Sunday, December 25, 2005

The latest from Israel's `peace partners'

The Israelis finally decided to activate a no-go security buffer zone in Northern Gaza in an attempt to stop the missiles directed at Israel’s W. Negev and Ashkelon.

The prevailing military opinion is that it won't be possible to root out terorist assaults in the Gaza AStrip without a comprehensive military operation, including ground troops. What was that about the `disengagement' being a move towards peace again? Some 300 missiles have been fired into Israel in three months.

Carving out a security buffer at this late date is going to be difficult for the IDF.Defense minister Shaul Mofaz demanded that the government release INS125m ($50m) to fortify the dozens of small villages and kibbutzim now within range of Palestinian missiles and mortar fire. Civilian traffic on the roads in the region has become extremely hazardous.

The main launch sites, as mentioned previously, are the abandoned Jewish communities
of Dugit, Nisanit and Eilei Sinai. There are reportedly 200 Palestinian `security' troops at the launch-sites, but they aren't stopping anything or arresting anybody.

In the Palestinian Authority as a whole, things continue to fragment. There are now two major breakaway factions in Fatah, one loyal to Mohammed Dahlan and jailed terrorist Marwan Barghouti(`Future') and a new one that calls itself the `Yasser Arafat list', set up by Palestinian prime minister Ahmed Qureia, legislature speaker Fathi Rouh and PLO executive Abbas Zaki.

All of these Fatah factions are pressuring Abbas to delay the coming election, while Hamas, Islamic Jihad and the umbrella organizaton the Palestinian Resistance Committee want the vote to go forward, for obvious reasons.

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