Michael Brown: To accuse Israel of genocide is scandalous



You may believe that Israel’s response to Oct. 7 is disproportionate. You may even believe that, on some level, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) are guilty of war crimes.

But to accuse Israel of committing genocide is as preposterous as it is scandalous. Yet the word “genocide” is virtually ubiquitous these days, the most common description of Israel’s allegedly abdominal acts.

According to the Britannica website, genocide is “the deliberate and systematic destruction of a group of people because of their ethnicity, nationality, religion, or race.”

The worst genocide in history was the Holocaust, where Hitler slaughtered 6 million out of 9 million European Jews in his attempt to wipe them off the map. This included the extermination of 3 million out of 3.3 million Polish Jews — more than 9 out of every 10.

In Cambodia, Pol Pot exterminated almost a quarter of his country, targeting specific parts of the population deemed unworthy to live.

How, then, can Israel be charged with practicing genocide against the Palestinians, specifically against the Palestinians of Gaza?

The population of Gaza is roughly 2.1 million, and if the figures released by Hamas are to be taken at face value, then roughly 17,000 Gazans have been killed by the IDF since Israel began its military operations in the aftermath of the October 7 massacre. That amounts to less than 1% of the total population.

Even if all those killed were civilians and none of them combatants, that would not constitute anything remotely near to “genocide.” Not in the slightest. To the contrary, these numbers would be typical of civilian casualties in war — tragic, agonizing, heartbreaking — but nothing comparable to genocide in the slightest.

To be sure, these are human lives, each of inestimable value, and we should mourn the loss of every one of them. I am not minimizing these deaths in the slightest, especially those of women and children. But to call such losses “genocide” is to mock the very meaning of the word and the suffering it represents.

When you add in the fact that the IDF goes to unusual lengths to avoid civilian casualties, including dropping hundreds of thousands of leaflets warning civilians to flee, along with tens of thousands of automated texts and calls, the cry of “genocide” becomes all the more preposterous.

The reality is that, if the IDF wanted to slaughter most of the population of Gaza, it could do so in a matter of days, if not hours, with virtually no Israeli losses. This alone should serve as a stark rebuke to those who dare use the “genocide” word.

As for the broader charge of Israel’s alleged genocide (or ethnic cleansing) of the Palestinians, consider the numerical growth of the Arab (= Palestinian) population within Israel proper, along with in the West Bank and Gaza.

The number of Arabs who remained in Israel after the War of Independence has grown from 200,000 in 1948 to more than 2 million today, representing an increase of more than 1,000%. This is “genocide”? Seriously?

You might say, “We’re not talking about all Palestinians. We’re talking about the Palestinians living in Gaza and the West Bank. That’s where the genocide is taking place.”

Let’s look at those numbers too.

Using the most common estimates, the Palestinian population of the West Bank in 1967, when Israel occupied it after the Six Day War, was slightly under 600,000. Today, the Palestinian population of the West Bank is roughly 2.5 million, representing an increase of better than 400%.

As for Gaza, the Palestinian population when Israel unilaterally withdrew from the region in 2005 was roughly 1.3 million. Today, as noted earlier, it has grown to 2.1 million, representing an increase of a little about 60% in less than 20 years.

So, the Arab (Palestinian) Israeli population has grown by more than 1,000% since 1948, the Palestinian population of the West Bank has grown by more than more than 400% since 1967, and the Palestinian population of Gaza has grown by better than 60% since 2005.

This is supposed to be “genocide”? This is what “ethnic cleansing” looks like? The dramatic growth of a people equals their “genocide”?

In a previous article, I mentioned the interaction between a mother and her 15-year-old daughter after her daughter said that they should not eat at McDonald’s because of the company’s alleged support of Israel.

The mother said, “Tell me what Israel is doing wrong without using the word genocide.”

“But it is genocide,” her daughter replied.

