Israelis say thanks, but no thanks to French cease-fire

posted at 10:30 am on December 31, 2008 by Ed Morrissey

What do you get for the terrorist organization that has everything?  A French demand for a unilateral cease-fire.  The Israelis rejected the proposal from Sarkozy’s government for a 48-hour cease-fire to negotiate a return of the truce that Hamas ended in a volley of mortar and rocket fire over a week ago:

The Security Cabinet on Wednesday rejected a French proposal for a 48-hour suspension of the IDF offensive against Hamas to allow Paris the opportunity to mediate a cease-fire.

“We didn’t initiate the Gaza operation in order to end it while Israeli towns are still under fire, as they were before the operation,” Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said deliberations that lasted the better part of the day. “Israel has shown restraint for years; she gave the truce a chance; we told ourselves ‘let’s try it,’ but Hamas violated the truce.”

Earlier, Olmert’s spokesman Mark Regev said that “Giving Hamas a respite just to regroup, rearm is a mistake. The pressure on the Hamas military machine must continue.”

The most absurd aspect of this story is that Israel actually gave it consideration.  At least as the Jerusalem Post explains it, the French wanted the Israelis to cease military operations for 48 hours while Hamas continued to launch missile and mortar attacks against Israeli civilian populations.  They expected Olmert to sit on his hands on the nonexistent chance that Hamas would agree to stop attacking Israel — which is their explicitly-stated raison d’etre.

Fortunately, wiser heads prevailed in Jerusalem.  The time to pause will come when Hamas either surrenders or flees Gaza, or gets utterly destroyed.  Hamas clearly has no interest in peaceful coexistence with Israel in a two-state solution, or in any other configuration.  They and their Iranian paymasters want a war of annihilation, and a unilateral cease-fire at this time will only serve to give Hamas some time to re-arm.

Cease-fires will not bring an end to this war.  While Hamas exists and serves as Iran’s proxy army, the Israelis have no choice but to fight them to the end.


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Sarkozy enjoyed his time on the world stage last August, and he wants more!

lodge on December 31, 2008 at 10:37 AM

What are the French doing there? Israel nor Hamas wish to surrender.

thomasaur on December 31, 2008 at 10:37 AM

This is this first competent thing Ehud Olmert has done since becoming PM, sadly that is not saying much.

Hopefully Israel will push HAMAS leadership out of Gaza. Unfortunately, the “International Community” won’t allow Israel to completely destroy HAMAS since that will take more than a week. The the best thing we can hope for is that HAMAS leadership is either exiled or killed.

Lance Murdock on December 31, 2008 at 10:38 AM

They gave it consideration, just long enough for their nostrils to clear of the water they were drinking after snorting in laughter…

right2bright on December 31, 2008 at 10:39 AM

The French obviously do not think highly of Isreal. 48 hours? The French could retreat in under 24 hours.

WashJeff on December 31, 2008 at 10:39 AM

So France wanted a unilateral cease-fire to negotiate how Israel could surrender. Typical.

Do. not. back. down. Israel.

rbj on December 31, 2008 at 10:39 AM

Absolutely right Captain. Israel must end this “hudna” nonsense once and for all otherwise Iran will just continue to girdle and strangle it. It will take nerves of steel for the Israelis to ignore the screams of the left of the world – but so be it. May they stay strong!

KickandSwimMom on December 31, 2008 at 10:40 AM

Hopefully Israel will push HAMAS leadership out of Gaza.
Lance Murdock on December 31, 2008 at 10:38 AM

How about this: Hopefully Israel will destroy the Hammas leadership.

right2bright on December 31, 2008 at 10:40 AM

Seriously, Ed:

It’s the French. They take their unconditional surrendering very seriously.

How you can insinuate they aren’t serious about unilateral surrender to an aggressive foe is puzzling.

BKennedy on December 31, 2008 at 10:40 AM

After hearing Hamas’ response – something to the effect of: “If Israel stops, then we’ll think about it”, Israel turned to France and said “Are you mental?”

JeffWeimer on December 31, 2008 at 10:40 AM

This “cease-fire” coming from the French is not surprising. David Pryce-Jones has written an excellent book on the French establishment betrayal of Jews in a book called, Betrayal: France, the Arabs, and the Jews

Lance Murdock on December 31, 2008 at 10:43 AM

France is offering military advice? That’s like calling in Barney Frank to advise you on wise investment opportunities.

amerpundit on December 31, 2008 at 10:43 AM

http://www.encounterbooks.com/books/betrayal/

Lance Murdock on December 31, 2008 at 10:43 AM

The most absurd aspect of this story is that Israel actually gave it consideration.

