JERUSALEM, Israel -- As Israel fights back against Hamas -- the Palestinian terror group that openly declares its intention to wipe the Jewish state off the map -- it faces condemnation from the Arab world.
The spokesman for the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan called for an immediate halt to Israel's "barbaric aggression."
The Islamic Republic of Iran, responsible in large part for funding, training and arming Hamas and other Islamist terror groups, called on the West to condemn the Zionists' "savage aggression…against the innocent and defenseless people of Palestine."
President Barack Obama leveled the playing field by urging both sides "not to act out of revenge."
The Arab League, meanwhile, wants the U.N. Security Council to convene over Israel's response to rockets targeting its major population centers.
But many Israelis and their friends around the globe ask how can the world condemn a country for protecting its people? But that's exactly what Israel faces every time it's forced to act against those seeking its destruction.
It doesn't seem to matter how well or how often Israel explains its position or how hard it tries to avoid collateral damage while destroying munitions factories, weapons warehouses, rocket launch sites, and arms smuggling tunnels in the Gaza Strip.
Israeli leaders vowed the operation in Gaza will expand and continue until the rocket fire stops and quiet returns.
"Hamas will pay a heavy price for firing at Israeli citizens," Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said after meeting with Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon, IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz, and Southern Command chief Maj. Gen. Sami Turgeman.
"Hamas has chosen escalation," Gantz said. "The other organizations have joined it and we will use all the power we have, in varying degrees, to ensure what we consider a victory. We will exact the full price [from Hamas] for the strategic mistake it has made."
Ya'alon also said Hamas would pay "a very heavy price" and the campaign would not end "in a matter of days."
"We are destroying [the terror group's] arms, terrorist infrastructure, command and control systems, institutions, government buildings, terrorists' homes," Ya'alon said. "And we are killing terrorists in the organization's high command," referring to a pinpoint air strike that took out a senior Hamas terrorist Wednesday as he traveled by motorcycle in northern Gaza.
"We will continue to hit Hamas and other terrorist organizations hard from the air, at sea, and on the ground in order to ensure the security of the citizens of Israel," Ya'alon said.
Most Israelis back the government's full-scale operation against Gaza-based jihadists. Many hope the IDF will succeed in destroying as much as the terrorist infrastructure as possible, now threatening the Jewish state's major population centers.