Thursday, June 29, 2006

Israelis continue to put the heat on arresting cabinet ministers and legislators; 2nd Jewish hostage murdered by Hamas

Ooooh the fur is flying now.

The Israelis swooped in and arrested 64 Hamas officials, including the deputy prime minister Nasser Shaer and Parliamentary Speaker Abdel Aziz Duaik, in an early-morning raid in Judea (the West Bank). In all, eight of Hamas' 23 Cabinet ministers and 20 of its 72 lawmakers were rounded up.

Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Mark Regev said the officials were not taken as bargaining chips for Shalit's release, but because Israel holds Hamas responsible for attacks against it.

And why not?

Hamas controls the government, and ordered an attack on an Israeli position. This was an act of war, not opposed to the kidnapping and murder of Israeli teenage civilian Eliyahu Asheri.

On that little issue, Israelig government spokesman Asaf Shariv said Asheri's killers would be arrested, and Israel would bring them to trial. "Their days as free people are numbered."

(UPDATE: Apparently Hamas has also murdered 62 year old Noach Moskowitz, who's body was found hours after the remains of 18-year-old Eliyahu Asheri were retrieved from a site near the Palestinian capital of Ramallah.)

The Palestinians of course, and their EU and Arab allies were outraged by the arrests.

"We have no government, we have nothing. They have all been taken," said Saeb Erekat, the right half of Yasir Arafat and Mahmoud Abbas' forked tongues. "This is absolutely unacceptable and we demand their release immediately."

Hamas declared the Israeli moves an "act of war against the Palestinian people" as well as "a grave precedent (and) an international crime", and warned of dire consequences .

I guess they were just kidding before!

"This goes against all human moral and democratic values and hurts the will of our people," spokesman Mushir al-Masri said. "The international community must have its say."

"Today, tomorrow or after that, there will be no option but to give in, and admit to the right of our prisoners to freedom, and our people's right to an honorable living. Wasting time is not in their interests and for sure, they are the losers," said Abu Mujahid, a spokesman for Hamas.

The EU press,of course is ambivilent for the most part, is ignoring the murder of the two Israeli civilians and yammering about `subverting a democratically elected government'.

I agree...but one of the consequences of a democratically elected government is that it has to behave like a government, and not a terrorist organization...and it's accountable for it's actions,including attacks on another sovereign state. The Palestinians also need to understand that an election gives choices..and choices have consequences.

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