Hamas unprovoked? Gimme a break!

8 Oct

See also my later post, Hamas attacks: top ten takeaways …


As in Orwell’s 1984, words mindlessly spewed out in unison by narrative managers have come to denote their antitheses. A current favourite is “unprovoked”. It’s been used, ludicrously but effectively, to denounce Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Now it’s being wheeled out en masse  to describe Saturday’s Hamas attacks on the apartheid state of Israel. On her blogsite today, Caitlin Johnstone has assembled a sample:

“The United States unequivocally condemns the unprovoked attacks by Hamas terrorists against Israeli civilians”White House statement 

“The loss of life in Israel as a result of the violent, calculated and unprovoked attack by Hamas is heartbreaking”  – House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries

“The unprovoked terror attack today and the murders of innocent Israeli citizens are a stark reminder of the brutality of Hamas and Iran-backed extremists”  – Congressman and house speaker contender Jim Jordan.

“This ignominious, unprovoked, and barbaric attack on Israel must be met with world condemnation and unequivocal support for the Jewish state’s right to self-defense” –  presidential candidate Robert F Kennedy Jr.

“… an ‘unprovoked attack on civilians’ –  Lt. Gen. Keith Kellogg as cited by Fox News

The unprovoked chorus will be no less deafening on my side of the pond. (British Labour Party members voicing a scintilla of demurral on this point can expect short shrift from the Starmer machine. Most will keep their heads down whatever their real views. I find it mind-bogglingly difficult to imagine myself in their shoes and figure out why they’re still there.)

Half a dozen more quotes in the same vein as the above can be found on Caitlin’s site, where she also invokes Noam Chomsky’s verdict on Ukraine …

Of course, it was provoked. Otherwise, they wouldn’t refer to it all the time as an unprovoked invasion.

… before reminding us that in the context of the Hamas attacks the u-word is a truth-inversion no less absurd, but more blatantly so:

Calling Palestinian violence against Israel “unprovoked” is easily even more ridiculous than calling the Russian invasion unprovoked, because the abuses of Israeli apartheid are so well-known by the general public by now. Multiple mainstream human rights organizations have accused Israel of administering an abusive apartheid regime which treats Palestinians as lesser people. Palestinians who live in the open-air prison known as Gaza are deliberately subjected to undrinkable water, food shortages, energy shortages and bombing campaigns. Those outside Gaza are subjected to racist, violent policing and land seizure and live under a different set of laws than Jewish Israelis. The entire people were forced out of their homes to make way for a new state for reasons that had nothing to do with them, and any attempt to resist this has seen them killed as “terrorists”. 

In these times of debased linguistic coinage there are many things we can validly say about asymmetric war against a vastly more powerful oppressor. One being that these attacks will draw a terrible response from the Jewish State. 1

But unprovoked? Gimme a break!


Further sources? I’ve now read several pieces on or apropos Saturday’s attacks, of which I’ve selected this by Ramzy Baroud (whose writings include co-authorships with Israeli historian, Ilan Pappé). For so short a piece it packs a surprising amount of context and detail.

* * *

  1. For a taster of the wrath to come, on Saturday night, October 7, Benjamin Netanyahu’s office was promising to stop supplying electricity, fuel and goods to Gaza. These alone will be indiscriminately lethal and on that count unlawful.

4 Replies to “Hamas unprovoked? Gimme a break!

  1. Encouraging article by Ramzy Baroud. I didn’t realise that Israel was going down the tubes so fast. Unfortunately I suppose the attack from Gaza will persuade most of the rebelling reservists etc. to back the government again. But maybe also Hamas’s stunning success so far will be a major blow to the zionist state, no matter how it (temporarily) ends.

  2. Hi Phil,
    The subject of the illegal Israeli occupation of Palestine(The Times Atlas does not show any reference to Palestine as existing) is a highly emotive and totally misrepresented one.
    I am a follower/member of BTselem, the Israeli occupied territories monitoring group who have announced that Israel is an apartheid state, the PSC and JVP and as such am familiar with what has been done to the Palestinian peoples.
    What I find just as egregious about the Tories and Starmerites and their sewer dwelling subservient MSM is the lack of real and adequate response from both the neighbouring Islamic countries and the UN.
    That several billion people in countries around the world understand exactly what Israel is and yet choose to say nothing and never make demands for actionable denunciation of that monstrous regime so cowed are they by the Israeli powerful protectors and enablers, but are so willing to take up the banner and demonstrate on behalf of activities by the few and manic minorities.
    How can the EU countries be so silent and accepting of the US financial attack on their own economies by the US(the proxy war in Ukraine was just as much about keeping the EU dependent on the US as trying to ruin Russia)?
    How can certain peoples all over the world be so aggressively protesting for preferential treatment of Transgenders because, apparently, it is the most pressing issue of our time?
    Why are the western nations willing to even contemplate Klaus Schwab of the WEF and the WHO trying to impose dictatorships based on illegitimate and controversial policies in their bid to rule the world at the cost of ruining it and the people?
    Where is the clamour for justice on behalf of the long suffering Palestinians? Looking for a resolution on the matter of Israel’s abominable treatment of the Palestinians is like looking at an empty space.
    As for the current Kennedy Jr, he may be promoting some of the things I am vehemently in favour of, but I most certainly would not want him advocating on my behalf on those subjects given his complete lack of credibility.
    I accept that many of us are afraid of the power the Israeli Lobby wields and of suffering the consequences, but that in itself should be a matter of exposure not censorship.
    The evidence of provocation in both the case against Palestine and Russia is proven so only those people who are egregiously rewriting the facts and replacing them with lies or are simply ignorant could ever claim that resisting a wrong and acting on it is a provocation.
    I despair.
    Thanks for the article,

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