The world doesn't get to tell Israel how it can rescue its hostages

the world doesn't get to tell israel how it can rescue its hostages

SHLOMI ZIV is reunited with loved ones after he was rescued by Israeli forces from Hamas captivity in the Gaza Strip, earlier this month.

Emotions are still running high in Israel over the heroic operation that rescued four of our hostages in Gaza. Yet, in a sick parallel world, pro-Hamas activists and celebrities such as Bella Hadid are finding a way to demonize Israel over its rescue of its own citizens after eight long months in captivity.

Israeli hostages Noa Argamani, Almog Meir Jan, Shlomi Ziv, and Andrey Kozlov are finally home after a daring IDF mission that can only be compared to the Entebbe mission that rescued 102 hostages in 1976. We all remember the horrible, vivid images of October 7, one of which showed Noa’s abduction. The horror and fear on her face as Hamas kidnapped her on a motorcycle while her demonic captors filmed it will forever be seared into Israeli consciousness. It was a moment that traumatized so many of us and showed the true face of evil.

The rescue mission, initially called “Seeds of Summer,” was highly complicated and dangerous. The four hostages were detained in two different buildings (Noa in one and the three men in another) within the densely populated Nuseirat refugee camp. To avoid alerting Hamas and putting the hostages at risk, both rescue operations had to occur simultaneously. The raid was carried out during the daytime, thus enabling the IDF to maintain the element of surprise. It took weeks of planning as the IDF gathered intelligence and even built models of the buildings to plan the safest escape route.

As more and more details have come out, it appears increasingly miraculous that the four hostages came out unscathed. The IDF forces completely surprised Noa Argamani’s captors and extracted her from the building. Soldiers who were involved in rescuing Noa said that she was barefoot and terrified. When they told her, “’We’re coming to bring you home; we came to save you,” she didn’t believe them at first. Eventually, one of them carried her out on his back.

The apartment holding the male hostages came under heavy fire by Hamas militants, with the terrorists shooting at them and firing RPGs deep into a civilian area. Thankfully, the soldiers were able to rescue Almog, Shlomi Ziv, and Andrey. Still, it came at the price of one of our soldiers, Officer Arnon Zamora, who was injured during the fight and then later succumbed to his wounds.

the world doesn't get to tell israel how it can rescue its hostages

Noa Argamani, a rescued hostage speaks on the phone surrounded by loved ones, June 8, 2024. (credit: VIA REUTERS)

Noa Argamani, a rescued hostage speaks on the phone surrounded by loved ones, June 8, 2024. (credit: VIA REUTERS)

The IDF’s incredible actions and handling of the frightening complications during the rescue mission restored our faith. Eight months of hopelessness and despair were met with celebrations on the streets of Israel. Watching the emotional reunion between Noa and her father still elicits tears.

The world continues to blame Israel for saving its citizens

Yet, in the antisemitic world we are currently living in, specific public figures and celebrities have found ways to demonize Israel over this rescue operation, blaming the high Palestinian death toll on the IDF instead of on Hamas.

Less than 24 hours after the rescue, public figures, activists, and journalists published the number “4 for 210” all over social media, insinuating that we place higher value on Jewish life than on Palestinian life. Let’s first acknowledge that it was Palestinian civilians who were holding the hostages – including journalist Abdallah Aljamal, who kept the three men at the home of his family members in central Gaza.

According to Israel, Abdallah Aljamal, who has worked for Qatar-based news outlet Al Jazeera (a claim Al Jazeera denies), lived on the third floor of the building, where the three hostages were found. Aljamal was found to have written an opinion piece for Al Jazeera, as well as serving as spokesperson for Hamas’s Labor Ministry. He is also claimed by the Palestine Chronicle as “a well-known journalist.”

While any civilian death is a tragedy, there is presently no way of knowing the civilian-to-combatant ratio in the battle – and the death toll is not Israel’s responsibility. Hamas shouldn’t have taken hostages in the first place and should not have placed them in a civilian populated area. If Hamas had not tried to kill the rescuers, the IDF would not have needed to use the firepower they did to suppress those who were shooting at them. Hamas and the Palestinians who collaborated with them should not have fired RPGs into a crowd.

For anyone to place the blame of the death toll on anyone other than Hamas only proves they don’t understand the rules of warfare; or that they believe that Jewish life is worth less than other lives.

Only an antisemite would place more blame on Israel for rescuing its hostages than on Hamas for kidnapping them in the first place.

The writer is a social media activist with over 10 years experience working for Israeli and Jewish causes and cause-based NGOs. She is the co-founder and COO of Social Lite Creative, a digital marketing firm specializing in geopolitics.

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