Settlement Freeze

Posted on November 22nd, 2007



When I first heard that there would be a “settlement freeze,” I thought “so what?” I mean, having lived in Neve Daniel for two winters, I have come to accept the fact that five months a year I will not be able to see out my windows because of the fog. I bundle up the kids and watch them disappear into the cold mist. Sometime after Pesach, spring comes back, and we all warm up again.

Then I realized that the “settlement freeze” had nothing whatsoever to do with the weather. Apparently, our government is trying to prevent Jews from building homes, schools, and synagogues. In addition, we might go ahead and let a few hundred terrorists out of jail. These are referred to as “confidence building” measures. They are efforts to show the Palestinians that we are serious about peace. (The last time we tried this approach, we ended up with 8,000 homeless Israelis. In exchange for all the land of Gaza, the Palestinians gave us a few thousand Qassam rockets.)

Now, this time our Prime Minister is not just on the giving end, he expects something serious in return. He could have demanded that our peace partners stop shooting rockets at us. That would have been a good start. It would have made sense. If you are making peace with someone, you might think that they should stop shooting you.

He could also have asked the Palestinians to release Gilad Shalit, the young man that Israel abandoned over a year ago. I don’t think it would have been asking too much that in exchange for releasing several hundred bomb-makers and throwers, they let one poor kid go whose crime was being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

But no, Prime Minister Olmert decided that in exchange for freezing us all out, he would DEMAND that the Palestinians… recognize that Israel is a Jewish State.

Excuse me? Did I read that correctly? We are asking the Arabs to recognize something as obvious as the sky being blue? We are the state of kosher Kentucky Fried Chicken where the buses stop running on Shabbat. That’s all we want from them. “Sure guys, go right ahead and keep shooting up the schools in Sderot. But please admit that these are JEWISH schools, okay?”

After they finished laughing, the Palestinians of course claimed that this demand was too high. Instead they will probably work out some sort of deal that they won’t shoot rockets between the hours of 2 and 3 on Thursdays…. Except for when they do.

Should I be worried? No, I’m not. Just as the cold eventually thaws and we have a beautiful spring, I am confident that eventually we will have a government that is strong enough to make peace on terms that will actually benefit the nation of Israel.

Until then, hand me another blanket, it’s getting cold!

Shabbat Shalom from our blessed nation.

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