Monday, June 1, 2009

I am a settler in Beersheba

Bibi and the Community Organizer are at loggerheads – thank goodness.

Without question, Iran is what should be causing sleepless nights for the Community Organizer. If he cared anything at all for his American constituents, that’s where he’d focus his attention.

But instead, he’s got “Israeli Settlements” in his crosshairs. The “Settlements”, as he and Missus Bubba chant, over and over, are the “obstacle to peace”.

What’s a “settlement”? Why is Israel so protective of them – and why is the Community Organizer so hell-bent on eliminating them?

Like many Zionists, I consider myself a “settler”. Why? Because as far as the Arabs are concerned, there is no difference between the area where I live, Beersheba, in the northern Negev, and what he calls “settlements” in Judea and Samaria. They want it all.

But when the Community Organizer talks about “settlements” what he means are the population centers in “Yesha” which is an acronym for Judea and Samaria – actually for Aza, Judea and Samaria, but Israel stupidly gave away Aza, so now only Judea and Samaria remain.

Another term you’ll see is the “West Bank”, i.e. the west bank of the Jordan River. “Disputed territories” is another appellation, because while the area came under the control of Israel after the 1967 war, Israel never, unfortunately, annexed the area. (Our enemies like to refer to the area as “occupied territories”. I won’t even justify that with a comment.)

Roughly speaking, in the map of the “West Bank” above, “Judea” is the green territory south of Jerusalem, while “Samaria” is the land area north of the City.

Understanding what’s at issue here starts with the aftermath of the 1967 “Six Day War”.

Victor Sharpe wrote a fascinating opinion piece on Israel National News setting forth the whole history. Check it out:

Sharpe discusses a memorandum issued by the United States Joint Chiefs of Staff right after the 1967 Six Day War. They concluded that in any peace settlement between Israel and the Arabs, Israel absolutely must retain and control certain territories if it was to survive.

Which territories? The minimum defensible borders, as the Joint Chiefs stated, included the “West Bank” as pictured above, plus Aza, plus parts of the Sinai Peninsula. Without those buffer zones, they said, Israel could not defend itself.

So what happened?

In 1979, Menachem Begin, to his everlasting shame, gave the Sinai to Egypt in return for a sort of “peace”.

In 2000, Prime Minister Ehud Barak (now Israel's Defense Minister) withdrew from southern Lebanon, which permitted the terrorist Hezbollah to take over, which resulted in the 2006 Second Lebanon War. That war ended when Israel quit fighting, which means that today Hezbollah looms as a greater threat now than they were before.

In 2005, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, trying to appease the leftist media and save himself from indictment for corruption, “disengaged” from Aza. Predictably, the Hamas terrorists rushed in to fill the vacuum, where they continue to fire rockets and missiles into Israel – including one yesterday, by the way.

Now the Community Organizer is fixated on having Israel give up what remains of Judea and Samaria.

Israel cannot – and will not – obey. The reason is simple: without the West Bank, with its strategic mountain ridges that directly overlook Israel’s major population centers, Israel itself would be militarily indefensible.

Equally critical is that 80% of Israel’s fresh water supply comes from this area, from the Golan Heights. You don’t need to be a military genius to realize that turning over your source of drinking water to people sworn to your destruction would constitute your last mistake.

So. No matter how strongly the Community Organizer threatens -- how much he says he’ll withdraw UN support for Israel, or suggests he’ll halt loan guarantees, or that he’ll stop selling Israel military supplies – no matter how he tries to bring down the Netanyahu administration, or finds new ways to strut and fret his hour on the stage, Israel will not turn Judea and Samaria over to its enemies.

About 275,000 courageous Jews live in several major population centers in Judea and Samaria. As their populations grow, they need to expand. There’s no reason in the world why they shouldn’t – after all, Arabs live in the West Bank, too. They’re building and expanding just like we are.

All that said, it’s either sheer insanity or willful ignorance to suggest that the “settlements” are “obstacles to peace,” or that limiting settlement growth would end the Arab hostility toward Israel. Even if – G-d forbid – a “peace agreement” were signed and the “territories” turned over to Israel’s enemies, “peace” will not result.

Understand: The conflict in the Middle East has nothing to do with “territories”.

The conflict here is a religious war, pure and simple. The Islamists simply will not permit a non-Muslim state to exist in this part of the world. Giving them additional land masses doesn’t solve anything at all. All it does is encourage them.

Bottom line: Israel is not required to commit national suicide just because the Community Organizer demands it.

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