Friday, January 14, 2005
Sharon quicker on the draw
Some prophecies take a long time to fulfill—like waiting for the Iraqis to welcome the invasion. Others materialize so quickly that people may suspect cheating. Today's news from Israel falls in the latter category.
The Lebanese Daily Star reports—
Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon on Friday ordered all government officials to cut ties with the new Palestinian government until it curbs attacks, a day after militants killed six Israelis on the Gaza border. "The prime minister has instructed all members of the government to cease all contact with the Palestinian Authority until they take the necessary steps to curb and stop terrorism," a senior Israeli official in Sharon's office said. Sharon and Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas spoke by phone this week in the highest level Israeli-Palestinian contact in years. They had been widely expected to meet soon to discuss security coordination in a run-up to Israel's planned pullout from the Gaza Strip later this year.It was only this Tuesday that I was quoting Xymphora—
Within hours of the confirmation of the election of Mahmoud Abbas to lead the Palestinians, Ariel Sharon urged Abbas to end terrorist attacks and to dismantle Islamic militant groups (Sharon may have even tried to limit the scope of a meeting with Abbas to discussions of security cooperation). Since Abbas has no more ability to restrain the militants than Arafat had, we can see how Abbas is being immediately set up in exactly the same way that Arafat was. There will be much talk of how the election of Abbas will finally give Israel that elusive 'negotiating partner', and that peace is just around the corner. Once a few 'terrorist' incidents occur, however, the Israelis will sadly conclude that Abbas is just another Arafat, and clearly not a 'negotiating partner' as his failure to restrain the militants indicates that he really doesn't want peace....Xymphora thought it would take "a few" attacks to give Sharon his excuse. So did I. Perhaps with Bush's re-election Sharon now feels he has a "mandate."