Yoel Marcus of Ha’aretz observes the following about Abu Mazen:
1. The prime minister’s decision to give Abu Mazen the cold shoulder until the terror stops is perfectly justified. To criticize Sharon for not giving Abu Mazen 100 days of grace is ridiculous. Abu Mazen knows who’s doing the shooting and how to handle the operators who send out suicide bombers.
2. Abu Mazen denounced the attacks, but like his predecessor he rolled his eyes heavenward, cleverly disguising a wink to the dearly departed. Israelis are tired of this wise guy stuff.
3. What really makes me blow my top is when the intellectuals and peaceniks huddle around Abu Mazen and say that if we want quiet, we have to pay for it with gestures, like a prisoner release, to boost his image among the Palestinians. Gestures? What gestures? We don’t owe this guy a thing. The burden of proof that something has changed in the Palestinian world is on Abu Mazen.
4. We cannot sit back and resign ourselves to artillery fire on civilian settlements in Israeli territory. Every day, towns like Sderot are sentenced to a game of chance. An entire population – men and women, children and elderly – holds its breath, waiting to see if and when a mortar will fall, who will be hit, and who will be the next to die. No country in the world would be willing to endure this kind of daily bombardment of its cities.