A Brash Proposal

Once again, Israel finds itself between a rock and a hard place. Mortar shells and the inaccurate Qassam rockets from Gaza continue to rain down upon nearby Israeli cities such as Sderot and Ashkelon -- the recently employed Katyusha, or “grad” missiles may soon be capable of reaching larger population centers such as Haifa.

But every move of self-defense is condemned by the “international community” -- consisting primarily of Israel’s enemies and even a few countries who ought to know better. Does Israel attempt to take out the rocket lunching areas and those who man them with a few air strikes or a ground raid? That’s “disproportionate.” Does Israel administer a dose on non-violent reprisal such as lowering the amounts of electricity or fuel it sends to the Gazans? That’s “collective punishment” and “inhumanitarian” treatment.

To which I say, “horse puckey!” And the concept of a Palestinian state living peaceably side-by-side with Israel is, now and for the foreseeable future, completely a pipe dream; the Palestinians don’t want it; the Iranians, Syrians, and Saudis would never allow it. So, Israel might just as well (indeed, must) maintain its might, defend itself as best it can, and cede to its enemies not a West Bank acre that will only be used as a launching ground for further attacks.

In the case of Gaza, however, it seems that Israel is damned if it does and damned if it doesn’t no matter what. So far, what has been tried doesn’t work, so I have a brash proposal that might be worth giving a whirl. It involves two parts:

(1) Make all retaliation indisputably “proportionate.” That is, design some rocketry similarly incontrollable to the Qassams and fire them willy-nilly at populated Gaza areas. Same for mortar shells and Katyusha-equivalent missiles. One for one exactly. What could be more proportionate than that?

(2) Seal all Israeli borders with Gaza -- permanently -- and stop all delivery of electricity, fuel, or anything else. Announce that Israel unilaterally abandons Gaza to the Gazans and its former Egyptian owners. What could be more humanitarian than to place Gazan welfare under the aegis of a kind and brotherly Arab neighbor?

Of course, Israeli defenses in the Sinai will have to be beefed up to guard against end-runs by Gazans trying to infiltrate Israel through the desert. A small effort compared to the alternatives.

Unworkable ideas? What’s the worst that could happen? What’s the best?
Once again, Israel finds itself between a rock and a hard place. Mortar shells and the inaccurate Qassam rockets from Gaza continue to rain down upon nearby Israeli cities such as Sderot and Ashkelon -- the recently employed Katyusha, or “grad” missiles may soon be capable of reaching larger population centers such as Haifa.

But every move of self-defense is condemned by the “international community” -- consisting primarily of Israel’s enemies and even a few countries who ought to know better. Does Israel attempt to take out the rocket lunching areas and those who man them with a few air strikes or a ground raid? That’s “disproportionate.” Does Israel administer a dose on non-violent reprisal such as lowering the amounts of electricity or fuel it sends to the Gazans? That’s “collective punishment” and “inhumanitarian” treatment.

To which I say, “horse puckey!” And the concept of a Palestinian state living peaceably side-by-side with Israel is, now and for the foreseeable future, completely a pipe dream; the Palestinians don’t want it; the Iranians, Syrians, and Saudis would never allow it. So, Israel might just as well (indeed, must) maintain its might, defend itself as best it can, and cede to its enemies not a West Bank acre that will only be used as a launching ground for further attacks.

In the case of Gaza, however, it seems that Israel is damned if it does and damned if it doesn’t no matter what. So far, what has been tried doesn’t work, so I have a brash proposal that might be worth giving a whirl. It involves two parts:

(1) Make all retaliation indisputably “proportionate.” That is, design some rocketry similarly incontrollable to the Qassams and fire them willy-nilly at populated Gaza areas. Same for mortar shells and Katyusha-equivalent missiles. One for one exactly. What could be more proportionate than that?

(2) Seal all Israeli borders with Gaza -- permanently -- and stop all delivery of electricity, fuel, or anything else. Announce that Israel unilaterally abandons Gaza to the Gazans and its former Egyptian owners. What could be more humanitarian than to place Gazan welfare under the aegis of a kind and brotherly Arab neighbor?

Of course, Israeli defenses in the Sinai will have to be beefed up to guard against end-runs by Gazans trying to infiltrate Israel through the desert. A small effort compared to the alternatives.

Unworkable ideas? What’s the worst that could happen? What’s the best?