Gaza And Israel – “A Taste Of Armageddon”

Spaceship, Star Trek, Enterprise, Science Fiction

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In the original Star Trek series there was an episode in the first season titled, “A Taste of Armageddon”. In this episode, the Enterprise and its crew stumble into a very unusual war being waged between two neighboring planets. Soon after Kirk and the landing party arrive on one of the planets, Eminiar VII, they are informed that the starship has been “destroyed” by a weapon launched by the enemy planet of Vendikar. The ship was not actually destroyed, but the crew members would be required to report to disintegration machines within 24 hours. 

Spock quickly deduces that Eminiar VII and Vendikar, at war for 500 years, have developed a system, run by interconnected war game computers, whereby battles are simulated and casualties tallied. The system was developed to allow both societies to continue to function and thrive without the ravages of an actual war. Citizens on each planet, bred to hate those on the neighboring planet and fully accepting the logic of this mode of war, dutifully report to a designated disintegration machine when notified that they are a casualty of a simulated attack. 

Obviously Captain Kirk had no intention of allowing his crew to be murdered. In violation of the “Prime Directive”, forbidding interference with less developed alien cultures, Kirk and Spock destroy Eminiar VII’s war game computer with a well placed phaser blast, gambling that the threat of engaging in a real war would get the two sides talking. As Kirk puts it in classic Star Trek style when confronted by the leader of Eminiar VII…

I’ve given you back the horrors of war. The Vendikans now assume that you’ve broken your agreement and that you’re preparing to wage real war with real weapons. They’ll want to do the same. Only the next attack they launch will do a lot more than count up numbers in a computer. They’ll destroy cities, devastate your planet. You of course will want to retaliate. If I were you, I’d start making bombs. Yes, Councilman, you have a real war on your hands. You can either wage it with real weapons, or you might consider an alternative. Put an end to it. Make peace.

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Carol Klein 3 weeks ago Member's comment

Very insightful.

Mike Nolan 4 weeks ago Member's comment

So I'm a bit confused about something and maybe you can clear it up... So Hamas is a terrorist group... but also a political party? And they control Gaza. The Palestinian Authority under Abbas is another, more moderate party. in the last election, ages ago, the terrorists won the election and took over.... but only in Gaza? Are Gaza and the West Bank separate countries with separate elections? Or do they have one election to determine who governs both areas? And if the latter, how did Abbas end up in control of the West Bank even though he lost?

So then I read there were going to be Palestinian elections again for the first time in like 15 years (why so long?). Then I heard they were cancelled. But why? Now I hear that Hamas is a shoe-in to win the next election since they are now more popular than ever on the streets of both Gaza and the West Bank. The reason for their sky rocketing popularity? Because they were able to kill a few Israeli Jewish (and Arab) women and children in Israel, at the expense of a couple hundred of their own people.

None of this makes sense to me. What else am I missing?

Leslie Miriam 4 weeks ago Member's comment

I woke up to see you have a cease fire. That's good news, right?

Frank Underwood 4 weeks ago Member's comment

So when do you think this round of fighting with Hamas will end? And once a ceasefire is declared, will the internal riots end as well?

ZinZen 1 month ago Member's comment

I think the world would be better off if we just nuked the entire Middle East. A lot less to worry about.

Jack F. Dawson 1 month ago Member's comment

Sure, then we have just the Russians, China, North Korea, the list goes on. The world is filled with problems. It's just that the media loves the ME conflict.

Duanne Johnson 1 month ago Member's comment

So what caused the recent flare-up anyway? Seems like you guys can never just get along. though I'm sure it's more complex than that.

Brittany Lacey 1 month ago Member's comment

Seriously? If you really want to understand and your google is broken, you can read the Joseph Cox article, and/or www.nytimes.com/.../israel-jerusalem-gaza. I've seen more thorough and thoughtful reports, which you can find if you look for more.

Texan Hunter 1 month ago Member's comment

You sound like you feel tremendous sympathy for the people of Gaza. But do they feel any sympathy for you? Yes, perhaps they are simply victims of Hamas who keep them uneducated, impoverished, and brainwashed to hate. But they also CHOSE that life by democratically electing Hamas into power. It's not like they did not know what Hamas represented. Seems to me that they made their own beds, let them lay in it.

Michael Lipkin 1 month ago Author's comment

There hasn't been an election for 15 years. The children being killed and injured weren't even born yet. So yes, I feel sympathy for them. Also, many Gazans chose Hamas not because they wanted to kill Jews and Israelis, but because they wanted better lives. And in fact many hate the fact that Hamas keeps making war rather than working on making their lives better.

Texan Hunter 1 month ago Member's comment

And 15 years later, has Hamas made the Gazan's life any better? I'd have to say no. And what about the Israeli Arabs? They have a higher standard of living than anywhere else in the Middle East. Women are free to live as equals to men. The LGBTQ have actual rights and don't have to live in fear of being murdered for the crime of their sexuality. Yet even they are now rioting and killing Jews. Seems like these people crave violence and nothing will satisfy them.

People like to act all PC but the truth is, Islam is a religion of hate and violence. Trump was right about them.

Susan Miller 1 month ago Member's comment

Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Wishing you and Joseph Cox the peace you both clearly want, and hoping you both stay safe as your nation is under attack.

Danny Straus 1 month ago Member's comment

Peace is nice. But how do you have peace with Hamas when they are sworn to the destruction of Israel? Doesn't seem possible to me.

Alpha Stockman 1 month ago Member's comment

You are right, you can't. However, the Abraham Accords show that Peace with other Arab countries is certainly possible. Which means, peace with Gaza is technically possible, but not with Hamas in control. America should really engineer their ouster and then there could finally be a clear path to peace. Unfortunately, instead we've decided to cozy up to Iran, their main sponsors. So Hamas won't be going anywhere any time soon.

Adam Reynolds 1 month ago Member's comment

Loved that episode. Good analysis, I hadn't thought of how the Iron Dome could actually be a crutch to let the Israelis tolerate the rockets barrages.

I know here in the US, we'd wipe out anyone who threw even a fraction of those rockets at us. I don't really understand your restraint.