UK Supports IDF Response to Hamas Rockets
It seems that the world is looking at Israel a with kinder eyes these days. Britain's Minister of State for the Middle East, Kim Howells had strong words of support for Israel's response to the rain of Kassam rockets that Hamas let loose upon Israel this past week. He said that Israel's response was measured and appropriate. He also called on the PA to do more to end the terrorists attacks against Israel and hinted that if more is not done, financial aid maybe cut.
"The Palestinians are receiving more aid per capita than any other people on the face of the earth, and we want to see some proper response," Howells said, hinting at a decrease of economic aid if the Palestinians don't fight terror.
"I thought the retaliation this week was proportionate," said Howells about the IDF operations. "The [Palestinian] attack was a very serious one, it could have killed a lot of people. It's a miracle really there weren't more casualties."
"I think there is no excuse now," he added. "Gaza is now in the hands of the Palestinian Authority, and there are no Israeli troops there. One hopes that where tough decisions have to be made, Abu Mazen [PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas] and the PA will make them."
"We are waiting with bated breath for a response from the PA," said Howells, "and it has to be a signal that it is capable of good governance. This is not a bottomless pit that this money is coming from." Jerusalem Post
An aide had to hand him a note to prompt him about the settlements in the West Bank.
Howells said there was "incredible momentum now" and "it would be great if we had some very positive signs that Sharon understands the significance in world opinion of containing the expansion of the settlements. We are watching that very carefully."
Asked whether settlement expansion meant stopping building inside the settlements, or just putting an end to expanding them outward, Howells replied, "It means moving out, and taking by whatever means more Palestinian territory." As to Britain's position on whether building could continue inside the construction lines of existing settlements, as Israel argues, he said, "I don't know enough about that, honestly. The worry in Britain is about whether or not what emerges in the West Bank together with Gaza will be able to constitute a viable state. That's the main area of concern."
I like the quote he made about financial aid to the PA not being a bottomless pit and implying that the continuance of such aid may depend on the PA reining in the terrorist groups. It's about time. The Palestinians try to portray themselves as the victims of the world and yet they have been given more money then any other group. And what do they have to show for it? Nothing, except PA officials and leaders like Arafat who have siphoned off money and put it into foreign bank accounts while doing nothing to improve the lives of people they are supposed to help. The Palestinian people have been used since 1948 by Arab countries and their leaders and have gained nothing in their hatred of Israel and the West. All they have to show for it is a culture of death and hate.
Perhaps they are beginning to see that for themselves since Hamas only garnered 24% of the vote in elections held this week. However, Fatah received 54% and they are only marginally better than Hamas. Read more about the elections.
It is nice once to see that the some are beginning to say that Israel has a right to defend her citizens. Perhaps I was wrong about the disengagement from Gaza. For even though Israel rightfully won the territory from Egypt, the international view(which was very wrong) said Israel was there illegally. Israel has gained so much since the disengagement from Gaza. The West Bank settlements are a different issue. Perhaps Jordan could be persuaded to give territory to the Palestinians since so many of them still live in refugee camps. The refugee camps are for another post and are another example of Arab countries using the Palestinians as a screen to cover their own shortcomings.
So, Israel rejoice. For once the world is on your side and is telling the PA to stop the terrorist attacks or else the deep pockets of aid may end.