Israel's <i>Hudna</i> Capitulation

The New "Road Map" is, in many ways, worse than the original Oslo fiasco. Ariel Sharon is increasingly likely to go down in history as even a more destructive and foolish leader than the original Oslo junta.

Prof. Steven Plaut,

The New "Road Map" is, in many ways, worse than the original Oslo fiasco. Ariel Sharon is increasingly likely to go down in history as even a more destructive and foolish leader than the original Oslo junta.

Why is the Road Map so foolish? For one, it comes after a decade of Oslo. It is based on all of the old Oslo delusions and stupidity and games of make-pretend. But Shimon Peres and Yossi Beilin at least could claim the right to benefit of the "doubt", because they were venturing into the unknown and were testing a new path, one that the rest of us knew was foolish and destructive, but still was open to doubt before being tested.

Sharon has none of that working for him. Sharon is implementing the "Road Map" after the past decade provided daily empirical proof that all of the "thinking" behind Oslo was wrong and that Oslo was a "process" for producing Israeli national suicide and not peace. Oslo was based on trying to achieve victory through Israeli weakness and defeatism. It was based on the belief that Islamofascist terror could be eliminated through demonstrations of goodwill and willingness to compromise, by niceness instead of harshness. Terror could be ended not through armed victory and suppression of violence, but by payoffs to those performing the violence.

Oslo was based on the principle that the most effective way to disarm Arab terrorism and fascist aggression against Israel was by rewarding Arab violence, by behaving in ways that broadcast weakness and destructibility, by proving over and over that Israel is afraid to use force against its tormentors. It was based on the idea that Israeli cowardice is the highest form of valor, that Israeli self-debasement is the highest form of patriotism. It was based on the idea that if war is ugly, it can only be ended by pretending that it does not exist. It was based on the belief that Kodak moments with murdering terrorists and posturing for peace with Palestinian war criminals for the media constitute a peace process.

Hardly surprising, Oslo produced a massive escalation of Arab atrocities and violence, with around 1300 post-Oslo murdered Israelis. Oslo produced the most massive world assault on Israeli legitimacy in history, this in spite of the promises that by cooperating with the barbarians and making peace offerings and goodwill gestures, Israel was buying for itself legitimacy. Oslo was all about Israel blowing up its own deterrent powers voluntarily and partially disarming itself, in the hope that the Arabs would prove good sportsmen and respond with gentlemanly quid pro quos. Oslo was based on Israel making peace while the Arabs made war. It was performed under the slogan of "Land for Peace". The only problem was that it was the Israeli leaders talking about swapping land for peace, not the Arab leaders. The Arab leaders spoke of Israel giving up land as an Arab victory, as an Israeli capitulation, as part of the Plan of Stages leading to Israel's removal and annihilation.

The Arabs insist they seek a Rwanda solution, where Israel ceases to exist and is replaced, in stages, with a "bi-national state", in which one of those two "bi-nations" will face a Rwandan fate.

Oslo was based on a complete denial of reality and the attempt to achieve peace by leading the entire country of Israeli into a world of infantile fantasy. It is the Hogwart?s version of peace making. Back in 1993, many an Israeli might still be convinced that the fantasy could turn out to be real, because there really is a school of sorcery behind that train platform. By 2003, however, we have had 3,600+ days of proof that each and every Israeli goodwill concession produces more Arab violence, more attacks on Israeli legitimacy, more world anti-Semitism, more Arab intransigence.

When the Labor Party leaders released imprisoned Arab terrorists in the 1990s, there was, as yet, no proof - other than common sense - that these released people would simply re-enlist in the terror brigades and murder Jews. There was still the pretense that these would renounce violence, suppress the Hamas and Jihad terrorists, and establish a PLO constabulary that would fight terror and protect Jewish lives. By 2003, no one can possibly believe any of that unless they are on the most dangerous psychedelic drugs. Yet, here we have Ariel Sharon - once again - buying a three-month "cease-fire" by releasing terrorists from prison. And not even a "cease-fire", but a hudna. Sharon agrees to the national debasement of having Israel beg for a hudna, a charged Arabic term from the Koran referring to a temporary cease-fire agreed to by Moslems, while they rearm and re-organize for the coming battle and showdown. It is a cease-fire that Moslems are determined to violate and attack the moment they feel they are in a position of strength.

