A Daily Analysis
By Marc Schulman
March 3, 2008 Hamas Declares Victory
In a planned move, Israeli forces pulled out of Gaza today. Hamas,through its spokesman Machmoud Azar who came out of hiding, announced a major victory and claimed to have beaten Israel. They have declared it the ëFive Day War, and victory celebrations were held in Syria and Lebanon. In his victory speech, Azar thanked Al Jazeerah for its help in the war. He claimed that god was protected Hamas.
The attempt to claim a victory for what clearly is not follows a longline of similar actions. The Arabs, and particularly the Palestinians,have 90 years of interpreting history often to what they wish was the situation as opposed to what really is. This has often resulted in thePalestinians making disastrous decisions for their future. This time around instead of deciding to build a model society out of Gaza whenIsrael withdrew, they decided to use it as a new launching ground for the ìarmed struggleî
Another Grad hit Ashkelon today, although the number of missile attacks decreased. The hope is that this round is over. It is clear that if Israel kills a high ranking member of Hamas, they will attack Ashkelon.They did not get the support they were hoping for despite the help o fAl Jazeerah from the Arab world at large, and the number of casualties that they suffered was much higher than they were expecting,
Meanwhile, Israel is still trying to work out a coherent strategy. Minister of Defense Barak has asked for a legal opinion on whether or not it is ok to fire artillery at the source of Qassam fire, even it kills civilians. Minister Haim Ramon was interviewed on London and Kirshenbaum tonight and he strongly supported the plan, claiming that if we give fair warning, it was legal and might end the fire. Both London and Kirshenbaum were rather incredulous, wondering what would happen when the first artillery round was misfired- something that happens all too often.