Daily Show host Trevor Noah is being sharply criticized for his recent remarks that Israel should consider restraining itself in responding to deadly attacks from Hamas due to the fact that Hamas itself is militaristically inferior.
Glossing briefly over the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in a recent clip posted to Twitter, Noah suggested that Israel’s significant military forces should compel it to restrain itself during combat with Hamas.
“Israel has one of the most powerful militaries in the world,” he said. “They could crush Gaza like that. Not to mention one of the most advanced defense systems in the world.”
“I just want to ask an honest question,” he continued. “If you’re in a fight where the other person cannot beat you, how hard should you retaliate when they try to hurt you?” Noah further compared the conflict to fights he used to have with his little brothers.
The remarks generated blowback and criticism from numerous commentators. “A country should accept a terrorist group launching deadly rockets at its civilian population because a comedian thinks that the terror group won’t win?” writer Bari Weiss said in response.
American Jewish Committee Executive Officer David Harris, meanwhile, called the remarks “troubling.”
“What exactly is Hamas?” Harris said in an open letter to Noah. “… It is a terrorist organization. That’s not a personal view. It is the formal designation of the United States and the 27-member European Union.”