Israel: Posturing For Power


January 28, 2008: Hamas has to keep posturing to prevent being portrayed as pathetic. For all their brave pronouncements, Hamas has been largely ineffective, either in helping the people of Gaza, or putting any hurt on Israel. Egypt tolerating the Hamas border assault can be understood if you realize that most Egyptian media, and public opinion, still considers any attacks on Israel to be a good thing. Throughout the Arab world, the idea that "Israel must be destroyed" is still widely accepted, and has never faded over the last sixty years. The Middle East is a very intolerant place, which is the main reason why there has been no unity, despite many locals calling for it. Palestinians continued to fire rockets into southern Israel. Few of the rockets hit anything of value.

January 27, 2008: So far, nearly 40 Egyptian soldiers and police have been injured by Hamas gunmen and Palestinian civilians. The Egyptians don't want to start a war with Hamas, but it is clear that the longer the breeches remain, the more criminal activity (smuggling, of people and goods) will go on. Egyptian police have been halting Palestinians trying to cross the desert to Cairo. This would enable Palestinians to try and get to another country, particularly in Europe, where they can claim asylum from Israeli oppression, and get away with it. The Hamas security forces have backed off a bit, and are stopping Palestinians in cars from crossing the border. Apparently the Egyptians have made it clear that force was going to be used if then went on much longer. Some of the Palestinians the Egyptians caught, trying to drive to Cairo, had weapons and explosives in their cars. The Egyptians know that Hamas is harboring Egyptian Islamic terrorists, as well as Palestinian terrorists eager for a chance to blow up things in Egypt.

January 25, 2008: In two days. About 700,000 Palestinians crossed the border into Egypt. Many began to bring their cars through the breeches in the wall.

In Lebanon, a bomb killed the army officer in charge of investigating who has been killing Lebanese politicians via terrorist type attacks (typically, bombs). All the victims have been anti-Syria and anti-Iran (in other words, anti-Shia, at least to Lebanese Shia). There has been an increase in violence between Shia and non-Shia in Lebanon.

January 24, 2008: Hamas gunmen on the Gaza-Egypt border fired on Egyptian policemen who tried to halt movement through the border. But Egypt moved in hundreds of riot police and paramilitary troops. Some of the many holes in the wall were now manned by Egyptian police, and no one could pass. But Hamas continued to use violence against the Egyptians, and the Egyptian police were forced back.

January 23, 2008: Hamas blew holes in the wall between Gaza and Egypt Civilians were allowed to move into Egypt and go shopping. The media was alerted, and the international news outlets soon had pictures of the border breech. The Egyptian border guards were too few in number to physically restrain the Palestinians, and were ordered not to use force. Partly that was because the holes in the wall were guarded by Hamas gunmen.

January 22, 2008: International outrage at the lights going out in Gaza prompted Israel to allow fuel shipments to resume, and to make sure enough food is getting in.

January 20, 2008: Israel tried to force Hamas to halt the rocket attacks on southern Israel by cutting off fuel supplies. This led to the Gaza power plant running out of fuel, and shutting down. Much of Gaza went dark. Palestinian rockets continued to land in southern Israel.




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