Hamas-governed Gaza is fighting a war of attrition against Israel. According to The New York Times of Jan. 19, “Hamas resumed firing Qassam rockets toward the Israeli border town of Sderot, along with other militant groups like Islamic Jihad and Al Aksa Martyrs Brigades, which is affiliated with Fatah. On Thursday, at least 40 rockets were launched, half of them landing in Israel, hitting two houses in Sderot and lightly wounding four Israelis, with a dozen more treated for shock.
"On Friday, at least 31 more rockets were fired toward Israel and 16 landed, but no one was wounded, the Israeli Army said. One rocket landed within 40 yards of a nursery school, which was open, said David Baker, an Israeli government spokesman. Since Tuesday, the army said, 130 Qassams have been launched; about half have landed in Israel and the remainder in Gaza.”
Israel’s response has been to target and kill terrorist leaders. However, this tactic has not deterred the Palestinian terrorists from firing rockets at Israel. The town of Sderot is now losing residents who simply cannot bear the near daily assault from Gaza.
Palestinians are now trying to develop or purchase longer-range rockets that can reach Tel Aviv. The last war of attrition was between Egypt and Israel from 1967 to 1970. Egypt’s President Gamal Nasser’s purpose was to compel Israel to withdraw from the east bank of the Suez Canal. He failed because of the Israeli military response.
The Nazis sought to break the resistance of Londoners with their daily bombing of London. They found their citizens were more vulnerable when the Allies bombed Berlin and Dresden in retaliation.
True to form, the U.N. has shown hostility towards Israel. A special session of the U.N. Human Rights Council last week voted 46-1 with 15 abstentions to condemn Israel for cutting off electricity to Gaza in retaliation for the rocket attacks. The resolution, primarily sponsored by the Arab states, did not include any reference to the Palestinian rocket attacks on Israeli towns.
Those voting to abstain did so because of that deliberate omission. Why didn’t they have the courage to simply vote no?
My suggestion is that Israel announce that the Israeli town, reeling under the almost daily rocket attacks, can form its own militias to protect themselves by using rockets and mortars against towns and villages in Gaza that shelter terrorists, and that, so long as the Hamas government won’t control their own terrorists, the Israeli government won’t seek to control the Israeli militias.
If every Palestinian rocket is met with 10 Israeli rockets aimed in the direction from which the Palestinian rocket came, I predict Hamas will be compelled by its own citizens, suffering under the Israeli counter-barrage, to stop its attacks. When the Hamas government stops the rocket barrages, the Israelis undoubtedly will do so too.
The Israelis withdrew from the whole of Gaza as a gesture of peace. Hamas, instead of seeking to live in peace with Israel, announced it will never accept the right of Israel to exist and will do what it can to destroy Israel, expel its Jewish citizens and create a Muslim state from the river to the sea.
The greatest obligation a government has to its people is to protect them from attack — foreign or domestic. Let’s see what happens when Israel exercises its right to defend its citizens in this war of attrition, using the same weaponry and tactics employed by Hamas and its partners.
There will be those, especially at the U.N., who will bitterly complain when, in response, Israeli rockets and mortars strike towns in Gaza and Palestinian civilians are injured or killed, among whom Hamas-supported terrorists are hiding while they rocket Israel. Those responsible for these deaths will be the Hamas government leaders.
Their intent is to kill innocent civilians and drive Israelis from Israeli towns.
The intent of the Israeli military and militia, if used, is to kill terrorists and stop the rocketing.
Kudos to Barack
Barack Obama won an impressive victory in South Carolina, receiving 80 percent of the black vote and 25 percent of the white vote for which he deserves enormous congratulations. Obama ended up with 55 percent of the total vote, leaving Hillary Clinton with 27 percent and John Edwards with 18 percent. Now comes the big contest — the primary on Feb. 5 that will involve 22 states.
It was easy to predict Obama’s victory in South Carolina. As I said in my last commentary, “So it will not in my book be an act of racism if Obama wins in South Carolina. It will be an act of group identification, practiced by whites, Hispanics, and others all over America.”
Obama’s supporters point to his getting 25 percent of the white vote as a sign of his across-the-board popularity. All this makes the Hispanic vote even more crucial. Hillary’s unexpected win in Nevada demonstrated that Hillary wins the Hispanic vote overwhelmingly. Hillary’s embarrassment and anguish are almost over. She is on her way to a national victory.
This time, I won’t pray. Instead, I sent her $2,300 for the campaign, the maximum allowed. I believe I was one of the first to urge a Hillary Clinton-Barack Obama ticket. It is still doable, and I am still for it.
Economic Recovery Too Slow
The stimulus package is almost set — the Senate has to add its two cents. The agreement thus far among the president, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and Majority Leader Harry Reid, calls for a treasury rebate of $600 per person, $1,200 per couple and $300 per child, to those whose joint income does not exceed $75,000.
The irresponsible part of the package is that, after passage of the legislation, the U.S. Treasury estimates that checks will be mailed by July. By that time, the country’s economic condition will have either substantially worsened or the economy will be roaring back on its own and the stimulus package will be a waste of taxpayers’ dollars.
The Congressional leaders rejected my suggestion that a debit card be used and that unused balances revert to the Treasury after July 1, 2008. Why is the federal government so slow and ponderous, when the speed of a track star is needed at this time?
Our economy is in trouble because our citizens are not buying American-made merchandise. There are some good reasons not to do so. Foreign-made products are often cheaper and better designed. Nevertheless, there should be a national campaign to urge Americans to buy American. Merchants should make certain that where there are American products available, (I don’t think we make TVs anymore) they are clearly marked and given prominent placement at stores and online.
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