July 22, 2008
- A Palestinian bulldozer driver goes on a rampage in downtown Jerusalem today, wounding at least 16 people, in an apparent copycat of a recent deadly attack which occurred just weeks ago (more here).
- Israeli Shin Bet chief Yuval Diskin warned today that Hamas has been exploiting the terms of the truce by bolstering its military strength in the Gaza Strip, and developing missiles capable of reaching past the northern Negev town of Kiryat Gat. Palestinians have been firing Qassam rockets and mortar shells at the Negev town of Sderot, some 5 kilometers from the Gaza border, for the past seven years. Recently, however, they have been able to reach Ashkelon, some 12 km away. Diskin's assessment is that they have now doubled their range (more here).
Then read these:
- The United States security coordinator for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, retired General James Jones, is preparing an "extremely critical" report of Israel's policies in the territories and its attitude toward the Palestinian Authority's security services. Jones was appointed by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice following the Annapolis peace conference last November (more here).
- State Dept. complaints are irking Israeli officials. Senior officials in the U.S. State Department, including Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, have been repeatedly complaining to Israel recently over relatively minor Palestinian issues (more here).
And then decide:
Should Israel respond to Condi Rice, James Jones and the U.S. State Department the same way Ambassador John Bolton responded last night in an interview regarding the New York Times' refusal to publish a McCain op-ed, i.e., "If they'd have come back to me with that kind of comment, I'd have said stick it in your ear..." (more here)???
July 18, 2008
Below is a picture worth 6 million words (and counting...):
So who is Samir Kuntar? Kuntar is the guy who smashed the skull of a 4-year-old Israeli girl after shooting her father in front of her very eyes.
In the dead of night on April 22, 1979, Kuntar and three other gunmen made their way in a rubber dinghy from Lebanon to the sleepy Israeli coastal town of Nahariya, five miles south of the border.
There, they killed a policeman who stumbled upon them, then burst into the apartment of Danny Haran, herding him and his 4-year-old daughter out of the house at gunpoint to the beach below, where they were killed.
The attack is seared in Israel's collective consciousness because witnesses recounted that Kuntar shot Danny Haran in front of his child, then killed her by smashing her skull against a rock with his rifle butt.
Haran's wife, Smadar, who had fled into a crawl space in the family apartment with her 2-year-old daughter, accidentally smothered the child with her hand while trying to stifle her cries.
[Posted by R.S.]
"Let me be very clear: The policy of strategic patience has ended. ... All options are on the table. If they elevate the threat of their weapons program to a level we believe requires action, that option is on the table."
~ Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, at a news conference in Seoul on Friday with his South Korean counterpart, Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se (more here).