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Thursday, November 06, 2003

Negotiating with terrorists

It's a terrible deal
By Caroline Glick, my hero at the Jerusalem Post.
The parameters of the deal are that Israel will release from our prisons former Hizbullah leader Abdel Karim Obeid, former Amal militia chief Mustafa Dirani, 17 other Hizbullah terrorists who killed IDF soldiers, and more than 400 Palestinian terrorists, some of whom were directly involved in the murder of Israelis. In exchange, Israel will receive the bodies of IDF soldiers Adi Avitan, Omar Sawayid and Benny Avraham who were kidnapped from their base in Israel and murdered by Hizbullah in October 2000 and Israeli businessman Elhanan Tannenbaum who the same month was abducted and brought to Lebanon by Hizbullah while carrying out legally dubious business dealings in a Gulf state.

. . . The fact that Israel is willing to give more than four hundred live terrorists for one live Israeli businessman means that now Hizbullah knows that every Israeli they can get their hands on is a prime target. If the government agrees to pay such a high price for Tannenbaum, the suspected felon, the lives of all Israelis everywhere are at risk. If his release costs Israel 400 terrorists, how much will Israel agree to pay to secure the release of an Israeli family abducted while on safari in Africa or a honeymooning couple kidnapped while trekking through South America? Today we are agreeing to play this game. Tomorrow we will see the price.

. . . It is impossible to envy the ministers, who will be called on Sunday to make a heartbreaking decision. Will they prefer the fortunes of four families who are suffering unspeakable sorrow over the well-being of every single Israeli citizen, and the lives of Coalition forces in Iraq even as the former is staring them in the face and the latter has yet to grasp the coming storm? David Bar Illan had the presence of mind and common sense that made him, as his son Jeremy eulogized yesterday, "a Jewish superhero." He would undoubtedly have seen this deal as the poison tipped spear it is. Can we not expect and demand that our government follow in his deep footsteps and use their common sense?