The same charge was raised when I recently interacted with university students from Gaza while in India. And that same charge is repeated day and night, unthinkingly and incessantly, raised against the very people who suffered the worst genocide in human history, while university presidents cannot state that the call for the genocide of the Jews constitutes bullying and harassment.

This is a scandal.

Dr. Michael Brown (www.askdrbrown.org) is the host of the nationally syndicated Line of Fire radio program. His latest book is Why So Many Christians Have Left the Faith. Connect with him on FacebookTwitter, or YouTube. His column first appeared at The Christian Post.


  1. The UN Secretary General needs to resign. He is emotionally void and morally inept to do a job that needs truth and unbiased thinking and actions. He is unsuitable for the position and has displayed that to the world. So, SHAME on him. He needs to go and take his blood money from the terrorist organizations with him because he is “bought and paid for” as shown in his first speech on the “killing and rape of Israel women and children” on October 7th 2023.

    • Simply because innocent women and children were brutally attacked raped and killed by terrorists. I know that is a lot to comprehend with your head where the sun dont shine but you may want to come up for air.
      If you cant figure it out on your own and think they deserved that violent end to their life you are welcome to join Hamas.

      They need supporters like yourself….We dont

    • Because they are NOT murderous. You need to get educated and get RID of your indoctrination or are you not sure what that is?

  2. This whole thing has become a travesty! The fact that some Americans and American businesses are jumping on the Hamas bandwagon is shameful. Trump 2024 🇺🇸🇮🇱

  3. You’re so right! How many of the 17,000 were enemy combatants after all? Around the world, it is estimated that roughly half of these 17,000 dead are children. Child combatants maybe? All I know is that Israeli government officials have a nasty habit of calling for the total annihilation of Palestinians, too. So the Israeli’s are far from innocent. Take Ayalet Shaked’s facebook post, which was deleted just before she was appointed Israel’s justice minister: “They are all enemy combatants, and their blood shall be on all their heads. Now this also includes the mothers of martyrs, who send them to hell with flowers and kisses. They should follow their sons, nothing would be more just. They should go, as should the physical homes in which they raised the snakes. Otherwise, more little snakes will be raised there.”

    I suppose you didn’t pause to listen to the deafness of tone that this article clearly suffers: “It’s not genocide, because not nearly enough of them have been murdered yet. Think of Pol Pot! Now that was a genocide! Oh baby! Them Israelis’ could be doing a whole lot worse, me thinks!” Perhaps you chose to publish right at this very moment because MRAK’s readers are yet unaware of the fact that Israel warned Palestinian civilians to run to Northern Gaza, where they would be sheltered. But today, Israel has turned its artillery to Northern Gaza–just where all the presumably innocent women and children ran to in the first place. I wonder what tomorrow’s death toll will be once we get some numbers from the Palestinian Authority (and get them widely acknowledged in the international discourse). Would you say it’s less of a war crime to use white phosphorous munitions on a civilian population, if that illegal use of weapons only kills less than 1% of the population?

    Your figure of 17,000 dead is already an OLD FIGURE. I see a lot of images and videos of rockets flying toward Gaza. Not too many flying back. And don’t you think we’d see a whole lot more of Israel’s anti-Hamas propaganda if there was any kind of significant return of fire from Gaza? Seems even with the absurdly ineffective artillery that the Gazans have with which to defend themselves, it’s hardly a fair fight. No point asking Israel to have some compassion. They view Palestinians as “snakes.” Go ask them Ayalet yourself!

    • One question. Just one.

      How many Palestinian babies have been thrown into ovens and cooked alive while mom was raped and made to watch?

      You put the idiot into useful idiot.

      • Masked you confuse Holocaust with genocide .
        Look up the 1948 UN Declaration of Definition of Genocide

        I think my comments are being censored. ? Mrak didn’t tell me if they are . Maybe just times out due to length.
        Maybe just lost in internet sauce. I tried explain definition of genocide . It specifically matches Israel actions .
        Possibly also Palestinian

      • You really believe those insane stories? Gullible in the extreme. Reminds me of the heinous Iraqi soldiers ripping babies out of incubators and throwing them on the floor to die. Which of course was later proved to be completely fabricated.

