Is the 'fix' in?There was a report that I had planned to blog yesterday from WorldNetDaily that indicates that a deal is all-but-done to give control of Judea and Samariato 'moderate' 'Palestinian President'
Israel and the Palestinians have been conducting behind-the-scene negotiations regarding handing over most of the West Bank to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, according to top Egyptian and European diplomatic sources who told WND they were directly involved with the talks.You will note that there is no mention here of the possibility of expelling revenants. That's because the IDF cannot evacuate the revenants. The topography of Judea and Samaria is completely different. While revenants might willingly leave some of the less 'ideological settlements,' it is almost undoubtedly true that expelling revenants from places like Beit El, Ofra, Shilo, Kiryat Arab, etc. would lead to bloodshed among Israelis. If Olmert actually goes ahead with this lunacy, look for the revenants to form 'citizens' armies' and to rely on their own people for security. And look for lots more shooting between them and the 'Palestinians.'
The West Bank borders Jerusalem and is within rocket-firing range of Tel Aviv and Israel's international airport.
The Egyptian and European sources told WND the negotiations for an Israeli withdrawal were mediated by Egypt and the European Union, with U.S. input. The sources said major changes in Israeli-Palestinian affairs are expected within a few weeks to two months.
According to an aid to European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana, speaking on condition of anonymity, there will be a "historic political evolution and movement in negotiations in the next few weeks and few months, unseen since the Camp David peace talks in 2000."
The sources said Israel is studying the transfer of responsibility in the central and southern West Bank to Abbas' security forces, which reportedly are receiving aid, weapons and training from the U.S.
They said one proposal being considered for the northern West Bank would see Jordan and the EU supervise the transfer to Abbas' security forces.
Still being debated is the role of Hamas, which leads the PA and maintains the majority of seats in the Palestinian parliament. Negotiations between Abbas and Hamas leaders for a national unity government have mostly fallen through.
So far, Hamas has refused to recognize Israel, but recently offered a 10-year truce with the Jewish state. In a series of interviews this past weekend, Hamas leaders told WND during any 10-year truce period they would build a large Palestinian army and plan for the destruction of Israel.
Several recent public opinion polls showed the majority of Israelis now oppose a West Bank withdrawal. The leaders of Egypt and Jordan have expressed reservations about withdrawal plans, fearing terrorism can spill over into their respective countries.
Now for what it's worth (not much) Olmert's office has denied this story:
"There were no negotiations regarding a West Bank withdrawal. This would go contrary to other things we have said in the recent past," said Olmert's spokesperson, Miri Eisin.This morning, WND is reporting that the European Union is expanding its offices in Israel in anticipation of an expanded role in Israel's security. Just what we don't need.
"Perhaps the officials talking to WorldNetDaily were referring to general expectations for movement in the Israeli-Palestinian arena," Eisin said.
But the European and Egyptian sources today stood by their statements that Israel agreed in principal to transfer security control to Abbas of most of the West Bank. The territory borders Jerusalem and is within rocket-firing range of Tel Aviv and Israel's international airport.
Israeli leaders previously have denied reports of pending withdrawals only to later carry them out. [In other words, they have lied to the electorate. CiJ] Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, elected in 2001 on a platform against unilateral withdrawal, at first denied media reports Israel was planning to evacuate the Gaza Strip but later announced his Gaza withdrawal plan.
Olmert was elected prime minister on the platform of carrying out a withdrawal from the West Bank, but after this summer's Lebanon war, he has stated a West Bank withdrawal would not occur.
Olmert in August called the policy of unilateral withdrawal a "failure" and said it was "no longer relevant." But he can argue handing the West Bank to Abbas in an agreement is not unilateral. [Think of Bill Clinton saying "I did not have sex with that woman." It's the same level of argument. CiJ]
For those of you who still live overseas who want to try to change the situation, I have one piece of advice: Pack your bags and make aliya. That's the only chance you have of changing anything. I have met several people on this trip who cannot understand how Israel's politicians are willing to give the country away. If those people lived in Israel, it would make a huge difference.