Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Will The Isreali Pullout of Gaza End Terror There?

A couple of years ago I was in a heated debate regarding Iraq and our policy in the Arab world with a friend of a friend and a party(in Washington, the debates never end). The subject of Isreal came up, of course, and I defended the US's support of Israel and it's right to defend itself. The person I was debating with called me "ignornant" for ignoring the "obvious" fact that the Israeli's had "stolen" their land from the poor Palenstinians and that they were obviously occupying Gaza nad the West Bank illegalaly and that the Palestinians had every right to fight back to claim it. I was taken aback, first because this woman had just called me ignorant. Second, because she essentially said Palestinian terrorism was OK. I asked her if she really supported the killing of innocents by the terrorists in Isreal. She respinded with a non-answer, saying should could "understand the desire" to hurt those who took your homeland. Unfortuantly for this woman, I had just finished reading two books: "The Case for Isreal by Alan Dershowitz, and "Six Dats of War", a well-written, fairly balanced history of the Six Days War in 1967. Dershowitz's book dispels most of the myths defenders of teh Infitada use to justify attacks on Isreal, and the history of the Six Days War enlightened me as to why Isreal still held onto Gaza and the West Bank.

For those of you who don't know, it's because neither Syria or Jordan has ever promised not to attack Isreal again. After the war ended, the Isreali's immediately offered to give back all the land they had won in a war they didn't start if the agressors, Egypt, Syria and Jordan, promised to stop making war on them. None agreed. When the Camp David accords were signed, Egypt got back the Sinai because they finally promised to stop attacking Isreal. Syria and Jordan, however, have been using the Isreali occupation of those lands as a reason to forment hatred of the Jews in the Arab world. It's more useful to them for the Isreali's to keep the land because it works up their population into a frenzy against Isreal to keep the attention off how corrupt Syria and Jordan are. When I pointed all this out to by interrogator, she called me a racist and huffed off. I informed my friend of this exchange, who is half-Iraqi, half-Isreali. The friend was not seen at an of her parties again. I was.

Why am I telling this tale? Because Isreal is about to start pulling out of Gaza on it's own. On August 15th, Isreal will reomve it's own settlers from area and give it to the Palestinians. Without any of the previous conditions being met. It had caused some great upheavel in Isreali politics. with former Prime Minister and Cabinet Member Bibi Netnyahau quiting the government the other day. But they are doing it anyway. Today Daniel Pipes wonders if this will change the amount of terror directed at Isreal. It's an important question, because, as I said above, the common complaint from Isreal's detractors is centered around the "illegal" occupation of Gaza. Will people like the one I debated at the party stop complaining about Isreal after this pullout occurs, and, more imprtantly, are the right that the level of violence will decrease because the "injustice" is gone? Pipes doesn't think so. I hope so, but am not optimistic. It's a question that should be asked today though, because Isreal is showing it really wants peace. How will anti-Isreal members of both the Left and Right respond? I might have to wait to the next party over Labor Day to find out.


Blogger Ittay said...

The disengagement went remarkably well. As to whether it will end terror against all Israelis, only time will tell. What it has done though, is take 8000 Gazan settlers and over 50,000 Israeli soldiers out of harms way in Gaza. For that, we can be glad.

Mon Aug 22, 09:10:00 PM 2005  

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