      • MA – One question – what is your source for the babies thrown into ovens? At least you have moved away from the thoroughly debunked beheaded babies narrative!

    • You haven’t seen the reports of all the rockets being launched from Gaza towards Tel Aviv? Hamas is actively fighting, they aren’t just sitting there innocently. This would end if Hamas surrendered. There’s video footage of Hamas soldiers attacking Gazan citizens to take the relief aid. They don’t care about their own people.

      • It gets worse, as over 70% of those in Gaza think the 10/7 attack was worth it and don’t care about Israeli payback. Hamas not only killed Israelis but are serving up their own people. Israel is in the midst of making sure they can’t do it again. Must be working, as the billionaires who are Hamas leadership in Qatar just went into hiding. I’d say they are about to get what they want, shortly followed by the Mullahs in Iran. FAFO. Cheers –

    • It seems like one would have had to been standing in the middle of the butcher site on october 7th to visualize what actually took place to be able to grasp the aftermath that ensued after the initial attack.
      Anything else is just watching videos from the sidelines by onlookers that can edit and project any scenario they wish or perhaps what pleases the onlookers the most.

      Warning: watch out for the snakes. They bite and are deadly.

    • 70 Hamas terrorist just surrendered and left the Kamal Adwan Hospital, where they had sheltered, clearly using injured and sick patients of this hospital as human shields to protect themselves.
      Michael Brown is clarifying/defining the bombastic words apologists for Hamas use to convince the world of their supposed “righteous” cause.
      Words have meaning.
      You don’t like “anti-Hamas” propaganda from Israel?
      This implies you at least sympathize with Hamas then? The same guys, who hide in a hospital, counting on the decency and moral fiber of their enemies not to attack them there????

    • The Israelites NEVER called for the annihalition of Palestaninians, only Hamas who are using Palestinians as a shield. You need to get educated too, just like Andy D above.

  4. The the United States retaliated after 911 and invaded two countries spent billions of dollars all because we got attacked.
    Now the world wants to get on Israel about what they’re doing. It’s not nobody’s concern, but Israel and the Palestinians.
    It’s OK for United States to do it and not listen to anybody but it’s not OK for any other country to invade and then we gotta get in involved and press our will on them.
    Again, politicians screwing it up.

  5. Excellent article. When Israel was attacked it was not only an attack of terrorism but one of war. The Hamas terrorists could care less about the people of Gaza and only see them as useful to the cause to destroy Israel. Israel’s military is going after terrorists, not civilians. They are not seeking to destroy a population but to eliminate a terrorist organization. That is not genocide, a word that has become another word tool of the left, thrown around with abandon by the unthinking who pay little if any attention to facts or history.

  6. Another word being uses incorrectly by those who support the stated goals of Hamas is “indiscriminately”.

    Indiscriminately, as in Hamas supporters claiming Israel is indiscriminately bombing innocent women and children when it is in fact Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and other terrorists who are documented indiscriminately launching bombs towards Israel and often killing innocent Palestinians. It is well known, and Hamas fully admits, that they use women and children as human shields. Hamas hides in tunnels beneath hospitals and schools, they hide their weapons and bombs in hospitals and schools, they hide behind women and children and celebrate them as martyrs. Yet those who support these cowardly terrorists will not denounce them for these acts.

      • Such childish thinking only leads to misery. Multiple Israel intel officers have publicly stated that they sent multiple warnings to their superiors. This “surprise” attack was allowed to happen. Why is that?

