Israel: The Impossible Dream

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May 15, 2009:  Hamas is determined to achieve a real ceasefire with Israel, so that Hamas military power can be increased, and the Palestinian civilians in Gaza can get needed (to increase Hamas popularity) supplies. Israel has gotten the attention of Hamas by sending a smart bomb into the ground to destroy a smuggling tunnel, for each rocket or mortar shell fired into Israel. As a result, Hamas has convinced most of the fringe terrorist groups to halt firing rockets into Israel. For those terrorists who could not be persuaded, Hamas has put more police checkpoints on roads leading to northern Gaza areas favored for firing rockets. Hamas needs peace, prosperity, and more long-range rockets in Gaza in order to increase its ability to defeat Fatah for control of the West Bank, and, eventually, all Palestinians. Hamas is younger, more energetic, and less corrupt than Fatah. Hamas believes this is sufficient to make Hamas master of all Palestinians, and eventually Israel.

Hezbollah officials have admitted that they have people in Egypt organizing the smuggling of Iranian weapons into Gaza, but insisted that it was not engaged in planning terrorist attacks against Egypt. This is not believed in Egypt, because the weapons Hezbollah is bringing into Egypt often go missing before they arrive in Gaza. As a result of this, Israel is putting a more formidable fence, including sensors, along hundreds of kilometers of the Egyptian borders. This frontier has been increasingly used for smuggling drugs and job seekers into Israel. But now it is feared that terrorists will  be coming across as well.

Low level fighting continues in the West Bank, as Israeli and Fatah security forces seek out Hamas terrorists and activists. There are still a lot of independent Palestinian terrorists in the West Bank, who will make attacks against Israelis out of frustration at the inability of Palestinian leaders to work out any lasting deal with Israel. Most Arab states still want a "two state solution" (an independent Palestinian state composed of the West Bank and Gaza), but are unable to control Palestinian terrorists, whose violence against Israeli civilians makes this independent state difficult for most Israelis to accept. Generations of anti-Semitic propaganda have poisoned the well, making Arabs, including Palestinians, more enthusiastic about terrorizing Israelis, than in making peace with them.

Egypt continues its operations against Gaza smuggling tunnels. The smugglers are changing their methods, digging longer tunnels, so the entrance on the Egyptian side is farther away from the border, and police scrutiny. The smugglers are also trading ideas on how to conceal the activity at the entrance to tunnel (goods and people coming and going) can be concealed. Smugglers are particularly incensed by the Egyptian policy of rotating police in and out of the Gaza border area, to make it harder, and more expensive, to bribe the border guards. Egypt has also sent down some special police units that have proved very resistant to smuggler bribes and threats. While the smuggling has been reduced, it has not been stopped. There's too much money, especially cash from Iran and Arab Islamic charities, involved.

May 13, 2009: Israel revealed that an unnamed country has loaned Israel some MiG-29 fighters, which Israel has used to train its pilots. This would be part of the training for an air attack on Iranian nuclear facilities. The best jet fighter Iran has are some MiG-29s.

 

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