Elwood McQuaid on Why Land for Peace Will Never Work in the Middle East

Israelis are seen through a window damaged after a rocket fired from the Gaza Strip landed in the southern town of Ofakim November 18, 2012. | (Photo: REUTERS)

My wife, Maxine, and I agreed on almost everything.

There was one matter, however, that never came to a satisfactory conclusion. It centered on the conduct of our little poodle, Molly.

On laundry day, Molly would take up a post near the dryer door hoping that, when the door opened, an errant sock might fall to the floor. When a sock did take a tumble, she would race in, snatch it up and dash for the living room to begin refashioning the footwear.

My response was to negotiate a hasty exchange. I gave her a treat; she gave me the sock. The process inevitably evoked Maxine’s immediate retort: “You don’t reward bad behavior!”

My wife, of course, was right. Rewarding or tolerating bad behavior only encourages more of the same—a lesson, it seems, the West has been unable to grasp in its attempts to impose peace in the Middle East.

THE SWAP THAT NEVER WORKS

The “land for peace” mantra seems to be rearing its head again. But when Israel is always the party giving up land in exchange for a promise of peace, the deal never works.

  • When the Israelis won control of the Temple Mount and Old City from the Jordanians in the 1967 Six-Day War, they showed their goodwill by ceding oversight of the area to the Muslim Waqf. In return, Waqf control has engendered more than 50 years of militancy, hostility, and rioting and has banned Jews from worshiping at their most holy place.
  • The 1993 Oslo Accords gave Bethlehem and its environs to the Palestinian Authority (PA), then controlled by terrorist Yasser Arafat. Before Arafat took over, the area was more than 80% Christian. By 2018, most of the Christians had fled, reducing the number to 20%. Threats, terrorist acts and intimidation contributed to the exodus. Furthermore, from 2000 to 2005, Bethlehem became a launching pad for sniper fire, mortar attacks, and shootings into Jerusalem’s Gilo neighborhood.
  • In 2005, Israel forcibly removed 8,000 of its own citizens from 21 communities in the Gaza Strip and gave the land to the PA in hopes of peace. Hamas ousted the PA and began terrorizing Israel from Gaza by building massive weapon-transit tunnels, organizing riots to breach the border, and sending thousands of rockets and fire-bearing kites into the Jewish state.

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SOURCE: Christian Post, Elwood McQuaid