Providence is Not Just a City in Rhode Island

Every now and then we are reminded by events that providence has saved our civilization from disaster.

There was, for example, reminds my friend Narciso, the Bojinka plot In which Ramzi Yousef and Khalid Sheikh Mohammed planned to assassinate Pope John Paul II, bomb 11 passenger planes, and crash a plane into CIA headquarters. A chemical fire in one of the plotter’s kitchens disrupted those plans. (Khalid went on to commit other atrocities -- including planning 9/11 -- but providence cannot always protect us.)

This week the Daily Mail reported that the underwear bomber failed in his mission because he had not changed his underwear for the 2 weeks before boarding the plane, degrading the bomb inside his pants.

Today, with Hamas’ army demoralized and almost certainly whipped we have another example of providence preventing enormous tragedy and mayhem.

Had thugs not brutally murdered three young men in Israel, the Israelis would not have stepped up efforts to find those responsible. Had the Israelis not done so Hamas would not have begun the rocket barrage into Israel. Had the rocket barrage not occurred and not ceased, the Israelis would not have entered Gaza, Had the Israelis not entered Gaza they would not have found the tunnel system, or the storage there of fake IDF uniforms, sedatives, handcuffs, and ropes, nor learned of the long- planned Hamas effort to send thousands of their troops deep into lightly guarded Israeli communities on the holiest of days, Rosh Hashanah, to murder thousands and capture and hold as hostages countless more. 

The murder of the three young men set in motion something that may have saved Israel from unthinkable disaster.

Of course, under the circumstances, now there can be no long-term truce, nor can a two-state solution -- attractive on paper but out of touch with reality -- be seriously considered. Israel and only Israel can define what it needs to do to consider its response victorious. Undoubtedly, that will include a completely demilitarized Gaza. Maybe more than that. After all, Israel removed longtime settlers from the area and left millions of dollars worth of profitable industries behind before to” buy” peace. The industries were dismantled. The Gazans still rely on Israel to provide them with water and electricity and transport foodstuffs into the area.

Their rich leaders, some of whom live elsewhere, can’t be bothered with the job of administering the area. They are too busy with the easier job of stirring up hatred and strife. Tons and tons of concrete were allowed into the area to build schools and hospitals. This was used to build murder and smuggling tunnels instead. Tunnels that used the labor of children, 160 of whom were credibly reported to have died in the process. (Remember that when propaganda pictures of Palestinian children injured in the war are in the press. Children who -- in the rare instances the pictures are not utterly phony ones of other children in other wars -- are getting far more press than the 160 poor ones killed to make it possible for thousands more to be murdered on the other side of the tunnels.)

Alex Bensky reminds me of Golda Meir’s sage remark, what the world wants is a "nice, progressive, anti-colonialist, anti-imperialist, dead Jewish people." Once again, “the world” will have to be disappointed. Providence in the guise of some murdering thugs and Hamas rocketeers intervened to alert Israel in time.

 Matthew Continetti  as is often the case, echoes my feelings:

What Israel should not endure is the premature conclusion of hostilities. Disarming Hamas -- seizing its rocket caches, collapsing its tunnels, killing and capturing its forces -- is vital to Israeli security. And an artificial ceasefire imposed by outside powers, a ceasefire written in terms favorable to Hamas, would undermine the security gains Israel has made to date. President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry have given no sign that they recognize this fact. Or maybe they understand it all too well: The Obama administration’s top priority is imposing a ceasefire at exactly the moment when Israel’s military success is becoming clear.

Secretary Kerry arrived in Cairo earlier this week. No one wanted him there. Egypt’s ruler, General Sisi, has no interest in saving Hamas through international diplomacy: The Muslim Brotherhood is his mortal enemy. Kerry then went from Cairo to Jerusalem, where he met with U.N. Secretary Ban Ki-moon, who flew to the meeting on a plane chartered by Qatar, Hamas’ primary source of cash. Kerry also met Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is too gracious to tell the secretary to go back to Boston. (Israel’s former ambassador to the United States, Michael Oren, has said publicly what the Israeli government will not: Kerry is an unwelcome guest.) Next up was Mahmoud Abbas, president of the Palestinian Authority, who honored Kerry’s presence by endorsing Hamas’s call for a “Day of Rage” in the West Bank. Kerry “will soon decide if Hamas and Israel are willing to agree on a Gaza ceasefire,” Reuters says.

Kerry will decide? Who died and made him king?

While we are on the subject of the internationalists, Kerry and Obama are being ignored around the world. They are seen as weak laughingstocks in a world marked with fighting and hostilities. One wonders if it has yet occurred to them that when they pooh-poohed American exceptionalism, insulted our oldest allies, reached out repeatedly to embrace our worse enemies, and denigrated their own land, that maybe -- just maybe -- they were also diminishing their own power and role upon the world stage? It’s providence again.

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