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NEUWIRTH Olmert’s Threat to Israeli and American Security
by Rachel Neuwirth
[commentator/analyst] 8/30/06

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert must go. He is endangering the security of Israel and he now poses a serious liability to American security as well. Good leadership is indivisible – Olmert cannot be bad for Israel and simultaneously be good for America.

Just who is Ehud Olmert, the ex mayor of Jerusalem? In June 2005 he actually made the following statement to the Israel Policy Forum in New York.

“We are tired of fighting, we are tired of being courageous, we are tired of winning, we are tired of defeating our enemies, we want to be able to live in an entirely different environment of relations with our enemies.”

Rachel Neuwirth

Rachel Neuwirth is President of Middle East Solutions [go to Neuwirth index]

Imagine the encouragement given to Israel’s implacable enemies!

His own family members are all politically on the far left. His wife joined with Israeli leftists to harass Israeli soldiers guarding their country at border checkpoints. His daughter accused the Israeli Chief of Staff of being a murderer. One son is a draft dodger and the other son, after serving, now discourages other Israelis from serving. In a family interview on PBS’ Frontline program Olmert said that his family had influenced him to alter his views to be closer to theirs.

Ariel Sharon pledged no more withdrawals after the Gaza expulsion until there is a genuine change in Arab attitudes. Olmert claimed that Sharon, now comatose, wanted to proceed with unilateral withdrawals and he, Olmert, intends to expel up to 80,000 from the West Bank in return for nothing.

The new Kadima party was formed because many members of Sharon’s Likud party opposed the insanity of undertaking withdrawals-for-nothing.

Astonishingly Olmert even said he wanted to “give a lot and receive a little.” Kadima comprised a coalition of the bribed and the coerced who could only muster 29 seats out of 120 in the Knesset. However this was more than the next largest party and allowed Olmert to form a government coalition with a slender majority of 67 seats.

He quickly moved to intimidate the opposition by demonstrating his dominance with brutality towards fellow Jews who were people of faith. He ordered the attack on the small community of Amona. He sent in Russian-speaking troops mounted on large intimidating horses.

The residents were not allowed to leave peacefully. Instead the troops were instructed to beat them with clubs, causing many to be injured. Was Olmert even aware of the bitter irony of re-enacting the anti-Semitic brutality of Russian Kossaks towards Jews in Tzarist times.?

The following report in some detail, from August 10, 2006 during the Lebanon war, further illustrates both the insanity and the utter heartlessness of the Olmert regime and what it is capable of doing against fellow Jews.

IDF and Police Destroy Jewish Home in Samaria By Ezra HaLevi from a posting on www.IsraelNationalNews.com, Arutz -7.

Despite the ongoing war in the north and call-up of reserves, 30 IDF soldiers, police officers and riot policemen were dispatched to destroy the foundations of a Jewish home in Samaria on Wednesday.

The house, in the early stages of construction, was located near the Binyamin community of Shilo, on the outskirts of the Adei Ad hilltop community. It was being built by retired IDF officer Shaul Halfon, who served with former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in the elite Unit 101.

Halfon had laid the foundation of the house with the help of family members and local youths. On Thursday he planned to hold a ceremony for former residents of northern Samaria who were evicted from their homes as part of Sharon’s Disengagement Plan last summer. Halfon had moved to the community of Sa-Nur, and even built a home there, prior to the forced expulsion.

“Apparently the war in the north and south is going so well that Olmert decided he had plenty of soldiers to spare to send to destroy a Jewish home,” Halfon told Arutz-7. “They waited until we had everything set up, and arrived in the afternoon with bulldozers ­ destroyed everything and confiscated all of our equipment.”

Fifteen reservists died in heavy fighting in Lebanon Wednesday, just hours after Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and his Security Cabinet authorized the call-up of tens of thousands of reservists to allow for the expansion of the war in Lebanon.

Witnesses say that a large number of IDF soldiers, Yassam riot police and members of the Civil Administration swept in and quickly destroyed everything, as residents pleaded with them to stop. Halfon says he, his wife and two of his children were threatened verbally.

“They didn’t leave a single stone lying on top of another,” Halfon said. “While our children and grand-children are dying in the war, the government is ordering the destruction of their homes.”

