Sharon’s plans

January 14th, 2014 at 2:00 pm by David Farrar

An interesting article in Haaretz on what Sharon was looking to do:

Ever since Ariel Sharon sank into a coma eight years ago, many have wondered whether he would have taken the peace process with the Palestinians any further after the 2005 withdrawal from Gaza.

A series of cables from the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv to the State Department that were leaked to Wikileaks show that in fact, even before the Gaza withdrawal, Sharon was planning his next big diplomatic move. Moreover, leaked Palestinian documents show that after Yasser Arafat’s death in November 2004, and even more so once Mahmoud Abbas was elected Palestinian president the following January, Sharon made efforts to coordinate the Gaza withdrawal with the Palestinian Authority. …

In his summary of that meeting, then-U.S. Ambassador Dan Kurtzer makes it clear that Sharon had no intention of stopping with the Gaza withdrawal, but planned to take far-reaching steps in the West Bank and Jerusalem. Kurtzer noted that Sharon put emphasis on annexing the major settlement blocs, implying he would concede other parts of the West Bank, and that while he would not even discuss dividing Jerusalem, he would consider handing over some Arab neighborhoods, “but not the Temple Mount, Mount of Olives or the City of David.”

We’ll never know what would have happened if Sharon had lived, but I think we would be closer to a peace settlement. However I doubt we would have one, as both parties need to want peace, and while Fatah sort of do, Hamas do not.

13 Responses to “Sharon’s plans”

  1. Brad (82 comments) says:

    I doubt it would have gotten through the Israeli parliament either

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  2. iMP (2,665 comments) says:

    History plainly shows, that the Jews have sought peace at every stage, including giving away land for peace, only to have their goodwill violated again and again, and the land given to their enemies used as a missile platform to target civilian Jewish suburbs.

    It is a croc to make out that Isrealis are aggressors by “building residential homes in sensitive areas,” when Arabs, Jews, Muslims, Christians and secularists happily cohabit everywhere else in Israel. It is only an “aggressive act” because militant Palestionians and wider geo-political pawn movers, make it one, because they donot want Israel to exist at all.

    For God’s sake, Jews have quartered their most holy site, and currently allow muslim’s to manage their holiest Temple Mt. in the interests of peace. That belies the claims Isreali’s are aggressors. Jerusalem is also quartered. can you imagine Muslims allowing that?

    Non-muslims are not even allowed to enter Mecca.

    And Kiwis get executed on remote Libyan beaches.

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  3. SPC (8,704 comments) says:

    Olmert made an effort to continue the direction but got nowhere. This was because of the rockets out of Gaza that undermined support for evacuation from settlements – the argument was that withdrawal from the West Bank might result in the same consequences.

    Sharon probably would have been more able to withdraw from a few settlements to demonstrate that the risk was overstated, but as he was determined to be in control of the process with his approach – the reassurances (decide to stay in the larger settlements especially around Jerusalem) he would have made to maintain domestic support for his vision meant he would not have had a Palestinian partner. It would have remained a unilateral approach.

    So the outcome would still be little different to where we are now, the said settlements remain but set for withdrawal only on a peace settlement.

    People mistake the ambition for change on the ground as peace making. It is recognition that Gaza based Hamas prevents a peace settlement, but that things can be improved on the West Bank towards where they would be with peace.

    But other Israelis are only prepared to make these concessions to the West Bank Palestinians in return for peace (a peace that Hamas prevents).

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  4. SPC (8,704 comments) says:

    iMP, given the state of Israel borders are greater than awarded by the UN in 1947, what land is it they have they given away for peace or offered to give away for peace?

    Is it further land occupied after a war?

    The Sinai of Egypt occupied in 1967 left by Begin with a peace. South Lebanon, left by Barak in 2000 without a peace. And Gaza occupied in 1967 – left by Sharon without a peace.

    They have offered to leave parts of occupied West Bank, but not all, and that is one of the blocks on a peace. Note the UN does not recognise the right of a nation to annex territory taken in war. So leaving all of the West Bank with a peace, just as leaving all of Sinai for one with Egypt, is what would normally be expected.

    The problem is that it is not that clear that this would be enough for peace, thus …

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  5. kowtow (13,237 comments) says:


    I read an article somewhere that said overflying jet liners close the blinds so infidels can’t even LOOK at Mecca!

    Jerusalem is too important a city to ever be controlled by Islamics.

    That was one of the reasons for the First Crusade .They stopped pilgrims freely accessing the Holy Sites,does anyone seriously think it couldn’t happen again?

    Even under the British Mandate the Arabs wanted to prevent Jews from worshipping at their Temple site, no wonder it was such an important victory for the Israelis back in ’67.

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  6. Lance (3,830 comments) says:

    Rockets continue to be fired into Israel.

    Israel is presently doing nothing about it.

    Odd that nobody is praising their restraint?

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  7. Fentex (3,332 comments) says:

    History plainly shows, that the Jews have sought peace at every stage

    That is not true. Whether or not one agrees with the intent and ambitions of forming Israel the violence of birth and continuing treatment of Palestinians, deliberately kept stateless, cannot be described as actions of people “seeking peace at every stage”.

    Israel clearly prefers security to peace, it doesn’t require taking sides to see that.

    In the long term Israelis and Palestinians would be best off if they lived together in a greater Israel/Palestine respectful of all it’s citizens. Getting to such a place seems impossible to many but I think is achievable and would both require and contribute to the confounding of tyrannies that use Palestinians as a foil to distract their populations from their own oppression.

