Monday, September 28, 2009

28-Sep-09: Freeing hostages - what will it take?

We were dismayed to read that Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi said a few days ago "There is no way to bring Gilad Shalit back without freeing terrorists".

No way? We presume Ashkenazi's position is neither political nor diplomatic. Consequently, any negotiations or agreements involving the release of Palestinian Arab terrorists, felons and convicted murderers in exchange for the young hostage being held by the Hamas regime for more than three years are entirely outside the perimeter of his portfolio.

As such, his comment was superfluous and inappropriate. There are other means of rescuing Gilad Shalit, well within Ashkenazi's domain. Evidently these are not being pursued. Perhaps it was this failure and an urge to divert attention from it that prompted Ashekenazi's declaration. Whatever the reason, it's a sad note in a distressing public debate.

Reminder: one of the prisoners slated for release, a convicted multi-murderer, is the woman who engineered the massacre that took our fifteen year-old daughter's life. She can barely wait to do the same again: "I'm not sorry for what I did. We'll become free from the occupation and then I will be free from prison."

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