Left-Wingers Warn Against Disengagement

Yossi Beilin, Shlomo Ben-Ami, Ami Ayalon and others warn of the dangers - security and diplomatic - that the unilateral retreat/expulsion from Gaza/northern Shomron will create for Israel.

, | updated: 10:45

Former Justice Minister Yossi Beilin (pictured), currently not a Knesset Member but the chairman of the extreme left-wing Yahad/Meretz Party:
"If the disengagement does not lead to an immediate permanent status arrangement, it will bring a catastrophe upon both Israelis and Palestinians... It is liable to bring a renewal of violence [that] is liable to bring down the moderate Palestinian leadership...

There is a concrete danger that following the disengagement, the violence will greatly increase in [Judea and Samaria] in order to achieve the same thing [i.e., withdrawal - ed.] as was achieved in Gaza... A retreat from Gaza with nothing in return and with no agreement will strengthen Hamas."

Former Foreign Minister Shlomo Ben-Ami of the left-wing of the Labor Party:
"A unilateral retreat perpetuates Israel's image as a country that runs away under pressure... In Fatah and Hamas, they will assume that they must prepare for their third intifada - this time in [Judea and Samaria]... If we continue these unilateral steps, we will find ourselves establishing an enemy Palestinian state."

Former General Security Service chief Ami Ayalon:
"The captain of the disengagement can be compared to the captain of a ship who takes it from port to a very stormy sea, without knowing at all where he wants to lead it. And possibly even worse: He knows where he wants to lead it, but is hiding the information from his crew...

Retreat without getting anything in return is liable to be interpreted by some of the Palestinians as surrender. The plan is likely to strengthen extremist forces in the Palestinians society... There is a high chance that shortly after the disengagement, the violence will be renewed. 2006 is liable to be a year of another round of violence."

Ayalon said that the retreat from the northern Gaza communities - Dugit, Elei Sinai and Nisanit - is a "grave error. It has no demographic or security justification, and the price that it is liable to exact from us is not justified."

Former Air Force Commander Gen. Eitan Ben-Eliyahu:
"There is no chance that the disengagement will guarantee long-term stability. The plan as it stands can only lead to a renewal of terrorism... If there is no quick progress from the disengagement to a comprehensive retreat, [this will lead to] the one-state solution - bringing to an end of the Zionist dream, and the Jewish State will be lost."

Former IDF Deputy Chief of Staff Gen. Uzi Dayan:
"Retreat from Nisanit, Dugit and Elei Sinai is a double mistake: Security-wise, it unnecessarily brings the Kassam rocket threat closer to Ashkelon, and diplomatically, it creates a dangerous precedent of unilateral withdrawal to the 1967 lines, which strengthens the PA demands to return to the June 4, 1967 lines."


Former IDF Chief of Intelligence Gen. Shlomo Gazit:
"It is reasonable to assume that within a short time, we will face mortar shelling and Kassams from [Samaria and Judea]. These rockets and shells will hit Kfar Saba and maybe even reach Netanya."

Former Mossad head Ephraim HaLevy:
"After the disengagement, Israel will face a diplomatic crisis the likes of which we have not known for years."

Former Mossad head Shabtai Shavit:
"The disengagement plan sabotages itself, creating a situation of instability. The plan does not create the necessary minimum of balance that would enable long-term coexistence... Immediately after the disengagement, Israel will find itself on a crash pattern with the United States."


(based on a new book by Aryeh Shavit)




top