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While I share the writer's view in Saturday's letter that the last several decades have been grim for the Palestinians, I oppose the notion that the fault lies with Israel.
Recall that from 1948-67, the territory that held and still holds the Palestinian people was under control of Egypt and Trans-Jordan, brothers in faith and culture. Yet no effort was made to provide them a home state, nor was the burden of their pressing poverty made lighter. Economic and residential development of these areas was essentially nonexistent.
It was only after the 1967 war that these lands, plus the Golan Heights, were found to be in territory won by Israel. Why does it fall to the Israelis to ensure economic progress to those whom their own brothers ignored and abandoned?
The Israelis did not "simply move into" Palestinian land in 1948. The United Nations resolved two nations to be created side by side, one for Jews and one for Palestinians. Within one day of the creation of Israel, multiple Arab nations attacked the infant nation in violation of the UN resolution.
By the grace of God, the Jewish people prevailed against overwhelming odds to defend their new country. Why now does the writer insist upon adherence to UN resolutions by Israel when no such insistence existed in 1948 when the Jewish state was attacked?
The notion that lands won in war should be returned to their defeated previous owners is strange. Has this writer made the same demand that the U.S. return Texas to Mexico or the original 13 colonies to Britain? Should Montana return to the Apache nation?
And recall that in the Camp David accords, Israel offered 98 percent of the demanded land back to the Palestinian people, which included portions of East Jerusalem to be used as capital of a new state. The offer was rejected by Yassir Arafat.
Land for peace is proven to be a false ideal in the Holy Lands. Recall that Israel tasked its own army to remove Jewish settlers from the West Bank to show good faith. And what was the reward? Thousands of rockets fired by Palestinians into Jewish towns not in disputed territory.
The wall was constructed as a means to stop the terrorist attacks in Israel by Palestinian bombers. Remember, each family providing a terrorist bomber to attack Israel was sent a check for $25,000 by Arab friends. These attackers killed thousands of innocent women and children. Since the wall arose, there has not been a single attack by a homicide bomber inside Israel.
While the plight of the Palestinian people is most difficult and shows not even glimmers of hope today, we must not focus only on the people but also their leaders. Do we ignore that the Palestinian charter today calls for the destruction of Israel and extermination of the Jewish people?
Hamas terrorists still rule Gaza. As we have seen in Tunisia, Egypt and Yemen, Arabs do seek to breathe free air. But no one can reasonably contend that it falls upon the Jewish people to provide that freedom.