By Carol Rushton
One of the complaints against Israel is that Israel just hasn’t done enough for peace. The argument goes, if Israel would just:
Give up the West Bank (Judea & Samaria)
Give up Jerusalem so the Palestinians can have the city as their capital
Give up the Golan Heights
Allow all the Palestinians that live in tenement camps to “return” to Israel (despite the fact that most of them now have been born in other countries)
Be more flexible (whatever that means)
Be willing to compromise (whatever that means)
Do _________________ (fill in the blank)
then there would be peace in the Middle East.
These excuses – and this is what they are – for the fact that Israel does not have peace with her Arab neighbors are absolutely laughable.
Israel has done more to try to bring peace to the Middle East than any nation in the history of the world. Israel HAS given land for peace. The Jews gave up the Sinai Peninsula in the 1978, their only natural source of oil at the time, to Egypt under the Camp David Accords. Did Israel receive peace in return? No! Egyptians refuse to come to Israel, for business or pleasure. They have business partnerships with Israelis but Israelis must travel to Egypt to initiate and maintain those business relationships. Under former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, Egypt repeatedly sided with Israel’s enemies when any type of military conflict erupted between Israel and any country or terrorist group in the region.
The peace with Jordan hasn’t been much better, even though Israel gave up some land on the border between the two countries and also shared water rights, something extremely valuable in the Middle East where water is at a premium. Jordan has also sided with Israel’s enemies on various occasions when it was in their interest to do so, as well as offering their country as a haven for Hamas terrorists. Neither Jordan nor Egypt recognize Israel on their maps.
Under the Oslo Accords of the 1990s, Israel gave up areas of Judea and Samaria to the PLO. What did Israel receive in return? Not the peace she was promised but massive terrorist attacks that continue to this day. Bus bombings became common occurrences, murdering hundreds and maiming and injuring thousands. When we heard emergency sirens blasting through Jerusalem city streets, we knew that another terrorist attack had occurred. Israel finally had to give up the idea that there would ever be peace with Arabs living in Judea and Samaria and built a huge wall to keep Arabs in those areas out of the country.
When Israel uprooted Jewish settlements in the Gaza Strip in 2005 and turned the country over to the Arabs, once again the Jews were promised peace. Once again, Israel received terror in return. The Arabs promised to keep up the farms and gardens that Jews in the settlements had planted and nurtured. Today those same farms and gardens are terrorist training camps. To this day, Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists launch missiles and rockets into Israel on a regular basis from hospitals, schools, and residential neighborhoods, sending Israeli citizens scrambling to rush to underground shelters. This is particularly traumatic for Israeli children. Then Hamas and the PLO cry bloody murder that Israel is killing innocent civilians when Israel has the effrontery to respond to the terrorist attacks by having Israeli fighter jets bomb terrorist targets to stop the rocket attacks into their country!
Terrorists are constantly digging tunnels under the Gazan-Israeli border to smuggle terrorists into Israel to commit more terrorist attacks against Israelis. Since Israel finished building a large wall to try to keep Arab terrorists and weapons from Judea and Samaria out of the main part of the country, Arabs now drive cars into groups of pedestrians on sidewalks to kill and injure as many Jews as possible. If they kill non-Jews in the process, who cares?
Terrorists rioting at the Gaza Strip-Israeli border because the United States has moved the embassy to Jerusalem in recognition of the city being Israel’s capital are sending burning kites and balloons across the border to terrorize Israelis. Israel even dropped leaflets and pamphlets into the Gaza Strip warning the Arabs to stop their rioting and terrorist activities at the border or Israel would no choice but to retaliate. What other countries beside the United States of America and Israel drop leaflets into a region to warn terrorists to leave before they bomb it??!!
Simply based on these facts alone, Israel would be insane if they turned any part of Jerusalem or any more of their land over to the PLO or any other Arab entity.
This includes all the other “reasons” listed above. Israel has gone above and beyond what any other country in the history the world has done in order to bring peace to the region in which she lives. At this point, Israel cannot do any more than what she has already done. Israel has proven to the entire world that she is willing to risk the security of her country and her citizens to reach out to her Arab neighbors time and time again in good faith and with goodwill to have peaceful relations with them. It is now the Arab/Islamic countries’ responsibility to do the same. The ball is in their court.
Israel’s fourth prime minister, Golda Meir, said, “We can forgive the Arabs for killing our children. We cannot forgive them for forcing us to kill their children. We will only have peace with the Arabs when they love their children more than they hate us.” Sadly, that day has not come yet.