Noam Shalit stands in front of a sign showing the number of days that his son, Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, has been in captivity, at a protest tent. Shalit was abducted by Palestinian gunmen from Gaza during a cross-border raid in June 2006
Gilad Shalit Media Event -Yisrael Ne'eman
Over the past week there was non-stop media coverage [in Israel] of vigils and protests demanding that the Israeli government make the prisoner swap necessary to ensure the release of captured soldier Gilad Shalit who has now spent over 1000 days as a Hamas prisoner.
The Olmert cabinet is negotiating his release through Egyptian mediators but is not willing to cut a deal involving the return of certain Hamas murderers convicted of involvement in bombings which killed and injured thousands of Israelis. Approximately half of all convicted terrorists return to terrorism once freed. Yet you would barely know this from engaging the Israeli media.
Night after night Shalit's release was the main story with the Israeli government standing accused of having abandoned him. Family, friends and supporters of his freedom are constantly interviewed.
[T]hose who claim the future blood of innocent [Israelis] is far too high a price [to pay], many of whom are relatives of terror victims, are barely heard.
Even when trying to "balance" the story the [press] plays on emotions. "What would you do if he was your son?"
They do not ask the Shalit advocates "How many blood thirsty terrorists would you release” and “will you take full responsibility for all of their terror acts in the future?"
All of these protests and vigils, while being of emotional comfort for the Shalit family, have only raised the price of Gilad's release, adding more murderers to the list of Hamas terrorists to be freed. Islamists everywhere are now further encouraged to abduct or capture Israelis and/or westerners and in particular soldiers, knowing they can demand a heavy price in the release of terrorists in the future.
Gilad's freedom and security are dear to all. But let us not forget, so are the freedom and safety of all of us whether in the present or in the future. No one is worth more than Corporal Shalit, but then no one individual life is worth less either.
[Mideast: On Target]
Protesters Block Visits to Hamas Prisoners -Roee Mandel
[D]ozens of [Israelis] protested outside the Sharon Prison and blocked the entrance of visitors. Yoel Marshak of the Kibbutz Movement said, "We are here to...block visitation to [Palestinian] prisoners, as long as they are not allowing anyone to see Gilad Shalit."
The joint protest of the World Likud, Beitar Movement and Kibbutz Movement displayed a unified front in the demand to have the conditions of security prisoners changed to match those under which Shalit is held. "With Gilad Shalit held for 1,000 days now without anyone knowing where he is, we cannot have Palestinian prisoners enjoying visitation, watching television, and reading the newspapers," said Marshak.