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"Hamas Abandons Truce After Israeli Strike"
"Hamas Abandons Truce After Israeli Strike" read the Yahoo headline on the AP story. A reasonable reaction. Hamas had just been pushed too far. They send out a holy man to blow up a bus, and Israel has the temerity to kill some architects of the plot. You can understand Hamas' position: How can you talk to such hotheads? How do you deal with people who think dead Jews count?

You can also understand the anger of the Palestinian Authority, which insisted it was seconds away from a big crackdown when the Israelis responded. They had their boots laced up, the uniforms pressed to a sharp crease, the guns all polished, the holsters oiled. They had the special, used-only-once citation book in the proper pocket with brand-new pens so they wouldn't run out of ink while writing up a ticket for operating a bomb factory. (It's a misdemeanor.) They were actually in a runner's crouch, ready to bolt out the door and start arresting people!

Then came the word that the Israelis had taken out some Hamas leaders -- and well, it just ruined the mood. C'mon, guys. No fair. We were going to take them out. If you're going to be like that, fine. We won't arrest anyone.

But they did shut down a few tunnels used to smuggle stuff into Gaza. It was one of these tunnels, incidentally, that some say the sainted Rachel Corrie was trying to protect when she was accidentally bulldozed. From the press reports, we seem to believe she was protesting the destruction of an orphanage or a Palestinian branch of the Fluffy Bunny Friendship Society, but no.

Odd how no one protested when the PA cracked down on one of these booty holes.

 France has weighed in, and cautioned us crude rude cowboys against judging the men who blow up babies taking the bus back from the synagogue.

Here's Jacques Chirac's diplomatic adviser, Maurice Gourdault-Montagne, speaking to Israel's ambassador to France: "If we find that Hamas and Islamic Jihad are indeed terror groups opposed to peace, we may have to change the EU's stand." Granted, he was referring to the groups' political wings, not the members who wire up their pectorals to explosives. But who winks at that distinction anymore?

One suspects that if Gourdault-Montagne defined the detonation of 17 buses as proof that Hamas was evil, and Hamas blew up 16, he would praise their restraint and moderation.

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