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Settlements in Occupied Territories

Reader comment on item: A Rapid and Harsh Turn against Israel
in response to reader comment: The great Israel sell off has begun!

Submitted by GWK (United States), Jun 8, 2009 at 15:52

Anne -- I believe that the perceived difficulty in securing peace in Israel's borders continues to be expansion beyond the borders originally secured for Israel by the UN in the 1940s. Israel's territory is considerably larger than that of Metropolitan New York City, and yet it's population is a fraction of the Metro NY population. Why does Israel need to expand beyond the original bounds of the nation? Why should the world agree to let Israel settle "occupied territories"?

I am unsure of the effect the settlements have on the behavior of the people of the west bank, and I'd love to see that the settlements have a positive effect on most West bankers and leads to a general feeling of well-being, but I have my doubts that the settlements have been beneficial to all concerned. But I do agree with some strategists on one slice of "occupied land" -- Golan Heights. Given the potentially strategic risks of ceding the high ground at Golan back to potentially hostile characters, I can see many plausible diplomatic reasons for allowing the Israeli military to permanently post lookouts and other soldiers on Golan. But as far as allowing expansion of settlements for Isreal's growing Jewish population, I find it hard to find precedents under current Western principles.

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