October 13, 2023

Elections Have Consequences

By Glenn

As we wake up to another day of chaos and unwillingness to compromise, it might be helpful to remember that elections have consequences.  Elections are not a game.  Elections are not about teams.  Elections are about the future you want for yourself, your children, and your neighbor.

In 2006 the voters in the Gaza Strip voted for a theocracy at home and perpetual war against Israel.  Hamas told their voters that they would neither compromise with other Muslims nor compromise with Christians and Jews.

Hamas wanted a society built on their understanding of God’s law.  God’s law required them to destroy Israel.  God’s law required women to stay at home, produce children and convince boys to die in the perpetual war.

This ideology looks a lot like European fascism.  While it is using a language of liberation, it is not offering others freedom.  Hamas is not willing to let others make choices.   Hamas asked its voters for the power to build a militant theocracy and the majority of voters in Gaza gave it to them.

Once elected, Hamas did what other fascists did before them.  They shut down internal dissent.  They eliminated other Palestinian voices and told their people that perpetual war was the only option until Israel no longer exists.

Hamas does not represent all the Palestinians.  Israel made peace with the elected leaders of the Palestinians on the Westbank.  Is it a perfect peace? No.  Does Israel always treat Palestinians with justice? No.  Should Israel stop new Settlements? Yes. The issue today, however, is Hamas’ war.

Hamas represents Gaza.  Hamas chose war.  Hamas started a war by crossing the border and killing unarmed men, women, and children as well as soldiers. Gazans are paying the price for their votes.

Hamas lost the battle it launched.  Hamas was driven back.  On the way back, Hamas took hostages into Gaza.  Hamas did not view the defeat as a loss but as another fight in their perpetual war.  Hamas continues to send rockets into Israeli cities.

Israel is now fighting back.  The death, destruction, and loss of innocent life is horrible.  Gaza is starting to look like Atlanta in 1864 and Dresden in 1945.  When a people elect a pro-war, militant government with uncompromising politicians, the results are devastating.

Hamas choose to build its military infrastructure under innocent people.  It built its rocket factories under women and children.  Hamas stores it weapons under women and children.  The civilian devastation is the direct result of choices Hamas and its voters made long ago.

Hamas could end this today by surrendering and asking for peace.  Hamas will not.  This war, like wars before it, will come to an end.  Thousands will die. Men will die. Women will die.  Children will die. We know this, because fascists always glorify a violent struggle.

The only question left is how quickly this war will end.  This is the war Gaza voters wanted.  They voted for it.  They prayed for it.  How many more must die for it?  

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