I am someone who sympathizes with Israel. In their position I probably would have reacted to continuous Hamas rocket fire and provocations the same way. No one other than the most genocidal maniac can be happy about the Gaza situation. Troops have moved into the strip, which is densely populated. No matter how careful Israeli soldiers are, civilians are dying. Young Israelis are dying.
What bothers me most is the "rah rahing" I see from supporters of both sides. No matter what you think of Hamas, you cannot be happy with the increasing civilian casualties and the humanitarian disaster. Israel has proved its point. Unfortunately, I fear Hamas will not stop. So in a year or two we will again see the recurring spectacle of Palestinian rockets followed by Israeli bombs and more war, death and destruction.
The Byzantines had I think the best view of war. To them, war was tragic, but some times necessary. They were surrounded by enemies on all sides and rarely knew peace. But while they hailed the victors and honored their heroes, they did not see anything particularly heroic about war itself. Soldiers who killed the enemy in battle were expected to do penance.
War was avoided by a combination of nuanced diplomacy, bribes and brute force. The Byzantines would make a cost benefit analysis but always had the power of a strong army to back up negotiations. Every now and then, a barbarian who asked for too much would suffer the consequences of Byzantine power, to make an example for the others. In this way, the Byzantines were able to 1000 years to fend off enemies from all sides.
So let's cut out the rah rah -- war is not a football game,. Many people have died, and I fear many more will in the coming days.