I would prefer if that were true. In reality, Hamas have been firing Qassam rockets into Israel at the same rate of attack going on for month after month and the Israelis only began to respond a week ago–implying that they view their own right to self-defense as arbitrary.

The Israelis should have counterattacked a lot earlier, and over a lot longer time. A week is nothing. In that light, a 48-hour suspension may be a bad idea but it is in no sense a logical absurdity which is why Hamas have lobbied for it and why the French have taken it seriously.

aengus on December 31, 2008 at 10:44 AM

Oh brother…a 48-hour cease fire…Just enough time for Hamas to regroup and re-arm it’s rockets.

JetBoy on December 31, 2008 at 10:47 AM

right2bright on December 31, 2008 at 10:40 AM

Not a chance. This government is too dovish/weak to do that. The only way that will happen is if Israel conducts a ground assault into Gaza. It will be deadly for both sides, but especially for the Palis since HAMAS will use Palis as human shields and the world will condemn not HAMAS but Israel. So like every battle, Israel will most likely back down, b/c they care too much about humanity unlike the HAMAS animals.

Lance Murdock on December 31, 2008 at 10:47 AM

Why do we never hear about Hamas’ response to the calls for cease-fire?

BohicaTwentyTwo on December 31, 2008 at 10:48 AM

France has tried to broker several peace deals. Didn’t they broker one in Georgia that failed? Seems to me that the Israelis made the right choice French peace means nothing unless the French are the ones surrendering.

I pray that the Israelis play this out to its logical end.

theguardianii on December 31, 2008 at 10:49 AM

Why is it that all the people involved, including Israeli politicians, speak as if this was set off by Hamas violating the cease fire in a unique way last week?

Hamas never honored the cease fire – unless honoring it meant that they’d only fire dozens of rockets into Israeli cities each day instead of hundreds.

JadeNYU on December 31, 2008 at 10:49 AM

aengus on December 31, 2008 at 10:44 AM

Do you pay attention? Israel have been honoring a cease fire agreement, and when it expired they responded. Read more than just the headlines for cryin’ out loud.

thomasaur on December 31, 2008 at 10:50 AM

I hope that the Israelis are shipping truckloads of Fatah operatives in along with all that humanitarian aid.

The proper way to clean out Gaza is getting the people to rally behind someone other than Hamas. Since everyone in Gaza(apparently) already has a gun, the only thing lacking is the will to use it. Against Hamas.

Fatah has a real opportunity here.

wccawa on December 31, 2008 at 10:51 AM

Three lines of 5000 troops each, shoulder to shoulder, marching the length of Gaza allowing only women and children to pass through the lines. Everyone else with a weapon shot on sight including the ring leaders.

The last line of troops enters every single dwelling and ransacks them for weapons etc.

Short of this and we will recycle this conflict for the umpteenth time in six months.

Will what I suggest actually happen? Of course not. See you in six months.

patrick neid on December 31, 2008 at 10:51 AM

It sounds cruel to eliminate all the palestinians in a modern day holocost, But it looks to me like the only way to stop the violence there. The Palestinian muslims are the most stupid people on earth, they live in self made $hit hole and rocket the people that can help them most.

You can’t fix stupid, and stupid is forever. Wiping them out will stir up big trouble with other musllims, but many muslim govewrnments are fed up with the palestinians.

BE GONE!

saiga on December 31, 2008 at 10:51 AM

have=has

thomasaur on December 31, 2008 at 10:51 AM

Cease-fires will not bring an end to this war.

Then what will?

And please. If your solution is “the end of Hamas.” Then you actually are just as stupid as the extremists in Hamas. Because whether or not you like it, whether or not the U.S. recognizes them and whether or not it confuses the hell out of you, Hamas is the elected government of the people in that region. They chose them. So if the goal is the destruction of Hamas, then the goal is the destruction of the society as a whole. And I just don’t think that’s workable. We can spew “let em burn” rhetoric all we want. But in the real world, no one’s actually going to accept a genocide campaign or a campaign of overwhelming ferocity. We know that Isreal could unleash that.

So what then? You fight and fight and fight and every couple of years have a mini war and then again and again and again and again. At what point is continuing a never ending war worth not being the one to say “I’ll give in first”. It applies to both sides, but only because both sides refuse to do that.

