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Wednesday, August 23, 2006

The Old Bait And Switch

The Golan Heights instead of Convergence???

On today's political program on Channel 10, the 2 journalists discussed whether Avi Dichter's comments about Israel's "readiness" to give up the Golan for peace with Syria was really a solitary comment thought and felt only by him and condemned by Kadima, or was it a voiced comment that is actually on the minds of the Party. Is giving back the Golan going to become Olmert's new "Convergence Plan"???

It seems like a stupid question as the facts on the ground in Syria make talking about negotiations with them a complete farce. But, one must never underestimate the stupidity of the current government. No-one really understood why, in the middle of a war caused in part by unilateral withdrawal with no plan (Sound familiar? Do you feel like you've heard that song before?), Olmert would dare to opine that rockets flying into all of northern Israel would give momentum to his Convergence Plan in the West Bank. Yet, that's exactly what he did.

It must be mentioned that Dichter isn't the first Knesset member to bring up the Golan, in this month alone. DM Peretz stated that the result of this war would give rise to peace negotiations with the Lebanese, Palestinians, and the Syrians. This is the co-founder of Peace Now we're talking about. He can mean nothing but giving up land, especially the Golan Heights, when he's speaking about "negotiations". These two comments, made just a couple of weeks within each-other and from 2 high standing members of the current coalition, should hint to Israelis that it is very posssible that the old argument of giving back the Golan for peace with Syria is making a come-back. (Get out you "Ha'Am Im Ha'Golan" Stickers again!) Of course, as with the reality on the ground within the Palestinian Authority, the current government has taken a trip to Never-Land if they believe that the current situation in Syria warrants "serious" discussion of attempting to restart "peace" negotiations with Assad.

After reading The Letters of Jonathan Netanyahu, I have realized that his ideas about the Golan are as true today as they were when he spoke of it back in the 1960s and early 1970s. The only way that Israel is going to have true and lasting peace with Syria is if SYRIA gives up its demand for the Golan Heights and finally concedes the land to Israel. READ THE REST... Besides being the most beautiful and breath-taking landscape in Israel and a tremendous addition to the Israeli economy, the Golan is a priceless strategic point for Israel's defense. It is this piece of land that has prevented Syria from seriously considering a full-scale attack on Israel since her 1967 victory. From the peaks of the Golan Heights, Israel can practically and literally see into Assad's bedroom in Damascus. That's an incredible deterrence. This factor has protected Israel's existence for the past 39 years.

However, if Israel were to return the Golan to Syria, Syria would recover its strategic advantage and danger that they would use hang over Israel's heads like the hang man's noose. As can be seen with Israel's "peace" treaties with Jordan and Egypt, these countries are not our "friends". There is still a lot of anti-Israel sentiment and threats stemming and boiling within these 2 countries. Egypt is at great risk to be taken over by terrorist and extremist elements within its society. It is an extremely fragile and budding democracy. If Jordan and Egypt were to be taken over by extremist elements, Israel still has strategic points in place to protect itself from these two countries' attacks. Deterrence remains intact on top of the continuously haunting memories of 1967 and 1973.

Syria would be a different story. The current government is developing a strong relationship with Iran, a government sworn to "wiping Israel off the face of the map". On top of this, the Muslim Brotherhood terrorist group is gaining a lot of momentum and power within the country, and it is feared that it won't be long before the Brotherhood gains a majority control within the country. There is no realistic indications that would give any-one looking at the situation in even a minutely objective way any sort of evidence that this situation will change any-time in the future. Therefore, it is completely irrational and illogical to look at the situation and say that true peace with Syria will be achieved, EVER, by giving back the Golan.

In fact, all historical research and fact proves that Israel and Syria will only have true peace by following the path given by Egypt and Jordan, and that is Syria giving up demands for the return of the Golan, and Israel keeping its strategic advantage via the land-scape. As is being demonstrated now, it seems as Israel has lost its military initiative, and, therefore, that part of its deterrence package. Lebanon is a perfect example of this. So is 1967-1973. If Israel will not work to take back its military initiative and learn from history's hard lessons, the only deterrence Israel has left is the topography, which is priceless. Giving up any part of it is suicide.

All military analysis of land captured by Israel in 1967 have come to the same conclusion. It is time that the government of Israel abandon the antiquated and suicidal idea that the only way to achieve peace with enemies sworn to her destruction is to give them the land necessary to achieve those goals. As long as Israel keeps the strategic landscape, their true existential threats - meaning, those belligerent countries not terrorist groups - will not give in to the will to attack. Israel needs to stand up to the world and finally say, "We will not commit suicide again. The only way to achieven real peace with Syria is for Israel to retain the Golan Heights. We refuse to return to the status quo of June 4th, 1967."

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