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Critics say the Gaza disengagement has failed. It has not brought peace to Israel, but rather increased the level and intensity of terror attacks, claim supporters of Greater Israel. It has not brought freedom to Palestinians, but rather shut them into Gaza, claim pro-Palestinians.

Indeed that seems to be the case. The fault however is not in the disengagement, but in what was done, or not done, after the disengagement. The terror in Gaza was ostensibly aimed at ending the occupation. Evil Zionist settlements were stealing the water and land of the Palestinians, as we were reminded each day by the media. The international community found it hard to condemn Palestinian terror in these circumstances.

Disengagement was supposed to have changed the rules. There are no more settlements. Nobody steals the water and land of the Palestinians in Gaza. Gaza was also meant to be a model for future disengagement in the West Bank. The rules should have changed. The victims of terror are no longer "settlers" in "illegal settlements" in "occupied territory." They are poor Israelis living a quite difficult and legal life in towns and kibbutzim and moshavim ringing the Gaza strip.

The new rules should have been clear. The Israelis end the occupation, the Palestinians end the terror, everyone can finally begin to get on with their lives.

However, all sides still play by the old rules, as though the people of Sderot are "settlers" and somehow Palestinians have a right to "resist" the occupation of Sderot. The Palestinians continued a reign of terror and anarchy. Israel could not possibly allow the free flow of goods in and out of Gaza, because that would result in smuggling of heavy armaments and create a monumental security problem. The international community should be bending every sinew to ensure the success of disengagement and keep the peace. After all, the US and the rest of the quartet insist on a peaceful two state solution. Every Qassam rocket that lands in Sderot or Ashkelon pushes that possibility farther away.

However, instead of acting firmly and unequivocally on the side of peace, the international community has vacillated. When an Israeli soldier is kidnapped, the US State Department urges "restraint" as they always do. What restraint did the US exercise in "illegally occupied" Iraq when "resistance" kidnapped an American soldier?? What restraint would the US exercise if Qassam rockets were falling on Buffalo New York, and had "only" killed about eight people?

Israel has made a few mistakes about the disengagement as well. We understood what the disengagement was supposed to accomplish, but then we apparently forgot. The disengagement puts Israel in the right in Gaza. We should no longer have to argue about "moral equivalence" or who kills more people. It is irrelevant. Terror and aggression are wrong, and they have to be stopped. The Qassam rockets kill and maim innocent people for no reason. The Israeli soldiers killed in Kerem Shalom, and the Israeli soldier who was kidnapped, were not monsters of the some occupation army. They were young men doing their lawful duty, guarding their own country, inside a border that the international community claims to recognize.

If the international community recognizes the green line border, as they claim, why are they unwilling to defend the peace along that green line? Israel should have taken advantage of the new reality created by disengagement, and pressed tirelessly for international action against the Qassam rockets, instead of engaging in fruitless IDF "retaliation."

We are still thinking according to the old rules. Some Israelis are bemoaning disengagement. Disengagement was the right thing to do. We should never be sorry to have done what is morally correct, but now we have to show that we know we are right. Instead, some Israelis want an "eye for an eye" - endless retribution in a scenario that makes both sides equally culpable.

Nobody should die, and nobody should be killed, if at all possible, but the terror must be stopped. Not one person should suffer needlessly, because of someone's need for vengeance, but it is unthinkable that the world will allow this pointless terror. born of the vagaries of gang wars between Palestinian terror factions, to continue.

Ami Isseroff

Original content is Copyright by the author 2006. Posted at ZioNation-Zionism and Israel Web Log, http://www.zionism-israel.com/log/archives/00000135.html where your intelligent and constructive comments are welcome. Disributed by ZNN list. Subscribe by sending a message to ZNN-subscribe@yahoogroups.com. Please forward by e-mail with this notice, cite this article and link to it. Other uses by permission only.

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Replies: 1 Comment

You say the terror must be stopped.
How? if not by retribution; or maybe the terrorists should be educated anew to accept Israel's existence, by talking to them and convincing them of Israel's right to the land of Israel! ! !

How do we show we are right?

Do you or does anyone really believe that terror will be stopped one day?

Angela Wine, Wednesday, June 28th

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