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Leaving Gaza

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

Submitted by Don Skupsky (United States), Aug 15, 2005 at 12:07


I have followed your comments for years and applaud your efforts. But, your recent article describing the disengagement from Gaza in black and white terms as a "huge mistake" misses the mark.

This was clearly a difficult decision, and there are many opinions on both sides. But, the majority of Israels were fed up with occupying Gaza, especially when so many soldiers were needed to protect so few settlers. This was a huge commitment of lives and resources, with very limited returns. You have no right telling Israelis to make this commitment for the goals you would like to achieve.

I also, personally, believe Sharon is making a one time trade -- 8,000 settlers in Gaza for 250,000 settlers in the West Bank. I don't believe those West Bank settlements will ever become part of any Palestinian state. You see that only 4 detached West Bank settlements were included in the disengagement, but only because they were not part of other settlement blocks.

Nobody ever claimed that disengagement was a step toward peace. In fact, I fully expect the Palestinians will once again show that they don't want their own country, they don't want peace, and they just want to continue a state of war. Then, for sure, Israel and the world will see, that no future steps toward peace are justified. Regardless, with the Gaza settlers out of harms way, the Israeli army will have a free hand to deal with terrorism in Gaza, unless miraculously, the Palestinian Authority starts fulfulling its obligations.

So the sacrifice of 8,000 may very well ensure that Israel's broader goals are met. And, you might be surprised, that your predictions do not come to pass.

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