Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Israel's strategic quandary

From Israel's Cassandra, Caroline Glick, comes this disturbing column. First, some excerpts:

[Palestinian PM Mahmoud] Abbas, whom the Sharon-Peres government and the Bush administration uphold as Israel's partner in peace and the fight against terrorism, has been making some interesting moves. Abbas has told the Americans and the Israelis that he is working to end Fatah terrorism by integrating the Aksa Martyrs Brigades into the Palestinian security forces.

But on Wednesday night, Channel 2's reporter in Gaza interviewed three such "former" terrorists as they stood in position outside the ruins of the community of Neveh Dekalim. The flag flying from the top of their tent was that of the Aksa Martyr Brigades. One man was in uniform and the other two were wearing civilian clothes. All were brandishing the same AK-47 rifles they received as terrorists. All claimed that they are still part of the Aksa Brigades.

As one Palestinian source noted to the Post, the fact that Fatah and Islamic Jihad terrorists are now operating in the same cells raises the prospect that Islamic Jihad operatives will infiltrate the Palestinian security services by claiming to be Fatah terrorists. As members of the security forces, these murderers will receive training at the hands of Russian security personnel who are now operating in Gaza.

And that's another thing. According to recent press reports, as the multitudes of foreign terrorists entered Gaza after the IDF abandoned the Philadelphi Corridor linking Gaza to the Sinai last month, Russian security forces also quietly entered the area. Without any prior coordination with Israel the Russians set up shop in Gaza, where they claim to be training Palestinian security forces which they also wish to arm with armored personnel carriers and other weapons systems.

Given Russia's intent to sell advanced anti-aircraft missiles to Syria and its continued support for Iran's nuclear program, the deployment of an unknown number of Russian security personnel in Gaza is an unwelcome strategic development that is liable to have disastrous and far-reaching consequences. Abbas himself spent a formative period of his terror career as a KGB underling in Moscow while he received his doctorate in Holocaust denial at the Soviet Institute for Oriental Studies in the 1960s.

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The Sharon-Peres government, like every other leftist government since 1993, insists on making a distinction between "good" terrorists from Fatah and the Palestinian Authority and "bad" terrorists from the Islamic Jihad and Hamas. Yet the Palestinians themselves make no such distinctions. Since Yasser Arafat signed his accord with Hamas in Cairo in November 1994, the PA and Fatah have enthusiastically and continuously cooperated with Hamas and Islamic Jihad. The fact that in all the PA's calls for the release of terrorists from Israeli prisons, it has never distinguished between Fatah terrorists and Hamas or Islamic Jihad terrorists is just one clear example of this cooperation. Wednesday's bomber, for instance, was supposedly from Islamic Jihad and yet he was recently released from an Israeli prison as part of a "confidence-building measure" aimed at strengthening Abbas.

In Israeli politics, Sharon has crushed the middle and far right, joined hands with the dovish left and aggressively supported Abbas in the face of overwhelming evidence that the PA continues to coddle terrorists. Sharon is like Neville Chamblerlain on steroids -- Israel's situation is as if Neville Chamberlain had returned from Munich, outmaneuvered the Churchill wing of the Tories, and defended Hitler's invasion of Poland whilst praising neutrality and peace all the while.

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