Israel’s Mistake

I’m not a big fan of Ariel Sharon, but his diengagement policy is simply the most sensible policy for protecting Israel from terrorism. However, it appears that the Likud referendum on this policy has been soundly rejected in the polls, delivering a major blow to Sharon’s administration.

I believe this is a mistake. The settlers in Gaza and the West Bank have put themselves in an essentially undefendable position. It takes a large amount of resources to protect them, and the settlers have chosen to take an unacceptable risk to themselves and their families. They should have been compensated handsomely for their trouble, but leaving those settlements is tactically untenable.

The only way for Israel to protect itself was to pull out of those areas and let the Palestinians sort themselves out. The Palestinian Authority is heading directly towards a bloody civil war in which Fatah, Hamas, and the other groups vying for power in the West Bank and Gaza will eventually turn after each other once they realize that Israel was no longer a soft target.

By leaving the settlements intact, the Israeli people have given the terrorists a nice set of soft targets to attack, giving the terrorist groups something to focus in on rather than attacking each other. As Captain’s Quarter’s notes the Israelis have allowed the violence to continue indefinately.

It doesn’t help that a group of Hamas murderers shot a pregnant woman dead along with four of her children on the day of the referendum. Unfortunately, this decision will ensure that such attacks will only continue so long as those settlements exist.

Israel either must military invade the West Bank and Gaza and pacify the terrorists directly, an option that is extremely undesirable and dangerous, or wall off the West Bank and Gaza until the Palestinians either slaughter each other or come to their senses. Unfortunately the Israeli electorate just voted to have it both ways, which is only going to lead to the death of more innocent Israelis.

3 thoughts on “Israel’s Mistake

  1. The irony here is that many of these settlers are not ardent religious zionists, but indeed are secular russian Jews (the post iron curtain arrivals) who are simply looking for cheaper housing. Settlement homes cost 10% of what you can get in Israel proper. Many of these people do not speak good hebrew and are known for buying many christmas trees and wearing large crosses. Their main reason for being in Israel is economic advantage. I agree these people are not worth impeding political progress over.

  2. Jay… read your own stuff on fallacies. This argument engages in bifurcation. You are creating a false dilemia and ignoring any third option here. The third option being that Israel withdraw from the west bank and gaza and a Palestinian state be constructed as the Oslo accords laid out. Of course anything short of total support for militant zionism is unacceptable to you.
    Like I said before… read your own stuff on fallacies.

  3. The third option is Sharon’s plan – Israel would unilaterally pull out of the West Bank and Gaza along defensible lines, creating a de facto Palestinian state.

    Arafat was already offered exactly that plan at Camp David/Taba and he turned it down – a crime against his own people and all of humanity – an act which even the Saudi Prince Bandar said left Arafat with blood on his hands.

    If all the Palestinians wanted was a state, they could have had one. The goal is not independence, but the destruction of Israel.

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