For the Israeli right, this is the moment of "We told you so." The fact that the kidnappings and missile attacks have come from southern Lebanon and Gaza -- precisely the areas from which Israel has unilaterally withdrawn--is proof, for right-wingers, of the bankruptcy of unilateralism. Yet the right has always misunderstood the meaning of unilateral withdrawal. Those of us who have supported unilateralism didn't expect a quiet border in return for our withdrawal but simply the creation of a border from which we could more vigorously defend ourselves, with greater domestic consensus and international understanding. The anticipated outcome, then, wasn't an illusory peace but a more effective way to fight the war. The question wasn't whether Hamas or Hezbollah would forswear aggression but whether Israel would act with appropriate vigor to their continued aggression.Also worth reading is Ari Shavit's editorial in Haaretz on Israel's most justified war.
Monday, July 17, 2006
When All You Can Do Is Read.....
New Republic editor Yossi Klein-Halevi has a must-read editorial on what the media has dubbed the "Crisis in the Middle East." He points out that unilateral withdrawal wasn't all about doves and peace, but about creating firm, internationally sanctioned borders through which Israel could defend itself: