First rule of problem solving - stop digging
Posted by aogTuesday, 13 January 2004 at 10:02 TrackBack Ping URL

Regular readers will know that I’m very strongly pro-Israel. Yet I understand those who say “it’s a hard nation to like”. In this case, I’ve been reading of the settlements in Gaza. In a legal sense, I am forced to agree with the Israeli view that Gaza is conquered terroritory and that therefore settlements are “legal” (as much as that has meaning with regard to international law). Yet just because something is legal doesn’t make it moral or smart and creating settlements in Gaza fails both tests. I hear of them and all I can say is “what were they thinking?”. I may not agree with Israeli settlements on the West Bank, but I can at least understand why someone would think those were a good idea. But Gaza? Even beyond the unnecessary conflict generated by such activity, there is the point that Eqypt wisely refused to take Gaza back. They knew just what a liability it was. Yet Israeli settlements in Gaze entangle Israel. That’s just dumb. If some region is so bad that even an aggressive dictatorship wants nothing to do with it, it seems entangling oneself with it is a bad idea.

There is the claim that pulling out would embolden the terrorists. But I think this is a bogus argument for two reasons.

  • As with the USA invading Iraq and other actions, it’s difficult to see just how much embolden the terrorists could actually get.
  • The security wall could change the psychological equation by making it clear that Israel is in charge and doing what’s best for Israel.

It’s bad enough to get stuck with a tar baby, it’s even worse to deliberately rub it all over you.