Monday

Hamas Attacks - Claims it Proves Israel's "Aggressive Intent"

The border between Israel and Hamas-controlled territory saw an interesting bit of action today. Apparently, a number of trucks carrying a total of five, explosive laden horses approached the Israeli border and the Palestinian occupants were found planting bombs along the border fence by Israeli infantrymen. The Israelis employed tanks and helicopter gunships and, when the smoke had cleared, there were four gunmen and a horse found dead along with the charred remains of three trucks.

Ehud Barak, Israeli Defense Minister, said the army prevented a "severe attack", claiming the militants might have planned to capture an Israeli soldier. The attack occurred along the security fence which encloses Gaza near Nahal Oz, a crossing used to ship fuel into Gaza and a past target of militant attacks.

While the Palestinians have not tried to attack on horseback until now, I suppose they had to choose another type of animal as their prior efforts had not gone well either. In 2001, a donkey pulling a booby trapped cart was used to explode near troops in Gaza. Again, in 2003, Palestinian militants loaded a donkey with explosives and sent the animal toward troops near the West Bank town of Bethlehem. In both of these attempts, the donkeys were the only casualties. (I wonder if P.E.T.A. will take a stand against Hamas now?)

In a remarkable show of bravado from the head of Gaza's Hamas government, Ismail Haniyeh, praise was lavished upon the militants who were conferred the status of "martyr". Additionally, Haniyeh claimed that the violence confirmed the "aggressive intentions" of Israel toward the Palestinians. The group taking responsibility for Monday's operation calls itself the Soldiers of the Companions of God.

In order to ensure correct understanding of the Hamas government position, let's recap this once again. The Palestinian Hamas faction, calling itself the Soldiers of the Companions of God, brings several trucks and five horses to the border fence between Israel and Gaza. The horses are loaded with explosives and Palestinian militants are found to be placing bombs along the fence line. Israeli troops, upon discovery of the activity, call in tanks and helicopter gunships and thwart the attempted attack, leaving 4 militants and a horse dead and THIS is what constitutes the "aggressive intentions" of Israel.

Is there any wonder there can never be a solid peach between Israel and the rest of the muslim world? Israel can ever expect a meaningful and lasting peace with any nation or group of nations who have as their stated goal the complete destruction and utter annihilation of their existence. This is not about Israel's unwillingness to live at peace with the Palestinians, nor is it about settlement disputes. Hamas may not take direct credit for the attacks, but in declaring those that do "martyrs", praising the attackers and then blaming Israel for defending itself, they show themselves for who they are.

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