29 Nissan 5778
14 April 2018
The News on the Israeli Street
The U.S. led attacks in Syria . . .
. . . are obviously on everyone’s mind this morning. By all accounts, the attacks were extremely limited in scope, carried out with advance warning to the Russians and Syrians, and probably will accomplish little.
The best estimates are that around 100 cruise missiles were fired from naval vessels and aircraft at three targets–all of which were empty, having been evacuated earlier in the week. The entire attack lasted for about an hour.
What are the end results? President Trump, Theresa May, and Emmanuel Macron feel like they did something. The Syrian, Russian, Iranian, and Hezbollah militaries were completely unscathed and will continue doing whatever they were doing before last night. And there is dancing in the streets of Damascus where the locals are declaring a great victory:
One more word about the strikes . . .
To have watched Israeli television last night, one would have thought that the end of the world was nigh.
Panel after panel of pundits breathlessly told us how U.S. attacks would trigger a war with Russia, about how Iran would come to the aid of Syria, about how Iran would launch a war against Israel, about how . . . you get the idea. It was a new version of “The sky is falling, the sky is falling.”
While your humble servant has no doubt that the Iranians will strike Israel in some form following our strike on the T-4 base earlier this week, it doesn’t seem that anyone wants to unleash a full-scale war anywhere.
At least for the moment.
Three cheers for Honduras! . . .
The Honduran Parliament voted overwhelmingly yesterday to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Honduran President Juan Fernando Hernandez deserves much of the credit.
It may be wishful thinking, but the hope is that the current trickle of countries moving their embassies will turn into a flood.
The Ever Diminishing “Marches of Return”
in the Palestinian State of Gaza
The ever diminishing “Marches of Return” diminished even more yesterday with more shrinkage on the Palestinian side. From 30,000 two weeks ago to 10,000 last week, the maximum number of rioters this week was 7,000.
And most of these 7,000 were bused in from mosques following Friday prayers. Interestingly, the Palestinian bus companies have proven somewhat recalcitrant about busing terrorists to the fence–and have had to be strong-armed by Hamas into doing so.
In any case, these 7,000 burned some Israeli flags, stomped on others, and launched some Molotovs using large slingshots, but all in all it was a riot that was easily suppressed by the IDF which has strategically switched to “crowd control and dispersal.”
All of this doesn’t mean that in the coming days we won’t see a change in strategy by Hamas (such as missiles, attacks from tunnels, etc), but at the moment the activities by Hamas on the border are like some pitifully performed stage play.
As for the Palestinians who are citizens of the other Palestinian state (Areas A and B of Judea and Samaria), it’s just the same steady drumbeat of terrorism day in and day out.
Yesterday featured “rock” and Molotov attacks on Israeli men, women, and children at Sinjil, Al Bireh, Al Khader, all along the Gush Etzion-Jerusalem Road, Shilo, Yitzhar, Tekoa, Hevron, Hawara, at various places on the Trans-Judea highway, El Aruv, and some 20 other places.