Halfon says the location, named Kol Tzion (Voice of Zion), upon which he planned to build two houses, was not claimed by any Arabs until the IDF came and burned an agricultural plot Jews had planted there. He says when he asked the authorities why they came specifically on Wednesday, he was told that local Arabs are paid to report any incidences of unauthorized building in the area. Tens of thousands of illegal structures remain standing in Arab areas, many with court orders for their demolition.

“It is interesting that when local Arabs uprooted trees we had planted, the media and the police were too busy with the war to care,” Halfon laments, “but after planning for two months an event to lift the spirits of those expelled from northern Samaria on the anniversary of the expulsion, they managed to send a whole army of soldiers and police the day before the event to wreak destruction all over again.”

Arutz-7 contacted the IDF spokesperson’s office but was told that there is no official response to the event.

During the Lebanon war Olmert said that one goal of the war was to prepare the way for a unilateral mass expulsion of Israelis from the West Bank. This pronouncement caused so much resentment that some Israeli soldiers refused to fight. Even after the disastrous consequences of the withdrawals from Gaza and southern Lebanon were evident, Olmert remained intent on repeating the same insanity in the West Bank, but on a far larger scale, and despite widespread opposition.

His proposed West Bank withdrawal would inflict immense suffering and costs in expelling some 80,000 Jews and require a huge military effort. This would then expose Tel Aviv and the major population centers to rocket attack from only 10 miles away, making defense impossible and mass casualties certain. The densely populated coastal plain would be highly vulnerable to saturation attack by Katyusha rockets from the West Bank, weapons which are easy to launch, impossible to intercept and hard to defend against. Every sane observer, inside and outside of Israel, called this proposal suicidal. And yet Olmert remained adamant on pursuing this insane policy.

Olmert rushed to accept a lopsided U.N. cease fire resolution, harmful to Israel, in order to extricate himself from his failing war effort. The resolution failed to obtain the release of the two kidnapped Israeli soldiers, failed to assure the disarmament and removal of Hezb’allah terrorists, and failed to assure the prompt insertion of outside troops with the ability and mission to disarm Hezb’allah by force if necessary.

At this writing, Hezb’allah is rapidly rearming and reconstituting itself in violation of the U.N. cease fire resolution. After only one such Israeli action Olmert then refused to order his air force to continue bombing these illegal arms shipments, despite a green light from the Bush Administration. This additional Olmert insanity, combined with the feeble U.N. Resolution 1701, will insure that the next war will begin sooner rather than later.

The U.N. is moving to obtain relief from many nations to assist and rebuild Lebanon. But there is NO mention of any outside aid for Israeli victims of Hezb’allah. George Bush is sending $230 million in U.S. grant aid for Lebanon relief but only loan guarantees for the Jewish victims. Israel will have to bear the full cost alone. (Past experience also raises the danger that U.S. aid to Lebanon might also end up in the pockets of Hezb’allah.)

Even before the war with Hezb’allah, Olmert’s public approval rating was only about 35% as a result of his poor reputation and his plans for massive expulsions of Israelis from the West Bank. During the war his rating rose to about 70% in part because Israelis united behind a wartime leader to repel Islamic aggression. But with the cessation of fighting Olmert’s approval rating quickly fell to about 40%.

Olmert’s conduct of the war showed that he was an incompetent amateur given to unsubstantiated boasting which revealed his lack of honesty and credibility. His choice of Defense Minister was also a disaster. Amir Peretz, has no defense experience and even admitted knowing nothing about Hezb’allah’s fortifications. Olmert is trying to avoid an independent investigation of his conduct of the war – anything to retain power and evade responsibility.

Israel has always been America’s strong and reliable ally and the only reliable ally in that entire region. Anything that weakens Israel undermines American security as well. In Israel’s entire history no Prime minister has been as incompetent and posed so great a danger to his country as does Ehud Olmert.

We obviously need to dethrone Hezb’allah’s terrorist leader Hassan Nasrallah, but there is also an urgent need to replace Ehud Olmert before he does any more damage to Israel and to American security. Perhaps American Jewish leaders should lead the call for America to exert pressure on Israel to replace Olmert with someone more qualified and responsible. CRO

copyright 2006 Rachel Neuwirth





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