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if only Israel ended “the occupation” …

By Middle EastMarch, 2011December 12th, 20234 min read

The Jewish world is in shock after the brutal murder of five members of the Fogel family, from the town of Itamar in northern Samaria. On Friday night (the Jewish Sabbath), as they were sleeping, a Palestinian broke through the fence around the town, and brutally cut the throats of the family as they slept.

I say the Jewish world, because the uproar at this massacre can hardly be heard from the rest of the world. The event barely cracked a headline, and we are fed the usual even-handed condemnations of all forms of violence from those who bother to comment.

Israel Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu blamed the PA for the attack, and used the occasion to call upon the Palestinians to condemn violence against “setttlers” unequivocally. For his trouble, he received criticism from the Left suggesting that he talk more about peace, and end the occupation. Others have called upon the Left to finally give up preaching moral relativism in the face an attack like this.

The question is this: if only Israel ended “the occupation” …

  • Would Palestinians stop breaking into towns and killing innocents?
  • Would Hamas stop firing rockets randomly into residential areas?
  • Would the Arab world acknowledge the existence of Israel, the Jewish state?
  • Would clerics cease preaching hatred and antisemitism in the name of Islam?

I could go on and on; the answer to these and similar questions is a resounding “NO”.

Even more poignant and disturbing than the awful and bloody photos of a murdered child in the arms of his murdered mother are the pictures of Palestinians handing out sweets in celebration of the “successful operation”. This says more than anything about the nature of the threat that Israel faces, and gives in insight into what can and can’t be done to stop the terror.

When I wrote a parody of Obama’s Cairo speech in 2009, several people were critical and asked me what my alternative was to his Middle East engagement model. After all, it’s easy to criticize someone else, but what’s the point if you don’t suggest something better.

So now, I will unveil the Werdiger Peace Plan. It’s very simple, and is based on the principles of pragmatism and realism, rather than an inversionist belief that if Israel caves in to Arab demands (which are never ending – given a finger and they will take a hand), they will all stop hating us Jews.

Step 1: reach an agreement with the Palestinians to stop teaching hatred to their children, stop preaching antisemitism in the name of Islam, and acknowledge the existence of Israel as part of the narrative that is taught in schools.
Step 2: wait about 30 years until the hatred is slowly “bred out” of the Palestinians.
Step 3: start talking peace.

The Left are quick to jump on the root cause of the Arab-Israel conflict as “the occupation”. But time and time again they have been proved wrong. They said give them Gaza, and we got thousands of rockets in return. Tunisia, Egypt and Libya are in upheaval not because of anything Israel has or hasn’t done (except be a local model of what a democracy can be for its citizens), but because they (and most of the Arab world) are basket-case repressive autocracies.

Ending “the occupation” won’t end the hatred. Ending the hatred will lead to a new paradigm of engagement and a model for Israeli-Palestinian co-existence. And that will take at least a generation, if they start now. If that isn’t addressed, then everything else is a waste of time.

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