DeathToMediaHacks on December 31, 2008 at 10:51 AM

Lance Murdock on December 31, 2008 at 10:47 AM

You don’t think Israel is going to do a ground attack?
I think they are going to finish this now!
Hamas’s “allies” are not lining up behind them this time…I think Israel will target the leadership…they only need to take out a couple to make the point.

right2bright on December 31, 2008 at 10:52 AM

Yep. France is a expert at how to surrender. They’ve surrendered in ware and are now in the process of surrendering their country to Islamic immigrants. Putting them in charge of a military operation would be like making Bawney Fwanks a Scout Leader. Bad Idea.

kingsjester on December 31, 2008 at 10:52 AM

Why doesn’t France suggest a Nato sponsored “West Berlin” solution under which the West takes custody of Gaza, guarantees civil order and civil rights and floods the zone with investment and jobs. The PLO knew it had to keep its population in desperate poverty, and Hamas is happily staying the course. If Arabs see a model of prosperity, they have a stake in stopping terrorists from screwing it up — especially if a a Nato security force will back them up.

Mark30339 on December 31, 2008 at 10:53 AM

Not this time. This is Israel’s last chance for long-term survival. They must ignore the braying of the Left, and continue to completion. Do they have the courage?

OldEnglish on December 31, 2008 at 10:54 AM

ware=war
oops.

kingsjester on December 31, 2008 at 10:54 AM

Hey France, don’t go away mad, just go away!

Typical frogs, always wanting to retreat or surrender!

P.S. I have some surplus French rifles for sale, they’re in excellent condition, never fired and only dropped once!

Liberty or Death on December 31, 2008 at 10:54 AM

Why is it that all the people involved, including Israeli politicians, speak as if this was set off by Hamas violating the cease fire in a unique way last week?

Hamas never honored the cease fire – unless honoring it meant that they’d only fire dozens of rockets into Israeli cities each day instead of hundreds.

JadeNYU on December 31, 2008 at 10:49 AM

Olmert, Livni and Barak only finally acted against Hamas because the rate of rocket fire increased to an unbearable barrage that became impossible to ignore. But the summer war against Hezbollah proved they do not fully believe in Israel’s right to self-defense–Livni wanted to call a cease-fire after 4 days before even Chirac, Rice and the international community requested it. Likewise, I predict the Israeli government will call a cease-fire before Hamas is defeated though not necessarily right away.

aengus on December 31, 2008 at 10:55 AM

Do you pay attention? Israel have been honoring a cease fire agreement, and when it expired they responded. Read more than just the headlines for cryin’ out loud.

thomasaur on December 31, 2008 at 10:50 AM

How does that contradict anything I said? Yes, Israel has been honouring a cease fire agreement which they should not have honoured if it imperiled them–which it clearly did. Hence it isn’t absurd that they would consider honouring another cease fire agreement which also would imperil them.

aengus on December 31, 2008 at 10:57 AM

Then what will?

If there was an easy answer that, we wouldn’t have the problems we do.

But in the real world, no one’s actually going to accept a genocide campaign or a campaign of overwhelming ferocity. We know that Isreal could unleash that.

How would taking out Hamas’ infrastructure equal to genocide? And, frankly, who’s going to stop Israel from a long campaign against Hamas if not the people of Israel?

So what then? You fight and fight and fight and every couple of years have a mini war and then again and again and again and again.

If that’s what you need to do to survive, then that’s what you do.

At what point is continuing a never ending war worth not being the one to say “I’ll give in first”.

DeathToMediaHacks on December 31, 2008 at 10:51 AM

Give in just so you don’t have to keep fighting. That’s a brilliant maneuver. Let’s surrender for peace.

amerpundit on December 31, 2008 at 11:01 AM

If Hamas were lobbing rockets into the suburbs of Paris, would Sarkozy propose that the frog army abide by a cease-fire? Maybe that is a bad example since chances are they would vacate Paris and let Hamas move right in. But let’s assume France has half the gonads of Israel. Would they want the U.S. or some EU power telling them they should have a cease fire?

grdred944 on December 31, 2008 at 11:01 AM

e Israelis rejected the proposal from Sarkozy’s government for a 48-hour cease-fire to negotiate a return of the truce that Hamas ended in a volley of mortar and rocket fire over a week ago never honored

FTFY.

nukemhill on December 31, 2008 at 11:02 AM

right2bright on December 31, 2008 at 10:52 AM

Israel can destroy HAMAS, but, the problem we face here is that HAMAS will kill hundreds if not thousands of Palestinians in the process by booby-trapping apartment building throughout the Gaza Strip. HAMAS wants to murder it own citizens and blame the Jews for it. Saddest part is that the world will take them at face value.

Like usual Israel will stop right before the finish line. They’ve done it before. Best example, in the first Lebanon war they could have kill Arafat, in classic Israel manner they hesitated and let him live.

Israel had a chance to wipe out HAMAS during the intifada, but they didn’t. I don’t see why this is situation will end any differently.

