Courtesy Reuters

The prisoner exchange deal that Israel struck with Hamas last week does not make sense in terms of the country's foreign and defense policy goals. A country that has been a victim of terrorism for decades -- and that maintains that nations should never negotiate with terrorist organizations -- has done exactly that, exchanging 1,027 convicted terrorists (550 of whom were directly involved in multiple murders) for one soldier, Gilad Shalit.

Although the government initially considered military action to recover Shalit, who was abducted on the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip in 2006, it was never a feasible option. Gaza's dense

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