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Israeli response to terrorist acts

Reader comment on item: [The Road Map:] Learning from Oslo

Submitted by Ed Hirsch (United States), Jun 11, 2003 at 10:56

As a friend of Israel who has lived and studied there, and as one who has friends and relatives living there, I believe that Israel is playing into the hands of Hamas, Islamic Jihad, etc. by such acts of retaliation as have just occurred.

That's just what the Palestinian extremists want for they sabotage the peace process such as it is.

Of course, the first responsibility of any government is to protect its citizens, but one must keep the long view foremost in mind. Israel must exist side by side with a Palestinian state. Israel, the U.S. and other powerful democracies must nurture, support and encourage the most moderate elements of Palestinian society such as those represented by Abu Abbas. If he can't subdue radical elements within a reasonable period of time, third parties should be brought in to do so.

Only if and when they fail should Israel try to rout the killers. Unfortunately Israelis will be killed during the interim but Israelis have been killed all along and would continue to be killed if Israel followed the course of action it has been following until now. It's a cliche but truth that those who keep doing the same thing expecting different results are either stupid or crazy. Let's hope Israeli and American leadership is smart and sane.
Ed Hirsch
Memphis TN
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