Not to say I want to HAMAS to survive. I want the whole organization DESTROYED along with FATAH. I just have no faith in the current government.

Lance Murdock on December 31, 2008 at 11:02 AM

I imagine there will be one or two less French cars go up in flames tonight in gratitude after their gallant attempt to protect Islam.

Just kidding, Mohammedans don’t do gratitude.

BL@KBIRD on December 31, 2008 at 11:05 AM

The only way that will happen is if Israel conducts a ground assault into Gaza. It will be deadly for both sides, but especially for the Palis since HAMAS will use Palis as human shields and the world will condemn not HAMAS but Israel.
Lance Murdock on December 31, 2008 at 10:47 AM

I agree. In fact, if Israel doesn’t put boots on the ground and clean them out once and for all, the image of letting world opinion corrupt their willingness to defend themselves becomes even stronger and strengthens the hand of Iran in this mess which allows the spiral to continue. Israel hurt their image badly by dropping the ball in Lebanon and a repeat performance here will reinforce the image of weak leadership.

a capella on December 31, 2008 at 11:06 AM

So what then? You fight and fight and fight and every couple of years have a mini war and then again and again and again and again. At what point is continuing a never ending war worth not being the one to say “I’ll give in first”. It applies to both sides, but only because both sides refuse to do that.

DeathToMediaHacks on December 31, 2008 at 10:51 AM

Israel has given in a bunch of times. Hamas doesn’t care.

Darth Executor on December 31, 2008 at 11:08 AM

One of my favorite quotes of all time:

As for the enemies of freedom, those who are potential adversaries, they will be reminded that peace is the highest aspiration of the American people. We will negotiate for it, sacrifice for it; we will not surrender for it—now or ever.

–Ronald Reagan

amerpundit on December 31, 2008 at 11:10 AM

For the dim bulbs. Hamas. Fatah, and all the Paloeos are not interested in getting fairness or “their share”, they want the destruction of Israel and all the Joooos in it. Can you wrap your heads around that?

BL@KBIRD on December 31, 2008 at 11:14 AM

I am a big Israel supporter and they should have done this long ago. But now that Olmert’s party is about to lose a election Feb 10th he has done this not to defend Israel but to try and salvage there party’s greed for power “typical liberal move” they know the people of Israel are country first before political party. This military action is the only way they have a chance to stay in power.
Netanyahu and the Likud party are in a position to win!
Let’s hope that this military action will not keep Olmert’s party in power.

time2taketheglovesoffGOP on December 31, 2008 at 11:20 AM

Why hasn’t Israel removed the Hamas leadership and any leaders 3-4 layers down in the Hamas chain of command?

Target one on day one of Iraq war II was Saddam Hussein. And until they caught him, he was target Number 1. Remember the deck of cards with all the top Iraqi leadership targets?

Who is the number 1 target in Al Queda? Is it the guy shooting his gun in Iraq or driving a trunk in Afghanistan? Nope, it is Bin Laden.

Who are Israel’s top 10 human targets in Hamas?
Who knows?
Israel would rather attack empty Hamas HQ buildings and shoot at the missile launchers than go after the Hamas leadership. If they want to destroy Hamas, destroy it from the top down, not bottom up.

Question: What political purpose or advantage does it serve Israel to keep these mini-wars festering and going on? This continual attack, cease fire, retreat and repeat cycle seems to be what the Israelis want. Not win, not force a complete surrender of Hamas or other attackers; just keep the wounds of war festering.

albill on December 31, 2008 at 11:23 AM

The stupid part of all this situation is that many call for a ‘proportional’ response. All that does is keep it going. You go in and win not trade punch for punch.

If you buy into the proportional argument then for each random fired missile that comes into Israel would be answered on a one for one exchange.

If Israel were to shoot back a matching missile with zero targeting to hit random targets does anyone believe the world community would all of a sudden be all happy and joyous.

No I think not either.

CommentGuy on December 31, 2008 at 11:25 AM

Just keep on killing terrorists.

Hilts on December 31, 2008 at 11:25 AM

Did you hear the French response to Israel’s rejection?

Carl in Jerusalem on December 31, 2008 at 11:28 AM

Here’s a thought…how about Israel and Hamas have a cease-fire long enough for Israel to invade France in order to force them to butt out?

