Sunday, June 29, 2008

Endangering Gilad Shalit

Israel has decided to release several Lebanese prisoners in exchange for two dead bodies of the Israeli soldiers Eldad Regev and Ehud Goldwasser, abducted by Hezbollah in 2006. This decision makes the release of Gilad Shalit less likely to come to fruition soon. Remember, it is known that Shalit, the soldier being held by a faction of Hamas in Gaza, is alive. This means he's much more important than the dead bodies in Lebanon.

The verbal diarrhea of our stupid leaders is doing as much, if not more, damage as the deal with Hezbollah. IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi and Defense Minister Ehud Barak, for example, have both said that soldiers will be less willing to serve if Israel doesn't "do everything" to release them if they are captured by the enemy.

They're addressing their words to Israeli soldiers, but also our enemies hear them. Hamas now knows it can inflate its demands in the Shalit deal, which means it will take longer for a deal to be reached (if ever). It also encourages more kidnappings.

Numerically, it might seem like this deal is better than the deal Ariel Sharon reached in 2004 since we're releasing about 75 times less prisoners this time. The truth is that because of the fact that Gilad Shalit is still being held prisoner this deal is much more dangerous that the previous one. A deal over the live soldier should have been reached before the deal over the dead ones.

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