JERUSALEM – Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is dissatisfied with the emerging cease-fire deal and told his defense minister in a meeting Friday to get ready for a wider ground offensive in Lebanon, a senior Israeli official said.
The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to discuss the contents of the Olmert-Peretz meeting. It was not immediately clear whether the Israeli threat was meant to pressure the U.N. Security Council or whether Israel is determined to send troops deeper into Lebanon.
Olmert and his defense minister, Amir Peretz, met for several hours Friday, as diplomats worked on a final text for a cease-fire resolution. Israel is upset about apparent last-minute changes in the text, which would seem to weaken the mandate of a multinational force, the Israeli government official said.
Politcal correspondent Emmanuel Rosen said on Israeli TV's Channel 10: "The Israeli ground offensive is getting underway, but they are still not ruling out the diplomatic option."