Jimmy Carter Condemns Gaza Blockade

Former President Jimmy Carter blasted inaction on the part of the European Union and the so-called Quartet for its refusal end the blockade of Gaza. He termed the blockade “one of the greatest human rights crimes on Earth” and claimed many families in Gaza are eating only one meal per day. He urged the European Union to reassess its stance on Hamas if the group agreed to a cease fire. “Let the Europeans lift the embargo and say we will protect the rights of Palestinians in Gaza and even send observers to Rafah gate to ensure the Palestinians don’t violate it.” He termed the idea of refusing to talk with Hamas as unrealistic one and pointed out that Israel has been in contact with Hamas representatives and is cooperating with the Egyptian mediator, Omar Sulleiman, in trying to arrange a cease fire.

Carter charged that Bush adviser, Elliot Arbrams, is the author of not talking with Hamas, a charge that is most probably not accurate. There are plenty of right wing hardline groups in Israel which refuse to negotiate with Hamas to ever believe the idea was concocted in the White House. Jimmy Carter raised many important issues but his failure to condemn Hamas for firing rockets into Israel opens the door to charges his approach is one-sided.

Carter, who is a superdelegate, refused to indicate which of the two candidates he will support, but suggested the race was over and it was time for Clinton to end her campaign.