Taking More Risks for Peace?

(Ha'aretz) Amiel Ungar - U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta lamented Israel's isolation in the region, while arguing that the American security commitment should embolden Jerusalem to take risks for peace and reach out to Turkey and Egypt. Do the Americans expect a groveling apology to sway Turkey's Recep Erdogan the Magnificent, who undoubtedly enjoyed seeing Israel's Arabs commemorate the anniversary of their October 2000 insurrection by flying Turkish flags along with the standard PLO banners? This demonstrated the success of Turkish penetration of the Arab world, using Israel bashing as an entry card. Can Israel expect to fare better with the current Turkish government than the hundreds of imprisoned Turkish military officers and journalists? As for Egypt, Israel apologized for the killing of Egyptian soldiers during the August firefight with terrorists who attacked Israel from Egyptian territory. Israel did not utter a discouraging word when our embassy was attacked a few weeks later and then trashed. When the Egyptian minister of social justice, Gouda Abdel Khalik, called Israel "the Zionist enemy" on Egyptian state TV, respectful silence prevailed. Israel cannot do more. If Hamastan in Gaza and indeed Oslo itself do not constitute unrequited risks for peace, then we cannot meet Panetta's expectations.

2011-10-07 00:00:00

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