We are on the brink of a civil war, nothing can be stopped”
Palestinians complain that they are defenseless against Israeli strikes.
“There is no such protection and powerful equipment as Israel (an iron dome and bomb shelters) in Palestine, there are huge victims. People simply have nowhere to escape from all the horror. How many children are dying. Each time the situation gets worse and worse, and after a pandemic it does it feels like everyone has gone crazy, “Katerina Atrash, who lives in Palestine, tells us.
“Jews take to the streets, chanting” Death to the Arabs. “Israeli gopniks (they are called Ars) came out to smash the Arabs, the Arabs smash the Jewish areas, and the police do not interfere. in Israel Radmila Medvedeva.
“I have been in Israel for 43 years. There have been many wars and terrorist attacks. In 2000, the Arabs also rebelled. But what is happening now is a disaster. If this does not stop as soon as possible, we will not have time to count the victims on both sides,” our former compatriot Raisa Klinger, who moved to Israel a long time ago, complains.
“I remember the events of 2000. Everything repeats itself, but then the army and the police had the will to act, and the country’s leadership was not afraid to take responsibility. Now I think that we were betrayed (I mean the lack of signals of support from the United States),” – Israeli Oleg Gold writes on Instagram.
Israeli Arabs have not resigned themselves to “second class” status
Indeed, more and more predictions are being made about the start of a full-scale war. Experts call the mutual pogroms of Arabs and Jews in Israel itself a bad sign.
“It’s not just the occupied territories, their irregular status and clashes in areas where they are part of the daily routine, such as the Sheikh Jarrah quarter from which it all began. Israeli Arabs are already participating in the riots in Lod, Rahat and Haifa. This speaks to the minus not only of the Palestinian political leadership, which over the years has not been able to rally people around some adequate and common agenda. It also shows that the authorities in Israel did not deal with the issue of Jewish-Arab relations at a serious level, and after 2014 Netanyahu’s policy went to the right and tightened, which led to the radicalization of a part of the Palestinians who today feel cornered, “- writes in his Telegram channel” Mustache Assad “political scientist-Arabist Ilya Kusa.
The last three years have been called the most difficult for the peace process.
“If they somehow tried to fence off the Palestinian Arabs in the West Bank and even in East Jerusalem with walls, checkpoints and concrete blocks, then the Israeli Arabs in Israeli cities are the same citizens of the country as the Jews, their neighbors, one might say. , the further the conflict unfolds, the more difficult it will be to enter the phase of de-escalation and post-conflict settlement, “Kusa believes.
The political crisis in Israel could have played a role in aggravating the Arab-Israeli conflict, where Netanyahu, who has been the prime minister for 12 years, or, as the locals call him, Bibi, could not create a new coalition after the elections. And now the government can form an opposition candidate. More precisely, it could have formed, if not for the exacerbation that had begun.
There are speculations on social networks and among experts that one of the consequences of the escalations may be the announcement of new elections.
“In his video message, Bibi strictly and competently said that we would not allow lynching on both sides. That is, at first we allowed it, and then he put it into his speech. That is, he reacted quickly, and the police, who were nearby, on the border with Jaffa , sent after the lynch, much later. The conclusions are filthy, “- writes the Israeli Victoria Fau on Facebook.
“This situation is beneficial to Bibi. Now” Camp of Changes “(opponents of Netanyahu) will not be able to attract the votes of the OAS (Joint Arab List). There will be a fifth election. Perhaps this is a coincidence,” said Lev Malinsky.
“One gets the impression that everything was planned, almost simultaneously everything began in several cities,” writes Grigory Geiber.
“Every time before an election or at a time of crisis of power, we have a small victorious war. This time, it seems, they played too much,” writes Yulia Manastyrnaya.
Experts do not really rule out new elections in Israel.
“Netanyahu has always been able to act brilliantly in crisis situations and now can once again demonstrate that no one can replace his experience. Probably, if the ratings go up after these events, then one can think of a fifth early election in Israel. Although, like me it seems that the events in Lod and the instability already on the territory of Israel may force the Prime Minister to start negotiations on a truce and pause, “political scientist Kusa believes.
Muslim countries have predictably condemned Israel (including those that have recently established diplomatic relations with it).
However, the position of Israel’s main ally, the United States, is much more important.
On the one hand, Washington and NATO have already declared their support for Israel, which has been undergoing missile attacks.
On the other hand, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, during a telephone conversation with Netanyahu, condemning the violence by Hamas, separately stressed that Israel is obliged to avoid civilian casualties.
In general, the Biden administration, unlike Trump, is not inclined to unconditionally approve of any action by Israel.
Moreover, anti-Israeli sentiments are strong in the left wing of the ruling Democratic Party. They are already comparing Israel’s actions to racist police violence in the United States.
Member of the US House of Representatives from the Democratic Party Ilhan Omar condemned the “Israeli occupation terror.”
Her colleague Rashida Tlaib called for cutting off American funding for the “Israeli apartheid regime” (for many years Israel has been receiving military aid from the United States in the amount of three to four billion dollars).
In turn, Republican Senator Ted Cruz accused Omar and Tlaib of being “press secretaries” for Hamas. But their position is becoming more and more popular in the Democratic camp.
This sentiment is a wake-up call for Israeli politicians.
“The Trump administration has always taken an open pro-Israel position. With Biden, things are more complicated: he is rather cool towards Israel. The newly minted American president even refused to talk to Netanyahu on the phone for more than a month. Amid the aggravation of the situation in Palestine, Biden’s team took a wait-and-see attitude. the decision not to openly interfere in the conflict and only declaratively called on both sides to stop the outbreak of the war, “writes the Americanist Malek Dudakov in his” Telegram “.
According to polls, 75% of Americans have a positive attitude towards Israel and only 30% towards the Palestinian Authority. However, the number of the latter is growing from year to year. And even now, many Democrats are in favor of putting political pressure on Israel.
“Biden is trying with all his might to sit on two chairs. And not to scare away the pro-Israeli centrist democrats, and to please the growing” anti-Zionist “pressure from the left. While this is still possible, but soon such a compromise will become impossible,” Dudakov sums up.