Sometimes I just want to grab certain people and shake them...

Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is one of those people. In fact, just about everybody involved in that conflict needs a good shaking, but Sharon is the one who's made the latest bonehead move.

Said ill-considered action being a proposal to expand Jewish settlements in and around Hebron.

Bad Ariel! Naughty, naughty!

It's bad enough that those settlements are there in the first place, and while it's unlikely that they will be removed, expanding them has to be the dumbest thing I've heard since the creation of cow tipping.

Sharon made the proposal in the wake of another Palestinian attack Friday night (I'll be addressing those boneheads in a bit, trust me) and again colored his idiocy with rhetoric on increasing Israel's security. And yet, Israel's settlements in the West Bank, which exist in violation of international law, are the single largest cause of the violence he's trying to prevent.

Even a majority of the Israeli people do not support expanding the settlements according to polls, and the Bush administration doesn't like it either.

This all goes to that vicious circle, cycle of violence concept I touched on several columns back. Arrogant old warrior that he is, Sharon is less concerned with peace and more concerned with defeating his old foe Yassar Arafat.

And Arafat is just as stupid, thinking he can stay buddy-buddy with his old terrorist comrades while pretending to be a legitimate statesman at the same time.

And let's not forget that bunch of rocket scientists in Hamas and all the little so-called splinter groups. Like all terrorists everywhere, they lose themselves in the violence cycle as well. Every suicide bombing and any other attack only serves to degrade their cause rather than promote it and it cannot result in an actual victory.

Even when the leaders of these terrorist groups decide they've had enough and are ready to settle, they find that it's not so easy to flip the hatred switch back to off. Just ask the older members of the IRA about that.

Finally, referring again to the Palestinians, encouraging your children to throw stones at soldiers is inexcusable under any circumstances.

Of course, blasting random civilians is not only morally offensive but tactically stupid since the result is not fear but anger. At the same time, the Israeli government's little "mistake" about Friday night's attack being on worshippers coming home from marking the beginning of the Sabbath at the Tomb of the Patriarchs when it was really on Israeli soldiers and security personnel is a little transparent.

Oh, just, arrrggghhh!

I wanna shake 'em! I just wanna shake 'em all!

Ed Brock covers public safety and municipalities for the News Daily. He may be reached at (770) 478-5753 ext. 254 or via e-mail at ebrock@news-daily.com.