Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey to Gil Eyal: Please explain to us

Dear Mr. Eyal,

There does seem to be a communication problem here. You claim that the Israeli Defence Force could have killed Arafat long ago and that the IDF is stronger than all the other armies in the region.

About this there is no doubt, as would the Palestinians be if they had 3 bn. USD worth of armament pumped into them every year and Israel, precious little.

I also have no doubt that you could carpet-nuke Damascus, Cairo, Bethlehem, Jerusalem, Amman and Jeddah all at the same time, if you so wanted.

The point is, where would it get you, and where does the shooting at ambulances get you? Where does the return of bullets for stones get you? Where does the bulldozing of civilian houses with old men, women and children inside get you? Where does the occupation of Palestinian lands get you? Where does the building of colonies on stolen lands get you?

You claim that you are fighting against terrorism. Here we agree; it isn't very nice to know that your son, having a birthday party in a pizza bar, could suddenly find himself face-to-face with some lunatic yelling "Ali Akhbar!" and blasting himself, and everyone else, into the next world and out onto the streets.

Certainly terrorists have been rounded up in the current operation and certainly terrorism will never be defended in these pages in this newspaper.

Please explain to us, and I am not trying to be facetious here, why it is that there seems to be a disability to understand that if Israel gave the Palestinians the West Bank and Gaza Strip, all of it, abiding by UN Resolutions, then the wave of sympathy for the Palestinian cause wouldlose its raison d'etre and the Palestinians would be forced to live at peace with you, instead of hating you so much they are prepared to blow themselves up.

Thank you

Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey

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