Wednesday, August 24

The Aftermath of the Disengagement

Those who had been following the various disengagement scenarios in the media have noticed the rapid pace of evacuation of settlements and its demise. There had been fear of widespread resistance and violence. While there were pockets of resistance from the hard-core right wing, which were not even residents and just arrived for the sake of provocation. Much remains to be done in rehabilitation and housing of the settlers within the green line of Israel.

The settlements fell like a pack of cards under the action of the various bulldozers and within ten days - total destruction. Now the big challenges are on the horizon. Where does one go from now?

The soldiers and police acquitted themselves very well indeed. They deserve praise for the restraint shown. Many resisting settlers and their youthful fanatic supporters had exhibited much violence. There were insults, spraying of paint and even acid on the forces. Despite that, there were no serious injuries and the pullout was peaceful and achieved rapidly.

On reflection of the various scenarios observed, the irresponsible behavior of many of the settlers was disgusting and was no credit to their cause. Many had made cynical use of their young children who had undergone trauma as a result. These parents have nobody to blame but themselves for the psychological damage done to their children. They pushed babies into the arms of soldiers while parents went into a hysterical screaming frenzy. At the same time, they cursed their evacuators. The brainwashing of young children to resist and hate is a total disgrace! Suddenly religious fanatics started turning almost every stone and plant into a religious symbol. The establishment of macabre religious rituals dehumanizing the Security Forces who had protected them over the years made horrifying viewing. Cynical use was made of their faith in their opposition to leaving. Many had not taken any responsibility for planning their future and avoided taking advantage of the generous help offered by the government.

Now that their palatial homes are gone, the rebuilding of their lives will begin. There will be plenty work for social workers and psychologists. These settlers, encouraged by the previous governments in the past, were doomed to leave from the day they started building their palatial homes in the Gaza strip. It was shear governmental folly allowing an island of affluent settlers to live in the midst of a poverty-stricken hostile Palestinian population. They had received many benefits and tax reductions from the previous governments in the past as well as army protection.

Many settlers had compared their plight to the treatment of Jews under the Nazis. This was so far from the truth and it will backfire on them. The settlers will receive much compensation from the government in housing and future employment. The theatrics of a relatively prosperous Jewish Community amidst a Palestinian impoverished community was the order of the day prior to the disengagement and its duration was pathetic. They had it very good during the period that they had lived in their "Nirvana".

What will occur on the Palestinian side? How will they react? The Palestinians will celebrate a victory. They will see the disengagement as a first step towards more concessions by Israel. Hamas will be crowing victory and view this step as a hint that terror pays. Mahmoud Abbas has done very little apart from paying lip service to cessation of terror. He will not stop Hamas from carrying out terror attacks. There will be a certain amount of negotiations under fire as Palestinian extremist terror groups will carry on the butchering as usual.

It may not be long before the Israeli Defense Forces will move into Gaza once again to contain the terror. There has been no change in Hamas and Islamic Jihad towards recognizing Israel's right to exist. There are signs that they will be gaining increasing support from the Palestinians. This does not leave room for optimism until they lay down their arms. There is a possibility of violence within the Palestinian camp between the various factions. What may unite them to a certain extent is the partnership that Mahmoud Abbas will give them. The key to peace lies with the Palestinian terrorist groups. As far as they are concerned, the armed struggle against Israel's existence will continue. At least the settlers have been evacuated which will make Israel's borders easier to defend without protecting settlements as well.


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Kira Zalan said...

If Abbas is planning a swift round up of all known terrorists, he is likely to lose all credibility with the Palestinians. This is because Abbas has been visibly aligning himself with the popular martyr theory. Last week, banners waved across Gaza proclaiming that “The blood of martyrs has led to liberation.” Then, Abbas attended Friday prayers at Caliph Mosque, where the imam announced, “Allah knows that when we offer up our children, it is much better than choosing the road of humiliation and negotiation.” Additionally, the PA’s official radio station - Ramallah Voice of Palestine - continues to broadcast messages that Israelis “want neither a solution nor peace.” These statements are synonymous with those of Hamas, and the Palestinians are listening.

zac said...

Kira Zalan, I agree with your analysis. It is one of the facts in Palastinian street that there are extreme terrorist groups, who are not prepared to recognize Israel's right to exist. They live in a fantasy world and believe that Israel could be destroyed given time.

The attitude of these groups is so uncompromising that they will continue with their terror against Israelis - whether individual acts of terror such as stabbing innocent people or continuing with suicide bombings.

I would like to see the establishment of a viable and prosperous Palestinian state alongside Israel. How could this ever come about if the Hamas and allied terrorist groups are dead set on Israel's destruction?