Letter: Why the wall exists
I agree with Robert Azzi when he says that in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, there are competing narratives (Sunday Monitor Forum, July 27). I also support the creation of a Palestinian state and am critical of the Israeli government’s actions that impede such a creation. And while I take issue with several of his assertions, I will address just one.
Azzi asks me specifically what I call a land divided by a separation wall. What I call that land is safe. Why did Israel build the wall? In 2000, the second intifada began. Its hallmark was Palestinian suicide bombers who blew themselves up on buses and other places. Or who left bombs in places to explode at later times. The police estimated that 100 bombs per day were detonated or deactivated. After 605 Israelis were killed between 2000 and 2005, Israelis demanded that their government do something. The solution has been devastating to Palestinians. And at the same time, Israelis stopped dying from exploding bombs.
As I stated in my original column (Monitor Forum, July 23), Israel does whatever it can to keep its population safe and alive – building a security wall, developing the Iron Dome and building bomb shelters. Israel will know that it has a true partner for peace when the leaders of the Palestinian people, be it Hamas, Fatah or the Palestinian Authority, make the safety of its own people – rather than the killing of Jews and hiding the atrocities done to its own people in an effort to win the PR battle – its priority as well.
Rabbi ROBIN NAFSHI