Sunday, May 29, 2011

Could The New Open Border Between Egypt And Gaza Work Towards Israel's Benefit?

Too bad the UN's Ban Ki-Moon didn't speak out this strongly against last year's Flotilla:
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has voiced his concern about potential flotillas to Gaza, and written to Governments of countries around the Mediterranean Sea asking them to discourage their use to deliver assistance to the territory.

...In his letter to the Governments, Mr. Ban expressed his belief “that assistance and goods destined to Gaza should be channelled through legitimate crossings and established channels.”
Of course, it's that last line that explains why Ban thinks the Flotillas are now pointless, specifically now that Egypt has opened its border with Gaza:
Egypt permanently reopened southern Gaza Strip's Rafah border crossing on Saturday which has been raising Israeli fears of an rise in militant attacks.

The Israeli opposition party Kadima blamed Egypt's for opening the Rafah border, saying such a move will threaten Israel's security.
Even so, there is a silver lining to the newly opened border between Egypt and Gaza:
However, a Haifa University's Palestinian society and politics expert Ido Zelkovitz said that is actually good for the State of Israel in the long run.

"If Egypt opens the crossing, Israel will supposedly no longer be responsible for supplying Gaza's daily needs and Egypt will become the official gateway," Zelkovitz added.
And Former National Security Council head Major-General Giora Eiland agrees:
The whole world claims that Gaza is under siege and Israel is to blame...the Egyptians and Hamas are saying clearly, Gaza is not under siege, the crossing is open. … Diplomatically this gives Israel a great advantage.
The fact that Ban has actively come out against the flotilla would tend to confirm Eiland's analysis.
Of course, if the flotilla is actually called off, that would be even better confirmation.

But that of course would mean that those behind the flotilla are actually motivated by a real concern for the Palestinians living under Hamas rule--and there is now sign that those who have signed up for the flotilla care that much about the life Gazans lead under Hamas.

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