James on December 31, 2008 at 11:30 AM

Since Israel is fighting for its very existence on the planet, I suspect they are driven every bit as much as the Palestinians who are fighting(they say)to regain land they see as theirs. Faced with such basic and implacable motives, I don’t think it will ever end no matter what anyone else says or does. It appears that the Israeli is just as ready to face death as the Palestinian(Hamas?)(militant Islam?) over this. Even should Israel succeed in wiping out Hamas, it will probably lead to years and decades of underground activities and harrassment or out right war from other Islamic countries. I am very uncomfortable with this perpetual no win scenario, but am unable to convince myself otherwise. My thirteen year old grandson came home from his Bible class the other day and after reading about Isaac and Ishmael announced that “God started this and only He can finish it!” Well?

jeanie on December 31, 2008 at 11:33 AM

Israel needs to keep the pressure on Hamas and force them out of Gaza or they will just do like Hezbollah did in Lebanon in 2006. Then when they have chased out Hamas they should turn to the north and finish off Hezbollah before they decide to retaliate for their brothers in terror.

ic1redeye on December 31, 2008 at 11:37 AM

On that note…

Arab Youths Spray Gunfire At Israeli Mall Workers In Denmark

Lance Murdock on December 31, 2008 at 11:37 AM

“Giving Hamas a respite just to regroup, rearm is a mistake. The pressure on the Hamas military machine must continue.”

How do I get my fellow countrymen to understand this concept?

Send_Me on December 31, 2008 at 11:44 AM

So what then? You fight and fight and fight and every couple of years have a mini war and then again and again and again and again. At what point is continuing a never ending war worth not being the one to say “I’ll give in first”. It applies to both sides, but only because both sides refuse to do that.

Hey, genius, the Israelis fight a major conflict with their crappy a** neighbours every 10 years. It’s pretty much a given with my Israeli friends because they are painfully aware of what happens when they don’t fight those jackholes.

Of course, your solution would end with the ultimate destruction of Israel and the rest of the Middle East falling further into death, destruction and chaos. That’s SO much better!

mjk on December 31, 2008 at 11:44 AM

The Palestinian muslims are the most stupid people on earth, they live in self made $hit hole and rocket the people that can help them most.

No kidding. I was in the West Bank earlier this year (on the way to Bethlehem), and the place was an absolute dump.

Add to this the fact that before the Jews moved in, there was nothing there. Nothing but swamp and desert. It was the Israleis who made something out of it. It was also the Palestinians who rejected the two-state solution that was originally proposed back in 1948. They made their own bed.

crazy_legs on December 31, 2008 at 11:48 AM

I saw the Israeli tanks and guns massing on the Gaza border on T.V. Is this for real–will Israel finally wipe out the Hamas fighters and supporters? Or is this another political KABUKI THEATER to keep the current Israeli P.M. in power?
***
Kind of like Jimmy Carter’s (aka the worst U.S. president in my long memory) half a**ed attempt to win the 1980 election with his pitiful “attack” to free our Iranian hostages?
***
Israel seems to have lost the will to survive–witness their pitiful performance against Hizbollah in Lebanon two years ago. The die has been cast–win or die!
***
Watch the JIHAD WATCH site video of HAMAS SUPPORTERS IN FT. LAUDERDALE, FL. yesterday. This fifth column is in our own country now. I hope Homeland Security will check out the E-mail and phone contacts of this group–there are probably some real jihadis / supporters there.
***
The group that loves HAMAS should have their sorry butts shipped out of our country–back to Gaza just before the next attacks. GET THEM OUT OF OUR COUNTRY–BEFORE IT IS TOO LATE!
***
John Bibb

rocketman on December 31, 2008 at 11:48 AM

Earlier, Olmert’s spokesman Mark Regev said that “Giving Hamas a respite just to regroup, rearm is a mistake. The pressure on the Hamas military machine must continue.”

I hope they really mean this. Nothing we have heard so far alters my first view – that the only effective strategy in Gaza will be a full ground invasion – call it a surge, if you will – and door-to-door thrashing of Hamas and their collaborators. Kill them in their beds, find the rockets, destroy the tunnels, seize all weaponry, rid Gaza of Hamas.

This will require the loss of Israeli blood and the loss of UN favor, as if that ever existed. But the experiment in forfeiting Gaza has gone exactly as predicted by those with clarity (i.e., “us”) – disastrously. Take it back, and make it a permanent part of Israel.

Jaibones on December 31, 2008 at 11:50 AM

P.S. I have some surplus French rifles for sale, they’re in excellent condition, never fired and only dropped once!

Liberty or Death on December 31, 2008 at 10:54 AM

Buy now and I’ll throw in a French flag of war; pure white but well used.

Laura in Maryland on December 31, 2008 at 11:55 AM

I looked at Carl in Jerusalem’s post. He wrote this:

In May, Kouchner [French Foreign Minister] admitted that he had been in contact with Hamas for ‘months’ in violation of an international boycott against the terror group. So we know that the entire idea of a ‘ceasefire’ comes from a terror apologist. Fortunately, for once, the government did the right thing…

Israel Radio just reported that the French government responded to the cabinet’s rejection of the ‘cease fire’ by saying that President Nicolas Sarcozy would discuss it with foreign minister Tzipi Livni tomorrow and that Sarcozy and Kouchner would visit here next week. Just what we (didn’t) need.

