Czech, Gaza, & Israel

Vaclav Klaus President of the Czech Republic and as of 01/01/09 the New EU President


The following news item was of interest:

Czech Republic defends Israel’s strikes
WELT, Germany – Dec 30, 2008

Czech Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg said Tuesday that he supported Israel’s management of its conflict with Hamas, saying that it had a right to defend itself. The Czech Republic is set to take over the rotation presidency of the European Union from France on January 1.

The Czech Republic, which takes over the European Union’s presidency on Jan. 1, defended Israel’s strikes against Hamas on Tuesday.

“Let us realise one thing: Hamas increased steeply the number of rockets fired at Israel since the ceasefire ended on Dec. 19. That is not acceptable any more,” Czech Foreign Minister Schwarzenberg told daily Mlada Fronta Dnes in an interview.

The EU has called for a ceasefire to end the violence that has killed almost 350 Palestinians. Czech Foreign Minister Karel C said Israel had the right to defend itself.

France, which will hand over the EU’s rotating presidency to Prague, has condemned Israel’s strikes and the rocket attacks from Hamas militants and called for both to stop immediately…

Schwarzenberg, a staunch ally of Washington, said Hamas had excluded itself from serious political debate due to its rocket attacks on Israel. He also indirectly blamed the group for the growing death toll, saying it put its bases and gun warehouses in densely populated areas.

“Why am I one of the few that have expressed understanding for Israel? … I am enjoying the luxury of telling the truth,“ Schwarzenberg told the daily.

He said under the Czech EU presidency he would try to push through a policy that would lead to peace, saying “I would be very happy if it helped the Palestinians“.

He said he would not support either side in the conflict but rather work as a mediator. The paper cited his office as saying he would take part in an extraordinary of EU foreign ministers in Paris on Tuesday evening to discuss the attacks.

Hamas won elections in Gaza in 2006 and then took over the coastal strip in 2007 after routing rival Fatah forces loyal to President Mahmoud Abbas.

Apparently the Czech Republic is starting to decide that it can have a bit more influence in the international area.

But what is perhaps of more prophetic interest is that the idea of a European mediator seems to be coming up.  The Bible shows that there will be some type of seven-year peace deal that a leader from the area once dominated by the Romans (cf. Daniel 9:26-27) will be made, and then broken in the midst of it.

Could 2009 be the year for this deal?

To find out, we will need to heed Jesus’ admonitions and “watch” (Matthew 24:42; 25:13; Mark 13:33-37; Luke 21:36).

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