Friday, December 12, 2008

12-Dec-08: Same old same old

Here we go again. The same boring old reports. So boring that no one, other than a tiny handful of Israeli sources, bothers to publish anything about them.

Two days ago, on Wednesday, a deadly Qassam rocket launched from Gaza landed in an open field near a kibbutz in Israel's Sha'ar Hanegev area. No injuries or damage were reported in the attack, which occurred as the area's children were making their way to local schools and kindergartens.

It's continuing this morning (Friday). A rocket was fired by Gazan terrorists, landing in Israel a few hours ago near a kibbutz in the south of the country. Another rocket from the same source crashed into a location near the security fence separating Israel from the Hamas-controlled enclave.

Earlier this week, Yediot Aharonot (an Israeli daily paper) calculated that 215 rockets - and possibly more than that number - have been fired from the Gaza Strip into Israel since November 4.

Israel's response so far? There are two.

AFP says: "In a goodwill gesture to Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas, whose effective control extends only to the West Bank, an Israeli cabinet committee gave its approval to a list of 230 Palestinian prisoners to be freed this week."

And yesterday trucks carrying 100 million shekels ($25 million) were allowed into the Hamas-run Gaza Strip "to ease a shortage of banknotes in the Israeli-blockaded territory, Palestinian bank officials said... Israeli Defence Minister Ehud Barak approved the transfer of the 100 million shekels following a request from Bank of Israel Governor Stanley Fischer. The Israeli central bank said in a statement it did not want to be responsible for the possible collapse of the Palestinian banking system. Barak had also come under pressure from the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and Middle East envoy Tony Blair to transfer the money. Western officials said the cash was needed to protect Abbas's standing in the Gaza Strip, which Hamas Islamists seized in June 2007 after routing secular Fatah forces loyal to the Western-backed president."

Protect Abbas's standing, they write? So how about this: Most Palestinians believe Mahmoud Abbas's term as prime minister should end right now. A poll released yesterday (Thursday) by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research shows 64 percent believe he should leave office and go home.

And as for the overall benefits of trucking Israeli currency into a neighbourhood controlled by terrorist thug gangs, Haaretz quotes senior Palestinian Arabs officials including PA Prime Minister Fayyad saying "in private conversations" that "there is no way to check whether the entire sum really reached the employees for whom it was earmarked. Some of the banks' branch managers and tellers cooperate with Hamas" and the Israeli cash can easily (read: certainly was) snatched by Hamas.

So just to summarize:
  • Most consumers of news around the world do not even know (since the reports do not get published) that Israel continues to be under steady bombardment from terrorists operating with the active support of the government of their region (Hamas).
  • These attacks are exclusively directed at civilians. Terrorism, by any definition.
  • Israeli losses are not heavier than they already are only because of the incompetence of the terrorists. In any event, the terrorists do not aim at specific targets since any target inside Israel meets their needs.
  • Israel for its part continues to make gestures of conciliation, this time allowing Israeli banknotes to be trucked in to Gaza's banks. Financial corruption being endemic and endless in their world, and Israeli being principal victims of its effects, this gesture is puzzling in the extreme.
  • Israel continues to provide a deeply unpopular lame-duck political hack (Mahmoud Abbas, the Holocaust-denying head of the Palestinian Authority) with unparalleled support through shortening the prison sentences of, and releasing, convicted Palestinian Arab terrorists. His voters, for their part, tell him he needs to quit now.
As we said: same old same old, all over again.