Why There Can Be No Cease Fire in Gaza And This Election Is All About Looking Backward

Why There Can Be No Cease Fire in Gaza And This Election Is All About Looking Backward


Leonard Zwelling



I have a bit on my mind. I’ve been ruminating on these issues for several weeks.

For reasons that are not obvious to me, the world seems to think that the Israeli-Hamas conflict can come to some sort of negotiated settlement. As these articles show, Israel has been wounded at a level that cannot be perceived by most outsiders. Israel will not be at peace until all the hostages are returned and there needs to be some accounting for the brutality of October 7. And Hamas needs to be gone!

First, there is absolute solidarity among the Israeli population that the hostages must be returned if there is to be any stop in the siege of Gaza.

Second, the nature of the horrific events of October 7 including the sexual crimes committed by Hamas, preclude anything but complete surrender by Hamas and Hamas vacating Gaza.

There is no negotiating on these points. There will not be a ten to one swap of Palestinian prisoners for the Israeli hostages. If Hamas wants to improve the lot of the people they were elected to govern they can do so rather readily.

Give back every hostage—dead or alive—and leave Gaza.

If the world wants a cease fire in Gaza, how about starting with one in Ukraine? That war has been going on longer and the atrocities on the part of the Russians surely exceed those of the Israelis in Gaza. Why do the Jews always get such special attention?

There cannot be a double standard for the Jews despite the fact that this is what the world wants.

And talking about stalemates, how about that American election? Elections used to be about the future. This one is a tale of two pasts—pre- and post-2020.

The only logical vote for a thinking person in the presidential contest is “neither.”

This blog has made a strong case against Mr. Trump and an equally strong case against Mr. Biden. It is time for the people of the country to say that these choices are inadequate. Write in someone or vote third party. Neither the Democrats nor the Republicans should in any way be encouraged to continue with their broken systems of candidate selection.

What could fix this?

First, there ought to be a delimited one to four days in the early part of an election year to have primaries. If there are four days, there ought to be at least 8 state primaries each day. They ought not to be by party, but ought to be open and it should be easy to get on the ballot.

Second, the top two vote getters in each race run against one another in the fall, even if both candidates are Republican.

Finally, the leadership of both parties need to pretend that they are at least somewhat responsive to the American people. Some 70% of Americans do not want a rerun of 2020. If this were a fair country, we would have open conventions and let’s see if Trump and Biden are really the people’s choice. I doubt it.

What is clear in both Israel and the United States is that there is a grave lack of leadership in both places.

Now, at least I give Mr. Netanyahu credit for clarity. He’s not budging. Either it’s him or Hamas and there seems to be no middle ground.

By contrast, I have no idea what Mr. Biden stands for. His foreign policy is disintegrating on all fronts—the Middle East, Ukraine, and China. The economy is still not robust and inflation is stubbornly persistent.

And, then there is the question of what Mr. Trump will do–if he is elected—at the Southern border, in Europe, in Israel, at home.

We live in turbulent times. Strong leadership is called for. Where the heck is it?

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