Israel will not forgive Arafat on the day of his death for releasing the caged beast of terror and letting it sow destruction in every corner.
The citizens of the state justly feel that Barak and Netanyahu take dangerous chances at their expense, but a glance around reveals, unfortunately, that they have almost no challengers.
Starting this morning, let Sharon shape his policies, including the disengagement plan, to the new reality and seek an end to the conflict without waiting years to see the extent to which Arafat has left behind a "heritage."
Ariel Sharon has shown impressive determination and willingness to pay the personal and political price of his disengagement plan. But dangerous cracks are appearing in the thin ground on which Israeli democracy has so far managed to stand in spite of ruptures that are tearing it apart.
Even the Talmud does not say the Torah was given to Moses directly by God. But Rabbi Avraham Shapira, in the statement he issued this weekend ordering soldiers to refuse to participate in implementing the disengagement plan, spoke in the name of Heaven and presumed to express the will of God.
This mixture of violence dulls the senses, making the horror banal and clouding the ability to distinguish between types of terror threatening the country and undermining the calm of its residents.
Sharon is showing us how he carries out a withdrawal: He announces a disengagement plan from the whole of the Gaza Strip and, meanwhile, he orders the IDF to return to large parts of the territory and deepen its hold on them.
The alertness and dedication of Israeli soldiers and police cannot always overcome the cunning and the determination of Palestinian terrorists. At the end of the week, Israel received a painful reminder of this: in the terror attack at French Hill in Jerusalem and in the terrorists' infiltration into Morag.
Hundreds of thousands of people spent the holiday out of doors as if there was no terror; anyone who mentioned the events in the territories over the weekend was branded a serial party-pooper.