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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Opinion: An attack on Israel and the human conscious

Photo by Kyle Heise

Molecular and cell biology sophomore Alice Asinovsky and former student Ori Yonay stand in support of Israel during the Aggies Stand with Israel Silent Walk event on Thursday, Oct. 12, 2023.

On Oct. 7, streams of genocidal terrorists stormed into Israel and committed the greatest massacre of Jewish lives since the Holocaust.

Hundreds of terror-stricken people were gunned down as they fled from the marauding invaders. Women, children and the elderly were indiscriminately slaughtered in their homes. The attackers took their victims’ mutilated bodies and paraded them around in the streets, as they bragged about the killings on social media. Hamas fighters targeted elementary schools and youth centers with the order to “kill as many people as possible.”

The attack was so brutal and inhuman that I’m not sure the English language has the words to describe it accurately. It almost doesn’t feel real that people can commit such evil. As of now, the Israeli death toll is around 1,200, with 27 confirmed American deaths. Undoubtedly, the number will rise as authorities continue to comb through the destruction.

The violence against Israel at the hands of the terrorist group Hamas is nothing short of a barbaric medieval slaughter of innocent people. An attack on Israel but ultimately an attack on the human conscious. And yet, some continue to excuse the killing of innocents as nothing more than a fight against “colonization” or hand-wave it away through vague political misrepresentations.

Flyers put out on Texas A&M’s campus by the Palestine Solidarity Committee student group read “GAZA BROKE FREE” in reference to the violence on Oct. 7. In an impressive amount of intellectual dishonesty, the flyer blames the attack not on the terrorists but on Israel.

“Over the past few days, we have witnessed the active decolonization of Palestinian land,” the flyer reads. “While many call the events by the Palestinian resistance ‘unprovoked,’ this attack is in response to decades of brutal colonization and occupation by Israel.”

Other student groups around the country have made similar statements, such as the president of New York University’s Student Bar Association stating that “Israel bears full responsibility for this tremendous loss of life.”

Perhaps someone should remind them that Israel completely pulled out of Gaza in 2005, including forcefully removing over 9,000 Jewish families from the region. Regardless of the political debate, how does any of that excuse the murder, rape, pillaging and kidnapping of innocent civilians?

At the end of the day, there are not two legitimate sides to this conflict. There is the state of Israel, which has an obligation to defend its people. Then there is Hamas — a terrorist organization that utilizes unconscionable levels of violence to achieve its goal of killing as many Jews as possible. It is motivated by hate and is willing to sacrifice as many lives as possible to achieve it, including using Palestinians as human shields and digging up water pipes to refurnish into rockets to fire into Israel.

The Hamas playbook is clear: Kill Israelis, run and hide in tunnels under Gaza, cry foul play when Israel retaliates, obtain international funding and then plan another attack against innocent people. Rinse and repeat. Hamas’ existence is a threat to Israel but is also detrimental to the Palestinians in Gaza who are forced to live under the terrorist regime. To allow Hamas’ continued existence is only to compound the shared tragedy of both peoples.

If the goal of America’s foreign policy is the betterment of Americans and global security, then now is not the time for justifying atrocity. It is not the time for merely blinking at the march of evil actors. To reverse the decline, we must firmly distinguish between right and wrong and loudly condemn barbarity in all of its forms.

With Russia continuing its brutal war against Ukraine, Iran training and supplying terrorist groups, including Hamas, Azerbaijan’s ethnic cleansing of Armenians and China’s continued aggression against Taiwan and in the South China Sea, it’s clear what the fruits of America’s international decline have wrought: instability, terrorism and war. Simply put, the world is becoming a more dangerous and unpredictable place.

Do we have the moral clarity to reverse the decline?

Ryan Lindner is a political science senior and opinion editor for The Battalion.

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About the Contributor
Ryan Lindner
Ryan Lindner, Head Opinion Editor
Ryan Lindner is a political science senior from Hutto, Texas, minoring in history. Ryan joined The Battalion as an opinion columnist in June 2022  until he became the Assistant Opinion Editor for the Spring 2023 semester. Since July 2023, Ryan has been The Battalion's Head Opinion Editor. Ryan has covered a range of topics, from local politics and campus culture to national issues, such as school choice and drug policy. After graduation, Ryan hopes to pursue a master's degree in international affairs.
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