INC on December 31, 2008 at 11:57 AM

crazy_legs on December 31, 2008 at 11:48 AM

A couple of years ago I remember seeing pictures of the greenhouses the Israeli left behind in Gaza contrasted with the current scenario of just dirt with terrorists tunnels there.

INC on December 31, 2008 at 11:58 AM

And this from the worlds most experienced SURRENDERCRATS.

Helloyawl on December 31, 2008 at 12:01 PM

The best UN plan so far:
Disarm Israel. Issue its citizens running shoes so they can evade the terrorists, that need more understanding. Collect payments from Iran and Syria.

DL13 on December 31, 2008 at 12:10 PM

On Tuesday, in discussions with Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni that lasted late into the night, Olmert and Defense Minister Ehud Barak had appeared split on whether to accept the French proposal.

I’m so glad our Founders had the good insight not to establish a parliamentary form of government. I just can’t imagine having to make decisions about how to fight a war by committee!

As to Sarkozy and his interference, I do expect to see more of his hand insinuating France into international events and expected that would be his role if Obama was elected POTUS. There will be little respect of Obama in the traditional American role of Leader of the Free World over the next four years as France, Germany and others will step into fill the vacuum left by his weakness and inexperience.

Texas Gal on December 31, 2008 at 12:15 PM

Why hasn’t Israel removed the Hamas leadership and any leaders 3-4 layers down in the Hamas chain of command?

It is hard to get to these guys because they live and operate out of Jordan, Egypt, Iran and Syria. Those who are in the fifth layer and on down are the ones who are stuck in the rat cage of Gaza and by all accounts, they are expendable to a point. Mark my words, Egypt will be “pressured” to allow safe passage of the Hamas commanders who are in Gaza now to escape to safety. Most, the smart ones in the dumb group, have fled to Egypt already through the tunnels. Israel needs to install some seismic activity monitors along the Gaza border with Egypt so they can monitor new digging activity. Just a thought.

0321_GUY on December 31, 2008 at 12:23 PM

Cease-fires will not bring an end to this war. While Hamas exists and serves as Iran’s proxy army, the Israelis have no choice but to fight them to the end.

Does anyone remember when thinking like this was considered normal? There are some benefits to getting older. Here’s another. Wear your galoshes in the rain.

JiangxiDad on December 31, 2008 at 12:25 PM

One of my favorite quotes of all time:

As for the enemies of freedom, those who are potential adversaries, they will be reminded that peace is the highest aspiration of the American people. We will negotiate for it, sacrifice for it; we will not surrender for it—now or ever.

–Ronald Reagan

amerpundit on December 31, 2008 at 11:10 AM

Thank you for bringing up a wonderful quote from Ronald Reagan. How could I have forgotten this? I have over looked some things lately. I will kick myself. The words in that quote is so true.

sheebe on December 31, 2008 at 12:26 PM

We fire-bombed Germany and Nuked Japan; thus destroying their will do to evil. Until the international “community”(of Isreal Haters) gets and stays the hell out of the way, and lets Isreal do what it must, this sorry charade will continue. Everytime a peace or cease fire is forced on warring parties by the U.N/Int. Community, the hard lessons are never learned. “Try that again and we will FINISH destroying you.” By not allowing the fight to ever really finish to its conclusion, they encourage Palestinian misbehavior. They know their apologist will come to the rescue; and prevent their total destruction.

Lunkinator on December 31, 2008 at 12:27 PM

Everytime a peace or cease fire is forced on warring parties by the U.N/Int. Community, the hard lessons are never learned.

France cannot forced a cease fire on Israel. The only country that has the power to do that is the United States. What will probably happen is that Olmert et al will agree to a self-imposed cease fire as they have before and almost did again.

aengus on December 31, 2008 at 12:33 PM

Go Israel! This is a dream come true. Maybe they will finally follow through and stop the tit for tat ridiculousness of the last 60 years.

ashleymatt on December 31, 2008 at 12:34 PM

It is interesting how Hamas are being separated from “Palestinians” in the minds of folks. “just go in and take out Hamas leadership and any fighters that get in the way.” They are not interlopers who have hijacked a sacred democracy, they ARE the “Palestinians” along with Fatah and every Allah loving “innocent” civilian.

