So anyway, I bin worse places for Christmas, let me tell ya:
Which isn't to suggest that Israelis are dumb for not spending Christmas in Marlborough, I just wanted to let everyone know I've been doing alright for myself the past week or so.
I gave this post a counter-title to Fairfacts Media's post immediately below, as I'd come to completely the opposite conclusion.
Let's unpack it a bit:
You squash a huge number of people into a small space and deny them basic civil liberties. Oddly enough, this "gift" as Fairfacts puts it, far from inspiring gratitude in the recipients, annoys them sufficiently for them to start up a cottage industry in building little rockets they can fire at you. You respond with a blockade, removing any ability they had to make a living, but this only annoys them further. More rockets. You respond with full-on military force against civilian targets. For some strange reason this also only annoys them further.
Your military responses fail, because the cottage-industry rocket guys look like everyone else in the place and generally get to snigger from safety as you blow up yet another crowd of innocent civilians and stir up further hatred against you. You hope that the blockade and the military attacks will turn the population against the loony creeps who are the nearest thing to a govt in the place, but as anyone with even an elementary understanding of human nature could have warned you, the locals blame no-one but you for it and start up even more little rocket workshops.
Then one day the loony creeps unilaterally declare a cease-fire. For a while, the only time rockets come over are when you assassinate one of the loony creeps. Things quieten down. Cool!
Only problem is, the cease-fire has an expiry date. What to do? What to do? Hmm, what are the options?
1. Come to a deal with the guys in the cage so that they get their own state and their own govt. That way, there's somebody officially running the place and responsible for it, so they can get on with earning themselves a living without having you blockading them, and if rockets are coming over you've got somebody to hold accountable.
2. Offer to extend the cease-fire, ie if it ain't broke don't fix it.
3. Let the cease-fire expire, maintain your blockade, wait for the rockets to start coming over again and then, pow! Huge military response! That'll show 'em! They'll see that they're getting killed because of the loony creeps who are the nearest thing to a govt, and overthrow them! Er, despite that approach having failed every other time you've tried it.
And the winner was... approach 3. It makes you wonder if the Israeli leadership can walk and chew gum at the same time. These ass-clowns are in charge of one of the most powerful military forces on the planet and have a shitload nukes at their disposal, and yet their actions lead to you wonder if they're able to tie their own shoes. Doesn't that worry you right-wingers even a little bit?
Update 31 Dec: obviously I don't really think the Israelis are stupid, I was just winding you up. Continuing to pursue a military strategy that's failed conclusively on previous occasions is a failure that's afflicted many otherwise-sensible govts over the centuries. They do have aims for this bombardment, it's just that the aims have nothing to do with pin-prick rocket attacks. Neve Gordon explains them well - if, like most of the commenters below, you're still labouring under the delusion this has something to do with preventing further rocket attacks, I suggest you read it.
Tobacco control measures
21 minutes ago