Sunday, April 23, 2006

 

Is this the true reason for Disengagement?

For those who keep asking why "G-d allowed" the Jewish communities of Gush Katif and Northern Shomron to be destroyed... It seems like it was needed to show what the Arabs are really like, because now there are Israeli leftists who are starting to comprehend how foolish and dangerous Disengagement was. And now they're saying that Olmert's Resettlement (Convergence) Plan, to deport and exile innocent, law-abiding Jews from their homes in Judea and Samaria, may be a very serious mistake.

Left-Wing Writers Against Olmert's Unilateral Withdrawal Plans

13:52 Apr 23, '06 / 25 Nisan 5766
by Hillel Fendel

Journalists Yoel Marcus, a prominent dove and left-wing apologist, and Sever Plocker, pro-Disengagement commentator for Yediot Acharonot, are no longer sure they support Olmert's plan to quit Yesha.

Marcus wrote in Haaretz last week, "In light of the fact that the evacuation of Gush Katif put Hamas in office, increased the Kassams, and Israel is still in Gaza with artillery - and maybe soon with tanks - I suddenly doubt if the Ehud Olmert government will be able to evacuate 60 thousand settlers."

Dr. Aaron Lerner of IMRA noted that the article, which appeared only in the Hebrew edition of Haaretz, was written by a man who devoted the past years encouraging Ariel Sharon to retreat from the Gaza Strip.

A more detailed exposition against Olmert's unilateral convergence plan was penned by Sever Plocker, the Chief Economics Editor and Member of the Editorial Board of the daily Yediot Aharonot. Commenting in the past in favor of Ariel Sharon's disengagement plan, Plocker wrote that it was "a first step – and not a last step – ahead of a return to [Israel's] proper borders." Now, however, he feels that the lessons of the Disengagement indicate otherwise.

Plocker's article on Ynet last week was entitled, "Disengagement Lessons: Flawed Pullout Predictions Should Make Olmert Rethink His Plan." The article states: "...Almost nothing has materialized in the way supporters of the Disengagement promised us would happen. The Gaza Strip did not calm down and the Palestinian Authority did not take matters there into its own hands in order to establish the Middle Eastern Hong Kong... Armed gangs rule the narrow, derelict refugee camp streets. The only manufacturing activity is the industry of flying iron tubes that are launched to short distances... The handing over of the border crossing with Egypt to Palestinian control also failed to lead to the expected results. The border is rather porous, checks are inadequate, and smuggling is rampant. There too, the Palestinians failed to implement their sovereignty... The Palestinian Authority did not use the months between Israel's withdrawal and the general elections in order to reinforce its hold among Gaza residents. It was busy with internal power struggles. The elections were decided in favor of Hamas... [E]ven the official Hamas has given up in the face of Gaza's collapse and left it to face its destiny.

"And Israel, even though it removed its army and settlements, and even though it closed down the crossings to the movement of goods, is still stuck with Gaza as if it was a huge bone in its throat. We didn't disengage: What is happening, and particularly what is not happening, in Gaza, continues to haunt us. The responsibly over it, in the eyes of the world and in some ways in our own view, has not been lifted from Israel...

"Did Israel gain from the disengagement? Less than what its planners hoped. The United States didn't grant us even one cent in economic aid, even though in various phases of preparation for the withdrawal and upon the pullout, much was said about a special $2 billion grant. As of today, there's no grant. "For a short while, Israel enjoyed international sympathy, with the pullout perceived as the start of a large-scale unilateral withdrawal. Yet the sympathy is slowly evaporating, particularly following Ariel Sharon's illness. Ehud Olmert may discover that the attitude to a Sharon-made disengagement is very different than the world's approach to an Olmert-made one. The first one fascinated the world because it appeared to be a personal sea change by a hawkish leader tired of war. The second one, Olmert's pullout, would look like - and already looks like - as an act by a centrist politician whose party received about a quarter of the vote in the recent elections.

"...Would Israel really be able to unilaterally set its border vis-vis the Palestinians, a border they or the world would not accept? Would Israel be able to 'converge' into 'settlement blocs' in the West Bank and annex them? Who would finance such a move, which would cost tens of billions of shekels and not be perceived as a solution to anything? Who would prevent a tragic rift among the people? And what would be left behind in Palestine following a pretend-Israeli-withdrawal coupled with pretend-annexation? ..."

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