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War with Hamas is abundantly justified
January 15th, 2009
In the Jan. 9 Chronicle, Rabbi Shlomo Levin wrote that Israel’s defensive war against Hamas was not justified because the attacks have gone on for a long time and because he does not understand the goals. I do not understand him.
Hamas is considered a terrorist organization by the United States, the United Nations and the European Union. The Hamas charter states: “Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it.”
Hamas was elected by 70 percent of Gazans. Israel does not occupy Gazan land and Israel forcibly removed 10,000 Jews from Gaza four years ago. Hamas launched about 10,000 rockets and mortars into Israel attempting to murder Israelis over the past seven years.
The Talmud (Berakhot 58a; Yoma 85b; Sanhedrin 72a) states, “If someone comes to kill you, get up early in the morning to kill him first.”
Maimonides in his Mishneh Torah (Laws of the Sabbath 2:23) wrote: “If foreigners ... came with the intention of taking lives, or if they established the lines for war, or if they simply besieged us, we sally forth against them with weapons and desecrate the Sabbath because of them. It is a commandment incumbent on all Israelites.”
Has there ever been more justification for war than today with Hamas? Has the issue ever been clearer?
Ivan M. Lang
The Committee for Truth and Justice