Building for Calm by Giving Up on Peace

(New York Times) Banks of computer and television screens showing images of Israel's security barrier are transforming the physical and mental landscape of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Night-vision cameras trained 24 hours a day on a barrier loaded with electronic gizmos that signal the precise location of anyone who touches it, ensure that Israeli forces reach the area within minutes to stop the infiltration of Palestinian suicide bombers. It is an effective tool, say the soldiers, not a political statement. Projected to cost well over $1 billion, it works and must be completed. Most Israelis feel a fence makes the task of Palestinians who want to kill them harder. "There is a feeling that you cannot resolve this situation for the coming decades, you can only manage it," says Tom Segev, a historian.

2004-07-20 00:00:00

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