Shifra Horn writes:
Israel was established to provide a haven for Jews from persecution in many countries, in a land they had lived in for 3000 years. The Holocaust was a fresh and frightening reality. Jewish refugees created a functioning and tolerant democracy – which now has an Arab population of more than 20 per cent or 1.6 million – with full employment, sophisticated healthcare and social services. There are no refugees in Israel despite the country absorbing millions of Ethiopians and Russians who escaped persecution in their homelands.
And as attacks on Jews increase in countries such as France, never has it been more important that there is one country where Jews can be safe from persecution.
Israel returned Gaza in 2005 and was rewarded by continuing rocket attacks on nearby Israeli towns and cities. There are no Israelis in Gaza and no occupation. These attacks continue today. Despite millions of dollars from the United States and United Nations pouring into Gaza, this money has been used for rockets and military tunnels – not the food or housing the Palestinians so desperately need.
And this is why the mood in Israel has turned against land for peace.They gave up the land of Gaza and in return did not get peace, but many more attacks.
There have been several substantial offers of peace with the Palestinians. Offers to return up to 97 per cent of the West Bank after the Camp David talks in 2000 and of land swaps by Ehud Olmert in 2008 were either turned down or answered with violence.
Make no mistake – any Palestinian leader who makes peace with Israel will be killed by his own people within days or weeks. Egypt’s Sadat did not survive his peace agreement with Israel.
Sad but true.
It is said that when the Palestinians want to have a Palestinian state more than they want to destroy the Jewish State, when they value life more than death, then maybe there will be peace.
Some Palestinians want peace. But many, possibly most, just want Israel destroyed.
Polls of Palestinians have found that 83% of Palestinians think the area from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea is Palestinian land and Jews have no rights to it while only 12% think “both Jews and Palestinians have rights to the land.”
78% of Palestinians support suicide bombing of civilians.
Around 60% of Palestinians say that even if a two state solution is negotiated, armed struggle should continue to wipe out Israel.