Surprising objection to military operation in Gaza: Member of the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee MK Effie Eitam (National Union-National Religious Party), urged late Monday against launching a ground operation in the Gaza Strip. The reason: Due to his political bind, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is unfit to send soldiers into battle.
“I support a wide military operation in Gaza that would bring calm to the residents of the south,” Eitam said, adding that “a prime minister who has lost his defense minister’s faith, and who has been ideologically suspended by him, cannot make fateful decisions regarding Israel, including a military operation in Gaza and the country’s borders.”
MK Yoel Hasson (Kadima) said in response: “Eitam’s statement hit a new populism record. He who determinedly called for an urgent, swift operation in Gaza is changing his position only because of narrow political considerations that are not synonymous with Israel’s safety and the safety of its southern residents.”
Hasson, who is a close affiliate of prime minister Olmert, also said that “the government’s calculations in launching an operation that would restore calmness to the southern region must be separate from the political crisis.”