Death squads from Gaza murder, mutilate and rape before carrying off their Jewish hostages. They carried off as well any chance of peace for generations

By David E. Kaplan

My inclination is to retch not write but write as a journalist I must.

On Friday 6 October, I was speaking to a friend and our last words were to again speak on Sunday morning to make arrangements to meet. We never did – neither meet nor speak.

By Sunday we, like all Israelis, were SPEECHLESS!

Few if any words could accurately express what was happening.

Ein Milim” (“No words”) is a Hebrew expression used by Israelis when confronted by such unspeakable enormity that defies verbal description.

Such was the situation in Israel on October 7 – “Ein Milim”.  It remains so today on October 19; still stunned, still lamenting “Ein Milim”. The visuals and the smell of bodies, of families executed, children first before their  parents, babies decapitated, young girls raped and paraded like trophies, blood of the victims on bedroom walls relate an epic horror story without words.

How Hamas’ attack on festival in Israel unfolded

Yes, it’s a fact that Israel was taken by surprise – again. However, this time Israel was surprised not only by the attack itself – and there will be a state commission of enquiry into how – but by the horrific nature of the attack. And for the answer to this – there is no need for any commission of enquiry.

We sadly know the answer. It’s a 2000 year old explanation to an all too familiar scenario.  Its hunting season again and Jews are the prey – again!

Music Festival Massacre. A group of friends at an Israel music festival before Hamas terrorists attacked killing 260 revelers. (Photo Shye Weinstein)

In current political discourse, there is much convenient linking of Hamas to ISIS but for Jews everywhere it is less ISIS  and more Nazi Germany – more specifically the Einsatzgruppen – the paramilitary Nazi death squads that were responsible for the mass executions of Jews, primarily by shooting, during WWII in German-occupied Eastern Europe. Like the Einsatzgruppen, the Hamas death squads that penetrated Israel, systematically mowed down every Jew on sight – man, woman and child and did so with glee fulfilling a national agenda. They kept alive only those they took back to Gaza as hostages. One shivers thinking about what they are going through and the anxieties of their loved ones. Unlike the Einsatzgruppen who buried immediately their victims to try cover up their crimes, the killers from Gaza want to publicize their killing. They are not ashamed, they are proud. And while many in the civilized world, particularly world leaders reacted with horror, Palestinians in Ramallah celebrated. With Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas’ vile antisemitic comments only last month about the Holocaust, a ‘Two State Solution’ could not be  further away today than in any time in history. Hamas has made sure of that.

Mass Murder. Its occupant presumed murdered, a home in Kibbutz Be’eri destroyed in Hamas onslaught (Photo: REUTERS/Amir Cohen)

The linkage between Nazism and Palestinian nationalism fermenting since the 1930s, culminated in October 7, 2023 with Hamas’ “Einsatzgruppen  attack on southern Israel.

On November 28, 1941, Haj Amin al-Husseini, the Mufti of Jerusalem met with Adolf Hitler who he thanked and said, “….The Arabs were Germany’s natural friends because they had the same enemies as had Germany, namely….the Jews.…” From rhetoric to extermination squads, what has changed in Palestinian thinking towards Jews? Nazi Germany has long gone but its core ideology lives on in Gaza. 

There is a strong element in some parts of  Arab society in the Middle East – notably in Hamas today, maybe another nomenclature mutation tomorrow – that will never accept a Jewish sovereign presence under any circumstances in its ancestral homeland. They are determined to rid the land of Jews to expunge its historic connection from this land and are committed to this bloodthirsty crusade at whatever the cost not only to Jews but also to their own people. How can Israel under any political leadership – left, centre or right –  accept alongside a sovereign militarized Palestinian state that will forever pose a threat to Israel?

It can’t.

Israeli Special Forces. When Gazan killers next face Israelis, this is who they will meet. (Photo: Gadi Kabalo)

While there are many across the world suggesting that Israel “summoned this evil upon itself” and thus has only itself to blame – the geopolitical equivalent of blaming rape victims for not being careful enough – the leader of the free world, Joe Biden was quick to offer moral clarity in his White House address:

You know, there are moments in this life – and I mean this literally – when the pure, unadulterated evil is unleashed on this world.
The people of Israel lived through one such moment this weekend.  The bloody hands of the terrorist organization Hamas – a group whose stated purpose for being is to kill Jews. 
This was an act of sheer evil

Hamas is the author of today’s horror story. But it has many co-authors. Any country, including my native South Africa that not only supports Hamas but has hosted its leaders in its parliament, are coauthors and must share culpability for the horrors unfolding. By cozying up to killers, they offer respectability and so  help facilitate in Biden’s words, these acts of “sheer evil.”

85-year-old Hostage. Palestinian terrorists transport captured 85-year-old grandmother, Yaffa Adar (center), from Kibbutz Kfar Azza into the Gaza Strip on Saturday, Oct. 7, 2023.( Hatem Ali/AP)

Surely Qatar, which hosted the 2022 FIFA World Cup and also hosts Hamas, notably in Doha senior political leader and Chairman of the Hamas Political Bureau, Ismail Haniyeh could pressure Hamas to release hostages – at least women, children and the injured – or else face eviction?

It’s not going to happen.

This latest catastrophe of the Jewish people is a reminder that Jews  whether in the diaspora or in the state of Israel can “Never let their guard down – never – not for a day, not for a minute, not for a second!”

Fate Unknown. A young man and a woman at the Israel music festival. After the attack on Oct. 7, the woman remains missing. (Photo Shye Weinstein)

Imprinted on the Jewish minds following the Shoah is “Never Again” and yet we failed  to prevent its recurrence when it reared its ugly head on Israel’s soil.

That “head” now needs to be decapitated.

Israel did not declare war on Hamas; Hamas declared war on the Jewish people.

While the mission of Lay of the Land (LotL) is to provide a wide and diverse perspective of affairs in Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish world, the opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by its various writers are not necessarily ones of the owners and management of LOTL but of the writers themselves.  LotL endeavours to the best of its ability to credit the use of all known photographs to the photographer and/or owner of such photographs (0&EO).

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