Editorials from the Hebrew Press




Yediot Aharonot opines that „If Netanyahu continues the freeze; they will claim that he has no character – he gave into American pressure.  If he resumes construction; they will claim that he has no character – just to prove that he has character he will enter a damaging confrontation with the American administration and will break off the talks that he so badly wanted.  According to Netanyahu’s remarks yesterday, it seems that he has chosen to make the demand to recognize Israel as the Jewish state into the issue, and thus put Abu Mazen in a corner.  Abu Mazen will say the freeze.  Netanyahu will say recognition.  Both will refuse and thus will be created a balance of blame.”
Ma’ariv professes that „The gas underneath the Mediterranean Sea is part of our natural resources.  The state must safeguard the public and raise the rate of royalties to 50%.  The tycoons will still earn more than enough.”
Yisrael Hayom believes that „There is no chance to realize an accord with the Palestinians.”  The author notes that Prime Minister Netanyahu has emphasized that Israel would be willing to compromise in all areas, accept those that affect security, while Mahmoud Abbas has already answered stubbornly that Palestinian Authority will refuse to consider any compromise.”  The author suggests „Trying to reach a temporary arrangement and to continue improving Palestinian living conditions until the time when there will emerge leaders among them who are willing to accept coexistence with us and recognize Israel as the state of the Jewish People.”
The Jerusalem Post comments that „It is Hamas’s destructive policies, such as the current attempt to escalate the conflict with Israel, that are the source of Gaza residents’ miseries,” and points out that „Israel’s obligation, like that of any other democratic sovereign state, is to assure the security and well-being of its citizens.” The editor states that „In the latest escalation, the IDF has so far limited itself to retaliatory air strikes against specific targets, such as the underground tunnels used for arms smuggling or known Hamas strongholds. But with a moral obligation to defend his citizens, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu will be unable to exercise restraint for long, especially if, heaven forbid, further fire from Gaza causes greater injury,” and cautions that „Before Israel is forced to resort to a military operation similar to Cast Lead, the international community must pressure Hamas into desisting from terror and using its energies, instead, to care for the welfare of Gaza’s 1.5 million residents.”
Haaretz eulogizes Israel Tal, the celebrated IDF general who was laid to rest yesterday, and discusses his legacy: the definition of what is worth fighting for, killing for and dying for. The editor states that „Tal opposed unnecessary conquests, settlements, wars of choice and delusions of expanding the Israeli empire without paying the cost in blood and eternal strife,” and adds: „In death, Tal has been the subject of genuine affection and admiration. Those who seek to honor his legacy must act in its true spirit.”