Gush Katif evacuees' rally

The disengagement sin

Op-ed: Despite promises, our security situation, global status didn’t improve after pullout

As we mark five years to the beginning of the Gaza Strip disengagement, we can clearly point to the immense damages we suffered in its wake.


The pullout’s destructive results for the Gush Katif settlers have already been identified by a national commission of inquiry, which ruled that the State turned evacuees into refugees in their homeland, utterly failing in handling them following their eviction.


However, our deteriorated, isolated global status at this time is also a direct product of the disengagement folly. In the wake of the Goldstone Report and flotilla incident, we can see the process of undermining the very legitimacy of the State of Israel (even within the 1967 borders) reaching a disturbing scope.


This has proven that the false pre-disengagement promise whereby the world will understand forceful action against the Palestinians only if we leave the Strip was completely foolish. The same is true for the claim that our very departure from Gaza would constitute an end to the occupation and control over another people.


The “enlightened world,” Israel's fans and even its foes, prefer in practice a “soft occupation” of the type maintained in Judea and Samaria over the terrible violence which the State of Israel was forced to resort to following its withdrawal from the Strip.


The false vision whereby leaving the Strip would improve our security situation was foolish and baseless five years ago already; today, this folly is loud and clear. There are no military leaders who believe that security control can be achieved without physically controlling an area, certainly in respect to the small territory of the Strip and Negev communities.


Today we also know that missile and rocket fire cannot be prevented without controlling the Strip. It is also impossible to prevent the smuggling of weapons, including long-range missiles that threaten central Israel, without maintaining our hold on the ground.


Detachment from reality

Gilad Shalit’s abduction from Israel’s small territory was also made possible as result of the disengagement; had we maintained our hold on the ground, we would have likely been able to prevent the digging of the tunnel used to kidnap him. It’s clear that the current absurd situation, whereby Shalit is being held in the Strip without us having any information about his condition, would not last for even a month had we remained in the territory and controlled it.


They promised that we would stop “wasting” money on our military presence and communities in Gaza if we only depart. However, the astronomical cost of billions of dollars in military expenditures and compensation for the settlers is almost incomprehensible, especially as these costs were needless and highly damaging.


The same is true for the immense current and future expenditures of developing and using the Iron Dome anti-missile defense system – this expense too would have been spared had we remained on the ground and prevented the firing of missiles and mortar shells. The fortification costs at southern communities and the immense losses incurred as result of the termination of Gush Katif’s agricultural exports also constitutes a major disengagement-related expense.


The dream of peace, which seemingly justified any price, moved further away from us because of the disengagement. A peace process is impossible vis-à-vis Hamas, and hence we are in fact facing an inevitable future war and the casualties it will entail. The disengagement supporters who promised to avert wars and casualties while advancing peace through the pullout in essence created the opposite, as the danger of war grew dramatically.


So if someone still dares ask the demagogic question “Do you agree that our soldiers/sons will serve in the alleyways of Jabaliya or Khan Younis,” the only rational and simple answer is “yes.” Soldiers in Jabaliya and settlers in the Strip prevented all the catastrophes we witnessed in the past five years.


Regrettably, the only disengagement proven successful is the detachment from reality. Meanwhile, disengagement supporters continue to endorse the move even today, despite its obviously destructive results.



פרסום ראשון: 07.21.10, 18:07
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