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Deepening Israeli assault on Hamas divides Arab world

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The diplomatic clock has caught up with the military one. The window is closed.

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the arab world is more united than divided. egypt and other nearby sunni powers will let israel demolish hamas. it blunts iran's plans of a shi'ite hegemony in the region. iran overplayed its hand it now it gets burned. the international community, the united nations, europe, the united states have no say in this.

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I agree that op-ed piece has a tad of bias mixed in. Along with the extra added emotion so loved by the radical left.

And I disagree with the window being closed.

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Israel has continued to stop the media from entering the zone and it is obvious that they do not want the media to report as to what they find in the Gaza strip. If Israel was sincere and truthful it would allow the international media into the strip to show the world what is actually going on, and not what their well rehearsed propoganda machine is telling you.

Israel is hiding something terrible. Israel is using weapons on the people of Gaza that are banned by International law- WP and DU. I guess law is not applicable in Israel as Israel violate every UN resolution that is passed against them. It is time Israel stops this cowardise.

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"and it is obvious that they do not want the media to report as to what they find in the Gaza strip."

Hmm, I think it is more to their dis-advantage, rather than being advantageous for the Israeli government. All the reports and images coming from Gaza are from the imbedded Arab journalists already there, and we know which way they lean.....

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Israel have stopped doctors from entering Gaza to assist in the terrible shortage of medical staff. This refusal is totally unacceptable for doctors who wish to help in the terrible humanitarian crisis. Injured civilians are stacked into corridors of the hospital but there are no doctors available to deal with their injuries. This results in more unneccesary deaths.

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Lots of thinking going on by our resident experts AIN and Mad et al, of course they know more than an someone who was an Israeli soldier, is an historian and commentator, of COURSE they... don't. Plus, of course the piece has subjective bias hence is tempered with 'THINK', you obviously missed that part and jerked, knee that is. I believe the window to new military operations is closed because already Israel has announced it is suspending the bombing of specified areas in Gaza for three hours every day to allow the delivery of urgent humanitarian supplies. The pressure is on, Israel will comply.

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If Arab nations just said to the US, "This is going to affect the oil output we can give you", the US might finally put some pressure on Israel to cease fire.

As I have said a number of times, regardless of who started it (and my opinion is that both did -- there is no 100% for either side), Israel is now totally screwed. Hamas may get completely trashed, but they'll find a way to spring up again, and they'll have even more support than they EVER had before Israel invaded. Israel has a bit of a catch-22 situation going on:

1) they cease fire and pull out. Hamas sees it as a victory, despite Western nations calling on Hamas to avoid further rocket fire. Hamas goes back to firing rockets, and we're back where we started, only this time Israel cannot go in again. What's more, Palestinians in general have the added support given to them by what's happened, and Israel has little or no room for negotiation.

2) Israel keeps up the attack and tries to wipe out Hamas. It becomes clear their goal of simply 'making Southern Israel quiet and not taking Gaza or removing Hamas from power' was untrue, or at some point changed to completely crushing Hamas. They have killed more than 100 Palestinians, lost a number of their own troops, and all the while rockets have still been fired into Israel. They have made more enemies, turned being anti-Jew into the popular norm for a lot of places, and have zero support world-wide (US aside, though Obama seems somewhat conflicted). They've also destabilized the region, and other nations have begun gunning for Israel, with the support of Arabs world-wide.

Both are a bit extreme, perhaps, but perfectly plausible. Again, regardless of who started it now, Israel is pretty much screwed, especially the current government. I hope they pull out quickly and offer some compensation (by way of the land they took in the 1967 war) to try and get some credit back.

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yang,

Why do you guy's immediately start shrieking about people being "resident experts"? I'm just offering my opinion on your opinion piece.

People let their emotions get carried away with them on the Israeli/Palestine issue. The Americans potentially killed 10,000 Iraqi's at the beginning of "shock and awe" and even then the shrieking wasn't this intense.

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THis attack by Israel could cause WWIII, mark my words! The whole bleeding world is becoming divided not just the Arab world. Divided in who hates Israel and American policies the most.

This are another thing i predicted. Iran is abaout to send young men will to die into Gaza to fight. Streth, this could easily escalate, and Americans like Madverts dont even fink Israel is the villain of the peace, and calls me and northlondon names for no reason.

