Things are rarely as simple as they seem, and the actions in Gaza are no exception.
After tensions flared up once again between Israel and Hamas, pundits, media organizations, politicians and even close friends of mine on Facebook were quick to choose a side and line up to rail on the other.
Supporters of Israel are quick to point to the events of the 1990s and the early years of the 21st century when Hamas was happy to take claim for every suicide bombing that struck the nation — especially those that occurred in Tel Aviv.
Those on the other side point instead to the deaths of children and other innocents in Gaza who, they claim, were killed by Israeli soldiers.
Violence, it would seem, only justifies further violence.
Therein lies the problem.
Many of the militants in Gaza — on both sides of the divide — are simply fighting because that is what the two parties have always done, and because the losses their side has sustained are seen as an argument in favour of continued violence.
And so they take that violent action, perpetrating another horrible act in a chain of despicable events. And thus nobody walks away without blood on their hands. But it’s a losing proposition for everybody.
The Israelis continue to fight and die in some misguided bid to correct the deaths of their forebears, and so do Hamas fighters, and the cycle continues ad infinitum. Some sort of resolution must be had, but with the cycle progressing as it has for decades, the most likely one is annihilation.
This most recent ceasefire is a breath of fresh air, but breaks in the conflict are not uncommon, either.
Everybody is blind in Gaza.
And that is as much a condemnation of the parties actively involved in the conflict as the politicians, media, and others who perpetuate and promote it.
Justin Crann can be reached at 306-691-1265 or follow him on Twitter @J_Crann