Israeli human rights groups and leading newspaper commentators this week harshly criticized the government of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert for agreeing to a ceasefire with Hamas and offering sweeping security concessions in Judea and Samaria, all while the Palestinians continue to plan an execute attacks against Israeli Jews.
Writing in Israel's largest daily newspaper, Yediot Ahronot, columnist Yaron London lamented that by agreeing to an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire with Hamas, the government had essentially "made it clear to the fundamentalist terrorist movement that persistence and murder pay."
Columnist Amos Gilboa angrily noted in the Ma'ariv daily newspaper that Israeli leaders "are ready to sacrifice tomorrow for now," while Arab leaders "are prepared to sacrifice now for tomorrow."
Meanwhile, the Almagor Terror Victims Association blasted the government for continuing to remove defensive roadblocks in Judea and Samaria. Almagor director Meir Indor told Israel National News that it was the removal of key roadblocks around the de facto Palestinian capital of Ramallah that had made possible a weekend attack in which Palestinian gunmen wounded three young Jewish hikers, one of them seriously.
"The hikers who were seriously injured have paid the price for this scandalous decision, one that was made just to be able to present a series of gestures to the [Palestinian Authority]," said Indor.
Israel agreed to begin removing the roadblocks under heavy pressure from US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who visited the region twice over the past month. According to an Israeli army press release, ten more roadblocks will be removed this week.