Sometimes, it sure seems like news organizations are addicted to polls, and the UK Daily Mail is no exception. On Friday (October 13), they reported a JL Partners survey of 1,000 Americans that determined a strong plurality supports Israel’s invasion of Gaza. Well, I should certainly hope so.
As Israel masses tanks and personnel around the Gaza Strip in response to the Hamas terror attack, Americans have a clear message for Israeli commanders: Go for it.
Some 50 percent believe it is reasonable for the Israeli Defense Forces to fully invade and occupy the territory, according to an exclusive poll for DailyMail.com, compared with 28 percent who said it would be unreasonable.
There is also overwhelming support for air strikes on Hamas targets.
It was from Gaza that thousands of Hamas gunmen fanned out across Israel last Saturday morning. Their murderous mission left more than 1,200 dead, including women and babies.
The survey graphic indicates that 50 percent of the Americans surveyed find the full invasion and occupation of Gaza “reasonable,” as opposed to 28 percent who find it “unreasonable.” 45 percent find a blockade of electricity, food, fuel, and water reasonable, as opposed to 36 percent unreasonable, 44 percent find “widespread bombing” reasonable, as opposed to 35 percent unreasonable, and finally, 60 percent find air strikes on Hamas targets reasonable, as opposed to 20 percent unreasonable.
That’s all very good, I suppose. I’d be very concerned at this point, after all that has come to light, if the American public didn’t support Israel’s response; in fact, I’m a trifle disappointed that the margins of support weren’t higher. But as far as conducting and reporting on the poll itself, one has to wonder: “So what?”
Israel is past the point where they should be worried about international approval. This is a matter for Israel to decide; they shouldn’t be overly worried about what 1,000 randomly chosen Americans think at this point. The American government has already offered logistical and military support, so it’s unclear why a poll like this is meaningful — at least, to Israel.
Israel is facing a threat on the order of what the United States faced on December 8th, 1941. They are confronted with enemies driven by irrational hatred, capable of enormous atrocity, and who make war on the innocent – and that their actions were planned and deliberate. It’s clear that they will act no matter what anyone’s polling says, and the appropriate response for Israel now is the one the United States took from 1941 to 1945 — drive on until their enemy’s capacity to make war is completely, irrevocably destroyed, and until that enemy’s will to fight is completely crushed.
That’s the only response that is in Israel’s best interest, and they are right to pursue it.
Of course, the Daily Mail piece ends up with the standard “cautions” for Israel:
And although much of the world has stood with Israel in its moment of need, there is growing concern that its impending offensive could amount to ‘collective punishment’ of the people of Gaza, contravening international law.
World leaders and U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken have been reminding Netanyahu and his government of their responsibilities.
On Thursday, Blinken stood alongside Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and said: ‘Israel has the right to defend itself … how Israel does this matters.’
That is belaboring the obvious; and Israel has, in every such operation, shown as much forbearance as “roof-knocking” and issuing warnings to Gaza civilians to evacuate. At some point, however, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) are going to have to do what any military force is primarily intended to do: To close with and destroy the enemy by fire, maneuver, and shock effect. The IDF’s history shows that they are very effective at doing precisely that.
It’s been very clear for some time now that the gloves are off. The IDF is about to kick some and take some, and they aren’t going to be worried about polling. There’s no reason why they should be — not when the very survival of their nation is at stake.