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I studied the foreign policy plans of the Likud and Kadima parties as best I can to learn the differences. The profound differences are: The Likud wants to keep half the West Bank and make the Americans sore. In contrast, Kadima wants to withdraw from half the West Bank and make the Americans happy.
Withdrawing from half the land is much more peaceful than keeping half the land, and making the Americans happy is certainly preferable to making them angry. The Arabs of Palestine don't enter into these considerations at all. That may explain why polls say Kadima will get about twice the mandates of either Labor or Likud.
Ehud Olmert explained to Ha'aretz newspaper that by the time he leaves office in 2010, Israel will be a country that's fun to live in. Olmert will set the permanent borders of Israel unilaterally, and magically, the rest of the world will agree. From the Israeli point of view, this is a much better partition plan than was ever proposed by the British or the UN or President Clinton. What do these borders include? Sugar and spice and everything nice. According to Ha'aretz,
What will Israel withdraw from? It is not clear. It is clear what Israel will not withdraw from:
Most interesting too, is the role of the security fence in this utopia:
Ha'aretz thereupon asked the logical question in their interview of Olmert, the question that we all want answered:
While Israel will be setting its permanent borders and having fun, what will the Palestinians be doing? The Palestinians disengaged from reality in their own way. They elected the Hamas, which promises to return all the Arab refugees to Israel and wipe out Zionism. What the Arab countries with their guns and tanks and airplanes could not do in 1948 or 1967 or 1973, Ismail Hanniyeh promises to do by praying to Allah and sending suicide bombers to blow up in discotheques. So the Palestinians will be preparing the Jihad against Israel, which according to the Hamas Charter is run according to the principles enunciated in the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. Large crowds will gather frequently in the Palestinian cities shouting "death to Israel, death to Zionism" just as they do today in Iranian cities. While Tel-Aviv becomes Fun City, Jenin, Tulkarm and Nablus will be a riot. A generation of Palesinians will be educated to believe that all of Palestine is a holy waqf given to Muslims by Allah, and that the dissolution of Jewish self-determination is part of Palestinian "rights" as Hamas claims. Inevitably, talk will lead to action. Eventually some of the riot must spill over into Israel. No fence will be high enough to keep Palestinian terrorists out of Israeli discotheques and hotels and universities, or to keep Palestinian rockets confined to the other side of this "international" border.
And what of the road map, that is still declared day and night to be the one true prophet of the lords of Washington, Brussels and Moscow? It is true that U.N. human rights envoy John Dugard pointed out the the road map is out of date. The road map called for a Palestinian state and a negotiated settlement by the end of 2005. Dugard however, is apparently a lone heretic. The child cries "The Emperor is Naked" but the adults persist in their fantasy. In Washington, they apparently didn't notice that it is 2006 and there is no settlement, no Palestinian state and no end to either terrorism or the occupation. The road map, like any theological construct, is eternal and unshakable. The Messiah did not come, the world did not end. The prophecies were not fulfilled, but the faithful are unshaken. Here too, there has been disengagement from reality.
Israelis and Palestinians and Americans and Europeans and Russians are not stupid, but the will to believe what is convenient overcomes all logic. If they are taken in by such obvious nonsense, it is because it suits them. Everyone wants to believe they can be rich without working, they can solve problems without trying and without unpleasant decisions. There is some logic to this. Right now, there is really no better alternative. Mahmoud Abbas can talk about peace, but he hasn't the power to guarantee a solution on his side, and he can't produce an Israeli partner who will give the Palestinians what they want. Amir Peretz can talk about peace, but he can't deliver any Palestinian partner other than the Hamas, and the Hamas do not want peace. Instead, each side withdraws into their national fantasies. Olmert is right. It can be fun to live in a fantasy, as long as it lasts.
Original text copyright by the author and MidEastWeb for Coexistence, RA. Posted at MidEastWeb Middle East Web Log at http://www.mideastweb.org/log/archives/00000438.htm where your intelligent and constructive comments are welcome. Distributed by MEW Newslist. Subscribe by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please forward by email with this notice and link to and cite this article. Other uses by permission.
Replies: 6 comments
Ami, you are a master of words. Nobody as you can reflect the mix of drama and comedy which is the outcome of human use of language.
Posted by Aleph @ 03/14/2006 05:33 PM CST
Posted by Butros Dahu @ 03/14/2006 08:56 PM CST
Some Israelis seem to have given up the fantasy world of greater Israel and settlements; the fantasy world of Oslo also seems to have lost currency. But they have replaced it with a another fantasy world. Presumably, when that comes to an end another wil be created. The same is true for the Palestinians. Even despite five years of futility neither side has come out of their fantasies.
Posted by Micha @ 03/14/2006 09:45 PM CST
Posted by Ami Isseroff @ 03/15/2006 12:12 AM CST
I want to know about Ra'ananna, the town north of Tel Aviv.
Posted by Caroline Schmitz @ 03/21/2006 05:55 AM CST
I Live in the US. But I do not agree with how the US is dealing with Isreal. Isreal was given land to live on for all time by GOD Himself not man. The US nor any other government should be allowed to dispute this nor to try to strong arm Isreal into giving up any part of the land that they were given. No matter what are race is or what our religion is. If we know it to be true that the land was given to Isreal then we all need to learn to put our differences aside and stand up for Isreal.I Pray that the Lord GOD protects Isreal.
May God Bless each and everyone.
Posted by Rodney Askay @ 03/21/2006 04:01 PM CST
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