The kidnappers holding 19-year-old Cpl. Gilad Shalit have moved the goalposts significantly. The demands have now changed from releasing women and those under 18 from Israeli prisons, to releasing 1,000 Arab prisoners and ending its offensive in Gaza as ransom for Shalit's safe return to Israel. This radical change underscores how inappropriate it would be for Israel to negotiate with terrorists.
The document titled "Military Statement Number Two", which was faxed to news agencies, did not specify whether the demands were for the release of Shalit. But a spokesman for Hamas said they were conditions for freeing Shalit.
As we said within the last hour, Hamas is emboldened. They perceive themselves to be very powerful, and are receiveing significant encouragement and support from Hezbollah leaders in Lebanon.
Prior to the new ransom, the IAF fired a missile at a training camp of the Abu Rish Brigades, an armed group affiliated with Fatah. According to reports, the camp is located next to the former settlement of Morag in central Gaza. Additionally, Palestinian sources in Gaza reported that the IAF fired two missiles at a camp belonging to Hamas in the Gaza City neighborhood of Zaitun. There were no reports of injuries during either air strike. To date, there has not been a single Palestinian civilian killed as a result of Operation Summer Rain. If that's not a humanitarian operation, we don't know what is.