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Monday, May 22, 2006

The best defense...

Yesterday's Qassam rocket that hit a classroom in Sderot is only the latest in a series of slow escalations that the current Israeli administration seems willing to allow. Just like the settlers have been demonized for choosing to live in dangerous areas, so too will we see the leftist Israeli leaders blame residents of Sderot for staying in rocket range of Hamastan. The hollow words of "defense" minister Amir Peretz that "The lives of the children in the schools and kindergarten should be top priority" ring false when he is not willing to do anything to solve the problem.

His big plan? Make the walls of schools thicker!

Already, the Israeli government recommends that top floors of classrooms in rocket range not be used:
Home Front Command officials explained that there is an instruction not to teach in classrooms on the top floors of schools located around the Gaza Strip, for fear a rocket will directly hit the building.
Capitulation to terror is now becoming normal in the New Israel.

Instead of actually addressing the problem, Israel is looking towards spending billions of dollars to fortify some classrooms. Those who live in houses, well, tough luck. And when Katyushas replace Qassams, I guess that is just another few tens of billions of dollars to fortify a few more miles in.

I guess in a few years every Israeli will be told to walk around outside with suits of armor, as a normal defensive move against bloodthirsty Arab terrorists. And we will be reading articles about how brave Israelis live sort of normal lives underground.

This is insanity.

It is impossible to defend Israel against rockets and other attacks at the same time that Israel is giving land to the terrorists. Not only because giving land emboldens the terrorists, but also for the simple reason that land is the only defensive buffer that can effectively forestall rocket attacks.

I am not saying that Israel should abandon defensive mechanisms. Rocket interception and some fortification of course will be needed. But it is clear that the Gaza withdrawal has not enhanced Israel's security at all; it just pushed the defense line closer to the major population centers. And it is equally clear that continued withdrawals will also not make the Palestinian Arabs any more peaceful, despite all the leftist Jimmy Carter-ish wishful thinking that pervades not only Europe but much of Israel itself.

It is time for Israel to abandon its wishy-washy policy of tough words followed up by bombing empty fields, or at best a targeted assassination here and there. I am unaware of a single fact that would indicate that Palestinian Arabs are capable of acting responsibly or even rationally in valuing the lives of their own people or wishing for true independence. Unless this changes dramatically, Israel will have to militarily re-occupy parts of Gaza sooner or later.

And when one is speaking about defense, sooner is almost always better than later, saving a lot of money and many lives.