As part of the understandings of the truce between Hamas and Israel, there will be a prisoner exchange deal, according to a Tuesday report by Al-Quds TV, which is affiliated with Hamas. The final decision is expected today.
Over the past few months, as Hamas was negotiating an “understanding” (less than a ceasefire, more than open warfare) with Israel, it persisted in raising the issue of speeding up the exchange of prisoners between Israel and Hamas. That would be releasing all the terrorists who have been recaptured since the Shalit deal, in exchange for two mentally challenged Israeli civilians who wandered into the Gaza Strip and the bodies of two Israeli soldiers who have been kept in Gaza since the summer of 2014.
Apparently, the Israeli willingness to do anything in order to prevent an all out war with Hamas, including ignoring minor provocations like the occasional rocket and mortar fire into Israeli settlements – has increased the terror group’s appetite.
Leah Goldin, the mother of the late Hadar Goldin whose body is lingering in a Gaza morgue somewhere, told Channel 12 News that “if something had really happened, they would have informed us, it’s just a publicity stunt ahead of the elections.”
She did acknowledge quite bitterly that Prime Minister Netanyahu is not living up to his promise to the soldiers’ families to insist on the release of the bodies ahead of any deal with Hamas. It isn’t happening, she said.
Minister Yoav Galant (Likud) who is a member of Netanyahu’s security and foreign affairs cabinet, told Army Radio on Tuesday: “We always demand the return of Hadar Goldin and Oron Shaul, but it takes time, it’s complicated.”
Yesterday, Israeli media reported that some 1,400 Hamas terrorists are threatening a hunger strike in five security prisons starting next Sunday, just ahead of Tuesday’s election. The prisoners are threatening to stop drinking water on the first day of the strike. According to Arab sources, the hunger strike will be led by a team of 25 prisoners known as the “Warriors Battalion.” The elite team is expected to include Fatah prisoners as well, including Marwan Barghouti, who last hunger strike was videotaped munching through a stash of Israeli-made candy in his cell.
War is hell.
Needless to say, the Ministry of Public Security and the Israel Prison Service are alarmed by the consequences of the threatened strike and the need to recruit doctors and paramedics who would agree to force feed the hunger striking terrorists.
Just put them in a cell with Marwan Barghouti and give them the Pizza Hut app. We understand they deliver sodas, too.