The Labor Party leaders at least went through the pretense of getting those terrorists released from prison to sign oaths that they would henceforth not engage in violence. But not the Likud leaders of Sharon's government; no one is even bothering to pretend. The Labor leaders at first, at least, could argue that Israel should comply with Oslo, because there had not yet been a track record of PLO violations proving the PLO would never comply with anything. Sharon has no such claim to make.

Sharon's fig leaf is that he will only be releasing terrorists who "do not have blood on their hands." As the Arutz-7 commentator Adir Zik says, this is simply because they showered it off while in prison. There is no difference between a terrorist who actually fired or detonated and one who provided him with logistics support or was his commander or otherwise participated in terrorist atrocities. Every terrorist has blood on his hands. Every terrorist released will engage in murder of Jews, Sharon is "buying" a ridiculous one-sided cease-fire with the blood of Jews. There has not been an hour since the announcement of the hudna without more Palestinian violence and attacks on Jews.

Yet, Sharon meets with the PLO's make-pretend "Prime Minister" and male bonds with him and glad-hands and poses for the cameras. Abu Mazen is a Holocaust-Denying Nazi. He is as up to his ears in Jewish blood as Yasser Arafat himself. His only real function is to allow the US and EU to pretend that the Palestinian Authority has been reformed and is no longer a Third World kleptocracy under the direct personal command and control of Arafat. The very same "Al-Aqsa martyrs" and Tanzim brigades commanded by Arafat and Abu Mazen murder Jews, while Sharon holds "peace talks" with their commanders and grants them appeasements.

Ariel Sharon makes a mockery of the notion that Israel's raison d'etre is "Never Again" - that is, making sure that Jews will never again suffer from Nazi anti-Semitism and genocidal anti-Jewish racism. Instead, Sharon holds talks with the Nazi-wannabes and offers concessions, releases the SS men from prison, begs for a hudna while the murderers re-arm, promises lands for the Gauleiters, and releases funds to finance the Wehrmacht.

The entire world sits back and laughs at the Jews. The Palestinians blow up buses of Jewish children and the Prime Minister of the Jews runs to meet with those who are responsible for the crimes, pretending they are not the real terrorists, shakes their hands, gives them gifts. The PLO fires rockets into Jewish civilian homes and Sharon congratulates it for working for peace and says that the PLO should be granted its own state in the Jewish heartland. PLO gunmen murder Israeli civilians every day and Sharon urges Abu Mazen to catch the murderers and bring them to justice. PLO school texts scream for genocide of Jews, while Sharon pretends he is engaged in peace dialogue with the book publishers. The PLO "arrests" terrorists, who are back on the street in hours, and Sharon peacocks about claiming that at long last the PLO is complying with its obligations and really, really trying.

There is no doubt that, at least in part, Sharon's pusillanimous behavior is due to American extortion and threats. Bush wants a "peace process" to defang Islamofascism. But a leader is someone who sometimes has to do unpopular things. Samson was willing to give up his own political career to prevent a greater tragedy. Israel will not survive unless it draws a line and tells even the United States, in the most polite and friendly tone, ?Sorry, but no. There are lots of things we are willing to do to help out the US, but committing national suicide is where we draw the line. You can growl and sanction us as much as you wish, but we are not going to do it.?

Ariel Sharon is not behaving like the Samson he was once thought to be, but as an Israeli Chamberlain. Like Bibi Netanyahu, he ran as Churchill and instantly morphed into a cowardly appeaser after taking office. The Likud of Sharon is no different from the Likud of Netanyahu in 1996; the Wye's Men of Chelm. It is the Me-Too-Labor Party.

Shimon Peres was on the radio this week crowing about how he and his policies had taken over the Likud, I guess like those space pods do in those science fiction films. Peres bragged that the Likud is a party with no ideology or game plan at all, which Peres regards as a great victory for him. He was proud as punch that the dilemmas into which he and the Oslo junta had thrust the country are so bottomless and overwhelming that no Likud government is capable of extracting Israel from them.
Steven Plaut teaches at the University of Haifa and is author of The Scout (available from Gefen Publishing House: More of his writings can be seen on the New Plaut Blog.