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desperate al-qaeda is blaming barack obama. and they have branded mubarak a traitor.

israel is getting to her enemies.this wont be a repeat of the war with hizzboolah.

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Is the Palestinian-Israeli conflict rooted in mindless Arab anti-Semitism or Zionism’s insistence that a Jewish state must be created in Palestine, despite the fact that for over 1,300 years it had been overwhelmingly inhabited by Arabs, who in the twentieth century sought political independence in --and sovereignty over-- their homeland?

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Keep in mind that the split view of the conflict in the Arab world is also due in part to the split between Iran/Hezbolla/Hamas and the Sunni Arabs. Egypt controls the border on its side, and they only let a trickle of aid in. Why? Because they fear the long arm of Iran.

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Israel has flown thousands of sorties and dropped thousands of rockets/bombs/mortars and they've successfully killed nearly....200 civilians? If that's their goal then they're probably the worst civilian killing machine in the history of the world. Just give them one terrorist with a bomb strapped to his belt and he'd be more "successful" than the entire Israeli army after nearly 2 weeks of "trying."

When you debate against people who rely on emotions and outrage I suppose things can get turned around pretty quickly....

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A cease fire will just give Hamas time to refit and rearm. What do you expect the Jews to do? They are in danger in the other countries of the middle east. They are in danger in Europe though to a lessor extent. If Hamas got it way they would kill all of the Jews. How many Jews are left in Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Iraq, Iran, etc? So the Jews agree to leave Israel where will they go? It is either Fight or Die for Israel. Oh if Israel wanted the west bank would already be clear of all people. They can do a lot better than some misguided person with a belt!

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Just now: A truce plan has been accepted. Told you the window for military action had closed.

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"Told you the window for military action had closed."

According to Sarko, but I don't trust him either. If the Israeli's back out now, bombing Gaza and not crushing Hamas was an even bigger mistake than their failure in the Lebanon.

Bottom line is the Israeli's will continue to receive rockets indiscriminately on their heads, and the Palestinians will continue to live in abject misery, with the terrorist government they democraticaly elected....

...and the stalemate continues.

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Cease fire is only for 3 hours, EU and especially Germany needs to stay out of this. The real EU is rearing its ugly head now that attacks on Jews there have restarted.

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Well if the truce includes the end of rocket fire then the Israelis have accomplished their goals. It looks like Israel will allow in aid for 3 hours a day and Hamas agrees to not attack during that time period. Sounds good to me. Hopefully it will hold and then expand.

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I suppose all the Hamas supporters here will concede the point the whole thing that started this were rockets fired into Israel. Tell me any nation that would allow that without retaliation whether any national was injured or killed, or building was hit. That is called violation of national borders.

The media is playing up the Palestinian casulties because it looks good for "humanitarian" scope. Courtesy of Al Jazeera news feeds, look at the logo on most footage.

If Hamas didn't start it, then there would be none of this right now. Hopefully with this new deal, Hamas ala Iran ala Syria ala Al Queda has learned Israel means business. No more ovens and gas chambers for Jews. No more violation of borders to start a fight the terrorists will lose. It took a good drubbing to knock sense into them.

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I'm not exactly what you would call a Hamas supporter, but I certainly wouldn't concede that the source of this whole thing was Hamas rocket attacks into Israel.

If you steal my car and I then blast out the windows of your house with my shotgun, it would be wrong to say that your subsequent mayhem with a 9mm in my house was caused by my shotgun.

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SezWho,

I'm so glad to "see" you back! The logic you bring to this has been sorely lacking on these threads.....

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I think the International peace keepers should intervene and stationed inside the conflict zones. That way both sides wouldn't dare to fire rockets or make incursion, I hope.

It would be funny though if Hamas fire rockets and hit the peace keepers.

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Again, to call Israel a mass murderer is to miss the whole beginning of this. Hamas fired rockets into Israel in violation of the peace agreements. Israel has had enough of being enticed, so now that they are being enticed again they are going all out against terrorists. To side with truth and justice its not hard to see this.

I support Israel for one reason, they are defending their nation, their way of life, and their people. Of course antisemitic, first world leftists would prefer Israel march quietly into the ovens and gas chambers like Sarko and the German dame want them to do. They have shown their true colors.

