Monday, July 03, 2006
Operation Summer Rain
No more dramatic news from the Gaza Strip, so far as I know; Israeli military operations continue, disrupting the Hamas government that signed on to the kidnapping of Corporal Shalit. As a recent Washington Post editorial points out -- astonishingly, for them! -- Hamas chose to treat Israel as an enemy regime, with whom Hamas is at war. They can hardly complain if Israel responds accordingly.
Except that, if this is war, it is unlike any war we have ever seen. Can you think of another war, in which an invading force explicitly plans for zero enemy casualties -- among enemy combatants and non-combatants both -- and places her own troops at risk to do so? Can you remember another war, in which an invading army continues to provide the enemy with electricity, provides medical supplies as needed, sends large quantities of free food and fuel, and negotiates her own withdrawal while still trying to achieve the original objective?
(Until the threat of Hamas attacks forced a stop to these humanitarian shipments from Israel, that is.)
In the meantime, it is now Hamas that is issuing ultimata, threatening "serious consequences" if Israel did not agree to their terms before Tuesday. Israel's Prime Minister Olmert has responded: "Israel will not give in to extortion by the Palestinian Authority and the Hamas government, which are led by murderous terrorist organizations. We will not conduct any negotiations on the release of prisoners. The Palestinian Authority bears full responsibility for the welfare of Gilad Shalit and for returning him safe and sound to Israel."
In the meantime, here's another photo of Gilad Shalit, from his pre-Army days, courtesy of the Jerusalem Post:
UPDATE: Interesting signs that Hamas may be weakening -- along with the resolve of certain Arab dictators.