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Readers React

If Gazans want the Israeli blockade lifted, they ought to repudiate Hamas

To the editor: There is another choice for the residents of Gaza besides living with a blockade or fighting Israel: to repudiate the goals of Hamas or remove it from power. The Hamas charter states its goals as the destruction of Israel and struggle against Jews. Every day with rockets, tunnels and terror, Hamas advances these aspirations. ("Gaza's dilemma: Deadly war or suffocating Israeli embargo," July 23)

The moment Gazans stop the violence and invest their resources and creativity in their people and society, Israel will lift its blockade. But as long as Hamas continues to make Israel's destruction its primary purpose, the conflict will continue.

The greatest beneficiaries of neutralizing Hamas will not be the Israelis but rather the children of Gaza. Today they are taught to hate Israel; without Hamas, they will have an opportunity for a much better future.

Rabbi David Eliezrie, Yorba Linda

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To the editor: Thank you for running a piece that identifies some of the horrible conditions that Gazans have endured for the last seven years: severely restricted access to former fishing grounds and farms; a lack of water, electricity, jobs, basic healthcare and building materials; and no seaport, airport or escape.

Gazans may not leave without Israel's permission. The Gaza Strip is not even twice the size of Catalina Island, yet it contains 1.8 million human beings whose existence increasingly depends on handouts.

What to do is not a dilemma for Gazans or its democratically elected leaders; it is a dilemma for the jailers in Israel and the so-called civilized countries that continue to support the illegal blockade of Gaza.

Richard Green, San Clemente

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To the editor: There is the demand that Israel end its blockade of Gaza. Really? If Hamas is committed to Israel's destruction and brings in arms to attack Israel, how can anyone demand that these arms be allowed to reach Hamas?

If the Palestinians do not want war and do not want the blockade, the solution is simple: If Hamas stops threatening the existence of Israel, stops its incessant rocket attacks and agrees to demilitarization, then there will be no war and no blockade. The lives of the Palestinian people will improve.

If the world more forcefully condemned Hamas for its crimes, perhaps there might be a chance to end this tragedy.

Sid Pelston, Marina del Rey

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