President Bush has been right all along that the war on terrorism must be seen to its conclusion .The free world will never be safe until Al –Quida and other terror networks are incapacitated and destroyed. That includes Iraq, the current center of terror activities.
Thus it is sad to see the administration remain publicly silent regarding the lack of progress by the PA and Mr Abbas on disarming Hamas,Al-Aksa Brigade and Islamic Jihad. That there have been no recent suicide bombings in Israel is only due to great intelligence and police efforts by the IDF.Certainly it is not for a lack of trying by the above elements. The number of youths caught attempting to infiltrate with weapons and bombs remains high, as does the rocket attacks on Gush Katif and its neighbors . Public reports of stockpiling of new and more sophisticated weaponry by the Palestinians represent a real danger to Israel in the post-disengagement period.
One month ago the second stop on our groups trip to Israel was the Soroka Medical Center in Beersheba.We witnessed not only its high quality of modern medicine, but its outreach to the Bedouin and Palestinian communities. Thus it was such a horrendous but yet poignant lesson regarding the face of the enemy. A young woman entering Israel for a clinic appointment after long and successful surgical care, was found with a bomb destined for her doctors and the hospital that saved her life.What gratitude !
The Abbas formula seems to be invite terror groups to join his “unity coalition “,while he talks the “one gun “ nonsense. Indeed he has not retrieved ONE GUN from these groups. The number of smuggling tunnels remains high and probably growing,
We were told that the President stressed these issues to Mr Abbas in their private meeting, however there appears little likelihood that Abbas will change his nature. He is weak, and surrounded by political enemies who are Arafat loyalists .It is not in the cards that he can deliver on his promises.
Sitting in America and observing the daily events, it appears to me to be Oslo revisited. Violence on the part of the Palestinians, a disclaimer by Arafat that he doesn’t control the”bad guys’ and if only he had his own state ,army, airport etc he would be in control. The Israelis for there part absorb the rocket attacks until they must respond, and then often bombing empty buildings with a prior warning .They blame the settlers and their right wing allies for incitement as they yield more territory under American persuasion receiving nothing in return. Peres, Barak, Sharon and Netanyahu all actors in the same repetitive series of scenarios
Talking of Bibi his vow to absent himself from the Knesset vote this Wed. is pure show business,as is Mr Sharon’s vow to fire him if he is absent. Mr. Netanyahu had a chance to prevent disengagement, and his affirmative vote was key to is passage. Will Likud and other voters detect any sincerity or national purpose for his absence on Wed?.
At the end of the day how many people doubt that Israel will be forced to respond to violence and terror by attacking or re-entering Gaza ?
We do not need a new EU initiative on the Middle East . We do need the PA to carry out its obligations for a disarmed populace, the rule of law, and the acceptance of Israel with an end to incitement .We need them to stop talking and preaching the “right of return” and a divided Jerusalem. We need them to stop preaching that Jewish Holy sites are fictitious.
While I have never favored disengagement, if anyone represents my point of view in the Israeli leadership it is Natan Sharansky.IT COULD BE,that for military ,strategic and the long term survival of Israel as a Jewish State with a Jewish majority that Gaza with its 1.5 million Palestinians must be sacrificed. However, it cannot occur without exacting the type of guarantees and concessions from the PA and the US that is totally absent. This is a withdrawal as a reward for terror- no matter what today’s polls show, or the accompanying rhetoric.
The actions of the irresponsible groups of youths that spill oil, and pour nails on major highways is a turn-off for most Israelis and counter-productive. .Rav Motte Alon is correct ,there is a proper way to oppose. Yes to marches, demonstations, newspaper ads, house to house canvassing and the ballot box. No one has the right to endanger lives of innocent travelers by spilling oil on the road of a major highway.
Many of us from time to time have been disturbed by a parade or a demonstration that brought traffic to a halt, Regardless of the cause most of us are unhappy because we are coming to or from work,tired, frustrated -and we become angry. The actions of these youths is surely responsible for a spike in public acceptance or support for disengagement .
I also oppose the actions of medical colleagues and friends who propose to build a field hospital in the Gush Katif area in Aug. It can only be an incitement to violence. A Jew must not strike another Jew. One may oppose this disengagement with all ones heart and soul ,but the stability of democracy and a viable state demands that laws, passed by the Cabinet and Knesset ,and reviewed by the Courts must be obeyed.
. Absent that we have anarchy .Public utterance to “depose” the PM is evil. Which we dare not contemplate. Surely we suffered post –Rabin.
One must pray for cool heads and strong backbones on the part of Israeli leadership. America and President Bush are great friends but the interests of Israel supercede total obedience to them
The completion of the Maale Adumim-Jerusalem ring, the building of needed facilities for family and communal growth in the Gush and Ariel areas as well as the completion of the security fence must be completed at a rapid pace without public announcements or fanfare.
Although Gush Katif is teaching us that “FACTS” on the ground may not be the last word, the people and the State of Israel will not be able to tolerate such a trauma and tragedy each time the White House or the Sec. of State snap their fingers.
We in the pro-Israel community in the US must maintain our support for the medina while pushing Congress and the Administration to realize in words and actions that the interests of the US in the war on terror, and the battle to spread democracy and freedom lies with tiny Israel (and not Mr Abbas and his henchmen) and a strong Israel with Jerusalem as its undivided and eternal capitol.
THE BATTLE HAS JUST BEGUN