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  8. Frankie Lee (24 comments) says:

    “It is a croc to make out that Isrealis are aggressors by “building residential homes in sensitive areas,” when Arabs, Jews, Muslims, Christians and secularists happily cohabit everywhere else in Israel.”

    The settlements are a flashpoint because their goal, always well understood within Israel, is to create “facts on the ground”. That is, to facilitate Israels absorbtion of large chunks of the West Bank without the need for formal annexation, as annexation would require the extension of Israeli law to cover the Arab inhabitants (the reason why Israeli Arabs are relatively docile). The end result would see the Palestinian towns surrounded and cut off from each other by ever-expanding settlements; turning them into little more than reservations. To say nothing of the frequently thuggish behaviour of the settlers themselves.

    The assertion that Israel is just “building residential areas” is thoroughly disengenuous.

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  9. Harriet (7,545 comments) says:


    “….Note the UN does not recognise the right of a nation to annex territory taken in war….”

    That is after the war has ended. Not during it.

    Land taken in war is allowed to be used as a defence. And Israel is still being attacked like it has been since 1949. Therefor the land taken will simply be used by the likes of Hamas as an attack platform to fire missles deeper into Israel.

    “The idea of slicing up Israel for peace is balony.” – Former Israel PM Golda Meir.

    “War will cease when the Arabs love their children more than they hate ours.”- Former Israel PM Golda Meir.

    The UN is nothing more than an international platform of anti-semitism and the final solution!

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  10. SPC (8,704 comments) says:

    Harriet, the state of Israel has claimed annexation of East Jerusalem and no one has recognised this annexation.

    Land cannot be annexed during a war, only occupied.

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  11. TimG_Oz (971 comments) says:

    Frankie Lee makes an accusation of a “disengenuous” [sic] argument.

    However some of the accusations just don’t wash. The majority of the Israeli settlements are along the West Bank Border, and do not encoach on land. Many of the settlements were actually Jewish settled land before 1947, so there is a question of ownership. The PA requested dedicated Palestinian and Israeli roads within the West Bank, so I’m not sure how the accusation of division stacks up.

    Here’s a map to back up the fact the land is not that invasive

    Geographic expansion of settlement has actually been halted by Israel since 2003. The much hated “settlement activity” is actually adding units to existing land, but not expanding it.

    Israel also actively dismantles illegal settlements. The accusation of settler violence is nothing compared to murders of the settlers, such as the Fogel family.

    Any peace agreements always include land swaps and or dismantling of settlements, which Israel has honoured in the past. In the case of Gaza, settlements were abandoned without any agreement in place with the Palestinians.

    So I ask you now, Kiwibloggers, who is disingenuous?
    I also spell checked it for you 🙂

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  12. SPC (8,704 comments) says:

    In April 2012, UN secretary general Ban Ki-Moon, in response to moves by Israel to legalise Israeli outposts, reiterated that all settlement activity is illegal, and “runs contrary to Israel’s obligations under the Road Map and repeated Quartet calls for the parties to refrain from provocations.”[17] Similar criticism was advanced by the EU and the US.

    The ongoing expansion of existing settlements by Israel and the construction of settlement outposts is frequently criticized as an obstacle to the peace process by the Palestinians[21] and third parties, including the United Nations,[22] Russia,[23] the United Kingdom,[24] the European Union,[25] and the United States.[22]

    The Israeli settlements in the West Bank make up what Israel calls the Judea and Samaria Area. Since December 2007, approval by both the Israeli Prime Minister and Israeli Defense Minister of all settlement activities (including planning) in the West Bank is required.[59] Authority for planning and construction is held by the Israel Defense Forces Civil Administration.

    The area consists of four cities, thirteen local councils and six regional councils.

    Cities: Ariel, Betar Illit, Maale Adumim, Modi’in Illit;
    Local councils: Alfei Menashe, Beit Aryeh-Ofarim, Beit El, Efrat, Elkana, Giv’at Ze’ev, Har Adar, Immanuel, Karnei Shomron, Kedumim, Kiryat Arba, Ma’ale Efraim, Oranit;
    Regional councils: Gush Etzion (Ezion Bloc), Har Hebron (Mount Hebron), Matte Binyamin (Staff of Benjamin, named after the ancient Israelite tribe that dwelled in the area), Megilot (Scrolls, named after the Dead Sea scrolls, which were discovered in the area), Shomron Regional Council (Samaria), Biq’at HaYarden (Jordan valley).

    The Yesha Council (Hebrew: מועצת יש”ע‎, Moatzat Yesha, a Hebrew acronym for Judea, Samaria and Gaza) is the umbrella organization of municipal councils in the West Bank.

    The actual buildings of the Israeli settlements cover only 1 percent of the West Bank, but their jurisdiction and their regional councils extend to about 42 percent of the West Bank, according to the Israeli NGO B’Tselem. Yesha Council chairman Dani Dayan disputes the figures and claims that the settlements only control 9.2 percent of the West Bank.[60]

    After the failure of the Roadmap, several new plans emerged to settle in major parts of the West Bank. In 2011, Haaretz revealed the Civil Administration’s “Blue Line”-plan, written in January 2011, which aims to increase Israeli “state-ownership” of West Bank lands (“state lands”) and settlement in strategic areas like the Jordan Valley and the Palestinian northern Dead Sea area.[39] In March 2012, it was revealed that the Civil Administration over the years covertly allotted 10% of the West Bank for further settlement. Provisional names for future new settlements or settlement expansions were already assigned.

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  13. SPC (8,704 comments) says:

    Oh good grief a downtick for posting the facts, is the truth unwelcome? And if so, to whom?

    Those scared of the truth are the cowards of humanity and always have been.

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