Letters to the Editor

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ISRAEL: Are Palestinians open to co-existing in peace?

Letter by Belinda F. Timpke, Tacoma on Jan. 10, 2013 at 12:36 pm | No Comments »
January 10, 2013 1:04 pm

Re: “Policies do qualify as apartheid” (letter, 1-8).

The Israeli military occupation of the West Bank cannot be compared to the racism of South African apartheid. Palestinians are treated different from Israeli Jews and Arabs because of legal differences between Israeli vs. non-Israeli. It has nothing to do with race.

So why there is an occupation in the first place? In 1967, Israel won a defensive war against the Egyptian occupiers of Gaza and the Jordanian occupiers of the West Bank. Attempts to trade land for peace were met with “no peace with Israel, no negotiations with Israel, no recognition of Israel.”

Unfortunately there is a need for checkpoints, separate roads, a separation wall, etc.; it is to protect Israeli citizens from terrorism, including the 350,000 settlers living on 1.75 percent of the West Bank. Palestinian media, schools and mosques teach hatred of Jews and glorify terrorism instead of preparing Palestinians to live in peaceful co-existence.

I don’t see how Israel can even think about withdrawing until the Palestinian Authority renounces terrorism, accepts Israel’s right to exist within secure boundaries and makes serious efforts to negotiate.

Both sides will have to make concessions. Israelis want a two-state solution. The question is, does the PA want the same thing?

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