Tag Archives: cease-fire

Hamas Accepts Cease Fire–Israel Must Stand Down!

A senior Egyptian official told the media that Hamas had accepted the Cairo Initiative and will cease firing. “We have obtained Hamas’s agreement and are awaiting the response from Israel.” An Israeli official is expected in Egypt today and hopefully it will bring an end to death and destruction. Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos said “Hamas is going to publicly express its support and acceptance(to the Cairo Initiative). The ball is now in the court of Israel to cease firing and come to the negotiating table of peace.

Israel must stand down even if at this moment each point is not clearly spelled out. It would assist the process if a Turkish armed force could be sent to assume control over Gaza crossings and ensure that rocket attacks cease as well as Israel attacks on Hamas leaders. The Turkish force would continue supervising the area on condition there are no more rocket attacks or assassinations of Hamas leadership. They would be responsible to ensure no more tunnels are built since the crossings would allow enough food and materials to enter and Israel would cease to supervise the process.

A next step would be for Israel to meet with the Arab League to discuss its proposal of peace and recognition in exchange for a return to the 1967 borders. It is time for religious fanatics on both sides to be pushed aside in the name of peace.

George Bush–Israel’s Worst Enemy!!

Many members of my family insist George Bush is the “best friend” Israel ever had in sharp contrast to “evil” people like Jimmy Carter. Of course, Jimmy Carter was the only American president to help Israel end a conflict with an Arab nation. During the past few days, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice worked with European leaders in order to develop a cease fire program that would end the madness that now envelops Gaza. French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner, British Foreign Secretary David Miliband and Rice worked out a cease fire in order to halt the slaughter now being inflicted on Palestinians. As Rice worked on the plan, she kept in constant contact with Washington D.C. to make certain everyone was on board for the agreement.

However, just as the ministers were taking their seats in the Security Council, Secretary of State Rice was called to the telephone where she was informed by President Bush not to vote for the resolution. All Rice could say was that America agreed with the need for an end to fighting.

George Bush has become Israel’s worst nightmare, a man who would rather see Israel commit blunder after blunder than to find a way for peace. Thank God, Barack Obama will be president in a week. Any supporter of Israel who believes refusing to sign a cease fire contributes to the security of that nation should take a look at how Bush ensured the security of the United States of America.

Death In The Congo–The Forgotten Slaughter!

Over five million people have died in the Congo over the past several years which represents a slightly higher murder rate than the 700 killed in Gaza, but the world is focused on the Middle East while millions of black skinned people die. The United Nations is endeavoring to hold peace talks not only in Gaza, but in the Congo where rebel forces from Rwanda led by guerilla chief Laurent Nkunda is attempting to disrupt the entire governmental process in the Congo nation. There is something pathetic about the UN which has spoken many words, but done little in reality to aid the ignored people of the Congo. Thousands of women will be raped and brutalized over the coming months while UN discussions take place with thugs like Nkunda and those in the current Congo government.

World attention is focused on Gaza where Israel is killing people and Hamas is enjoying the spectacle of death and destruction. It is clear there is scant appetite among UN officials to assume responsibility for doing anything specific to aid the Congolese people. Their nation lacks oil and their skins are black so why should the UN try to do something about a cease fire in the Congo?

What Price Security For Israeli Jews?

During the past two thousand years Jews have endured every form of persecution and brutality known to the human race. They have been murdered, burned to death, witnessed the destruction of their property and the rape of their women. They have been outcasts in a world that regarded being Jewish as sufficient reason to be killed. My grandfather was beaten up in front of his son(my father) during the Russian pogroms of 1905. If any group should understand the meaning of human hate and the importance of respecting the integrity of all people it is the Jewish people. However, recent events in Gaza have witnessed Jews crossing the line of decent behavior by refusing to accept a cease fire and by a senseless and inhumane policy of bombing schools and homes of innocent individuals.

Navi Pillay, the UN high commissioner for human rights believes Israel forces are guilty of war crimes for the bombing of civilian areas. At least 265 children are dead and 3,000 wounded. Yes, Israel had every right to strike back at the criminal actions of Hamas which also should be subject to war crimes for placing weapons in areas next to civilians, but Israel has crossed the line by refusing to stand down and halt the bombing and killing of the innocent.

The behavior of the Israel government violates the essence of Judaism and its respect for human rights. The tragedy is that Israel citizens have allowed their fears(many being justified) to support the slaughter of the innocent. What price salvation for Israel? Is it that anything can be justified in the name of “security?” Are their lines that can not be crossed?

Israel And Hamas “Welcome” A Cease Fire

Israel and Hamas both “welcomed”–but did not accept– an Egyptian-French plan for a cease fire agreement. The United States finally placed some pressure on Israel to agree to a cease fire as Secretary of State Condi Rice telephoned Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and urged an end to the fighting. However, Rice also added: “Our goal must be the stabilization and normalisation of life in Gaza.” But any cease fire “has to be a solution that does not allow the rearmament of Hamas.” Egyptian president Mubarak was reportedly trying to get a 48 hour cease fire to provide time to work out details of a longer term agreement. Hamas made clear it would insist that Israel forces withdraw from Gaza and open all crossings. Hamas leaders did not make any promises of halting rocket attacks.

The proposed plan includes such ideas as:

A cease fire to allow humanitarian aid into Gaza.

An international presence on the border of Gaza that might include American, Turkish and European Union soldiers.

