Surprise! Iran is meddling in Gaza, too Update

Turn over a rock in the Middle East, and Iranian terrorist helpers come scurrying out.

JERUSALEM: Seven Iranian weapons experts were seized yesterday in a raid by Fatah-affiliated security forces on the Islamic University, a Hamas stronghold in Gaza City.
Amid an escalation in the confrontation between Hamas and Fatah Palestinian factions, an eighth Iranian was reported to have committed suicide rather than be taken prisoner.

Sources close to President Mahmoud Abbas of Fatah said the Iranians included intelligence and chemical experts and a senior military officer.

The Israeli news site Y-Net quoted a Palestinian source as saying the officer was a general.

Although Hamas and Islamic Jihad are known to have sent agents to Iran for training, this is the first report of Iranian personnel in the Palestinian territories.

It’s unlikely to be the last.

Hamas and Fatah inked a cease-fire on Tuesday. How’s that going? Depends on who’s doing the reporting.

NPR: Cease-Fire Collapses Between Palestinian Factions

The AP: Palestinian cease-fire holds despite factional shootings

The facts are that fighting erupted when Hamas attacked a few Fatah trucks that, according to Hamas, were carrying arms in from Egypt for Fatah. At least 8 are dead in the shooting. It’s hard to see how AP has the right of this story: For a cease-fire to hold, the firing actually has to cease.

Cease-fire or no, the world is eventually going to have to wake up to the grim reality that Iran is meddling in Iraq, in Lebanon and in Gaza, and wherever Iran meddles, you have strife and violence and the threat of civil war. If we want to stop all this fighting in all these places, the place to go is Tehran. Right now, we’re treating the symptoms and not the disease.

Update (AP): Hillary’s solution? Let’s chat ’em up!

Update (Bryan): Diana West on the Bush admin and the Palestinians: Denial is an ugly thing.