Khalid # 3 Your Suggestions For Israel - Comment - Israel News | Haaretz Daily Newspaper
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    • Jeff Northridge
    • 13.12.05 | 16:47 (IST)

    Howdy Khalid; 1) Israel has withdrawn from the Gaza Strip and will probably withdraw from those portions of the West Bank which lie to the east of the security barrier after it is completed in about two years. Israel is not required to withdraw to the Green Line. The actual border between Israel and the West Bank was left up to the belligerent parties to work out through negotiations and which are to include mutual recognition. Failing an agreement, Israel intends to unilaterally define the border with the security fence and East Jerusalem will fall on the Israeli side of it. 2) Israel has repeatedly expressed her willingness to help with a "just settlement" for the Palestinian refugees and their descendents as part of a comprehensive final agreement. UNSCR 242 calls, "For achieving a just settlement of the refugee problem;", but notice that Israel is not the sole party responsible for this, there is no "right of return" mentioned, and Jewish refugees are not distinquished from Palestinian ones. Israel has already absorbed the lion's share of the 860,000+ Jewish refugees who were kicked out of various Arab countries and is willing to compensate the Palestinian refugees or their heirs for their loss of property provided that they stay on their side of the fence. Various other Arab states or authorities have failed to help the Palestinian refugees with the sole exception of Jordan. 3) Israel has no agressive designs towards Egypt, Jordan, or Turkey. Israel has peace agreements with the first two and her relations with Turkey are friendly to say the least. Israel's position with respect to Syria, Lebanon, and Iran is defensive in nature--not offensive. If attacked from those countries, Israel will respond, but that cannot be construed as "aggesive designs" towards those countries. 4) Israel cannot trust the other countries of the Middle East well enough to scrap her nuclear weapons. This is based upon a long history of Arabs failing to honor their side of any agreement and there is no evidence that the Arabs (or Persians) have any intentions of changing their ways in the near future. Israel could take the steps that you suggested, but she cannot do so without incredible and unnecessary risk to herself and without any concession or guarantee from the other side. Basically, you are suggesting that Israel surrender. Good luck with your proposal!

    from the article: Ahmadinejad can continue to smile while the world argues
    First published 00:00 13.12.05 | Last updated 00:00 13.12.05
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