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An intelligence brief circulated in the Knesset warns that Hamas has acquired rockets with a 50-mile range, enough to strike Tel Aviv.

The immorality of this warning is stunning. Are the three-mile rockets which hit Sderot regularly somehow less dangerous than those which might hit Tel Aviv? Why is a potential threat to Tel Aviv emphasized more than the long-standing threat to Sderot, Ashdod, and Ashkelon? We know, why: because politically influential Jews reside in the Tel Aviv area—and who cares about any others?

Just as his cabinet is expected to vote to approve an extension of the construction freeze, Netanyahu has revealed that the exact details of the American incentives package are still being discussed. Huh? Then why are we voting for the freeze in return for we know not what?

Netanyahu implies that the American incentives are connected to halting Iran’s nuclear program. Oh sure, we’ll have yet another round of useless sanctions. Meanwhile, Bushehr goes hot in a few days, despite Mossad’s sabotage.

So far, the White House has promised us a veto on the unilateral declaration of Palestinian statehood—but only for one year. And should we not expect the United States to veto such a declaration as a matter of friendship and alliance, regardless of the freeze? Obama also promised not to pressure Israel for a settlement freeze. But are we to believe the same Hussein who has already broken his electoral promises to stop Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons and help Israel to defend herself?

Barak claimed that the American gift of 20 F-35’s justifies the freeze. But why do we need those advanced jets if we cannot even bomb Bushehr?

Shas’ ministers can defeat the freeze vote, but needless to say, Shas will vote with the prime minister who bought them with stipends to religious students. Or, as a face-saving measure, they will abstain from voting. Nominally, Shas demands that construction in Jerusalem be encouraged, which would never happen on a meaningful scale even if it were approved. And what is the point of building there if R. Ovadia Yosef has already approved giving the place to Arabs, ostensibly to save Jewish lives?

Peaceniks laud the American pressure as a way to avoid a binational state. As if a state where Arabs constitute 34% of the youth is not already binational.

During the three-month freeze, Netanyahu is expected to abandon the Jordan Valley to the Arabs, leaving only a minimal IDF presence. This is the issue over which Rabin was killed: in his last Knesset speech, he refused to cede the valley. Is it not bizarre that instead of attacking Iran, as he promised to do during the elections, Netanyahu negotiates away the Jordan Valley, Israel’s major security barrier?

Worse, the freeze is entirely futile. It will cover East Jerusalem only nominally, but Abbas demands a formal freeze there. The upcoming talks assume IDF’s presence in the Jordan Valley after the Palestinian declaration of statehood, something that Abbas categorically opposes. And Netanyahu cannot sell to his government any agreement with the Palestinians which includes a division of Jerusalem.

Both Netanyahu and Abbas know the price of a peace treaty, but neither is strong enough to gain public approval for it.

November 2010
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