Sunday, February 8, 2009

Round And Round We Go

Two days before the Israeli elections, and Hamas is back at it, shelling Southern Israel with rockets. With Benjamin Netanyahu the front runner in the polls, Hamas is clearly flirting with disaster here. Netanyahu is a member of the Likud party and while he still leads, that lead has been shrinking against a surging Yisrael Beitenu party. A competing hawkish party, Yisrael Beitenu means "Israel is our home", and it would seem unlikely that that party's candidate would long tolerate rocket attacks from the Gaza Strip or any other region.

After obnoxiously claiming victory in the three-week conflict with Israel, Hamas has apparently learned nothing from the reality of that time. Couple that with the long overdue awakening in the United Nations - they are finally going to investigate allegations that Hamas used children as human shields - and Hamas is likely inviting annihilation.

Israel attacked Gaza, after repeated rocket attacks on Southern Israel, in an attempt to stop Hamas' capability to launch any more, but since Israel was being careful not to harm civilians - something which ultimately proved impossible to avoid altogether - many tunnels used for smuggling weapons into Gaza were not completely destroyed and were reopened days after Israel withdrew.

One of the complaints of the anti-Israel crowd was that the blockade was causing unnecessary suffering for the Palestinian people. Needed supplies such as food and medicine were not getting through, causing cruel hardships on the population. While pro-Palestinian advocates blame Israel and point to the fact that Hamas was duly elected, why is the question never asked...why didn't Hamas use their cunning ability to smuggle in weapons toward smuggling in the necessities to ease their constituents' suffering?

That answer is obvious since, even as Israel halted hostilities for three hours a day to allow crucial supplies to enter the war zone, Hamas seized the shipments and sold to their own people that which they chose not to keep for themselves. Perhaps Hamas is just having some fun thinking that the election season in Israel is a soft time to attack, but they may find something coming which will be much worse than the damage inflicted in January.

And from all indications, they may have eroding support, both inside and outside of their little kingdom.

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