One of the tabloids summed it up best in its headline "You Mossad Be Joking, Biffo." Our Dear Leader, Brian Cowen, known to the faithful and not-so-faithful as "Biffo" (Big Intereseting Fine Fellow from Offally... or maybe the IFF stands for something different?) has decided that enough is enough: if Israel harms Irish citizens on the MV Rachel Corrie, an Irish-owned vessel that is about to breach the Gaza blockade, there will be "serious consequences."
I love my country, and greatly respect our Defence Forces, but "serious consequences" are not really something we specialise in; military might has never been a major priority of the Irish. Even if we compare our naval forces (those of an island nation in the Atlantic) with Israel (not exactly famed for its naval prowess, whatever about its army and air force) we don't exactly meet the mark. Just as an example - number of Israeli submarines: 3, number of Irish submarines: 0.
The question remains, then, as to whether Biffo... I mean the Taoiseach, meant economic sanctions when he spoke darkly of Israel's fate should it dare to oppose our Celtic might. Again, I would expect that the Israelis would probably be more concerned about threats from the EU generally, rather than Ireland in particular, despite the multiple, incredibly valuable, well-known and much vaunted Irelandio - Israelianio trade agreements.
Unless, given the fact that the Irish economy is still tanking, Fianna Fail and our Taoiseach are casting around, desperately, for someone to focus the public's attention on, in case Seoisamh Public notices again that our country is falling apart. You have to hand it to the Israelis - whenever you need a scapegoat, they're right on hand!