Sunday, November 26, 2006

The Incredible Shrinking Ceasefire

When the ceasefire was first announced, it had a number of components. Abbas claimed that:
  • All Palestinian terrorist factions agreed to the ceasefire
  • Tunnel-digging would stop
  • Suicide bombing would stop
  • Firing of Kassam rockets would stop
  • Manufacture of rockets would stop
After Israel kept her side of the bargain, it did not take long for the ceasefire to unravel:
All IDF forces were withdrawn from Gaza in the course of the night - and shortly afterwards, two terrorist groups announced they were not parties to the ceasefire agreement. Islamic Jihad and the Abu Rish Brigades of Fatah declared this morning that they would continue firing rockets at Israeli citizens. [emphasis added]
And that was only the beginning:
In the meanwhile, three rockets hit the besieged city of Sderot and environs around 8 AM, and another Kassam was fired at the Eshkol region of the Negev.

...Shortly before 10 AM, a fifth rocket slammed into the town, but causing no physical damage.
In an interview with IMRA, a Hamas spokesman made clear that besides the manufacture of weapons, smuggling weapons in the tunnels is not covered by the ceasefire

IMRA has an article quoting from 2 Olmert speeches indicating that there is no expectation for a halt in weapon production--contrary to the original official Governement indication. By the same token, Olmert clearly states that the smuggling of weapons through tunnels would stop--contrary to what the Hamas spokesman quoted above claimed.

What do you expect when you make a deal with terrorists?

For that matter, why would you go to the trouble to negotiate a ceasefire with the same leader for whom the US is constantly demanding you make concessions because his weak position needs to be strengthened?

Then there is Shimon Peres:
"It is a positive development, but not the final move," he told Israel Radio this morning. "Let us not exaggerate its importance, but it should not be derided... It is an achievement for Israel, for Ehud Olmert and for his government."
Even while hedging, Peres does not grasp how hollow an achievement this is, even as it falls apart the day after the ceasefire goes into effect.

The problem again is that Israel follows the West's lead in the absurd notion that Palestinian terrorists somehow have some kind of legitimacy and not only can but must be negotiated with and trusted. As long as Israel buys into this, concessions will expected and demanded.

It is up to Israel to say 'no' to such expectations--consistently and repeatedly.
And first step is to elect real leaders.

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