Powered by WebAds

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

What if Olmert tries to surrender and no one goes along?

There's an article in the JPost regarding expectations of violence to go along with the implementation of Ehud Olmert's convergence consolidation surrender plan. The feeling among the 'security forces' is that since the Gaza surrender and the Amona pogrom, more Israelis have been pushed further to the right and may violently oppose the new surrender plan. Not surprising.

The army is talking about 'preventive detention' (also known as administrative detention) in the runup to the surrender. That means arrest without charges and without trial and they lock you up (or confine you to your home) for months on end. It's not pretty, and yes, it would violate every civil right on the book in the US - but not in Israel. It was widely used after the Rabin assassination against anyone and everyone who had ever expressed opposition to Oslo (literally - there was allegedly someone arrested in a barber shop in early 1996 because when the barber asked who is next in line, he answered "Shimon Peres").

You may recall that last week I called your attention to an article by Caroline Glick that arose out of the Hananel Meged-Dayan situation, in which she argued that the IDF has a vendetta against the National Religious community. Well, here it is: this time in the news section of the JPost:

One critical issue is whether the police will carry out the evacuation on their own or if soldiers will physically evacuate settlers alongside policemen like they did during the disengagement. On Sunday, the IDF Spokesperson's Office rejected a news report in Ma'ariv claiming that senior officers had asked Defense Minister Amir Peretz to excuse the army from participation in the pullout.

Police said they did not believe it was possible to carry out such a large-scale evacuation, which would include tens of thousands of settlers, on their own. The police, a senior source in the Internal Security Ministry said, did not have enough manpower to carry out the pullout without assistance from the IDF, and policymakers would have to take that fact into consideration when planning the pullout.

In the end, a senior defense official predicted Sunday, the government would most probably decide to assign the mission both to the police and the IDF. "No one wants the pullout to drag on," the official said, "and the only way to do it quickly is to for both soldiers and the police to do it together."

Another source of concern for the army is the growing number of religious soldiers in key command posts throughout the IDF. While disengagement from Gaza passed without large numbers of soldiers refusing orders, senior officers are now concerned that with religious soldier making up 50 percent of the cadets in the Officer's Training Course and with the official settler leadership considering calling on soldiers to refuse military orders - something they didn't do in the run-up to the Gaza pullout - the results could change.

In addition, the army is now vocally calling to remain in Judea and Samaria even if civilians are expelled - which makes you wonder what is the point of Olmert's expulsion plan:

Last week, former IDF chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Moshe Ya'alon said that Israel's current leadership was "confused" and was offering "illusions" to the nation in the form of additional land concessions to the Palestinians.

"I do not see any prospect for peace and reconciliation on the Palestinian side," Ya'alon said during a speech he delivered at an event in New York hosted by the Zionist Organization of America. "I needed no sophisticated intelligence to reach this conclusion - I only had to look at their textbooks, posters and so on…Under no circumstances should we surrender to terror. As long as they see our appeasement policy, they will continue."

In his speech, Ya'alon also touched upon the question of whether Israel should retain a military presence in the West Bank following a pullout there under the convergence plan. Senior officers have also recently weighed in on that issue, claiming that unless the evacuation was under a peace agreement, the army would need to stay within "every corner" of the West Bank.

Sounds like a very expensive operation for very little gain - even in the best case scenario.


Post a Comment

<< Home