But I do think Hamas will be mortally eroded because they sing and dance to a Shia tune in the Sunni world. The Sunnis wont miss the tools of the 12th Imam gumming up their purer, more reliable methods and rewards of Jihad. The silly Shia want to leapfrog life right into paradise and leave behind the world of chaos that they must create to stir the Hidden One. (yes, they are very dangerous nut bars indeed)

There will be many crocodile tears all around.

BL@KBIRD on December 31, 2008 at 12:38 PM

The United Nations is a load that should have been swal**w*d. They are as worthless as a fart in the wind. What they say and the other ABC clown organizations mean nothing. Their words are hollow.

0321_GUY on December 31, 2008 at 12:40 PM

So France wanted a unilateral cease-fire to negotiate how Israel could surrender. Typical.

Do. not. back. down. Israel.

rbj on December 31, 2008 at 10:39 AM

Fox news needs to get some French surrender experts to give commentary on this situation.

Johan Klaus on December 31, 2008 at 12:41 PM

group, have fled to Egypt already through the tunnels. Israel needs to install some seismic activity monitors along the Gaza border with Egypt so they can monitor new digging activity. Just a thought.

0321_GUY on December 31, 2008 at 12:23 PM

A bunker buster works better.

Johan Klaus on December 31, 2008 at 12:48 PM

I think the words and the efforts of “cease-fire” or “truce” should be banned in Israel they’re worse than useless.

Speakup on December 31, 2008 at 1:02 PM

Too bad the French don’t share their military expertise with Hamas. Couple of white flags would do wonders for a permanent cease fire.

GarandFan on December 31, 2008 at 1:04 PM

Putting them in charge of a military operation would be like making Bawney Fwanks a Scout Leader. Bad Idea.

kingsjester on December 31, 2008 at 10:52 AM

HA HA HH!!

Follow me boys… look it’s two-seated outhouse!

max1 on December 31, 2008 at 1:07 PM

No kidding. I was in the West Bank earlier this year (on the way to Bethlehem), and the place was an absolute dump.

crazy_legs on December 31, 2008 at 11:48 AM

When were you there? I was there at the end of January/ early February. Made it to Jerusalem just after they had their MMGW caused snowstorm. You think the way to Bethlehem is bad, you should have headed over to Bethany. There is a huge difference whenever you cross the wall around Jerusalem. Its like crossing from San Diego into Tijuana. Most of the West Bank is in dire need of a good bath. Jericho and the Dead sea areas are not bad. Also the quality of life for the Muslims living inside the Israeli operated parts is much higher than those that chose to move to the Palestinian controlled ares.

Corsair on December 31, 2008 at 1:11 PM

The most absurd aspect of this story is that Israel actually gave it consideration.

What on earth does France have to do with any of this in the first place?

America gives Israel about five billion reasons to listen to us per year. So, for good or ill, we have some say-so over Israel’s behavior. But Israel owes nothing to France. And are the French even pretending that they have any kind of control whatsoever over Hamas?

There is no rational reason for France to propose anything. Basically, they just unilaterally appointed themselves the world’s “experts” on the best way for contries to resist foreign aggression.

Arrogance, thy name is France.

logis on December 31, 2008 at 1:17 PM

Oh brother…a 48-hour cease fire…Just enough time for Hamas to regroup and re-arm it’s rockets.

JetBoy on December 31, 2008 at 10:47 AM

More likely for the surviving leaders to find better places to hide.

Israel’s rejection of this gives me hope that they actually mean it when they say they will keep it up until Hamas’ spine of support is broken. Faint hope, but hope nonetheless.

ProfessorMiao on December 31, 2008 at 1:45 PM

Because whether or not you like it, whether or not the U.S. recognizes them and whether or not it confuses the hell out of you, Hamas is the elected government of the people in that region. They chose them. So if the goal is the destruction of Hamas, then the goal is the destruction of the society as a whole. And I just don’t think that’s workable.

DeathToMediaHacks on December 31, 2008 at 10:51 AM

Why not? Hitler and the Nazis were democratically elected and we didn’t have a problem taking them out. As far as “workable” goes, it’s war. It is what it is.

Guardian on December 31, 2008 at 2:07 PM

Because whether or not you like it, whether or not the U.S. recognizes them and whether or not it confuses the hell out of you, Hamas is the elected government of the people in that region. They chose them. So if the goal is the destruction of Hamas, then the goal is the destruction of the society as a whole. And I just don’t think that’s workable.

DeathToMediaHacks on December 31, 2008 at 10:51 AM

Why not? Hitler and the Nazis were democratically elected and we didn’t have a problem taking them out. As far as “workable” goes, it’s war. It is what it is.

