Wednesday, August 13, 2003

Dammit. More suicide bombings, one by Hamas and one by al-Aqsa. As far as I know al-Aqsa isn't supporting the truce, so it isn't really a surprise, but the Hamas one certainly is, if only because they benefit far more from observing the truce than breaking it. Typically for this conflict, they claimed that the attack was to "avenge the killing of two of its members by Israeli troops last week", but that justification won't hold water, as the Israeli attacks were claimed to be in response to earlier attacks and any Israeli response will no doubt be in response to these attacks. Nobody is going to buy this justification, so why bother?

There is a bit of welcome news, though:

Still, an Israeli military source said there would be no large-scale retaliation and the extremists hinted that they would try not to escalate tensions.
Don't misunderstand; I support Israels right to defend itself, and believe that suicide bombings are both tactically and morally insupportable. They need to end, and this is one of the problems that needs to be solved in order to stop them. It become obvious to all parties: cloaking attacks in the rhetoric of retribution is as useless as attempts to "show them we're serious" or "send them a message". Self-defense may be part of the solution, but vengeance is forever part of the problem.

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