69 million page views

I hold Mr. Bush personally responsible for this

Reader comment on item: [Israel's Gaza Withdrawal:] A Democracy Killing Itself

Submitted by Steve Klein (United States), Aug 15, 2005 at 09:33

Perhaps a little history is in order:

Immediately after 9/11, president Bush announced his Saudi-inspired vision to create a Palestinian (terrorist) state in the land of Israel. Bush was planning an invasion of Afghanistan. He thought the conflict would greatly enflame the Muslim-Arab world. This Palestinian state idea was a sop to the millions of Muslims who hate Israel in order, Bush hoped, to appease an angry Muslim-Arab world due to the American-led invasion. Bush then cobbled together this quartet -- Russia, the United Nations, the European Union and the U.S.State Department -- in order to give legitimacy to his idea and in order to lay diplomatic siege to the land of Israel.

In April 2002, Israeli forces entered Tulkarm Charity Committee offices and found spread sheets detailing Saudi financial backing for the families of suicide bombers. The Saudis were also funding Hamas and al-Jamiya al-Islamiya in the Gaza Strip, an organization that belongs to Hamas. A report also implicated the Saudis with funding Islamic Jihad. The Saudis were up to their necks in financing terrorism. But the documents did not halt the Saudi effort to shift international attention away form their involvement in terrorism back to the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians according to Dore Gold. The opportunity to renew their diplomatic efforts came only months after September 11, when Crown Prince Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz decided to visit Bush at his Crawford, Texas ranch at the end of April 2002. According to Saudi sources, at the time Abdullah had extracted from Bush "a U.S. vision of peace that was acceptable to the Saudis, and that differed from any Israeli plan." The Saudis yanked Bush in their direction.

"The Quartet proposed the creation of a Palestinian state "with provisional borders based upon a new constitution,.....consistent with the vision expressed by President Bush, this means that the Israeli occupation that began in 1967 will be ended ... based on U.N. resolutions 242 and 338, with Israeli withdrawal to secure and recognized borders (i.e., pre-1967 boarders)..."

"On the Israeli side, Sharon reacted swiftly. He called on Western states, in particular on the US as the leader of the "free world," not to repeat the mistake that triggered World War II, when the European democracies tried to stave off the military confrontation that broke out the following year by sacrificing Czechoslovakia to Hitler's ambitions at the Munich conference in 1938. Sharon pledged that "Israel will never be a second Czechoslovakia," and that, accordingly, it would now have to rely only on itself.

"Bush dismissed Sharon's angry reaction to his statement on Palestinian statehood as "unacceptable." Categorically rejecting Sharon's allegation that the US was appeasing the Arabs at Israel's expense, he angrily denounced the Israeli prime minister's attempt to compare him to Chamberlain and Daladier, the European leaders who sought to appease Hitler at the Munich summit by ceding Czechoslovakia's Sudetenland to Germany." Twenty four hours later, just before the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan, Sharon backed down. (Ahram Weekly)

The 1967 Israeli "occupation" would also include the territory of Gaza according to Bush's road map since the Gaza Strip was captured from the invading Egyptian armies in 1967 and was a base for Egyptian-backed fedayeen terrorist raids into Israel. Egypt occupied Gaza from 1948 till 1967. The quartet's plan for dividing the land of Israel was given to Sharon for his cabinet's authorization; it was literally shoved down our collective throats. Sharon's cabinet offered amendments to the plan. President Bush and his Secretary of State would hear none of it. The road map was to be accepted as is, period!

Sharon came up with this unilateral withdrawal from Gaza in the hope that U.S. pressure to withdraw from the larger settlement blocks would be averted. President Bush and Secretary of Sate Condoleezza Rice have made it abundantly clear, the Gaza retreat has been accepted as a part of the road map and only as the beginning of Sharon's obligations to withdraw from other settlement blocks throughout Judea and Samaria in order to create a viable Palestinian state with contiguity to the Gaza Strip, all consistent with the terms of Bush's road map. Few if any demands are made on the Palestinians in regard to their obligations and responsibilities -- other than lip-service -- which everyone knew would be the case.

Has Ariel Sharon caved into U.S. pressure? Yes. Has there been massive U.S. pressure. Yes. And massive threats from Mr. Bush as well. I hold President Bush personally responsible for this retreat and for his attempt to create yet another Muslim terrorist state in the Middle East, in Israel's heartland. May he go down in history as one of our very worst U.S. presidents. As a thirty four year registered Republican, is this the party of Lincoln? The appeasement party and the appeasement president?

The Bush Administration and Mr. Bush does not deserve the defense provided in this article.


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".

Follow Daniel Pipes

Facebook   Twitter   RSS   Join Mailing List

All materials by Daniel Pipes on this site: © 1968-2024 Daniel Pipes. daniel.pipes@gmail.com and @DanielPipes

Support Daniel Pipes' work with a tax-deductible donation to the Middle East Forum.Daniel J. Pipes

(The MEF is a publicly supported, nonprofit organization under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.

Contributions are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law. Tax-ID 23-774-9796, approved Apr. 27, 1998.

For more information, view our IRS letter of determination.)