Rockets, Mortars and Fences in the New Year

Israel awakens to a difficult new reality that transcends the perennial debate in Israel over the location of security fences.

David Bedein,

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credit David Michael Cohen
Israel awakens to a difficult new reality that transcends the perennial debate in Israel over the location of security fences.

After all, mortars transcend fences. Ask people evicted from Gush Katif about the 6,000 mortars that rained down on their communities in less than five years.

Besides mortars, Israel faces a new year in which bulldozers stand ready to go into action to eradicate more Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, and to replace them with a lethal PLO state that would be within firing range of every Jewish community in the rest of Israel. Israel's citizens must cope with the following prognosis in the new year:

1. The government of Israel has not asked the US or any other nation to recognize its sovereignty in any part of Judea or Samaria. Israel Resource News Agency confirmed this with the leading diplomats and elected officials in the US, Canada and Europe.

2. The government of Israel has done nothing to annex any area of Judea or Samaria.

3. Israel Resource News Agency covered the speech given President George Bush on September 20th to the Republican Jewish coalition, in which the US president referred to the "West Bank" only in terms of its "vulnerability"; no mention of recognizing the right of Israel's citizens to live there. This is in keeping with understandings that were reached between the US and Israel before the Olso Agreements in September, 1993. Then-Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Yossi Beilin confirmed in December 1993 that Israel had relinquished all claims of sovereignty over Judea and Samaria as part of the Oslo process.

4. The Bush letter of April 14th, 2004 only states that the US understands that there are "population centers" built up since 1967 beyond the Green Line; no mention of the US accepting these population centers as part of Israel, no mention of the US recognizing "settlement blocs".

5. Jewish communities of Efrat, Gush Etzion, Kiryat Arba, Hebron, the Hebron Hills, Binyamin and Samaria enjoy precisely the same status as Gush Katif, of blessed memory. In other words, no status.

6. The "Quartet" (the European Union, the United Nations, the United States and Russia) and the government of Israel are working at lightning speed to create an instant PLO state, which would be Judenrein and which would not abandon the PLO's phased plan for destroying Israel. The PLO openly states that all areas it gains will be used as a launching pad to liberate "all of Palestine".

7. The government of Israel is embarking on multiple profit-making business ventures with the PLO's administrative arm, the Palestinian Authority. The chart on the front page of Israel's Globes newspaper from September 16th, 2005 says it all: In 2004, Israel exported more than two billion dollars' worth of products to the Palestinian Authority and imported less than 400 million dollars' worth of products from the PA. In other words, thousands of Israelis gain economic benefits from business with the PLO. That more than explains why three advisors to the current prime minister of Israel have direct personal interests in Palestinian Authority corporations.

The time has come to learn from the successes and failures of the "orange" campaign of the past two years. The campaign was successful in defeating Ariel Sharon in the referendum of May 2nd, 2004, when the opposition to Sharon characterized the Sharon Plan as dangerous to the people of Israel. The campaign failed in August 2005, when it stressed that it was only a threat to Gush Katif and Samaria.

If the Jewish communities of Judea and Samaria are to be preserved, and a PLO state is to be prevented, the movers and shakers of the state of Israel would have to be convinced that these areas are vital to Israel, and that the PLO is lethal to Israel. In order to do this, a sophisticated campaign would have to educate key players in Israel's business community, in Israel's unions, in Israel's universities, in Israel's intelligence community and in Israel's development towns. If the US administration were to understand that a groundswell of public opinion opposed a PLO state and favored the retention of Judea and Samaria, then US pressure would lessen.

The time has come to understand that sentiments alone will not "sell" the importance of Judea and Samaria or the dangers of the PLO. A generation of Israeli youth has been weaned on the hopes of the Oslo process and the seeming economic prosperity that has accompanied this process, despite 26,000 terror attacks and more than 1,300 people who have been murdered in cold blood. An educational effort would have to be launched to awaken the people of Israel to the importance of Judea and Samaria or to the dangers of the PLO. Otherwise, the PLO plan of gradually making Israel Judenrein will be put into operation.