Israel’s current ruling party, the Likud Party, is known for its inflammatory rhetoric and hard-line positions. Unlike previous parties, which have tried to strike a balance between politeness and looking out for Israel’s interests, the Likud Party seems to not even give a toss about appearing genial – something that has made Israel look much worse in the eyes of international media. So when it comes to illegal settlements, the bombing of the Gaza Strip, or whatever Israel is doing that day, the government seems unrepentant and uncaring.
That’s not to say Israel doesn’t face problems with terrorism and other issues, but it does mean that whenever they do something bad, the Likud Party exacerbates the situation with its attitude.
So the Defense Minister of Israel‘s recent comments, though he is not technically part of the Likud alliance, are certainly representative of the party’s tendency to say rash things that are sure to be misconstrued – because out of context, they tend to sound horrendous.
The interview was conducted by Al-Quds, an Arabic newspaper, with Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman.
“I would like to clarify that we have no intention of starting a new war against our neighbours in the Gaza Strip or the West Bank, Lebanon or Syria.” Lieberman said.
The line itself is fine, but it makes anyone reading worry about what bombshell he’s going to follow this up with.
“In Gaza, like the Iranians, [Hamas] intends to eliminate the state of Israel,”
True. The founding charter of Hamas also states that ‘Jewish Zionists’ were behind both WWI and WWII.
“If [Hamas] imposes the next war on Israel, it will be their last. I would like to emphasize again, it will be their last confrontation because we will completely destroy them.”
And this is the statement that is sure to be taken out of context and used against the Israeli government. This is just political stupidity. Why is this even necessary to answer? Does anyone really think that if a fourth war breaks out between Hamas and Israel, Hamas will win? When this quote is taken out of context, it’s definitely going to be used to suggest that Israel is planning to destroy Hamas. Lesson one of politics, guys: don’t hand your enemies bullets.
Maybe the Likud party will learn that eventually, but for now, we’re destined for dumpster-fire political discourse, where both sides just hurl offensive things the other side has said at each other.