The reality is no cease fire will last unless Hamas ends its rocket attacks once and for all. At the same time if rocket attacks end, Israel must open all border crossings.

End Bombings! — Cease Fire Now!

Bombs continue falling on Gaza as Hamas leaders continue their rhetoric of defiance and sending rockets into Israel A one ton bomb killed Hamas leader, Nizar Rayan, and four members of his family. Rayan had consistently refused to negotiate with Israel or, let alone, recognize it as an independent nation. “There is nothing called Israel, neither in reality nor in imagination.” Unfortunately, the non-exisant Israel is pounding away at Gaza in a fierce determination to kill Hamas leaders and force a cease fire that will end rocket attacks. The decision by Hamas to end the cease fire and to resume large scale rocket attacks on Israel must rank as among the most misguided actions of 2008. The only result was the death of dozens of innocent civilians and massive destruction of facilities.

Many international groups are urging Israel to halt the bombing, but the Israeli military establishment wants guarantees that all rocket attacks will cease. Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni went as far to state, “there is no humanitarian crisis in the strip.” Yes, Ms. Livni, there is a humanitarian crisis that must be resolved as soon as possible to prevent the death of innocent Gaza civilians.

We urge the following steps be taken:

1. An immediate cease fire by Israel with the understanding that within 48 hours, all rocket attacks from Gaza will cease.

2. A United Nations force be sent to Gaza to supervise crossings and ensure there are no future rocket attacks. The Turkish army would be the logical military force to enforce a cease fire– it has the confidence of Israel and is Muslim.

Sudan Promises Cease Fire–PR Or Reality?

President Omar al-Bashir, who is under indictment for war crimes, called for a unilateral cease fire in the Sudan. He claimed to be initiating a program to disarm the militia and reduce the use of arms in Darfur. “I hereby announce our immediate unconditional ceasefire between the armed forces and warring factions, provided that an effective monitoring mechanism is put into action and observed by all involved parties.” His janjaweed militia has been responsible for the death of hundreds of thousands as well as the rape and brutalization of untold thousands of women, and suddenly Bashir has become a man of peace.

The Sudan president has become frightened at the prospect of being forced to appear before the International Criminal Court for war crimes. He has established the Sudan People’s Forum which includes members of the opposition and this group has recommended releasing political prisoners and paying compensation to the two million people his militia has driven from their homes. It remains to be seen if he is serious.

Hamas Insists It Wants Truce With Israel

A senior Hamas official insisted his group wanted to maintain the current Gaza truce with Israel. He emphasized to the media, “all factions and armed groups have to be committed to the truce, although Israel is not committed to it.” He believes Egypt has to take a more pro-active stance toward Israel and to make certain the truce holds. On one hand, rocket attacks continue from Gaza to Israel territory while Hamas insists Israel is to blame for violating the cease fire agreement. On Friday, two rockets hit Israel territory and one nearly hit a group of Israeli police.

Of course, on the other hand, Israel continues expanding it settlements on the West Bank which is hardly a step toward peace. Both sides talk about cease fires and both insist they are the ones committed to peace while each violates any agreement that has been made.

Are Russian Soldiers In Gori, Georgia?

A Moscow Times reporter saw about 50 trucks with Russian solders moving toward Gori from the east while an advisor to President Saakashvili, said the Russian military was using Gori as a staging area for looting raids on neighboring villages. The Moscow Times reports a convoy of journalists and diplomats heading for Gori from Tibilisi were halted about two kilometers from Gori and prevented from proceeding any further. Finally, a group of diplomats were allowed to enter Gori but the reporters were detained at the check point. It is still unclear exactly how many Russian troops are in Gori or whether they also have tanks in the city.

President Medvedev has declared a national day of mourning for Russian and South Ossetians who died during the last few days of fighting. Russia’s military says 74 of its troops died in the fighting and about 171 were wounded. There is still controversy as to the number of South Ossetians and Georgians who died as a result of the war.

The reality is the status quo of what was present prior to the Georgian invasion of South Ossetia will be maintained. President Sarkozy believes the cease fire will hold and most probably the two breakaway provinces will maintain their independence. President Saakashvil destroyed any real possibility for dealing with problems arising from the areas breaking away by his ill advised invasion of South Ossetia.

President Bush Stands For Peace And Opposes War!

President George Bush made clear to Russia that he opposes use of armed force to settle disputes between nations. He informed the Russian government aid would be sent to Georgia and it would be delivered by American troops who would be flying into Georgia. Secretary of State Rice bluntly told the Russians: “This is not 1968 an the invasion of Czechoslovakia where Russia can threaten a neighbor, occupy a capital, overthrow a government and get away with it. Things have changed.” The European Union was prepared to dispatch soldiers as part of a peacekeeping group that would assist in maintaining the cease fire agreement that President Sarkozy hammered out between Georgia and Russia.

Under terms of the cease fire, both sides would withdraw to their bases and allow humanitarian aid. It is still unclear about the presence of Russian “peacekeeping troops” in the breakaway provinces of Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

The presence of George Bush as an opponent of the use of force to resolve problems is among the most laughable aspects of the current crisis. Actually, Russia acted in the same manner as did President Bush in 2003 when he ignored UN attempts to verify if WMD actually existed in Iraq. One can only wonder if the American president looks in the mirror of South Ossetia and sees his own reflection.