Personally I am glad rational people see letting terrorists get away with terrorism will lead to their goal of the entire world chanting the Koran, all females wearing burkas, and converting by the edge of the sword. Need some enticement watch Richard Dawkin's "Enemies of Reason" and listen to Hamas, Hezbollah, and Al Queda "fighters" spout their hate and desire for international domination. Listen how they describe in detail to get world sympathy by having Al Jazeera film schools hit that had terrorists shooting from them, they put fighters there to draw israeli fire, its a tactic. The result in my opinion is nothing but collateral damage. The adults let them in the school, and knew what would happen. Thats the enemy Israel is fighting, no regard for the lives of their own children.

Then again first world leftists will only see the poor Hamas terrorists being brutalised. Is that the truth and justice you speak of?

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I only side with truth and justice. I don't see either here anywhere.

One of the most rationale things written on all Isreal/Palastine threads. Saying one murderer is less of a murderer then the other and therefore the good guy is a slippery slope.

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ptolemy,

Your first sentence supposed that all Hamas supporters would concede that Hamas started this. I answered that point. I cannot speak for all Hamas supporters, but I don't concede that Hamas "started" this. I don't believe that Hamas itself would concede that and they certainly must be their own supporters.

You now say that your point was that weak pretenders get wiped out by the strong. That may be true, but that depends on what you define as a pretender. Hezbollah is certainly weak in some sense compared to Israel, but in another sense it is quite strong and definitely no pretender. I'm not sure that Hamas has the same strength but I doubt that Israel is capable of wiping out Hamas.

Yes, Israel is showing it means business, but so what? That's a strategy that it has periodically employed for years and it's a strategy that has not worked.

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Points taken SezWho2, but Israel is defending their nation. I just hope people see this is part of fight against people who wish to force by death their death on other people. Listen to their own words.

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It's a bitch that it took a war to be able to get supplies into Gaza. There have been so many gate/border closings and blockades that Gaza citizens are starving and dieing from lack of medicines.

(That's why they have to dig tunnells. To get in food, medicines and fuels.)

So Isreal kills through cross border attacks.

Hamas retaliates.

Isreal attacks and uses their U. S. paid armaments and kills many many Gazans/Hamas.

Finally after enough international pressure Isreal opens the borders to allow medicenes and fuels in. (Where was all the international pressure when the broders were closed before this attack by Isreal.)

I'd like to think that enough international pressure could be levied to force an agreement and peace keepers. On their own Isreal and Gaza will never be able to forge an agreement. It's going to take efforts by all; that includes the parties involved. < :-)

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ptolemy: "Suuport terrorists all you like, if you want to chant the Koran and have your women forced into burkas thats your choice."

No offense, bud, but your argument sounds less like you are calling Hamas terrorists and more like you are accusing all Muslims of being so.

"Of course antisemitic, first world leftists would prefer Israel march quietly into the ovens and gas chambers like Sarko and the German dame want them to do. They have shown their true colors."

As with the Russia/Georgia comparison, you're weakening your own point again. In this case, I'm sorry to say for you, it's Israel who wishes Palestine to 'march off to the gas chambers', my friend. Being against the EXCESSIVE use of force by Israel does not in any way mean we believe the holocaust is fiction, or that we are anti-Semites or any of the garbage people with no logical defense desperately spew out (with their need to appeal to emotion).

My point is you really need to town down your rhetoric if you want to get people to listen to your arguments and take you seriously. Saying things like, "Go read the Koran; it's fine with me if you like terr'ists! Go ahead and gas some Jews!" doesn't win you any credibility, and only undermines the tone of any valid points you may have. As it is you are making some pretty gross and very untrue statements about people who simply want a cease-fire and don't support Israel's method of beating down Hamas. At the same time, though, that doesn't make them SUPPORTERS of Hamas by any means (some may be, but I don't think many).

As for the cease-fire, here's hoping it holds. Hamas better not be dumb enough to launch rockets while the gates are open for aid. They have a chance now for peace, and if they wanted to use Israel's aggression for political means -- I'm not suggesting it, I'm just saying if they did -- they would be wise not to have what public support they've gotten turn against them. Let's hope peace prevails!

