# 425 – Back to Square One by Stephen Pohlmann - Ourboox.com
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# 425 – Back to Square One

Helping others to understand Israel - and Israelis to understand others...
  • Joined Sep 2016
  • Published Books 481

Let’s take a step back for a second.

The World has lived with this problem for most of our lives. In fact, my relationship with Israel, from its birth (I am older), is worthy of a book. (No. No way. I am too old and too busy. And anyway, you will VERY SOON hear of the launch of my first professionally-published book ‘Baron Flo’s World’. And I’m already working on a sequel).


OK, the Holocaust was just before my time (although a) some of my family perished in it, and b) I am honoured to be a close friend of one of the World’s most prominent survivors. He is a recipient of this letter). But I and we have all watched this very eventful revival and survival of the Jewish people. (Note the word ‘people’. Not just religion, not just nation, but a ‘people’).


Were I now to list all the ‘positive’ events and achievements, it would be extremely impressive. Add to that the human good, the almost miraculous stories, it would take so much space and time. There is no question that this tiny new nation, nestled in the arms of hating neighbours, has achieved far beyond expectations. Its contributions to so many aspects of society have been disproportionate- ly incredible. Hence my feeling that the Middle East moderates and nouveau riche have come around 180 degrees to the realisation that Israel is a necessary partner for the future.



And yet, even in the light of these totally inhuman attacks on Israel, a large section of the World remains opposed to Jews, to Israel’s existence. These people are prepared to go so low as to excuse the countless horrors we have witnessed in the last few days.


Now the aggressive shoe is on the other foot. Those headline numbers of killed and wounded continue to be crashed against other. We have reached the expected moment when there are more casualties on the Palestinian side, and so it begins. We are the brutal murderers, aggressors, occupiers and so on. ‘You are both as bad as each other’ will be the usual result. And we shall be back to square one.


I read a book recently about Germany, and the period post WWI and the build-up to Hitler and WWII.

Not only most of the Germans and Austrians welcomed this man and his hopes with open arms, so also the visitors and witnesses: diplomats, journalists, tourists, students etc., etc. It is absolutely frightening at not only how naive the visitors were, but, actually, how anti-Semitic. Most only saw the revival of Aryan pride, the re-building of a great nation, the return of hope, the focus on efficiency, cleanliness, eagerness to please, to impress.


The treatment of the Jews, mostly openly displayed (except during the Winter and Summer Olympics in Garmisch and Berlin), was unbelievably brushed off by so many as ‘a sad but perhaps necessary side-line’.

That’s repeated now, the support for the Palestinian people, with the very common factor: anti-Semitism. Rashida Tlaib and Mustafa Barghouti – and Hanin Barghouti at Sussex University – are just 3 examples of the millions whose hatred cannot be beaten.


Israel has tried everything humanly possible to set a good example – to be ‘A Light Among Nations’. Perhaps we HAVE succeeded (I gained my Israeli passport just recently), and perhaps we should be satisfied with 80% success. But that inevitable 20% is big, and perhaps will never go away.

Back to today.


Some activity on the northern borders with Lebanon (Hezbollah/Iran) and Syria (Hezbollah/Iran).  Obviously nothing more than intermittent. If it were Hezbollah/Iran really, then a major new front would be established and, I believe the US would get involved. But we are of course, very concerned, and, hopefully, very ready.


It appears that all Hamas murderers have now been removed from inside Israel. If any are left, they are now cowering behind the cries of the baby, who’s life they threaten. Israeli bombardment of Gaza intensifies. The casualty numbers will rise dramatically – and of course the criticisms and warnings will come from all directions, especially EU and UN – and from Hamas.


Israeli ground forces are massing on the Gaza border. This is now back to where I am concerned. What is the objective?

  1. Hurt Hamas? That will not work. And we kill thousands of citizens and lose many of our boys.

  2. Destroy Hamas? While the Gaza entity stands, this also will not work. We won’t find ALL them, and anyway, in X years, they will come back. And we again will lose many of our boys.



  1. Destroy Gaza? Mmmm. WITH all the inhabitants? Not practical; not human.

  2. So we go back to my suggestion from yesterday. The int’l community forces the humanitarian evacuation of ALL inhabitants, except Hamas and their followers. The filtering will not be perfect, but that is acceptable. When done, Gaza will be destroyed, including Hamas and their followers who have remained –


– Zero loss of innocent Palestinian lives. They join the Syrian etc. refugees distributed throughout the Middle East, who will eventually be settled and saved by their Arab brothers and the UNHCR. (Some Hamas will cleverly slip through the net, but there will be no Gaza to go back to).

– Zero (further) loss of Israelis, either civilians or combatants.


– Zero future threat from Gaza – It will no longer exist. In its place will be a new and wonderfully planned Israeli community, comprising a fair balance of Jews and Arabs (as in Tel Aviv, Haifa and, one day, Jerusalem).

– Hostages? As I write yesterday, there is little hope for them…..The London rep of Hamas yesterday reminded us with pride that they looked after Gilad Schalit for five years, and that today’s hostages will be exchanged for Palestinians currently in Israeli prisons. He is a lying schmock –


  1. 5 years ‘looked after’ is not exactly nice.

  2. He was exchanged for over 1,200 Palestinian prisoners, many of whom went straight back to terrorism – the head of Hamas in Gaza today is one of them!

  3. 1:1200 today would mean that we would need to release perhaps 150,000 prisoners.

  4. He is comparing 1 albeit frightened Israeli soldier to over 100 civilians: families, babies, grandparents etc.


‘Schmock’ is too good for this man. Immediately after the interview, I believe it was Channel 4 News – he should have been arrested, dragged through the streets, hung, drawn and quartered, and then sent for trial in Israel.


[I have just this minute read the following from the Guardian online – The US is discussing with Israel and Egypt the idea of a safe passage for Gaza civilians, the US national security adviser, Jake Sullivan, said on Tuesday. Wow!!!!]

Enough for today. Our stranded overseas friends will join us soon. I need to clear my mind.


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