Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Alex, You're Fudging

Alexander Yakobson, a friend of mine from when he was MK Amnon Rubinstein's arliamnetary aide and I served MK Geula Cohen, has an op-ed in today's Haaretz.

An extract:-

Israel Harel has asserted that, because of the deeds of a handful of individuals on the rampage, attacking the olive harvest and Palestinian locals - "a few dozen youths," in his telling - the entire population of Jewish settlers in the West Bank has been tarnished. In his opinion, the reason for this is "hatred for hatred's sake" toward the settlers on the part of their opponents (Haaretz, October 23).

Without a doubt, there is quite a bit of hatred for the settlers. This is regrettable. But a sharp debate is underway on the issue of the settlements. Its main thrust is the settlements themselves, and not acts of bullying by individuals. Opponents of the settlement project - like myself - would have been against it even if the olive harvest proceeded in absolute quiet.

Even if the Yesha Council - the settlers' established representative body - were to send volunteers to help defend Palestinian olive-harvesters from the bullies, instead of this being done by activists from the left, the assessment by opponents of the settlements, to the effect that if the land is not ultimately divided, the State of Israel will cease to exist, would remain as it is. It is necessary to learn to conduct difficult political debates without hatred - from either side.

Ah, put our point is that the opponents of the enterprise of returning Jews, as residents, to portions of their historic homeland are acting have been losing for the past four decades the political battle they are waging on the matter of a Jewish presence beyond the former 'Green Line'.

And that, to gain an unfair advanatage so as to convince undecided Israelis that their policy is best, they manipulate, lie, exaggerate, mobilize outside forces, excuse terror, deny equality before the law and otherwise act in a sneaky and corrupt manner.

If they want to wage a campaign based on true facts - past, present and possibly future, on true demographic projections, on real security concerns and on legal rights, then I have no hard feelings.

But that isn't the case.

Alex, you're fudging.

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