Only Hope: Sharon's "Discordant Voices"
Sharon calls for unity while inciting against part of the population. A speech of a bankrupt Prime Minister characterized by hypocrisy, hollow promises and insinuations.
Here was standing a Prime Minister whose policy has reached bankruptcy in all spheres - he brought neither peace, nor security, the economy is sliding into deep depression and the people are in a moral crisis. He exploited the media for a speech without content other than incitement, lies and hollow phrases. Sharon appealed for "National Unity" i.e. a closing of ranks behind a policy of war crimes, a policy bent upon ever more destruction and killing. At the same time Sharon himself chose to spew on camera words of incitement against the best sons of the nation, the soldiers and officers who follow the dictates of their conscience and refuse to take any further part in the crimes of the occupation.
What he offers the Palestinians are "Buffer Zones" (in other words: unilateral annexation of big slices of the Occupied Territories). Palestinians know full well what it means: more land confiscation, more house demolitions, more uprooting of trees, more killings. In the past two days alone 30 Palestinians were killed in the ever escalating cycle of revenge upon revenge, during increasingly indiscrimiunate bombings and invasions of the self-governing Palestinian areas.
To citizens of Israel Sharon's buffer zones remind of the disastrous "security zone" which he created in South Lebanon, and which entailed a decades-long futile guerilla war in which more than a thousand Israeli soldiers were among the victims.
Ariel Sharon has no intention whatsoever of giving up the occupation and the settlements. Therefore, his government has no option but to go on escalating the situation towards an invasion of all the Palestinian areas and eventually an all-out regional war. It would be foolhardy to place any reliance upon his pious assurances of the opposite.
Israel's only hope lies in the "discordant voices" which the Prime Minister so sharply denounced - the voices of protest and dissent which are increasingly heard in the Israeli society, especially among the young, and which will eventually bring the Sharon government down.