DEBKAfile‘s Washington source report that in a telephone conversation with prime minister Ehud Olmert, US president George W. Bush okayed Israeli air, sea and ground operations against Hamas in the Gaza Strip. He promised the US would veto a resolution condemning Israel at the UN Security Council meeting next Monday. Early Saturday morning, Jan. 3, Day 8 of Israel’s Gaza operation, US and British media described the Israeli invasion as hours away.
In his weekly radio address – brought forward by a day, the US president spoke with exceptional firmness: “Another one-way ceasefire that leads to rocket attacks on Israel is not acceptable,” he said. “This recent outburst of violence was instigated by Hamas – a Palestinian terrorist group supported by Iran and Syria that calls for Israel’s destruction.”
He noted that “Hamas took over the Gaza Strip in a coup and routinely violated an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire…” and went on to define the exit point for Israel’s military operation:
“Promises from Hamas will not suffice,” he said. There must be “monitoring mechanisms in place to help ensure that smuggling of weapons to terrorist groups in Gaza comes to an end.”