As Al Jazeera reported today…

Gilad Shalit, the Israeli soldier who has been released as part of a swap deal with Hamas, has said he would be “very happy” if all Palestinian prisoners still held by Israel could be freed and return home.

Speaking to Egypt’s Nile TV, Shalit, who had been held in captivity for five years, said “I hope this deal will help the conclusion of a peace deal between the Israelis and Palestinians.”

Israel and Hamas agreed to Tuesday’s swap through Egyptian mediation that secured Shalit’s release in exchange for 1,027 Palestinian prisoners.

Shalit, who told the interviewer he had been informed of his impending release one week ago, said: “I hope co-operation and links between the two sides will be consolidated.”

The 25-year-old soldier, who appeared overwhelmed and faint, said that he had been treated well by his Hamas captors during the years he was held hostage.

“I’m very emotional. I haven’t seen people in a long time. I missed my family. I missed seeing people, and talking to them,” he said…

Whoa Nelly…! Say what, SFC Shalit…? You do realize you’ve just set off a serious sh*t storm with your very first interview, on both sides of the Pond…?

From the WaPoo…

Israeli official ‘shocked’ at Schalit interview conducted minutes after he was freed

An Israeli official says he was shocked by a surprise interview soldier Gilad Schalit gave to Egyptian TV minutes after he was released from Hamas captivity.

A gaunt and weary Schalit awkwardly answered the questions from an Egyptian journalist before he was allowed to speak to his family or enter Israel.

Hamas’s leader in the Gaza Strip says the militant group has officially turned over captive Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit to Egypt as part of a prisoner swap with Israel.

The Israeli official said Tuesday, “We are all shocked that a so-called interview was forced on (Schalit).”

He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was discussing a sensitive diplomatic matter, but said the sentiment was widely shared in official Israeli ranks.

Ironically, I don’t think Bibi, Barak, and, Gantz had gotten that particular meme in quite enough time…

Anyways, Arutz Sheva was screaming its head off from the get go…

Israeli Media: Shalit Egyptian TV Interview ‘Borderline Torture’

Israel expressed its shock over the interview that Gilad Shalit ws apparently forced to give just minutes after he was handed over to Egypt.

On this side of the Pond, the Ziocons went nuts…

US awkwardly welcomes Israeli-Hamas prisoner swap

The U.S. is welcoming the release of Israeli soldier Gilad Schalit after five years of captivity despite concerns over some of the Palestinians freed in return. And the U.S. isn’t saying whether the Israeli-Hamas prisoner swap is likely to affect hopes for Mideast peace talks.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said Tuesday that the U.S. was pleased that Schalit’s ordeal was over.

But she and other U.S. officials didn’t address Hamas’ part in the deal or the merit of Israel’s decision to free more than 1,000 Palestinians to secure Schalit’s release.

The U.S. response was muted for several reasons. With the U.S.-backed peace process foundering, the disproportional prisoner trade likely will strengthen the Hamas militant group and weaken Palestinian President Mahmoud Abba’s (mahk-MOOD’ ah-BAHS’) American-backed government.

(mahk-MOOD’ ah-BAHS’) Are they really that stoopid…? Rhetorical, mind ya…

Ever more stupidity from our Reichwingers, Stateside… Does Gilad Shalit deal reward terrorists?

Anyways, Ha’aretz to its credit, quickly debunked much of that ‘noise’…

Egyptian journalist rejects Israel’s criticism of Shalit interview

Shahira Amin tells Haaretz ‘I asked Gilad if he was willing to be interviewed and he said he was,’ says otherwise she wouldn’t have conducted the interview.

In your face, Babee…!

I personally applaud the freeing of Shalit, his promising remarks, and, the triumphant return of many Palestinian Prisoners…! It was truly a positive day in the Annals of I/P relations…!

The Earth is but one Nation, and Mankind it’s Citizens…! *g*