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Israeli air strikes continue to terrorize Palestinians in Gaza. 350 Palestinians are dead, many of them civilians. 4 Israelis have been killed.
Here's Israel's plan...
Israeli says its offensive, which began Saturday, is designed to neutralize the threat posed to southern Israel by Hamas rockets. As the air strikes continued Tuesday, Israeli Interior Minister Meir Sheetrit told Israel Radio: “There is no room for a cease-fire.”
“The government is determined to remove the threat of fire on the south,” he said, referring to rocket attacks on southern Israel by Hamas forces. “Therefore the Israeli army must not stop the operation before breaking the will of Palestinians, of Hamas, to continue to fire at Israel.”
Israel has defined its aims relatively narrowly — the crippling of Hamas’s ability to send rockets into Israel — but has not made clear if it means to topple the leadership of Hamas, which Israel and the United States brand as a terrorist organization.
This is the same Israeli plan that failed miserably in 2006 when it was Hezbollah fighters firing the rockets from the Lebanese border into Israel. Israel failed to "break the will" of those Hezbollah fighters. Israel won't be successful in breaking the will of Hamas either....no matter how many terrorist smart rockets they explode inside the densely populated area of Gaza.
And, naturally.....there's the "collateral" damage....
a mosque where militants often took refuge has been destroyed by Israel, one of five mosques it has hit.
a group of young people, ages 18 to 20, were hit when a missile was aimed at a group of Hamas policemen in the street. According to a statement by United Nations Special Coordinator Robert Serry, eight of the young people, emerging from a United Nations training center, were killed instantly and 19 wounded. Eight of those hurt were in critical condition on Monday. One is awaiting emergency transfer to an Israeli hospital.
an attack on a mosque where militants were hiding also struck a nearby house, killing five girls under the age of 18, health ministry officials said. Link
The BBC reports...
A UN human rights monitor accused Israel of "shocking atrocities".
Richard Falk - the special rapporteur for human rights in the Palestinian territories - said the international community must put more pressure on Israel to end its attacks on Gaza.
"Israel is committing a shocking series of atrocities by using modern weaponry against a defenceless population - attacking a population that has been enduring a severe blockade for many months," Mr Falk said in a BBC interview.
I'm oh-so-sure that killing Palestinian women and children will do wonders in "breaking the will" of Palestinian militants.
Now, let's talk terrorism. Do you think Palestinians in Gaza are terrorized right now? Do you think Gazans consider Israel to be a terrorist nation about now? Can sophisticated airborne military gunships be considered terrorist weaponry...or is terrorist weaponry limited to suicide belts and homemade, unaimable rockets?
Biggest question. Do you think Israel's current military terror attacks in Gaza will lessen the chance for future Palestinian acts of terror?
"Anyone minimally objective and well-intentioned finds Hamas rocket attacks on random Israeli civilians to be highly objectionable and wrong, but even among those who do, one finds a wide range of views regarding the Israeli offensive. But not among America's political leadership. There, one finds total, lockstep uniformity almost more unyielding than what one finds among Israeli leaders themselves -- as though Israel's wars are, by definition, America's wars; its enemies are our enemies; its disputes and conflicts and interests are, inherently, ours; and America's only duty when Israel fights is to support it uncritically." Link
UPDATE 2: UK Guardian....
"In September, Bush spoke at the United Nations. No cause could justify the deliberate taking of human life, he said. Yet the US has killed thousands of civilians in airstrikes on populated areas. When you drop bombs on populated areas knowing there will be some "collateral" civilian damage, but accepting it as worth it, then it is deliberate. When you impose sanctions, as the US did on Saddam era Iraq, that kill hundreds of thousands, and then say their deaths were worth it, as secretary of state Albright did, then you are deliberately killing people for a political goal. When you seek to "shock and awe", as president Bush did, when he bombed Iraq, you are engaging in terrorism." Link