Frank Gaffney
The plight of Israelis today calls to mind the tongue-in-cheek prayer of Tevye, the hero of ?Fiddler on the Roof? who, in light of his people?s suffering, asks the Almighty if someone else could be the chosen people for a while.

For years, the people of Israel have voted for leaders who promised to protect them against Arab neighbors bent on the destruction of the Jewish State and to eschew wooly-headed ?peace processes? that advance their enemies? goal. Yet, in turn Yitzhak Rabin, Benjamin Netanyahu and Ehud Barak made a succession of concessions ? most notably, the legitimation of Yasser Arafat and his fellow terrorists as ?partners for peace? that was at the core of the Oslo ?process? ? that have emboldened those who believe Israel will ultimately be dismantled and increased international demands for still more Israeli concessions.

Such pressure comes in many forms. Foes like Egypt, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Libya and Syria refuse to fulfill their obligations under UN Security Council Resolution 242, which all too few remember requires the ?termination of all claims or states of belligerency and respect for and acknowledgement of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of every state in the area and their right to live in peace within secure and recognized boundaries free from threats or acts of force.?

As Shoshana Bryen of the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs noted recently, the Arabs and Iranians instead cynically insist that Israel must first find ? and pay ? a price acceptable to the Palestinians. They do so knowing full well that none among the latter could make peace with the Jewish State, even if they wanted to, as long as the principal nations of the region refuse to do so. These nations? totalitarian regimes offer the same excuse to justify staving off domestic and foreign calls to engage in long-overdue political and economic liberalization.

The Europeans are no less insistent that the responsibility for peace rests first and foremost with Israel. To be sure, leaders like Britain?s Tony Blair pay lip service to the need for an end to terrorism from the Palestinian quarter. Still, Europe seems determined to construe the continuation of terror against Israel as an argument for demanding that Israel swiftly resume negotiations with the Palestinians and concede the substantive points necessary to move them forward, rather than as legitimate grounds for Israelis to refuse to reenter the fraudulent ?peace process.?

Frank Gaffney

Frank Gaffney Jr. is the founder and president of the Center for Security Policy and author of War Footing: 10 Steps America Must Take to Prevail in the War for the Free World .
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