Some Israeli cabinet ministers insist that Israel reoccupies the border
between the Gaza Strip and Egypt in order to prevent more weapons
smuggling and digging of tunnels. According to the ministers, a military operation must be initiated immediately.


Eli Yishai, the Israeli industry and trade minister and Labor party member, with the support of two other ministers and a senior military commander, said, “"Action must be taken without hesitation. Any hesitation is dangerous and we must act immediately.”

Yom-Tov Samia, the deputy chief of the Southern Command, agreed that the operation must take place soon. He commented on Israel’s Army Radio, "The objective would be to prevent Hamas from replicating what happened with Hezbollah in Lebanon.” Samia added that the buffer zone should be expanded, a move which would most likely result in the destruction of more Palestinian homes.

Palestinian government spokesman, Ghazi Hamad responded to these comments and said that taking control of the border is only an excuse for Israel’s reoccupation of Gaza. He said: "The call to retake the border is a serious escalation and an incitement for more Israeli aggression."

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is considering a move to reoccupy the Gaza-Egypt border in order to prevent the smuggling of what Israel maintains to be tons munitions as well as advanced shoulder-fired missiles. He plans on discussing it with senior ministers on Tuesday or Wednesday, but realizes he must consult with Egypt before taking any significant action, according to political sources.

The border, also known as the Philadelphi corridor, has been administered by EU monitors since the army left in 2005. Israel continued to invade the Gaza Strip, but recently stepped up its operations after resistance fighters captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit in June. Instead of rescuing Shalit, soldiers have killed over 300 Palestinian civilians since June 25th.

Sourced from Al-Jazeera