Friday, April 30, 2004

The Facts Of Life
An excellent article by Melanie Phillips explaining THE FACTS OF LIFE. Do you think that emphasis was strong enough? How about - The Facts Of Life!

For one thing

The first major error is the idea that Israel is torpedoing a political settlement. There is in fact no political settlement on the horizon. For all Tony Blair's insistence otherwise, the road map is dead in the water because the Palestinian Authority refuses even to attempt the map's first and most basic requirement, that it dismantle the infrastructure of terror.

Not only has it refused on the grounds that to confront Hamas would mean civil war, but Yasser Arafat's own militias — and even the PA's own policemen— are repeatedly involved in the human bomb attacks which are being regularly attempted (and mainly thwarted). You can't negotiate a settlement if there is no-one committed to peace with whom to negotiate.

And more importantly

And here lies perhaps the biggest — and most bitterly ironic — error by Israel's critics. For to its Arab enemies, far from representing strength Israel actually embodies a terrible weakness.


The danger lies in not recognising that terrorism is encouraged by weakness, not strength. Al Qaeda attacked America because it perceived the west was decadent and so assumed it was not prepared to fight. It made a big mistake over America, but it got Europe (with the exception of Tony Blair over Afghanistan and Iraq) dead right.

The history of modern terrorism is a history of appeasement. From the first Palestinian plane hijacking in 1968, the response of the west was to assume there were legitimate grievances that had to be addressed. From that point, terrorists had every incentive to continue.

In a roundabout way, Melanie Phillips is one of the people who brought about the creation of this blog, back in the dark, desperate days of the spring of 2002, when simple, everyday events, like sending the girls to school in the morning, were traumatic.