Total Pageviews

Saturday, October 6, 2012

The Golan Heights: Chip to be Bartered Away or Kept?

Nadene Goldfoot
How is the Golan Heights important to Israel?  I'm talking about a place that shares 80 kilometers (49.709 miles) with Syria which is an area in the mountainous northern Israel of 250,000 acres.  14,000 Jews live there in 32 towns and 1 city.  It's pretty much a rural area with 9 moshavim.  It is a place of strategic life-giving importance to Israel.  As recently as the 25th of September mortar shells were shot near their border  with Syria at 7am.  Israel thought that it was the result of the clashing rebel forces with Asad's army.  Read Victor Sharpe's new article, "The Golan Heights:  its biblical and post-biblical history."  (website address below).

In order to have peace, former Prime Minister Barak 12 years ago offered Hafez al Assad the Golan in exchange for peace except for a thin strip 500 meters wide along Lake Tiberias.  He did this through President Clinton.  Assad refused the offer. An article about it came out in Reuters through the Arab press on April 24, 2008 about Olmert making an offer.  "Israel wants Syria’s ties with Lebanon’s Hezbollah and the Palestinian group Hamas to be on the agenda."  Of course they just want the Golan back without any conditions of safety for Israel.  That's a bad bad deal.

It is said that Netanyahu secretly offered Assad the same deal in 2001 and again the answer was no. Now, our government through Bruce Riedel, former longtime CIA officer and former senior fellow in the Saban Center at the Brookings Institution at President Obama's request chaired the strategic review of policy toward Afghanistan and Pakistan in 2009.  He has also come up with this solution to problems. He thinks Israel should give away the Golan to Syria.

Is that all the solutionists can come with, to give away parts of Israel?  I know our enemies want all of teeny Israel. Iran will have an A bomb very soon.  Hizbullah,  terrorists against Israel that also spread Islam, who get their money from Iran and Syria,  has 50,000 rockets aimed at Haifa, Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. Syria has hundreds of SCUD missles tipped with chemical warheads that could get into Hizbullah hands.  The way Syria has been slaughtering its own people today, does one think that they would keep a peace treaty with Israel in return for most of the Golan Heights?  They had their chance and blew it.  I hope that Netanyahu has thrown that idea back into the wastebasket.

Resource:  Victor Sharpe's article
Bruce Reidel of Saban Center of Brookings Institution through The Daily Beast

No comments: