Our Brilliant Leadership
A few days ago, Ehud Olmert said the following in response to palestinian claims that Israel and Hamas had reached an agreement:
“There is no agreement and there are no direct or indirect talks…The IDF enjoys complete freedom of action, we have not dictated any ceasefire. Egypt has no mandate to try and reach a truce agreement with Hamas.”
Today it has been revealed that Ehud Olmert was lying through his teeth, with news that Israel and Hamas have worked out a “lull agreement.”
Despite earlier denials by top officials in Jerusalem, a senior defense official has confirmed Tuesday that an agreement on a lull in Gaza Strip fighting has been worked out.
In a conversation with French news agency AFP, the security official said that an agreement that would see an end to Israeli military operations in the Strip in exchange for an end to rocket attacks on Israel has been finalized via Egyptian mediation efforts.
According to the defense source, who asked to remain anonymous, Egypt played an active role in reaching the agreement in the aims of bringing about a truce that would see the Israeli “siege” on Gaza lifted. The official added that Israel is currently engaged in contacts with Egypt on doubling the number of Egyptian soldiers deployed on the Gaza border to 1,500.
Egypt pledges to fight arms smuggling
The lull agreement reached between Israel and Hamas is subject to an Egyptian pledge to do everything in its power to prevent arms smuggling into the Gaza Strip, the defense official noted.
In addition, according to the report, Israel pledged to refrain from massive offensive operations but is reserving the right to carry out attacks on specific targets should the need arise.
Earlier Tuesday, London-based Arabic-language newspaper al-Quds Al-Arabi reported that senior Defense Ministry official Amos Gilad has relayed to Egypt Israel’s request for a month-long unofficial ceasefire with Hamas in Gaza.
The latest report joins earlier reports from the Arab world that confirmed Israeli-Palestinian understandings on a lull agreement. Last week, Ynet also reported that such agreement has been worked out, despite official denials.
I can imagine Olmert’s response:
“I did not lie. I said there is no ceasefire. I did not say there is no lull agreement.”
(I guess it could be worse. Quietness plan anyone?)
So let’s get this straight. Israel stops acting against Hamas for a period of time so as to allow Hamas to rearm and recover from Israel’s recent operation in Gaza, while placing faith in Egypt who allowed Hamas terrorists to bring arms into Gaza in the first place.
Now I know why it’s called a lull agreement – we lull Hamas into a false sense of security by making them think we are morons.
By the way, the Israeli government know Hamas will be rearming. Yesterday (while Olmert was still denying a ceasefire agreement), I heard Israeli Government spokesperson Mark Regev say that there was relative calm not because of such an agreement but because Hamas wants a timeout to rearm.
In other words, even though Israel know Hamas will be rearming and then attacking us ferociously again, we will allow them to do it.
Please enlighten me if I am missing something.
Previously: How Not To Negotiate