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680 casualties on palestinian and 6 soldier casualties were israel citizen. Fighting getting less with less casualties, there is talks about ceasefires and 3 hours fighting breaks.

There also humanitarian aid zone also. There is partial troop withdrawal from Khan Yunis. It is time for all parties to get a new more peaceful deals for gaza civilian people

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ptolemy,

Thank you for the reply. I agree that Israel is defending itself. And I agree that it has to do so. What I question is the way in which it does so.

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The foes of Israel show their true colors. The Hamas wants all of the Jews dead. The following is a example of such http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,477450,00.html

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The Saudis...have implicitly blamed Hamas for the offensive, saying that the “massacre would not have happened if the Palestinian people were united behind one leadership.

Even the Saudis, who are Muslim Arabs, recognize Hamas is to blame for all of this. How come first-world leftists can't recognize it? Have they been so brainwashed by socialism and "Palestinian" propaganda?

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4 of the 6 Isrealis killed were from friendly fire. < :-)

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Dear Superlib, re that comment of yours...

Israel has flown thousands of sorties and dropped thousands of rockets/bombs/mortars and they've successfully killed nearly....200 civilians? If that's their goal then they're probably the worst civilian killing machine in the history of the world. Just give them one terrorist with a bomb strapped to his belt and he'd be more "successful" than the entire Israeli army after nearly 2 weeks of "trying."

Could you please send that to every newspaper in the world. And email it to every person accusing Israel of genocide and even a "new holocaust".

And now for my message to the "men?" of Hamas. Stop attacking Israel and then hiding behind women and children.

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Israeli numbers on civilians killed in Gaza do not count males aged 15-55 who they consider to be military targets. So, double the numbers to 1,400 slaughtered in Gaza. 10 killed, most by friendly fire, in Israel. THIS is what divides the (whole?) Arab world, S L A U G T H E R of innocents.

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688575 at 07:53 PM JST - 7th January

“Israel has continued to stop the media from entering the zone.”

Egypt has a frontier with Gasa too & they have NOT stopped the media, have they?

“Israel have stopped doctors from entering Gaza to assist in the terrible shortage of medical staff.”

Hamas has stopped doctors & medical supplies entering Gasa from Egypt.

smithinjapan at 08:02 PM JST - 7th January “only this time Israel cannot go in again.”

Yes they can & this time who is going to be able to say they are wrong given that they can say they gave in to world pressure & got nothing in return. It’s just as likely.

YangYong at 08:43 PM JST - 7th January “it had been overwhelmingly inhabited by Arabs”

Putting the word “overwhelmingly” in the sentence doesn’t let you off mentioning that there were also Jews living there.

bimyou at 12:53 AM JST - 8th January “It would be funny though if Hamas fire rockets and hit the peace keepers.”

Hamas are so think they would probably kidnap the peace keepers.

Hamas are terrorists, that is the main point behind these rockets that seldom hit anything, they are terror weapons more so that killing weapons. They were also being used as an invitation to the Israelis to invade. A killing trap or a propaganda trap I’m not yet sure, but a trap. I suspect a propaganda trap given that Hamas has been hiding behind women & children. Dead children always get front page news coverage around the world. Channel 2 French TV even fell for showing dead children that were killed in an accidental explosion of a Hamas truck in 2005, which Hamas had told them the Israelis had just killed. So many seem to believe what they want to believe & nothing is going to change their thinking, if thinking is the right word, which I doubt.

Israel is a civilised country that is defending it self against savages & if those savages succeed against Israel you need ask yourselves who is next?

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killed nearly....200 civilians?

That's about how many Muslim Arab civilians are killed by trampling during the Haj nearly every year. And no one even cares about this senseless killing. Why no outrage by the first-world leftists? At least the current Israeli military compaign has a purpose of eliminating Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists from continually launching rockets at civilian targets in Israel.

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And no one even cares about this senseless killing.

Its not senseless killing. Those are accidental deaths, clearly, as they are mostly caused by untrained civilians stampeding and they chose to be there, clearly, because they traveled there.

No comparison to well trained soldiers shooting whatever moves in an area where the people not only live, but are not allowed to leave.

Believe me Helter, if you ever want to travel to a potentially fatal event, few here are going to complain.

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