ISRAEL - PALESTINE - Gaza: as airstrikes and rocket attack resume, Netanyahu "ready for a long operation" [AN]


Death toll reaches 1,113. Gaza’s only power plant is hit. Diplomatic efforts continue. French presidency says Western leaders agree “to redouble their efforts”. According to Al-Arabiya, a delegation of various Palestinian factions arrived today in Cairo for talks on Egyptian cease-fire proposal.



The deaths are tragedies on both sides. But inasmuch as Israel’s purpose is to destroy the tunnels into Israel and disarm Hamas terrorists as much as possible, these deaths are on Hamas’ hands.


Francis has called for a cease fire for all those involved- including Israel.


Did he endorse Hamas’ keeping tunnels into Israel and missiles in schools and hospitals? I doubt it.


He called for a cease fire for all involved.

He didn’t give qualifiers.

Do you ascribe this to just another case of. . . . . “prudential judgement”?


Not knowing what he thinks about the necessity of removing the tunnels and what it takes to get them removed, for example, I couldn’t say what the totality of his thinking is. Nor can you.

If his full wish is to have Hamas and Israel cease firing at each other forever, and I rather imagine it is, then I’m with him 100%. I’m sure Israel would be too. I doubt Hamas would be, but they could prove me wrong.


Hamas will not cease fire because the leaders of Hamas aren’t in Gaza, but Egypt and elsewhere out of harms way.

They have no desire to stop firing missiles into Israel as long as Israel continues it’s seven year blockade.

Of course, Israel knows that if they lift the blockade, Hamas will bring more weapons into Gaza to use against Israel.

The leader of Hamas, Khaled Meshaal, stated to Charlie Rose in an interview, that he will never recognize the State of Israel and even if the Palestinians have their own state. His desire is for a Palestinian State, period, without Israel.

That being he case, Israel must work with the Palestinian Fatah side to help them oppose Hamas, and that can only happen by giving Fatah justice in the West Bank and Gaza, and also help them to police Hamas out of Gaza and the West Bank. Fatah has only joined an alliance with Hamas, because Israel was giving them nothing and continuing building Jewish Settlements in the West Bank.

The other problem is, Israel has a policy under Netanyahu, to punish the main populace in order to get them to turn against the terrorist organizations, but it doesn’t work.

Israel tried in Lebanon, when they bombed Beirut to smithereens after Hezbollah kidnapped and killed some Israeli Soldiers from the Golan Heights. The Lebanese government doesn’t have the means to drive Hezbollah out of Lebanon, and the Israeli government has blocked any effort from the US to help them militarily. But the Lebanese people paid the price for Hezbollah, which is supported by Iran. FYI, the Lebanese are both Christian and Muslim.

The other point is, Iran also supplies Hamas with rockets. So, any negotiations to lift sanctions against Iran would have to include demands that they stop supplying Hamas and Hezbollah.

Don’t know if they’ll agree to such a demand.

Meanwhile, the ME remains in a state of war and deprivation for ordinary people.



Israel just did allow a cease fire with Hamas, but the time period ended without Hamas agreeing to any substantive terms to end the fighting. Without any endgame in sight, a cease fire is nothing more than a cover for Hamas to regroup and prepare for the resumption of hostilities with impunity.

When the pope calls for a cease fire, he’s asking for BOTH sides to stop the fighting and look for peaceful means of resolution. He’s not asking ONE side to stop and stand idly by while the other party gets up of the floor, picks up his weapon again, gets his breath and readies to take another swing. That is, in a nutshell, Hamas’s demand for a real cease fire. They want the blockade ended because they’re running low on rockets and want the ability to import more so they can start the cycle all over again. They’re not honest leaders.

That said, Israel is missing a big opportunity here to foster real peace with the Palestinians. They should be going ALL out with the olive branch towards Fatah while heavy fighting with Hamas goes on. Maybe eventually the Palestinian people will grow tired of being permanently exploited by thuggish leaders who desire only the glory and spoils of war rather than a lasting and prosperous peace. Maybe if they saw in glaring contrast the difference between the outcome of endless jihad versus honest negotiations they’d throw the Hamas bums out of the country for good.


Maybe. One needs to remember that Arafat created Fatah and Fatah invented all sorts of things we’re seeing in the Middle East; taking captives for ransom, demanding tribute from oil states, refusing to make peace with Israel, pushing other states to war with Israel.

That’s not to say development of some kind of decent government among Palestinians is impossible. After all, Jordan is a reasonably peaceful, majority Palestinian state, though its peace is bought by very strict policing and occasional ruthlessness as well as providing a peaceful setting for a fair degree of opportunity.

But I think it’s unrealistic to expect one too soon. After all, Palestinians can see what it’s like in Israel and in Israeli settlements. They can also see how their leaders live very well while they, themselves, often don’t. And yet, when they had a choice of rulers, those in Gaza chose Hamas.


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