People often act on emotion. Countries are supposed to make rational, logical decisions. The European Union's decision to ban the funding of and cooperation with Israeli institutions operating beyond the Green Line angered someone in Israel, and he decided to freeze humanitarian projects in the territories that are funded by the 28-nation bloc.
Perhaps Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon believes this decision will help us vent our frustration, but such decisions are on the same level as those made by seven-year-old kids who want to show their parents they are angry, or those made by the teenagers who commit "price tag" acts.
What will Israel gain if EU-funded projects related to waste removal and sewage treatment in the West Bank stop and all the filth will pour into the country's streams? How is it beneficial for us if we will have to pay for infrastructure projects in Area C that are currently funded by the Europeans?
According to the EU's decision, Israeli entities seeking funding from the bloc will have to declare that they do not operate in the territories. We could have lived with such a decision and tried to minimize its damage using legal means.
But Israel chose a different course of action. A senior Israeli official told Reuters, "From our standpoint we cannot just ignore this or treat spitting in our face as though it is rain." Our strategy, apparently, is to identify the Europeans' move as a spit in the face and then step on their feet so they will also punch us in the face, giving us an excuse to pick up a stick and hit them across the head with it. Mature and calculated behavior indeed. It is time that the Israeli government act in a composed and calculated manner and decide where we are headed and what our goals are.
After a path is decided on, everything must be done so we will be able to move in the right direction. The government must identify who our allies are and try to make new friends rather than get involved in unnecessary conflicts.
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