"Message: Do Not Fuck With The Jews."
In the UK, the editorialists at the Independent wonder whether "counterproductive" rather than "disproportionate" is the better term to deploy in considering, say, a possible ground assault on Gaza: "There are, in any case, problems with the notion of proportionality in situations such as these. No state can be expected to tolerate rockets being launched at its civilians."
In the Irish Times, Zion Evrony writes: "Regarding the issue of proportionality concerning Israel's military operation, it is important to note that the principle of self-defence, according to international law, states that military actions must be measured in terms of the total threat facing a country. As such, the right to self-defence includes not just actions taken to neutralise the immediate threat, but also those taken to prevent subsequent attacks."
More to the point, Marty Peretz at the New Republic: "Frankly, I am up to my gullet with this reflex criticism of Israel as going beyond proportionality in its responses to war waged against its population with the undisguised intention of putting an end to the political expression of the Jewish nation. . . Enough. What would be proportionate, oh, so so proportionate apparently, are those tried-and-true half measures to contain Hamas that have never worked."
Better still, George Szirtes on the same subject: "But what would be proportionate? How would one go about arranging a proportionate response? Make sure one was firing duds? Aiming to miss? Executing a Hamas prisoner? Would that be internationally welcomed?"
UPDATE - George Jonas: "Certainly Israel has tolerated insurgents terrorizing civilian populations to a much greater extent than the U. S. (or, for that matter, Canada) ever would. In Canada, prime minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau invoked the War Measures Act in response to a few mailbox bombs and two kidnappings by the Front de liberation du Quebec. Agree with Trudeau or not, it took just one murder (Pierre Laporte), one maiming (Sergeant-Major Walter Leja) and one abduction (James Cross) to send tanks rumbling down the streets of Montreal in 1970."