Israel’s president, Isaac Herzog, set the tone as he spoke about how far to assign guilt for the worst single atrocity against Jews in his country’s history:
It’s an entire nation out there that is responsible. This rhetoric about civilians not aware, not involved, it’s absolutely not true. They could’ve risen up, they could have fought against that evil regime.
In different ways, the sentiment that the Palestinians are collectively responsible for the actions of Hamas in killing of about 1,300 Israelis and abduction of 199 – and therefore deserve what is coming to them – has been echoed far beyond Israel’s borders.
In the US, Senator Lindsey Graham called for the wholesale destruction of Gaza. He told Fox News:
We are in a religious war here. I’m with Israel. Do whatever the hell you have to do to defend yourself. Level the place.
In the UK, the editor of the Jewish Chronicle, Jake Wallis Simons, took a different tack in generalising guilt by writing that “much of Muslim culture is in the grip of a death cult that sacralises bloodshed” before deleting his tweet after a backlash.
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