|Editorial - September 2007|
|By Roland S. Süssmann - Editor in Chief|
Abu Mazen must be saved! Abbas must be protected! So they came – they are all there, Olmert, Rice, Solana, Blair and all the others who bow and scrape to the “moderate Palestinian leader”, to the savior of that poisoned cause that has been both promoted and supported for 14 years by successive Israeli leaders and the West; the myth of a Palestinian people that exists and is entitled to an independent state in the very heart of Israel.
The loss of Abbas is the fiasco that is the consummation of the Oslo Accords, the pitiful end to the policy of openness to and support for the PLO and the “Palestinian Authority” (PA), which, we should recall, has cost the lives of over 1,000 Jewish Israelis and has maimed more than 5,000. Saving Abbas, a terrorist trained in the 1950’s in Egypt at the same school as Arafat by that friend of Hitler, Haj Amin El Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, is to maintain the illusion that calm in the region can only be guaranteed by a militarily strong PLO heading up yet another Arab state. That is to forget rather too quickly that every square inch of ground whose control has been given over to this terrorist organization, has been transformed into a base for attacks against Israel. That is also to forget that the PLO has not kept any of its promises to Israel, particularly about stopping violence, because it has never been pressured to do so. On the contrary, each time that it renewed its empty promises it was immediately rewarded with new territorial concessions as well as increased political pressure on Israel. All the concessions made by Israel have been considered by the international community to be “insufficient to provide the Palestinians with a viable political horizon”, which means too meager for the PLO to renounce the murder and maiming of Jews in Israel. Following the Oslo Accords, Israel in fact abandoned most of Judea, Samaria and Gaza as well as Judaism’s second holiest city, Hebron (1997). Continuing its policy of openness, Israel offered the creation of a Palestinian state on 97% of the territories plus a large part of East Jerusalem and the Temple Mount, at Camp David in 2000. The result of this generous offer was the launch of the Second Intifada, during which Arab terror killed more Israelis in 4 years than in all the State’s first 53 years. Even more serious, in order to demonstrate its good will and its readiness to end what some called the “occupation”, Israel destroyed 21 Jewish villages in Gaza and four communities on the West Bank, quite simply to buy the right to live if not in peace then at least in quiet. Even this dramatic initiative was deemed “insufficient” for the Palestinian Arabs to be obliged by the international community to stop their violence against Israel. Finally, the expulsion of the Jews from Gaza in 2005, which had been considered “an excellent step towards peace”, resulted in the installation of an Al Qaida base on the Mediterranean and at the gates of Israel.
Under such conditions, why do the USA and the EU want to save Abbas and a moribund PLO? What are their demands and their aims?
Of the demands being made of Israel, you just have to listen to the latest statements of Javier Solana. “The most disquieting aspect of the peace process is the lack of interest by Israel to discuss final frontiers with the Palestinians”. Condoleezza Rice goes further, “The time has come for Israel to negotiate final status with the PA”. Tony Blair adds, “We must restore the Palestinians’ faith in a viable Palestinian state”. Meaning, Israel is being asked to negotiate final status with the PLO without receiving the slightest assurance of its intention to abandon terrorism, and to accept an Arab entity whose rockets will be at the gates of Tel-Aviv and of Ben Gurion airport; and to allow the establishment in Judea and Samaria of an armed fortress along the lines of the one set up in Gaza from the day the PA took over control of the border with Egypt, in direct collaboration with …the European Union.
This is quite clearly unacceptable, since the PLO, intimately linked with Hamas, will not abandon terrorism. The only way Israel can ensure the security of its citizens is to retain total control of Judea and Samaria and the border with Jordan. Yet America is asking Israel to disregard these realities and to act “as if” the PLO actually wanted to put an end to terror against Israel. In a nutshell, concessions must be made solely based upon renewed confidence in Abu Mazen. Ehud Olmert is aware that such an approach will be suicidal for the Jewish State and has rejected this American demand. He knows that if Israel signs a final status agreement with the PLO before it has effectively demonstrated its determination to root out terrorism, Tel-Aviv and Jerusalem will become as vulnerable as Sderot is today.
Having stated the basic requirements, let’s move on to the aims. The tone of the message delivered during the last Rice-Gates, American visit was extremely clear. “We want to strengthen one camp against the other. The split is evident, on the one side the good guys, namely the USA, Israel, the PLO and the Sunni Arab states, and on the other side the bad guys, Iran, Syria, Hamas in Gaza, and by extension Russia, China and North Korea. If you want us to take care of Iran, you have to help us”.
There is nothing to make us think that a coalition with the Sunni Arab states would be good for Israel. Thirty years after Sadat came to Jerusalem, not one of these states has abandoned the mantra of Islamic Jihad, the “refugees’ right of return”, meaning the invasion of Israel by 4 million Arabs, held by force in refugee camps in Jordan, Syria, Lebanon and in the areas controlled by the PLO since 1993; equating Arab terrorism with the building of Jewish towns and villages in Judea and Samaria; and equating the very existence of the Jewish State with the rise of Islamic fascism. On the ground, Hamas is continuing to arm and organize militarily, while Hizbullah is doing the same in the North under the passive gaze of the international community. A conflagration is inevitable, while a massive military offensive into Gaza and then in the North is just a matter of time. This could take place under a government of national unity in which Binyamin Netanyahu would participate.
Almost on the eve of a possible, further “peace conference” for which no agenda has been set but which is based on the Saudi Arabian 2002 plan, whose prerequisite are the mantras of the Islamic Jihad, Israel will not let itself be pushed up against a wall.
As ever since its creation, the Jewish State has just one way of getting out of this predicament, by sticking rigidly to its position. Thus it must be strong at the religious, economic and military levels. Israel must be both powerful and fearful!
“G-d gives strength to His people – G-d blesses His people with peace”. First strength, then peace!
The entire team of Shalom wishes you a Happy New Year.
Roland S. Süssmann
Editor in Chief