When speaking of "war on terrorism" or "eradicating terrorism," the question arises: Is "terrorism" the enemy, rather than those who commit it? Is the war against "terrorism," as if it was a separate entity, independent of the conflicts it serves? Perhaps it is a disease to be treated, like the "war on AIDS" or "eradicating cancer."
Terror is a weapon used to instill fear and panic, to undermine morale and to disrupt public order. Like all weapons, it is waved in the face of an enemy in the name of a specific purpose. Those who talk solely about “terrorism” while blurring the reasons behind it and the target in front of it, do not do so by accident. When they want to escape an embarrassing reality or a bitter truth, they attribute all to the abstract term, “terrorism,” and avoid addressing the fundamental problem.
Just as we are not fighting the gun itself but the person who shoots it, it is illogical to refer to “terrorism” as a target in and of itself, without referring to the question of what the terrorist is trying to achieve. When Obama is faced with the demand to blame “Islamic extremism” for terror attacks, he refuses. He knows that by calling a spade a spade, he will be forced to act against militant Islam, which he does not want to do for ideological reasons. Even if terrorism is comparable to a disease, so long as there is no desire to reach its origins, police and military methods such as the closure and encirclement of a village, demolitions and deportations, are little more than a band aid on a gunshot wound. And if terrorism is a weapon after all, we must convey to those who wield it that using this weapon will not help them achieve their goal.
If we pose the question, therefore, what Palestinian terrorists want to achieve, any child could say that it is to destroy the Zionist enterprise: the state, the settlements, Jewish life - in Netanya and Sarona as well as in Otniel and Kiryat Arba. It is no coincidence that the Palestinians refer to Sderot as a “settlement.”
In Gaza and in the northern Samaria, the enemy, using terrorism, succeeded in achieving its goal: destroying the Jewish settlements and "cleansing" the area of any Jewish presence—both military and civilian. The response, by the way, quickly came in true democratic form: Hamas won a landslide victory in the elections. The crowds in Ramallah and in Gaza rejoiced: Terrorism has won.
And now, would the leftists please explain to us why is it that what works for the Arabs does not also apply to the Jews? If demolishing settlements encourages terrorists, could the very opposite—strengthening the settlement enterprise—not decrease their motivation to carry out more attacks? Provided that it is done systematically, so they know that for every terrorist—a home, a street, or a neighborhood will be built in a settlement.“Hill 18” stands in Kiryat Arba, near to where Hallel Yaffa Ariel was murdered. This hill is included in Kiryat Arba's construction plans. Building permits have been delayed by a Supreme Court interim order for many years, and when it was finally determined that this was state land that could be built upon, Netanyahu’s settlement freeze policy came into effect. Attempts to hold onto the land with tents and caravans were crushed by riot police and the place remains desolate. This is well known to the Arabs living in the area, as is the fate of the plot adjacent to it, “26,” which was also approved by the Supreme Court and even had a family living on it until the father, Nati Ozri, was murdered during a Shabbat meal in his home. His widow and children were subsequently removed from the area, late at night in the pouring rain. Since, that area also remains desolate.
The message this construction freeze policy sends to terrorists is catastrophic. By contrast, immediate construction on both hills, which have seen so much horror, will strike the murderous motivation of the terrorists. The peace camp's mockery of the “Zionist answer” demanded by the right is unfounded. Only the building of Jewish homes will provide the strategic answer and the political answer to terrorism.