Jewish Right To Israel

Jewish Right To Israel
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Friday, June 30, 2006

Hamas: Terrorists, Freedom Fighters...Or Thugs

Little Green Footballs links approvingly to the Fox News Website which reports on its home page:
Israel Hits Palestinian Interior Ministry
Warplanes pummel Gaza; Hamas thugs reportedly offer conditional release of kidnapped soldier [emphasis added]
He calls the description of Hamas as 'thugs'--'honest'.

Of course it's nice that in the age of political correctness that shuns the use of the word 'terrorist,' Fox is using a substitute term that sidesteps the positive 'freedom fighter' or terms likes 'militant' or 'activist.' But the fact remains that Hamas are not a bunch of thugs, hoodlums, goons, punks, or toughs.

If they were, then a statement like this might make sense:

Israel said the crisis will end when Cpl. Gilad Shalit is released.

"If the Palestinians act now to release Cpl. Shalit and hand him back to us ... we would immediately initiate a dramatic reduction in tension," Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Mark Regev said. "He is the primary issue, he is the primary reason for the crisis."

This sounds like a hostage situation--its not.

At a NRO Symposium on the Gaza situation, one of the participants--Michael Freund--points out:
The only thing surprising about the return to Gaza is that it took this long to occur. Ever since the withdrawal, the Palestinians have been firing rockets on a near-daily basis into southern Israel, making life unbearable for tens of thousands of Israeli citizens.
Its understandable that the kidnapping of Gilad Shalit could be the straw that broke the camel's back, but it's not clear why the resolution of that alone should bring Operation Summer Rains to an end.

The statements of Israeli officials that have been quoted over the last couple of days give the impression that the goal of Israel is to allow itself the option to get out of Gaza without having to perform the massive cleanup job that many expected and looked forward to from the IDF.

Emanuele Ottolenghi, in the same symposium, thinks Israel miscalculated by entering Gaza the way it did:
...Israel fell in a trap by going into Gaza with massive force. Upping the ante with targeted killings would prove more effective because it leaves the option open to invade later. Threatening to kill Hamas ministers if the kidnapped soldier is not returned would have been a better measure. The invasion allows the Palestinians yet again to play victims in the stage of world opinion.
Instead of a show of real strength, all we read about are the bombings of deserted areas and buildings.

July 4th is the anniversary of the rescue at Entebbe.
It seems as if Operation Thunderbolt took place during a different time.

It did.

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