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Wednesday, December 31, 2008
By Steven L. Taylor

Via the BBC: Israel rejects Gaza truce calls

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has rejected international calls for a 48-hour truce in the Gaza Strip to allow in more humanitarian aid.


“If conditions will ripen, and we think there can be a diplomatic solution that will ensure a better security reality in the south, we will consider it. But at the moment, it’s not there,” he was quoted by Reuters news agency as saying.

Any ceasefire with Hamas had to be permanent, he said, adding that there was international consensus that Palestinian rocket attacks on Israel had to stop.

While certainly a permanent cease fire would be nice (otherwise known as “peace”), it is difficult to see how the current action will result in that outcome. If anything, the history of the region would provide the answer, as this is hardly the first (or second, or third) time that there has been a massive military response by Israel to the Palestinians, and yet here we are again. While it might be nice to think that this time all of Hamas’ violence-making capabilities will be destroyed and this time they will finally see that Israel has the right to exist and this time that the violence won’t lead to the further radicalization of Palestinian civilian population. This all is all rather unlikely.

The death toll to this point:

Palestinian officials say about 391 Palestinians have died in the Israeli air strikes; four Israelis have been killed by rockets fired from Gaza, which is under Hamas control.


The UN says at least 62 Palestinian civilians have died since Saturday. Palestinian medical officials say more than 1,700 people have been injured, overwhelming Gaza’s hospitals.

I can’t help but think that a roughly 100:1 death toll isn’t going to do anything other than increase Palestinian resentment and bolster in their own minds the justice of their actions.

I am not, by the way, defending Hamas rocket attacks, but can’t help but look at the current action and wonder what it will accomplish going forward, and at this point it seems to be nothing more than the latest chapter in the same basic story.

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3 Responses to “Israel: No Cease Fire Yet”

  1. Scholar in Training Says:

    I agree with you. I’m not exactly sure what these high civilian casualties is going to accomplish other than perpetuating the perception of Israel-the-bully among Arabs in the Middle East.

    On my blog I’m taking a lot of flak for *gasp* even suggesting a thought experiment where Israel didn’t respond to Hamassian aggression in its usual way:

    It hasn’t been a very popular thought experiment, but I do think it is worth having. I’m not advocating policy change, just questioning how things would be different if the policies of response were different.

  2. PoliBlog: A Rough Draft of my Thoughts » More on the Gaza Conflict Says:

    [...] Robert Farley at LGM does a good job of spelling out the basic issues in the current Israel-Hamas conflict that I was getting at, albeit more briefly, in my previous post. [...]


    Gaza was all philistines in the bible days of
    sampson….sampson was the leader of Israel 20 years.
    The gaza philistines worshipped a false god called
    “”dagon”"….These gaza..philistined…dagon worshippers took Sampson captinve and gouged out his 2 eyes…sampson in revenge…..killed thousands of them with his own two hands.

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