PM, Peretz at odds over offensive
Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Amir Peretz were at odds last night over the extent of the Israeli ground offensive in Lebanon.
Peretz favors expanding the incursion as far as the Litani River, with the objective of controling the area from which the short-range rockets are fired at Israel. He announced yesterday that he had instructed the army to do so.
Olmert, for his part, is not enthusiastic about the idea; he feels that holding more ground in southern Lebanon will not solve the problem of Hezbollah's medium- and long-range rockets.
The plan to take the area as far as the Litani was presented to the political-security cabinet on Monday, along with the less expansive plan that was approved and is currently being put into practice.
A government source said that most of the cabinet ministers, including Peretz, had approved the more limited plan.
The source said that this should first be completed and then the cabinet could reconvene to discuss a deeper incursion.