Guardian on December 31, 2008 at 2:07 PM

Regrettably, we have Bush to thank for the fact that Hamas was democratically elected. Israel was forced by the US to allow them to run in the election.

Actually, the Nazis were democratically elected but not into power – they achieved that by creating the “crisis” around the burning of the Reichstag, and then more-or-less forcing Hitler’s appointment as Chancellor.

These examples point to a basic flaw of democracy – that the election process can be used (and abused) by groups with no interest in democracy at all to gain a toehold in the halls of power. Their existence of parties is, in a very real sense, a perversion of democracy. Yet the system seems to demand that their perversion be permitted.

Something very wrong there.

ProfessorMiao on December 31, 2008 at 2:17 PM

Screw the French.

They’ve leaned towards the arab world since I can remember.

madmonkphotog on December 31, 2008 at 2:18 PM

Corsair on December 31, 2008 at 1:11 PM

I was there in late September, just before the New Year. The company I work for is Isralei-owned and based in Tel Aviv and I wind up going at least once a year to work there for a week or so. This last time I decided to take some time to sightsee. Jaffa and Jerusalem were incredible. Bethlehem, aside from the area around Nativity, not so much.

crazy_legs on December 31, 2008 at 4:32 PM

I really don’t understand why Jerusalem insists on bowing to niceties.

Olmert was right to say no. But what his spokesman should have said, literally, goes something along the lines of this:

“I really don’t understand why we should stop. Hamas says they want to be martyrs, and we are merely being good neighbors in finding them and obliging them to move onwards. Now leave us the fuck alone. Thank you.”

Summer on December 31, 2008 at 6:27 PM

And please. If your solution is “the end of Hamas.” Then you actually are just as stupid as the extremists in Hamas. Because whether or not you like it, whether or not the U.S. recognizes them and whether or not it confuses the hell out of you, Hamas is the elected government of the people in that region. They chose them. So if the goal is the destruction of Hamas, then the goal is the destruction of the society as a whole. And I just don’t think that’s workable. We can spew “let em burn” rhetoric all we want. But in the real world, no one’s actually going to accept a genocide campaign or a campaign of overwhelming ferocity. We know that Isreal could unleash that.

So what then? You fight and fight and fight and every couple of years have a mini war and then again and again and again and again. At what point is continuing a never ending war worth not being the one to say “I’ll give in first”. It applies to both sides, but only because both sides refuse to do that.

DeathToMediaHacks on December 31, 2008 at 10:51 AM

Quoted from THE STUPIDEST PERSON IN THE WORLD.

Unbelievable.

Give in to what? Do you think Hamas is firing rockets into Israel because they want to trade silks with them? God you are a moron. So in your scenario, Israel should just self-immolate in order to achieve lasting peace for the rest of the Middle East.

fossten on December 31, 2008 at 7:54 PM

Image that you had a doctor (French we shall say) who advised you to stop taking antibiotics in the hope that the bacteria would just go away on it’s own.

Cheshire Cat on December 31, 2008 at 9:28 PM

DeathToMediaHacks on December 31, 2008 at 10:51 AM

Quoted from THE STUPIDEST PERSON IN THE WORLD.

Unbelievable.

fossten on December 31, 2008 at 7:54 PM

In DeathToMediaHacks’s world everything is Hamas propaganda. Nothing is what it is because everything is what it isn’t. And contrary-wise; what it is, it isn’t, and what it isn’t, it is. You see?

Cheshire Cat on December 31, 2008 at 9:36 PM

No “cease fire”, just victory by destroying Hamas.

profitsbeard on December 31, 2008 at 10:32 PM

Sarkozy another bed wetting liberal…how’s the yuts of France doing lately, still burning their(moooslimb) ghetto’s in their cities? Gotta be good for the car salesman, ooops, sorry, car sales personages.

oldernslower on January 1, 2009 at 1:29 PM

Cease-fires will not bring an end to this war. While Hamas exists and serves as Iran’s proxy army, the Israelis have no choice but to fight them

I agree. Israel should fight and fight hard! I mean, really severely hurt the enemy. Any cease fire agreement by the Arabs is a joke. They have absolutely no intention of making peace with Israel. Israel is surrounded by a sea of hostile Arabs that want to see Israel annihilated and cast into the sea. This is the truth. Their goal is to take God’s land. That is their goal. That’s it. Okay. Simple. Don’t let any of these lying Palestinian apologists like Dian Buttu deceive you. That said, Arab beware! As you scheme to destroy Israel you have embraked upon mission impossible! God gave the land to Abraham, the first Jew, and to his descendant through Isaac and Jacob. You have no right to the land, and if you try to take it God will cut you to pieces.

apacalyps on January 1, 2009 at 6:39 PM