        • You know Tim, you are implying that Israel had the opportunity to prevent all this and did not. Yours is a simplistic assumption, most likely derived from too many TV shows and movies, where the main character always finds that little nugget in the sea of noise to prevent calamity.
          Reality is starkly different. There is a world of difference between actionable intelligence and chatter and noise. Real information in the sea of rumors, innuendo and assumptions doesn’t come with a red arrow over it saying “Hey I am important and real”. When you have limited assets and operate in a climate where your every move is scrutinized by others all the time, as in the case of Israel, you don’t have the luxury of running off after every piece of chatter that floats in. Verifying sources and solidifying intel is difficult. Then there is the sheer amount of information. After 9/11 many made the same accusations. What they conveniently overlooked was that with thousands of pieces of information coming in daily, having the personnel to find those that not only fit together, but paint a coherent picture AND can be verified, is a monumental task. I am sure there were some intel officers, who provided information to their superiors, but at the time it was one piece of info amongst many. Hindsight is always 20/20.
          The IRA famously said: We only have to be lucky once, you have to be lucky ALL the time”

          • That implication is correct. As proven by multiple Israeli soldier/intel operative whistleblowers who gave public testimony.

          • Tim, it is clear that you have no understanding of the reality of intelligence gathering.
            Believe what you want, but that doesn’t change the facts, as laid out above. Hindsight is 20/20 when you know what to look for and see the whole picture. None of that is certain BEFORE an event.

      • Mark – the current conflict began in 1948 when Britain unilaterally declared a small portion of Palestine to be the new homeland of European Jews. It was hoped, at the time, that this would “solve” Britain’s “Jewish problem”.

  7. This article should be titled.
    How to justify the deaths of thousands of civilians by a so called Christian.
    You Mr Brown are truly a pathetic excuse for an American, and an even more pathetic excuse for a so called Christian. And this comes from a supporter of Isreal.

    • Uhm sorry Rino, but Israelis are believers in the JEWISH faith. They do not recognize Christ. If you look at the old testament the Jewish people have always defended themselves against other nations to claim or retain their homeland.
      That you can’t handle factual definitions is a “you” problem not one of Mr. Brown.

      • Tax payer .
        It’s against Jewish religious law to spill innocent blood.
        Defense against invaders is different than their current actions of lobbing missiles into civilian housing. Killing indiscriminately is not Jewish history .
        Killing thousands of women and children should not be supported regardless of your faith. Anyone who does has permanent stain on their soul.

        • Nice try, again, American.
          Israel IS defending itself. Please see my post above about those 70 Hamas terrorist, who were hiding out in the Kamal Adwan Hospital. That Hamas killed thousands of Israelis over the decades apparently doesn’t count either in your view. I’ll repeat; if Palestinians would quit lobbing rockets ad bombs over the fence, Israel would have no reason to fight back.
          Tim Smith demands peace, so why are the Palestinian NOT setting the example and lay down their weapons in a show of good faith? Oh I forgot they want to eradicate the state of Israel and its people.

  8. Which murderous revenge blinded entity is worse, the government of Israel or the Hamas terrorists? And how do you measure? And who started it this time is largely irrelevant since for millennia, Jews hate Muslims and Muslims hate Jews. Religion is poison.

    • What inane drivel!
      First there is no equivalency in actions of Hamas to Israel. Elevating terrorists to be morally equal, is despicable and implies support or justification for any of their actions.

      Second, jealousy and greed are part of our psyche. It doesn’t matter what it is about. Religion/race/heritage is simply an excuse for some to feel better than others or take their stuff. Karl Marx did the same demanding the state take from the rich and give it to the “workers” i.e. the party bigwigs. Ironic since he grew up in an industrialist’s home and never held a real job. The real sad part is that socialism is without morality justifying any evil to benefit “the state”. The same goes for terrorists. They have no moral compass and therefore no right to demand such status.

  9. What concerns me is the lack of civilized behaver by all sides. Where is the world headed when I read the wholesale spread of hate and the murderess attitude that seems to be accepted by so many people today. When you read the news it looks like nations are choosing sides for the next slide back to a devasting war with no restraint.

Comments are closed.