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In a perfect world

Reader comment on item: Mr. Olmert Visits Washington

Submitted by Robert Arbetman (United States), May 18, 2006 at 09:43

In a perfect world far, far away people would leave Israel alone to sort these issues out for themselves.

I wish the rest of the world would leave Israel alone. This starts with the Arabs but also includes Israel's friends.

I have a lot of faith that Israel will do the right thing if it is not diplomatically pressured by Americans, Europeans and others to relinquish the disputed territories OR keep them.

The United States Department of State continues to pressure Israel for territorial concessions even though the Arab population make no secret as to their plans to continue attacking Israel. This pressure is not as loud and bellicose as it was during the first Bush Administration, but the results we see speak for themselves. Anyone listening carefully to our State Department knows that it has made its desires clear on this issue.

Israel doesn't need to keep the disputed territories or give them up. Israel needs freedom-of-action. At some point, Americans need to realize that the constraints we have placed on Israel's freedom-of-action has not been helpful.

I believe that America must come to grips with the fact that we have badly betrayed our "land for peace" policy. America promised Israel that if it took risks for peace in 1993, we would stand by Israel's side if it all went bad. If the failure of the 2000 Clinton-Barak-Arafat negotiations didn't demonstrate that it has all gone bad, the subsequent war that Arafat started should have done so. If the war that Arafat started hasn't demonstrated that it has all gone bad, the election of Hamas is the ultimate convincing factor.

In order for America to have diplomatic credibility, we must restore and reinforce our "land for peace" policy that has been the cornerstone of American diplomatic efforts for nearly 40 years. Americans and Israelis alike always understood the basic rationale of the "land for peace" policy. I don't think it takes a bunch of geniuses at some think tank (no insult to Dr. Pipes, Caroline Glick et al) to know that abandoning this policy will not likely promote peace and security for our Israeli ally. This generation of Americans and Israelis should not have to relive the horrible consequences of appeasement the previous generation endured.

In a perfect world far, far away America should learn from past lessons and act accordingly.

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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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