Olmert has it ass-backwards.

By Ted Belman

Each and every of the “good will gestures” can be questioned for their sanity or efficacy. I prefer to focus on the premise itself that Israel should make gestures at all.

Think about it. Why should Israel be expected to make gestures rather than Abbas.

Gestures are something we expect from people who have wronged us. They are intended to demonstrate that there is a change of heart or to build our confidence that the wrong is truly repented and will not be repeated.

In a normal world, a world of right and wrong, Palestinians should be making gestures to Israel. They should be arresting terrorists or at least disarming them. They should be stopping incitement in schools and mosques. They should be showing a willingness to compromise.

But no, it is Israel who is being forced to make gestures. Such demands suggest that Israel is in the wrong and responsible for the “tension”. Thus Israel is expected to change its ways and to make gratuitous gestures to demonstrate its willingness to make peace. Why so? It is the Arabs who must demonstrate their willingness to make peace or who must abandon terror.

The present government of Israel supported by the left is only too happy to comply to expiate their feelings of guilt that Israel stole the land, the original sin. They are desperate to capitulate because they are so fearful of war. They sell these gestures as a sign of Israel’s strength whereas the opposite is true. They show Israel’s desperation. How can they talk of restoring Israel’s deterrence when they are prostrating themselves thus.

Meanwhile, we must understand that these gestures are not stand alone items. They are part of a new effort on the part of the US administration to force a settlement of the conflict on Arab terms. Bush is shortly to make a new speech which will set out his vision as it now stands.

The international community is also getting desperate. They want to force this settlement before Olmert is thrown out of office and replaced by a government with backbone. They see a dwindling window of opportunity much like the hawks see a dwindling window on attacking Iran. But we never hear of this window though it is as much of a reality as the latter.

The race is on to elect a new government before this government destroys us.

You could scream.

July 16, 2007 | 3 Comments »

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3 Comments / 3 Comments

  1. I will take it a step further, Ted.
    Would it really matter even if Abbas or any Muslim made a goodwill gesture toward Israel?
    Islamic scripture mandates that Muslims can deceive, fool, and break agreements with the infidel/non-believer in Allah and his prophet, Muhammad.
    Remember Hudaybiyah? Muhammad signed an agreement with his native tribe in Mecca, the Quarysh, guaranteeing the Quarysh ten years of peace. Within two years Muhammad was able to strengthen his Muslim forces and then – and only then – did he break the agreement with the Quarysh and attack his native tribe. Why is this important? This is the example Muhammad set for his followers. This prototypical example is contained in all of the authoratative Hadiths. In fact, Arafat would often refer to ‘Hudaybiyah’ in his speeches (delivered in Arabic) after signing agreements with Israel vis a vis the Oslo ‘Peace’ Process. By referencing Hudaybiyah in his speeches, Arafat was letting his constituents know that any agreement which was signed with Israel was meant to be temporary. That is, each and every agreement made with Israel could be broken and violated at the appropriate time when the cause of Islam could be advanced. This is something that our political leaders refuse to acknowledge because they have not studied Islamic scripture – Qur’an,Sunnah and Sira. Or worse yet, if they have studied Islamic scripture, they refuse to acknowledge this foundational fact.
    Hence, any agreement made between an infidel with a Muslim – who claims to follow the Qur’an and Muhammad’s example – cannot be trusted!
    Ted, if Israel were dealing with an implacable enemy that did not adhere to Islamic scripture, your logic would be impeccable.

  2. Olmert has it right – for Olmert. Peres has it right – for Peres. And as much these two have it right for themselves Chaim Ramon has it right for Chaim Ramon. Kadima and Labor need to rid themselves of the territory AND THE SETTLERS. Not having been able to reintegrate 8000 Gush Katif residents, they will do the same in spades for those in the “isolated settlement.” Their desire to rid themselves of these voters may even extend to allowing them to be slaughtered when the IDF removes itself from protecting them. The government will simply leave them to rot rather than evacuate them by force and then say, “We tried to save them by inviting them home.” I do hope my speculation is wrong, but with Ramon and Peres working hard for these goals and Olmert riding shotgun, I would not bet against these outcomes.

  3. Very well put Ted.

    The reality now and probably before however is that while it is wrong to ask Israel to make gestures to support Arafat/Abbas/Fatah, previously called confidence building measures, it is pointless to now ask Abbas/Fatah to make any such gestures. Abbas/Fatah not only do not have the power to make such gestures, but if they tried, they would be lynched before they could set Palestinians on a new path towards a real peace.

    One can scream in frustration at Israel’s lacklustre leadership, present and recent past that has been leading Israel down a path that courts disaster, pushed along by American administrations, thinking they know best on what is in Israel’s best interests, provided those interests accord with American overall Middle Eastern interests.

    One of the main lobby groups in the U.S. AIPAC, unfortunately has taken its lead from the Olmert government and backs the Bush administrations efforts to aid Palestinians and shore up the unshorable Abbas/Fatah.

    As well intentioned as AIPAC no doubt is, AIPAC plays right into the hands of the Palestinians whose goal is to establish an independent Palestinian state which would be nothing more then a new staging ground for continued assaults on Israel.

    It is only because of Palestinian/Arab blind intractable hatred of Jews and Israel that the Palestinians have frustrated all Western efforts to get them to succeed in reaching an independent Palestinian state that for the Palestinians would be a very important and strategic interim stage in their avowed goal to eliminate Israel and build a larger Palestinian state on the ruins and ashes of Israel.

    AIPAC’s support for American efforts to support Abbas/Fatah gives credence and weight to the Bush adminstration’s policies vis a vis Israel and the Middle East.

    It is important in my view for those involved in pro-Israel advocacy and who share views at odds with AIPAC, to engage AIPAC in an effort to get AIPAC turned around.

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