Israel is continuing its airstrikes against Hamas, so Hamas' latest statements are that they intend to capture more IDF soldiers to be used as pawns to demand the release of Palestinian terrorists from Israeli jails.
Gilad Shalit remains in Hamas clutches, and it's been more than 2.5 years since he was captured. I still don't hear demands on Hamas to release Shalit as a humanitarian gesture. Perhaps the real reason for the silence on that front is the fact that everyone recognizes that Hamas is incapable of engaging in humanitarian actions. Israel has repeatedly engaged in prisoner releases, and Israel has suffered for it - as some of those released have gone back to kill again. It's a self-destructive policy and it undermines Israel's national security.
The diplomats continue to engage in pseudoreality, hoping to get a sustainable truce. That includes US Secretary of State Condi Rice. There is no such thing. Hamas violated the last truce within five days - it was incapable of going more than a few days without the urge to kill Israelis. Hamas has no intention of ever engaging in a sustainable truce - a real genuine one that involves Hamas laying down its arms; it would go against their religious and ideological beliefs.
The UN continues to worry more about what Israel might do to Gaza than to what Hamas has done to Israel over the years. Years of rocket attacks didn't spur much of a response from the UN, but the threat that Israel might go after Hamas in a ground operation has gotten the UN into a frenzy.
It really comes as no surprise that a majority of Democrats and leftists are against Israel's ability to defend itself from terror attacks. These are the same people who have hamstrung America's ability to protect itself and have engaged in lawfare that benefits no one but terrorists captured on battlefields around the world. These are the same people who extend Geneva Convention protections to a class of people specifically excluded from such protections.
Terrorists don't believe in human rights or the Geneva Convention. They aren't reading Miranda rights to those they kidnap - and then truly torture and brutally murder. Hamas celebrates the brutal murders of Israelis and aspires to so much more blood running - so long as it's Israelis who die. Then again, they don't mind if Palestinians die in huge numbers either, since the media backlash against Israel is useful for the terrorists as well.
And time and time again the media complies. Hamas uses the dead as props. Let's just ignore how and why that came to pass. Terrorists hiding behind women and children, indoctrinating children into a nihilistic and genocidal world where Israel cannot be allowed to exist. Hamas, and the other Islamic terror groups think nothing of turning children into suicide bombers. They glorify, extol, and honor terrorists who kill Jews.
Hamas teaches hatred and venom. The idea that there is a path other than terrorism doesn't even enter their consciousness. Israel's destruction is the only priority.
Of course, that hatred and venom is shared by more than just Hamas. Their supporters around the world - including many Muslims call for jihad as well. That's holy war of a non-spiritual nature to kill the infidels and nonbelievers.
Still more kassams have been fired into Israel by Hamas, and the targets remain women and children. Hamas knows that Israeli military forces are nearby, and yet they're still targeting Sderot, Ashdod, and beyond. This isn't about attacking Israel's military, but to kill civilians.
Israel responded by taking out another major Hamas terrorist.
If Hamas had chemical, biological, or even nuclear weapons, they would have used them against Israel - not only to kill as many Jews as possible, but to provoke a regional conflict since Hamas could procure such weapons from only a few places - namely Iran or Syria.
While Palestinians throw Molotov cocktails at Israeli hospitals, Israeli doctors are busy treating Gazans who were injured in the fight at those same hospitals. Palestinians receiving medical care for their injuries try to injure the same doctors who are trying to treat them.
Arabs march in Israel to protest Israel's defense against the rocket attacks, but refuse to speak out against the incessant terrorist attacks from their brothers and sisters in Gaza.
Meanwhile, Fatah's Mahmoud Abbas is set to release Hamas thugs from his jails. That's a partner in peace? These are terrorists helping fellow terrorists. Fatah can be trusted no more than Hamas can.
The ground campaign has begun, and I wish the IDF good hunting. The second phase of Operation Cast Lead has begun. The Israelis are going to take plenty of flak from the usual suspects, whether it's the insanely biased media that ignores kassam attacks on Israel, but focuses intently on Israel's response or the Islamists around the world that call for Israel's destruction at the drop of a hat and need no pretext to do so.
It's interesting that the Israelis have allowed a foreign reporter working for Iranian press to cover the story from inside Israel. The authorities are looking for him now, because he leaked details prior to the official kickoff announcement as permitted by the military establishment. In other words, this journalist was hoping to give Hamas and their terror masters a hint at the oncoming attacks.
The jihadis have found themselves face to face with Israeli forces on the ground in Northern Gaza. Ynet reports that multiple terrorists have been wounded as the IDF has taken hold of areas from which Hamas has regularly fired kassams towards Israel.
Army officials confirmed that dozens of terrorists were hurt in clashes with IDF ground troops, some of them were killed. In several cases, armed terrorists approached Israeli forces and were shot at by ground troops and IDF gunships. There are no reports of Israeli casualties at this time.At least 20 terrorists have been killed. Hamas has reported that they've killed Israeli soldiers. Hamas is also attempting to track down those they consider are collaborators and are killing and maiming them. Many are affiliated with Fatah.
Large IDF ground forces, including Armored and Engineering corps units, as well as infantry soldiers are currently operating in the Beit Lahiya and Beit Hanoun areas, from which rockets have been launched toward Israel.
The army is preparing to enter the third phase of the operation, which is expected to be much broader in scope. In this framework tens of thousands of reserve soldiers will be pouring into training bases in north and south Israel during the early hours of Sunday morning.
Even now, the rockets continue hitting Israel and injuring Israelis. We can expect the attacks to continue, and perhaps intensify as Hamas tries to fire off what it has left before Israel destroys them in place. Meanwhile, Israel has to watch that Hizbullah doesn't attempt to open a second front. Israel faced just that situation during the Hizbullah war in 2006 as Hamas began launching barrages to take the heat off Hizbullah.
The UN does what it always does - ignore that Hamas is a terrorist group dedicated to Israel's destruction and instead focuses on Israel's sovereign right to defend itself and finds fault with that.
The Spanish Foreign Ministry chooses terrorists over Israel. Nice. Stay classy Spain. The Islamists will destroy you last, or so you think.