As featured on p. 218 of "Bloggers on the Bus," under the name "a MyDD blogger."

Saturday, December 27, 2008

One Last War Before 2008 Ends

You could see these Israeli strikes on Gaza coming.

Israeli warplanes retaliating for rocket fire from the Gaza Strip pounded dozens of security compounds across the Hamas-ruled territory in unprecedented waves of airstrikes Saturday, killing more than 200 people and wounding nearly 400 in the single bloodiest day of fighting in years.

Most of those killed were security men, but an unknown number of civilians were also among the dead. Hamas said all of its security installations were hit, threatened to resume suicide attacks, and sent at least 70 rockets and mortar shells crashing into Israeli border communities, according to the Israeli military. One Israeli was killed and at least six people were hurt.

With so many wounded, the Palestinian death toll was likely to rise.

Ehud Barak, the Defense Minister who as Prime Minister came very close to a peace agreement with the Palestinians, is quoted as saying "There is a time for calm and there is a time for fighting, and now is the time for fighting." So this is going to go on, as Israel seeks to take Hamas out permanently. Expect assassination attempts of Hamas leaders and Hamas counterstrikes, maybe suicide bombs. The cycle of violence continues.

It's hard to have much else to say in these moments. This is the consequence of the United States pressing for elections when Hamas was fated to win, leading to a civil war inside Palestine. Israel's reaction, to wall off Gaza and turn it into a virtual prison, was a human rights disaster. This spate of attacks will ramp up anti-Israeli sentiment in the Arab world and destabilize the Middle East further. And full-scale bombing like this was insufficient to take out Hezbollah in Lebanon.

More here and here.

Labels: , , , ,