by Isi Leibler
Reviewing Israel’s political situation after two weeks abroad is a disconcerting exercise.
As anticipated, the Arab Spring has devolved into a bloody nightmare that has engulfed Egypt, leaving Israel surrounded by a sea of violence and barbarism with no prospect for stability on the horizon. Yet whilst hundreds of people are being brutally killed daily, the international community remains obsessed with condemning Israel for allowing the construction of homes in the Jewish suburbs of East Jerusalem.
Meanwhile, the disproportionate levels of energy and passion invested by US Secretary of State John Kerry and other Western leaders in the Israeli-Palestinian imbroglio can only be described as surrealistic. Despite realities on the ground providing irrefutable evidence to the contrary, Kerry continues to chant the absurd mantra that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict represents the principal obstacle to stability in the region. There is little doubt that Kerry gave a wink to the Europeans to encourage them to initiate the most recent campaign against the settlements. With his outrageous remark and worrisome threat to Prime Minister Netanyahu that if peace talks break down “there will be a delegitimization campaign ‘on steroids’ against Israel,” the Obama Administration is signaling that it is intent on imposing a settlement. One shudders at the thought of other messages that are likely to be conveyed, including suggestions that the US abstain from or even support one-sided Security Council condemnations and boycotts against Israel that it has previously vetoed.
The venom directed against us is inexplicable when we consider the facts: Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has refused to make a single, meaningful concession or gesture toward Israel; Palestinian media, religious institutions and educational systems continue to preach feral anti-Israelism and anti-Semitism; the liberal West remained silent when President Abbas proudly proclaimed that ethnic cleansing will be implemented in a Palestinian state to ensure that not a single Jew is permitted to live in Judea or Samaria; and Hamas, the terrorist entity occupying Gaza with which Abbas has pledged to reunite, remains violently opposed to any peace process.
But the most troubling phenomenon is the intensity of American pressure that has forced our government to consider releasing brutal murderers to “boost the morale of the Palestinians” and induce them into “engaging in negotiations”. Never in history has a nation that vanquished those seeking to destroy it been forced to release prisoners under such circumstances. To pressure us to release monsters (who are hailed as heroes and will receive state pensions) before negotiations commence is one of the most appalling concessions to terror ever made; it incentivizes future terrorists and traumatizes Israelis, especially families of terror victims.
If that was not enough, the government even abrogated its jurisdiction by conceding to demands from Abbas to include Israeli Arab terrorists amongst those to be granted amnesty.
The demand that we release these prisoners as a “goodwill gesture” calls into question the entire peace process and those who insist that we make compromises in order to win the “blame game” to secure public opinion.