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      Batya Medad made aliya from New York to Israel in 1970 and has been living in Shiloh since 1981. Recently she began organizing women's visits to Tel Shiloh for Psalms and prayers. (For more information, please email her.)  Batya is a newspaper and magazine columnist, a veteran jblogger and recently stopped EFL teaching.  She's also a wife, mother, grandmother, photographer and HolyLand hitchhiker, always seeing things from her own very unique perspective. For more of Batya's writings and photos, check out:

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      Adar 17, 5769, 3/13/2009

      Gilad Shalit--At Any Price?


      When I was first learning about life in Israel, over forty years ago, people talked about how one is expected to bargain. Never pay the first price offered. Pay as little as possible. Walk away from the shop, and they'll call you back with a better and yet better price. It was quite a switch from the very "proper" and inflexible America in the mid-1960's.
      Maybe we should send one of the veteran stall owners from Machene Yehuda to negotiate

      Israelis seem to have lost the knack. They're (we're) playing all these negotiations like total patsies, total fools. We've given away our precious Land for nothing--Disengagement or a smile and Nobel Peace Prize--Menachem Begin's Camp David.

      Instead of simply refusing all aid to our enemies and Red Cross visits to the terrorist/enemy Arabs we've captured until our soldiers are returned--alive or dead, we keep offering to free more and more terrorists.

      Gilad Shalit's family are media darlings like the religious parents of our soldiers captured in Lebanon could never be.

      Yes, Gilad Shalit must be freed, must be returned home to Israel, but what happened to the master Israeli bargainers of old? Maybe we should send one of the veteran stall owners from Machene Yehuda to negotiate. I'm sure he wouldn't do any worse than our politicians, diplomats and media have done.