UPDATES 11 am Israel time, Wednesday, September 18 2013:
*Israeli security forces arrested the two heads of the northern branch of the Islamic Movement this morning. They were charged with inciting riots on the Temple Mount several weeks ago.
*During a visit to the Temple Mount this morning, two Israeli security guards were wounded by Palestinian “rock” throwers and had to be hospitalized.
*In the wake of the Syrian debacle, calls are now increasing to force Israel to give up its ability to defend itself. Just this morning, a leading South African politician has demanded that if Israel refuses to give up its nuclear weapons, the world should suspend “all transactions to and from Israeli banks.”
Something has gone terribly wrong here in Israel.
The actions of the Netanyahu government defy explanation. Everyday sees more actions designed to put more Israelis at risk. Whether it be with Hamas in Gaza, or the Palestinians in the concession talks, or with the IDF in general, one cannot help but think that the day is soon approaching when Israel will be unable to protect its citizens.
Here are three examples from today alone.
As we all know, Egypt is now making a concerted attempt to root Hamas out of the Sinai and to isolate Hamas in Gaza. Hundreds of smuggling tunnels have been closed; the hours that the Rafah Crossing operates have been reduced to almost none, and the Egyptian government has aggressively attacked Hamas cells in the Sinai.
Just this morning, Egyptian naval forces fired on a ship carrying some 200 Hamas-affiliated Palestinian “refugees” from Syria who were trying to reach Gaza. Two Palestinians were killed. That ship is now headed for Europe.
But as all of these actions by Egypt are having the salutory effect of driving Hamas underground–even to the point that they are not firing missiles at southern Israel–what is the government of Benjamin Netanyahu doing? It is actively subverting the Egyptians in every way possible and supporting Hamas.
This morning, the Israeli government–to supplement the building materials lost to Hamas from the closure of the smuggling tunnels–has announced that it will now allow 1,600 tons of gravel, 800 tons of cement and 400 tons of iron into Gaza per day (the iron by the way that Hamas uses to make Qassam rockets). At the same time, Israel has announced that it is doubling the water lines into Gaza so that 10 million cu meters of water will be available to Hamas (water, by the way, that we do not have to spare).
Hamas’s response today is that Israel is not doing enough to help the people of Gaza.
What is Israel thinking about? Why is it the responsibility of Israel to help Hamas–which remains as committed as ever to Israel’s destruction? Incredible.
According to Palestinian officials this morning, Benjamin Netanyahu has now agreed to release 250 more Palestinian terrorists from Israeli prisons.
This is on top of the 104 already promised to be released by Israel (26 murderers were released in the first batch).
And what is the Palestinian reaction? Mahmoud Abbas said yesterday that during the time frame of these prisoner releases, “Palestine” would not undertake to join any more international organizations–but that the moment the releases are finished there are 63 United Nations’ organizations that “Palestine” will immediately apply for membership in.
The moronically perverse idea of Netanyahu in the first place was that the release of terrorist murderers was necessary to get the PLO to return to the table so that Israel could make more concessions. The moronically perverse idea of Netanyahu in the second place is that by continuing terrorist murderer releases, the PLO will continue talking–even if the Palestinians are making absolutely no concessions for “peace.”
What is Israel thinking about? Why are terrorist murderers being released so that they can kill more Israelis? Why is it the responsibility of Israel to help the Palestinians when every action they take is one to undermine the legitimacy of this country? Unbelievable.
At the precise moment when Israel has forces aligned against it on all sides, the IDF–under its recently reappointed Chief of Staff Benny Gantz–made the extraordinary public statement yesterday that it has just completed the pullout of IDF forces from “frontline communities” near on the northern and southern borders of Israel.
Yes, you heard that correctly.
Soldiers that were positioned in and around 9 separate communities on the Gaza and Egyptian border and 13 more communities on the Lebanese and Syrian borders have been withdrawn to bases more centrally located in Israel.
Listen to the idiotic arrogance of the IDF spokesman: “We know where the threats come from, what routes threats could take, and we understand these measures are no longer needed. The need to defend from inside communities seems less relevant.”
By the way he added that the move was not made because of budgetary constraints but because of “operational policy.”
Can you believe this? At a time when Hezbollah is opening engaged in training exercises to overrun northern Israel, and when Al-Qaeda terrorists have set up shop on the Syrian and Egyptian borders, and Hamas is sending infiltrators across the border into Israel all the time, the IDF has withdrawn its forces to central Israel?
Simply, incredibly, pathetically, unbelievable.
There is no other way to say it: the government of Benjamin Netanyahu is an unmitigated disaster for the state of Israel.