Olmert Orders Cabinet Not to Mention Truce

As Israel Ratchets Up Pro-War PR, Any Talk of Renewed Calm is Forbidden

by Jason Ditz, December 29, 2008

As top Israeli officials met to discuss the ongoing military offensive against the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert issued a rather strange order to his cabinet. “We no longer talk about an exit policy,” Olmert declared as he reported to the meeting that Israel has rejected an attempt by Senegal to negotiate a ceasefire.

Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni also ruled out the ceasefire, promising the Israeli attacks will continue until they “bring about a change in the equation.” During an interview on al-Jazeera television, Livni also lashed out at that network for broadcasting images of the carnage in the strip, warning that “you’re not helping” the cause of peace.

And as the Foreign Ministry struggles with its international PR blitz to shore up global support for the continued strikes, they have now netted the support of opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu, who announced that while he will continue to condemn the government for not attacking Gaza sooner, he will back the attacks now.

Netanyahu, a long time advocate of invading the Gaza Strip, also clashed bitterly with Arab MPs today after he promised to “act with an iron fist” against the “intolerable” opponents of the war.

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