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Former Israeli ambassador calls for 'crushing' Hamas

Remarks by former Israeli Ambassador to the United States Michael Oren on allowing Israel to "crush" Hamas symbolize the brutality of the current conflict.
Israel's President Shimon Peres (C) and Israel's Ambassador to the U.S. Michael Oren (R) are bathed in blue light, save for the red focusing light of a camera, as they take their seats in the audience at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) policy conference in Washington, March 4, 2012. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS) - RTR2YUFE

On July 24, the Washington Post published "Israel must be permitted to crush Hamas," an op-ed by Michael Oren, former Israeli ambassador to the United States. His desired outcome is an echo, or a potential replay, of what took place in July 1948 in Lydda: "[S]oldiers of the new Israeli army emptied that city of its Palestinian inhabitants and … killed more than three hundred civilians in cold blood and without discrimination," according to Jonathan Freedland's essay on liberal Zionism in the New York Review of Books, in discussing a chapter in Ari Shavit's "My Promised Land: The Triumph and Tragedy of Israel." According to Shavit, during those days, "Zionism carrie[d] out a massacre."

Oren writes that demolishing Hamas is in the interest of world peace. "To guarantee peace, this war must be given a chance," he wrote. Freedland quotes Shavit as stating, "If Zionism was to be, Lydda could not be. If Lydda was to be, Zionism could not be." Shavit tries to resolve his dilemma by acknowledging and then absolving his guilt with the thought that the Zionist project is ultimately justified because it brought the state of Israel to Palestine.

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