Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Israelis strike first

JPost on this story

Israel will no longer exhibit restraint toward Palestinian terrorists involved in anti-Israel operations, Defense Minister Amir Peretz said Tuesday following an Israeli air strike in Gaza that targeted a car carrying Islamic Jihad cell members on their way to launch GRAD-model Katyusha rockets at Israel. Eleven people died in the strike and, according to the IDF, at least three of them were Islamic Jihad members.

"We will act with all our might and use all our means against any group that acts against us," Peretz said.

"We showed the necessary restraint in light ... of the international uproar that resulted, but it's over," Peretz continued.

Nine civilians and two schoolchildren were killed in this strike when the second missile was fired. Abbas condemned the attack and was quoted as follows by the AP:

"Every day there are martyrs, there are wounded people, all of them innocents, all of them bystanders...They want to eliminate the Palestinian people, but we are going to sit tight. We are sitting tight on our land...We want to establish our state and live in peace...What Israel is committing is state terrorism."

A Katyusha rocket is evidently worse than a Qassam rocket. Even if the attack was a them-or-us thing, it's poison. We see Peretz and Abbas making statements you would not expect them to make every day. The Olmert government should especially not expect disengagement from the West Bank to have any good effect if the two sides are openly throwing bombs at each other.

(This just in: Evidently serious political pressure on both Peretz and Abbas. The lead prisoner of the "prisoners' referendum" disparaged Abbas's attempt to hold a vote on it and a combination of security forces loyal to Abbas and Al-Aksa Martyrs Brigades members attacked the Parliament and other Hamas-controlled buildings. Hamas, for its part, fired on the headquarters Preventive Security Force, loyal to Abbas, in Rafah. 2 were killed and 11 wounded. Abbas declared a state of emergency. Peretz was reported in the Israeli press to have "rejected army plans for intensified airstrikes against rocket-launching teams and sites" (NYT). In this situation the Palestinians will probably be happy Hamas is attacking Israel instead of Fatah. No one will take seriously a country in what amounts to a civil war.)


Blogger Batya said...

Let's see.

June 15, 2006 at 2:28 AM  

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