Thursday, June 29, 2006

De Facto Terrorists

Finally, an Israeli leader has admitted what has been obviously true for years and years - that he considers all Palestinians to be de facto terrorists:
Israeli military officials said that the prime minister, Ehud Olmert, had approved a "limited operation" for southern Gaza, aimed at "terrorist infrastructure".

Israeli planes also attacked three bridges and the main Gaza power station, knocking out electricity in most of the coastal strip.
(from yesterday's Guardian)

And what exactly has bombing a power station got to do with rescuing a kidnapped soldier? Clearly nothing. Even the IDF can't come up with an explanation for that one. (The bridges, they say, laughably, are being destroyed to stop the kidnappers moving him around). Although, finally, someone did provide an explanation (and it's actualy the real one):

An Israeli army spokeswoman said: "During the night, the Israeli airforce hit three bridges in central Gaza and a power station south of Gaza City. Israeli forces entered the south of Gaza near the village of Dahaniya and the airport and they remain there at the moment."

She said the operations were designed to stop the kidnappers moving the soldier. However, security sources told Israeli media that the attacks were also motivated by revenge. "To exact a price for the kidnapping incident and to restore deterrence," one official told the Israeli daily newspaper Yedioth Aronoth

Collective Punishment. And what do the "international community" do? They urge Israel to "show restraint". Woohoo. Is anyone ever going to stand up to this government, this army and tell it like it is? Convict people of war crimes, insist on UN resoluations, that kind of thing? I'm not holding my breath. Meanwhile, for the people of Gaza, more misery and pain and death and destruction.

But, at least somebody's happy:
Gazans have not begun to think how they are going to get through the coming weeks and months without electricity. The wrecked plant was only fully on line for three years and it will cost about £8m to buy and install new transformers.

There may be an interim solution. Israel provides about 40% of electricity in the Gaza Strip. It used to supply it all and may do so again, meaning that Israel's electricity company could make a handsome profit from the army's destruction
Chris McGreal