Yet again, the Hamas terrorist regime in Gaza, along with allied radical Islamist militants have deliberately provoked a wholly legitimate and fully justified Israel military operation to protect the Israeli people from ongoing rocket fire on Israeli civilians. I strongly back the decision by Prime Minister Netanyahu and the Israeli government to act in legitimate self-defense, and I am proud that our government, under President Obama's leadership, has explicitly offered its support as well.
There is one, and only one, responsible party for the bloodshed which has occurred: Hamas. It is their fanatical attachment to violence, to the deliberate shedding of innocent blood that has compelled Israel to act in self-defense.
Israel withdrew completely from Gaza in 2005. Israelis want nothing to do with it. If Gazans wish to live a peaceful life, all that they need do is to stop trying to kill Israelis. That's all. If they, for whatever reason, can't resist the urge to murder Jews--people who they've never met, and who wish only to get on with their lives--then they will have to endure Israel's fully justified and wholly appropriate military response.
Like people everywhere, the right of Israelis to live free from the threat or the use of force against them is absolute. The terrorist Hamas leadership can not expect to wantonly attack Israel with rockets and then decry the severity of Israel's fully warranted retaliation.
Finally, like Israel's government, I regret the loss of life and harm done to all innocents. But there can be no question that the responsibility for each of these individual tragedies lies exclusively with Hamas, which alone provoked this unnecessary conflict.