Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Israel's decision to launch its devastating attack on Gaza on a Saturday was a "stroke of brilliance", the country's biggest selling paper Yediot Aharonot crowed: "the element of surprise increased the number of people who were killed". The daily Ma'ariv agreed: "We left them in shock and awe"
Ran HaCohen reports some of the same cheery elan:
Yediot Ahronoth had six columnists on its front page and several more inside. The war's cheerleaders. Nahum Barnea, an over-appreciated "critical" journalist, expressed his view about the bloodbath rather succinctly: "better late than never." Dov Weissglass, "closely linked to the peace process" as Wikipedia puts it, was similarly outspoken: his column was called "Do Not Stop," with an exclamation mark to make things clear. "It should be just the beginning," he advises to the very government that has just vowed "it's just the beginning."
Well, apparently, "the element of surprise" was amplified by the fact that Israel attacked during a 48-hour truce brokered with Hamas. There is a bit of evil, Machiavellan genius in this: break one truce, blame the other side for breaking it, then promise to honour another truce, then use the interval provided to launch a devastating series of attacks - and then blame the other side for having brought it on themselves with some feeble rocket fire. Olmert now says he won't even talk about a ceasefire, and intends to pursue Hamas with an "iron fist". And when he's done pulverising Gaza, he will explain, poker-faced, that he regrets he has no partner for peace.