As it has been doing for many years, Syria supports Hizballah, Hamas, and other Palestinian groups which cause trouble to Israel. Syria needs to get back its Golan Heights and will not stop until it has it. It is much safer for it to make Israel suffer at the hands of others than confront Israel directly. This policy caused too full scale wars in Lebanon already, and a third is expected soon. Israel understands full well that peace with Syria will cost the Golan, and all the governments headed by Rabin, Peres, Netanyahu, Barak, were ready to pay it, subject to some security and water arrangements. Today, unfortunately, we have another player in the picture, Dumbya Bush. Once Bush added Hamas and Hizballah to his list of terrorists he should fight (and with no good cause), he had to add their supporter Syria to the list. Being under threat, the Syrians had to find a strong supporter - Iran. It is easy to remove Syria from the Iranian orbit: The US should offer its friendship and Israel should return the Golan. This will break the dreaded Iranian arc of influence, put an end to military Hizballah, and reduce Hamas. But Bush is diplomatically-challenged. He only knows to threaten, not to use carrots. Perhaps Jim Baker should convince Papa Bush that he should explain diplomacy to Dumbya. Somebody should, or we will be wasting the next two years.
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Clashes between IDF and Palestinians in Joseph's Tomb after Jews pray at site; none hurt (Haaretz)
from the article: Syrian President vows to keep supporting Hezbollah, Hamas