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Jason Holliston
Monday, February 02, 2004  
Sharon's Common Sense

Israel's Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon, finally pushed to the public what should have been on the table for the past 30 years -- the settlements in the Gaza Strip. He wants to relocate all the Jewish settlements there, and bring them back within the boundaries of Israel, behind the security fence that already exists for that area. It's caused quite an uproar among the settlers and the ultra-conservatives in the country. This, along with the corruption issues his government is facing, is threatening to bring him down.

It's incredible to me when I read around in the blogosphere (read some of the comments in the linked page) how many people think this is a bad idea. Listen -- I understand people thinking that this would result in more problems because it's "capitulating" and "retreating", but I think they're wrong. The Israelis should have known 30 years ago that trying to settle in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank wouldn't work in the long run. It's completely obvious that the Palestinians don't want peace if it means not having the Jews fully under their thumb all the way to the sea. It should be obvious that limited military action will never fix the problem, and unlimited military action probably won't work much better, given how deep the problem goes in the Palestinian society.

The way I see it, the solution is to get these security fences up, tell the Palestinians that they're on their own and to look east to Jordan for solutions, and get over it. Maybe in 20 or 30 years of not seeing IDF soldiers and tanks running up and down their streets, they'll begin to stop blaming the Jews for all their problems. Probably not, but this tit-for-tat dance they've been playing will never work. The settlements only require the IDF to be there for protection, and give the Palestinians something else to complain about. Get out -- now.

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