The philosopher George Santayana famously said, “Those who fail to remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” That condemnation can also be said for those who knowingly ignore the past as well.
In the wake of the atrocious Oct. 7 terrorist attacks by Hamas upon Israel, New York and many other parts of the world have experienced numerous protests either for Israel or for Palestinians. At too many of the pro-Palestinian marches, demonstrators have condoned, or outright celebrated, Hamas’ murderous actions as if they were fighting for freedom against an oppressive regime.
How can anyone confuse Hamas with a group of freedom fighters? How can anyone be so ignorant and hateful as to suggest that the only path toward a free state for Palestinians is through the murder of Jewish people?
Nothing the Israeli government has done justifies the vulgar antisemitism and acts of murder perpetrated upon Jewish people everywhere — both within and outside Israel.
True freedom fighters and champions of Palestine would work to secure normal relations with Israel through nonviolent means, not embracing extremism and terrorism. But Hamas is not a band of freedom fighters at all.
It has been compared by President Joe Biden and others to ISIS, and rightly so. Like ISIS, it seeks to exterminate the state of Israel and the Jewish people in pursuit of fundamentalist theocratic conquest.
Hamas cares not about Palestinians, but of itself — its fighters hide in schools and hospitals while using people as human shields in an effort to dupe the world into making Israel an aggressor state.
And if Hamas succeeds in its campaign, Israel is doomed, and people of the Jewish faith shall be in peril everywhere.
Let us not forget the reason why Israel was created in the first place. The state was established in 1948 as a home for Jewish people around the world three years after the end of the Holocaust, in which six million Jews around Europe were exterminated by the Nazis.
From the moment of their independence declaration, Israel has been subjected to regular war for survival initiated by their Middle East neighbors. With the support of the U.S. and others, Israel has prevailed each time, and through the decades, has made peace with many of their former foes — only to be regularly undermined by extremists seeking their elimination.
We must see the threat which Hamas represents to Israel and universally denounce it. And we must understand that any path to peace in the Middle East starts and ends with the preservation of Israel, and the protection of their people.
For if Israel falls, we are condemned to eventually repeat the horrors of our past.