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Monday, July 03, 2006

Egyptian representatives in the Gaza Strip confirm they saw Shalit alive

The London-based Arabic newspaper al-Hayat reports this morning that Egyptian representatives in Gaza are confirming that they visited with kidnapped Israeli corporal Gilad Shalit and that he is alive. The report also confirmed previous 'Palestinian' announcements that Shalit was receiving medical care for wounds sustained in the attack on IDF forces during which he was abducted eight days ago: a 'Palestinian' physician visited him and treated three bullet wounds he sustained during the attack and subsequent abduction.

'Palestinian' sources are also claiming that the Egyptians have agreed to continue the negotiations for Shalit's release.

There are a couple of things I find troubling and puzzling about this report:

1. It does not state when the Egyptians saw Shalit alive.
2. If the report is true, why is it being leaked to al-Hayat instead of the Egyptians telling the Israelis directly and keeping it under wraps from anyone else?
3. If the source of the al-Hayat report is a 'Palestinian' source, why would the Egyptians confirm it?

It is clear to me that the intention of this report is to put pressure on Israel to agree to the 'prisoner exchange' demanded by the 'Palestinians.' The last report I heard has the 'Palestinians' demanding the release of all women 'prisoners' and all 'prisoners' under the age of 18 plus an additional 1000 prisoners. The Egyptian proposal - to which the 'Palestinians' have not responded - is that Israel commit to releasing an indeterminate number of prisoners over the course of several months. At least the Egyptians seem to understand that the Israelis cannot cave in to terror.

For those of you who have never followed one of these crises before, assuming that Israel does not agree to the 'exchange,' tomorrow morning Hamas will announce that they killed Shalit and then start negotiating over his body. The demands then will be the same or higher. Israel cannot allow itself to be dragged in to this, or it will be dealing with kidnappings on a daily or weekly basis.


At 12:13 PM, Blogger westbankmama said...

I think he is gone already. Lots of blah, blah, blah - but no video of him alive. I really hope they don't agree to let anyone out of jail...

At 5:29 PM, Blogger Carl in Jerusalem said...

I agree. I think he was gone last Sunday night.


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