Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Kicking them when they're down posted by leninSo, as of yesterday, Israel had killed 360 people and injured 1600. This is good news in some quarters: according to the Angry Arab, footage is being shown on Al Arabiyya of Israelis dancing in joy at the Gaza attacks. Seumas Milne notes that the Israeli newspapers have been salivating over the attacks:
Israel's decision to launch its devastating attack on Gaza on a Saturday was a "stroke of brilliance", the country's biggest selling paper Yediot Aharonot crowed: "the element of surprise increased the number of people who were killed". The daily Ma'ariv agreed: "We left them in shock and awe"
Ran HaCohen reports some of the same cheery elan:
Yediot Ahronoth had six columnists on its front page and several more inside. The war's cheerleaders. Nahum Barnea, an over-appreciated "critical" journalist, expressed his view about the bloodbath rather succinctly: "better late than never." Dov Weissglass, "closely linked to the peace process" as Wikipedia puts it, was similarly outspoken: his column was called "Do Not Stop," with an exclamation mark to make things clear. "It should be just the beginning," he advises to the very government that has just vowed "it's just the beginning."
Well, apparently, "the element of surprise" was amplified by the fact that Israel attacked during a 48-hour truce brokered with Hamas. There is a bit of evil, Machiavellan genius in this: break one truce, blame the other side for breaking it, then promise to honour another truce, then use the interval provided to launch a devastating series of attacks - and then blame the other side for having brought it on themselves with some feeble rocket fire. Olmert now says he won't even talk about a ceasefire, and intends to pursue Hamas with an "iron fist". And when he's done pulverising Gaza, he will explain, poker-faced, that he regrets he has no partner for peace.