Tensions Rise In Middle East Due to Gaza Deaths

The exiled leader of Hamas told reporters in Damascus that President Bush’s recent visit to Israel was designed to encourage the Israelis to accelerate their attacks on Gaza and Hamas forces. In recent attacks, the son of a senior Hamas leader was killed. “This crime,” said Khaled Mashaai, “is the ugly fruit of Bush’s visit to the region. He has incited the Zionists and has exerted pressure on the Palestinian side to become more hardline against Palestinian dialogue.” He predicted retaliation for the Gaza attacks and emphasized, “we will not offer more concessions because of these crimes.” It is estimated at least fifty Palestinians were wounded in the recent Israel excursion into Gaza.

Presdient Abbas condemned what he termed “the barbaric Israel massacre in Gaza” and raised questions as to whether or not he could continue the peace process. Some Hamas leaders are now accusing Abbas of being an ally of Israel in the attacks on the people of Gaza. Abbas is not in the most powerful positions of authority. Continued Israel actions which result in deaths of Palestinians increase the pressure on him to back away from peace negotiations. Is it time for Israel to reconsider its policy of attack, attack, and retaliation?

  • Walter77777

    Retaliation is the best Israel can do to limit the attacks on its people. The Qassam rockets launched from Gaza do not hit military installations which are usually hardened enough to withstand them; the rockets launched from Gaza strike civilain areas to disrupt life in these areas.

    Israel has no territorial ambitions as may be seen by the withdrawal of Israeli settlers from Gaza which was done because Israel realized that it was a constant provocation for poverty-stricken Arabs in Gaza to see Israelis in the settlements living lifestyles reminiscent of life in a suburb of Phoenix or Los Angeles.

    It would only take a small amount of support from oil-rich arab countries for the Arabs living in Judea and Samaria (You call it West Bank.) to have nice lives, but the Arabs realize that deprivation helps in recruiting suicde bombers in case another campaign of terror is called for by the violent forces amng the Arabs living near Israel.

    W.

  • http://www.theimpudentobserver.com Fred Stopsky

    You raise important points. One of the tragedies of the Palestinian refugee situation is failure on the part of Arab nations to integrate these displaced people within their own societies. Most remain as virtual stateless refugees who lack the basic rights of citizens.
    I beg to differ with you on one point. Israel does have territorial ambitions as witness the growth of West Bank settlements. When Israel troops initially drove out the Jordanians in 1967, there was no thought at that time in the minds of Israel leaders to take West Bank land. Obviously, the concept of territorial expansion led to changes in policy.