Saturday, May 5, 2007
The Real Question Isn't Why Olmert Started the War in Haste, But Why He Started It At All
By URI AVNERY
".....All these accusations are accurate. But they also include a large measure of escapism.
That is a trait of the Israeli people (and perhaps of all peoples): they do all they can to avoid discussing the real disease and busy themselves with secondary, sometimes trivial, symptoms.....
But the real question is not why Olmert started the war in haste, but why he started the war at all.
Every right-thinking person understands that Hizbullah can be neutralized only by making peace with Syria, a peace for which we must give back the Golan Heights. What is more important for us--peace or the Golan? The Golan (and the God-forsaken Shebaa Farms) or peace with Lebanon?
About that no serious debate is being held--not in the Knesset, nor in the media, nor in public discussions. That was not the reason the masses assembled in the square. That is too complicated. That is too controversial. That needs cool thinking, drawing conclusions from what has happened. It is easier to shout "Olmert Go Home!".....
STANDING IN the square, between men wearing knitted kippas and men wearing T-shirts, orthodox women with long sleeves and women wearing very un-orthodox tight jeans, I could not avoid a bitter thought: Where the hell were you when your voices could have saved so many lives? Were you saluting Olmert the avenging Hero, when he sent you into the war?
And you journalists who, almost all of you, called upon the people to come and protest, didn't you call upon the people with the same enthusiasm to go to war?
What do we need now: to prepare for the next war--or to prevent the next war? To set up a government that will invade Lebanon again, and perhaps Syria, too, in order to "restore the deterrent power of the army"--or a government that will start serious negotiations to achieve peace?....."