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I don't think it was a mistake

Reader comment on item: Yossi Klein Halevi: Israel's Withdrawal from Gaza a "Disaster"

Submitted by Boris Frenkel (United States), Mar 6, 2008 at 18:17

By no means I am a liberal. However, I believe withdrawal from Gaza was a mistake. I base my opinion on few simple assumptions:

1. Israel does not want to create a unified palestinian state that would include Gaza and West Bank;

2. It will take a long, long, long time to end palestinian violence in the Middle East;

3. Israel does not have strength, primarily political, to end palestinian intifada.

These assumptions let me think that withdrawal from Gaza may help to achieve the following goals:

1. Make Gaza and West Bank politically different, where Gaza is entirely managed by palestinians and West Bank represents a mixture of palestinian and jewish enclaves. This difference inevitably requires different style of palestinian administration, which we actually witness today.

2. Over time the administrative differences may turn into unresolvable conflict. Even today we observe clashes between Hamas and Fatah. In few years we may expect complete separation, which will make the idea of a single palestinian state completely impossible.

3. As a result, again over time, the Gaza strip may become a separate state or will be absorbed by Egipt. However, the West Bank may be absorbed by Israel and nobody will be around to claim Jerusalem as their capital. The key here is not to force palestinians into this option and wait until their separation is complete.

4. The best way to postpone any decision and buy time is to pressure palestinians to end violence before any talks about peace. This goal is totally impossible to achieve, which means the process will go as long as it is needed.

5. Israel should not try to destroy Hamas completely. First of all, it is impossible. Also this organization is needed to maintain and deepen separation with Fatah. The goal here is to keep these two forces in balance, rather to fight either of them to the end.

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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