Here in Singapore, there is a cabinet post called "The Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs". Now most Singaporeans, including myself, consider this a minor post as the Minister only handled affairs relating to Muslims and the local Malay minority.
You don't usually see the Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs make any waves on the local scene; which is why I was kind of surprised when the current Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs, Dr Yaacob Ibrahim, responded to questions by praising Singapore Muslims’ rational response to the Mideast conflict. He then went on to say that condemning the Israeli action will not solve the problem and supports the United Nations resolution for an immediate ceasefire.
There's nothing unusual about Singapore’s stand here, but there's one problem with what Dr Yaacob said...there will not be a ceasefire through the UN.
The current conflict between Israel and Hamas in Gaza is a strictly political gambit for the Israeli election on Feb 10. If anyone has any doubts on that, just read into Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's words. He say that the end of the fighting is in sight and that Israel was nearing the goals it had set for its operation.
Of course! They are near the end of the fighting less than a month before their election (must take advantage of their ratings boost) and a new team will enter the White House next week as well (must not offend Barack Obama right off the bat)! No wonder they are nearing their goals NOW!
Personally I don't care about the fighting. They've been killing each other in the Mideast long before I was born and chances are the Israeli and the Hamas will kill each other long after I'm dead. But supporting a UN resolution for an immediate ceasefire? What use will that do?