A glance at what activists and pundits made of the assassination.
"The fate of the state of Israel is now in the hands of a group of persons whose outlook is primitive. They are incapable of understanding the mental, emotional and political dimensions of the conflict. They try to cover up their failures by a catastrophic escalation. This act will not only endanger the personal security of every Israeli, both in the country and around the world, but also the existential security of the state of Israel."
URI AVNERY, Israeli writer and member of peace group GUSH SHALOM
"It's true that Sheik Yassin, like Osama bin Laden, oversaw a terrorist organization, but unlike al Qaeda, Hamas is also a religious and social movement that holds the allegiance of a substantial segment of Palestinian society. Part of finding a solution to the conflict involves inducing the fundamentalist Islamic movement to pursue its agenda by peaceful means, as have similar groups in Egypt and Jordan. Some Israelis believed Sheik Yassin was inching in that direction; he recently spoke of accepting a long-term truce with Israel if it withdrew from the West Bank and Gaza. His violent death seems more likely to postpone rather than accelerate any moderation by his followers ."
"The Yassin assassination was justified, no less so than American assassinations (which have yet to succeed) of Osama bin Laden and his cohorts would be justified. But 'justified' does not mean necessary and wise. Yassin's assassination was not a necessity to thwart terror attacks, and a very high price is likely to be paid for it."
"If Yassin was responsible for planning attacks on civilians, then he deserved to be tried, convicted and sentenced for his crimes. It is an irony of the highest level that the very process by which Yassin was killed may place Israel in the dock one day to answer questions about its own crimes against humanity."
THE ELECTRONIC INTIFADA