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Thursday, May 31, 2007

Um, guys... I was kidding!

Apparently, members of 'The Quartet' * didn't read my 'Ambiguity Alert' post all the way to the end where I indicated (for the benefit of the sarcasm-challenged) that I was only kidding.

I say this because, after their most recent meeting, they came out with the following incredible statements (As reported by The Jerusalem Post):

"Israel must exercise restraint during its military operations in order to avoid civilian casualties"

Um, like maybe the Palestinians should be requested to use restraint in their ongoing unprovoked military operations against Israeli civilians.  I'm just sayin'.

"[Israel] must not react in a way that would harm civilians or cause "damage to civilian infrastructure."  "

OK, but what about the nagging problem that the Palestinians refuse to dress their combatants in uniforms or insignia (as required by the Geneva Convention) or designate anything as a military target installation?  Not only that, but almost all of their munitions factories, weapons warehouses and and 'barracks' are deliberately placed within densely populated civilian areas.  Why does Israel always have to be the one fighting according to 'Marquess of Queensberry rules' while the other guys get to use guns and knives?

"The Quartet raised concerns over the incarceration of Palestinian Authority (PA)government officials and called for them to be released by Israel."

Make up your minds!  You don't want us firing artillery rounds into apartment buildings in Gaza and you won't let us attack the perps... so what's left?  Arrest the guys calling the shots, right?  Seems perfectly logical to me... but then again what do I know?  I only did two years in Hebrew University's department of International Relations before deciding it was too similar to 'Chelm' and opted to do an English Lit degree instead.

"[they recommended] the resumption of transfers of tax funds by Israel on behalf of the PA, [saying it] would have a significant impact on the Palestinian economy. "

Uh huh... specifically the portion of the Palestinian economy that goes towards funding the guys launching rockets into Israel several times a day.  What the hell are these guys thinking???

"The Quartet expressed concern over the deterioration of a cease-fire between Hamas and Fatah members in the Gaza Strip and called for an immediate stop to factional fighting."

Helloooo, can you say 'exceeding the scope of your mandate'?  The Quartet is supposed to be mediating the dispute between Israel and the Palestinians... not the dispute between the Palestinians and the Palestinians!  Sheesh, the only thing Israel has going for it these days is the fact that these dirt-bags seem more interested in killing each other than going after us.  I say don't mess with a good thing!

"The Quartet also called for an immediate release of kidnapped soldier Gilad Schalit."

Oh jeez, thanks a whole hellavalot for remembering that before you adjourned for coffee and donuts.    How about setting your sights just a little lower... like demanding a humanitarian visit to Israel's captive soldiers by the International Red Cross (again, something required by the Geneva Convention) or simply a 'sign of life' (something required under the heading 'basic human decency')? 

One has to wonder about the objectivity of this so-called neutral body of mediators called 'The quartet' when they make absolutely no demands of the aggressor and place the entire burden of 'fighting fair' on those being attacked.

* 'The Quartet' is the collective title for the four actors involved in meditating peace negotiations between the Israelis and the Palestinians: The United States, the European Union, the United Nations, and Russia.  Source

Posted by David Bogner on May 31, 2007 | Permalink

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Um, isn't "make absolutely no demands of the aggressor" a wee bit of an exaggeration? The press statement says:
The Quartet strongly condemned the continued firing of Qassam rockets into Southern Israel as well as the buildup of arms by Hamas and other terrorist groups in Gaza.

What I don't get is why the Quartet seems to be six people.

Posted by: Simon | May 31, 2007 2:31:31 PM

Okay. Lovely rant.

Perhaps you would care to look at a rant of mine wich touches on some of the points you made?

See here:
http://atthebackofthehill.blogspot.com/2006/10/good-rant.html

I note that in the interim little has changed.

Posted by: Back of the Hill | Jun 1, 2007 1:16:05 AM

"The Quartet practiced in the park
And we sang dirges in the dark."

'Nuff said.

Posted by: psachya | Jun 1, 2007 3:54:51 AM

Simon- how is a condemnation a demand?

Posted by: tnspr569 | Jun 1, 2007 11:51:20 AM

When it's my turn to vote for the USA, I'm going to abolish all silly statements like the above referenced.

I will say, "DEFEND YOURSELVES."

I'll just wait right here, until they notify me that it's my turn...

Posted by: wrymouth | Jun 1, 2007 5:22:07 PM

Um, isn't "make absolutely no demands of the aggressor" a wee bit of an exaggeration?

As well as "You don't want us firing artillery rounds into apartment buildings in Gaza and you won't let us attack the perps... so what's left?" They're obviously endorsing attacks on rocket crews and their bosses, just opposing 1) dropping artillery fire into a random house yet again and 2) arresting whatever Hamas figures are easiest to find. You can quibble with the latter, at least, but they're supporting the current IDF actions.

Anyway, the reward for not being like Hamas is not being like Hamas. Not that eventually people pat you and the back and say "OK, now you can go launch rockets at their schools!"

Posted by: JSinger | Jun 1, 2007 6:24:16 PM

Simon... By 'Demand' I think it is pretty clear that I mean some sort of binding order that the recipient can reasonably be enforced (or coerced) to follow. In the case of Israel there is our partial dependence on foreign military aid and the U.S>'s continued patronage in various international agencies. The Palestinians apparently feel they have nothing to lose by defying these 'demands' so they are really more like 'requests' or 'suggestions'. Not helpful.

Back of the Hill... Strong work. I would hold your rants up against all comers! :-)

psachya... It's always about music with you. :-)

tnspr569... Good point.

wrymouth... Don't hold your breath. :-)

JSinger... I'll forgo that particular reward if it means not being around at the end of the day to collect my prize. Better to have dirty hands and still be alive.

Posted by: treppenwitz | Jun 3, 2007 9:09:45 AM

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