The Renewed Israeli Occupation
2 million Palestinians under curfew for 39 days!
Victims of pre-conceptions
Israel’s political and military commanders want the Palestinians, including the parents of the children killed and wounded in Gaza, to believe that nobody took into account the possibility that a ton of explosives dropped from a plane into a crowded residential neighborhood would harm only the bomb’s target, no matter how deserving he was.
Those same politicians and generals mock those who believe in the possibility that a few hours before the bombing, a Palestinian declaration for a general cease-fire against Israeli civilians had been finalized. No wonder Israel’s propaganda effort is trying so hard to minimize the reports about a dramatic change in the thinking of the Palestinian leadership, the Tanzim, and even the Hamas. If they were to admit the process is serious, in the worst case it would be confirmation of Hosmi Mubarak’s conspiracy theory that the bomb was meant to disrupt the cease-fire. In the best case, it would be a slap in the face to the concept that there’s nobody to talk with on the Palestinian side about “painful concessions.” [more]
If there’s smoke, there’s no cease-fire
Israel’s propaganda machine worked overtime this week and proved its efficacy. The prime minister, the foreign minister, intelligence officers, officials and spokesmen changed overnight from a fight for a cease-fire to a fight against a cease-fire initiative. For many months, they told the entire world that it’s a waste of paper to reach a cease-fire with the Palestinian Authority, explaining that Tanzim and Fatah leaders are in control of the street, along with Hamas. They claimed that with one hand, PA Chairman Yasser Arafat signs condemnations of terror and with the other signs fat checks that he shoves into the pockets of the terrorists. Some backed their claims by saying that even Alistair Crooke, the head of the EU security team in the territories whose integrity and professionalism is unassailable, says that there’s no value to a cease-fire that doesn’t include at least the Tanzim.
But when a unilateral declaration for a cease-fire, an initiative that rose from the deepest of the grassroots of the Tanzim and Fatah, was presented to them, everyone made a mockery of it. They weren’t impressed by Arafat and his associates jumping on the bandwagon driven by Fatah’s Hussein a Sheikh and his associates, because Arafat et al fear being shoved off the road by the young leadership. After we heard, unceasingly, that everything is under Arafat’s thumb, Defense Minister Benjamin Ben-Eliezer announced to the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee that the cease-fire was initiated by local leaders, and that they have no influence over the terrorists. [more]