One can and should understand the reaction of television viewers around the world who are moved by the images of destruction and devastation coming from both the Gaza Strip and cities in Israel.
Many good people claim that the blame for the current conflict lies with Israel, since it is clearly stronger than Hamas. A quick flick through the various channels also reveal a wave of unfounded allegations against Israel.
Needless to say, this is an unequivocal show of anti-Semitism. But it is also necessary to add that it is simply born of ignorance.
And so, here are the basic facts everyone should know.
In 2007, Hamas violently seized control of the Gaza Strip, eliminating in the process hundreds of members of the rival Fatah movement that is headed by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Some were even murdered by being thrown off the roofs of tower blocks.
The Hamas - an organization affiliated with the radical Muslim Brotherhood - has a senior spokesman who calls not only for the destruction of Israel and the Jewish people as a whole, but also seeks to conquer Rome, and "the two Americas."
Hamas also publicly and officially calls for the “extermination of Jews and Christians to the last." Hamas teaches these destructive worldviews as early as kindergarten.
At the political spectrum of Islamic organizations, Hamas holds an extreme ideology not to that of al-Qaeda and the Islamic State.
Despite this, the international community offered Hamas an outline that would allow it to receive large-scale aid.
In 2006, the Middle East Quartet (Russia, the United States, the European Union and the United Nations) presented to Hamas the three preconditions for continued Western aid: The recognition of Israel, cessation of terrorism and recognition of previous agreements.
These prerequisites were later made public in three separate statements made by then-UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, then U.S. Secretary of state Condoleezza Rice, and former EU foreign policy czar Javier Solana.
The offer for Western aid, which included $600 million in assistance from the European Union and another $400 million from the United States, was quickly and summarily rejected by Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal, who claimed that “Hamas was impervious to bribery, intimidation and blackmail.”
The international community refused to throw in the towel, and in 2007 the offer to provide aid to the Palestinian people came up again.
This time it was Ismail Haniyeh, who was the Palestinian prime minister on behalf of Hamas at the time, who rejected the offer, arguing that “it is the right of the Palestinians to continue their resistance by all means."
Consequently, the headline in the international Arabic news outlet Al-Jazeera read: “Palestinians reject Quartet demands.”
Hamas chose, and continues to choose to this day, terrorisms over prosperity. In 2014, when the Israel-Gaza conflict began, the ministers of the EU offered the Palestinians aid in exchange for "the demilitarization of all terrorist organizations."
And while Israel approved of the offer that would see the conflict promptly end, Hamas again refused.
In 2017, Yahya Sinwar, Hamas’ new leader in Gaza, reiterated once again that "Hamas will never recognize Israel."
In February 2018, when tensions between Israel and Hamas rose once again, the EU once again presented its aid offer to no avail.
In other words: Hamas does not want prosperity, it wants terrorism. Even so, again and again for humanitarian reasons, Israel allows the flow of hundreds of millions of dollars into the Strip along with hundreds of trucks carrying supplies into the Gaza Strip on a daily basis. It did not help.
Hamas used the money to fund the terrorist tunnels that go beneath Gaza into Israeli territory.
One more thing to keep in mind: wherever the branches of political Islam rule, destruction, bloodshed and destruction prevail.
After all, the large majority of Hamas’ victims are Muslims. Even Hamas rockets, which fall within the Gaza Strip itself once every six or seven times, have killed more Palestinians than Israelis.
Does this bother them? Without the blockade, Iran would not be supplying medicine, it would be supplying rockets. Without the blockade, the Hamas regime would expand its industry of death.
Without the blockade, the would not be building schools or industry that led to prosperity, Hamas would be building more tools of destruction meant for mass murder. This is not an opinion. This is what is they are doing today. These are the facts.
According to one claim, even if Israel has the right to strike at Hamas, its response is disproportionate. This is a strange claim. No country has ever taken so many measures meant to prevent civilian casualties.
The IDF, more than any other military in the world in similar operations, is making a supreme effort to reduce innocent casualties. This has been affirmed by world-renowned experts in military law.
One such expert is Prof. Wolff Heintschel, who said that, "The IDF takes many more precautions than are required, setting an unreasonable precedent.”
But who are they, these world renowned experts compared to nobodies in the global media who constantly criticize Israel without knowing what they are talking about.
When images of destruction are shown to the world, one can understand the demand for a ceasefire. But no one has the right to demand anything of Israel.
Even Sweden would have bombed any target of the Islamic Jihad organization near its border if it had fired missiles at Stockholm.
Background and facts are important. It is vital to know that Hamas is a radical jihadist organization that Israel has not only a right, but the obligation, to separate from its weaponry.
Ben-Dror Yemini is the author of "Industry of Lies: Media, Academia, and the Israeli-Arab Conflict"