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Opinion

Opinion

World wants to leave Israel defenseless

June 4, 2010

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— The world is outraged at Israel’s blockade of Gaza. Turkey denounces its illegality, inhumanity, barbarity, etc. The usual U.N. suspects, Third World and European, join in. The Obama administration dithers.

But as Leslie Gelb, former president of the Council on Foreign Relations, writes, the blockade is not just perfectly rational, it is perfectly legal. Gaza under Hamas is a self-declared enemy of Israel — a declaration backed up by more than 4,000 rockets fired at Israeli civilian territory. Yet having pledged itself to unceasing belligerency, Hamas claims victimhood when Israel imposes a blockade to prevent Hamas from arming itself with still more rockets.

In World War II, with full international legality, the United States blockaded Germany and Japan. And during the October 1962 missile crisis, we blockaded (“quarantined”) Cuba. Yet Israel is accused of international criminality for doing precisely what John Kennedy did: impose a naval blockade to prevent a hostile state from acquiring lethal weaponry.

Oh, but weren’t the Gaza-bound ships on a mission of humanitarian relief? No. Otherwise they would have accepted Israel’s offer to bring their supplies to an Israeli port, be inspected for military materiel and have the rest trucked by Israel into Gaza — as every week 10,000 tons of food, medicine and other humanitarian supplies are sent by Israel to Gaza.

Why was the offer refused? Because, as organizer Greta Berlin admitted, the flotilla was not about humanitarian relief but about breaking the blockade, i.e., ending Israel’s inspection regime, which would mean unlimited shipping into Gaza and thus the unlimited arming of Hamas.

Israel has already twice intercepted weapons-laden ships from Iran destined for Hezbollah and Gaza. What country would allow that?

But even more important, why did Israel even have to resort to blockade? Because, blockade is Israel’s fallback as the world systematically delegitimizes its traditional ways of defending itself — forward and active defense.

(1) Forward defense: As a small, densely populated country surrounded by hostile states, Israel had, for its first half-century, adopted forward defense — fighting wars on enemy territory (such as the Sinai and Golan Heights) rather than its own.

Where possible (Sinai, for example) Israel has traded territory for peace. But where peace offers were refused, Israel retained the territory as a protective buffer zone. Thus Israel retained a small strip of southern Lebanon to protect the villages of northern Israel. And it took many losses in Gaza, rather than expose Israeli border towns to Palestinian terror attacks.

But under overwhelming outside pressure, Israel gave it up. The Israelis were told the occupations were not just illegal but at the root of the anti-Israel insurgencies — and therefore withdrawal, by removing the cause, would bring peace.

Land for peace. Remember? Well, during the past decade, Israel gave the land — evacuating South Lebanon in 2000 and Gaza in 2005. What did it get? An intensification of belligerency, heavy militarization of the enemy side, multiple kidnappings, cross-border attacks and, from Gaza, years of unrelenting rocket attack.

(2) Active defense: Israel then had to switch to active defense — military action to disrupt, dismantle and defeat (to borrow President Obama’s description of our campaign against the Taliban and al-Qaida) the newly armed terrorist mini-states established in southern Lebanon and Gaza after Israel withdrew.

The result? The Lebanon war of 2006 and Gaza operation of 2008-09. They were met with yet another avalanche of opprobrium and calumny by the same international community that had demanded the land-for-peace Israeli withdrawals in the first place. Worse, the U.N. Goldstone report, which essentially criminalized Israel’s defensive operation in Gaza while whitewashing the casus belli — the preceding and unprovoked Hamas rocket war — effectively delegitimized any active Israeli defense against its self-declared terror enemies.

(3) Passive defense. Without forward or active defense, Israel is left with but the most passive and benign of all defenses — a blockade to simply prevent enemy rearmament. Yet, as we speak, this too is headed for international delegitimation.

But, if none of these are permissible, what’s left?

Nothing. The whole point of this relentless international campaign is to deprive Israel of any legitimate form of self-defense.

The world is tired of these troublesome Jews, six million — that number again — hard by the Mediterranean, refusing every invitation to national suicide. For which they are relentlessly demonized, ghettoized and constrained from defending themselves, even as the more committed anti-Zionists — Iranian in particular — openly prepare a more final solution.

— Charles Krauthammer is a columnist for Washington Post Writers Group. letters@charleskrauthammer.com

Comments

bobberboy 3 years, 10 months ago

they don't want to leave them defenseless they just want them to go home. Probably the best thing for them to do too. Just think of all the grief that could have been overted. Damn those Nazis !

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barrypenders 3 years, 10 months ago

The 'Lebanese' descendent Helen, can now assist the 'Arabic' named 'Blessed One' in defending Israel from the World. She will have plenty of 'Free' time to organize the Jewish folk back to "Where they came from"

Stimulus, Jewish Transformation, and Posercare live unprecedented

Darwin bless us all

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Flap Doodle 3 years, 10 months ago

In other news, Helen "the voice of Hamas" Thomas has pulled the ripcord.

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independant1 3 years, 10 months ago

Israel is the only democratic country in the middle east. There are Arab citizens in Israel. Their rights are protected under the Israeli constitution.

You will not find the converse in neighboring arab countries. That picture refutes your anti semitism.

When Palestinians and arabs in general retract their goal of wiping all jews out then there can be a solution to the problem.

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Richard Heckler 3 years, 10 months ago

How can the sixth largest nuke power in the world be left defenseless?

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TrooGrit 3 years, 10 months ago

Bozo, once again, your history lesson is bogus. You found a Palestianian website that bolsters your Bolshevic view of history. It couldn't come from a more fitting moronic socialist as you. Did you not think any of us conservatives smart enough to do our own research? You are just simply an idiot. http://mideastweb.org/briefhistory-oslo.htm

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 3 years, 10 months ago

The history of Israel is one of terrorism and ethnic cleansing.

http://www.palestineremembered.com/Acre/Palestine-Remembered/Story448.html

Here's an interesting excerpt, quoting Ben-Gurion, first prime minister of Israel.

"I don't understand your optimism.," Ben-Gurion declared. "Why should the Arabs make peace? If I was an Arab leader I would never make terms with Israel. That is natural: we have taken their country. Sure, God promised it to us, but what does that matter to them? Our God is not theirs. We come from Israel, it's true, but two thousand years ago, and what is that to them? There has been anti-Semitism the Nazis, Hitler, Auschwitz, but was that their fault? They only see one thing: we have come here and stolen their country. Why should they accept that? They may perhaps forget in one or two generations' time, but for the moment there is no chance. So it's simple: we have to stay strong and maintain a powerful army. Our whole policy is there. Otherwise the Arabs will wipes us out".

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Liberty275 3 years, 10 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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independant1 3 years, 10 months ago

Israel is about 8% of the original 118K sq. km. of the British Mandate for Palestine. The end of WWI and the mandate ended 4 centruies of Turk-Ottoman rule and the beginning of 30 years of British rule.

The 8 sq. km. of the Palestine Territory was for the establishment of a jewish homeland. The Jewish Agency was established in 1929 to facilitate immigration.

Jewish settlement was excluded from most of the greater Palestine Mandate. This was to appease the Arabs. So 110K sq. km. not for jews, 8k sq. km. for jewish homeland.

Today: Israel is 75% Jewish and 20% Arab. Jordan is 98% Arab Jewish 0%. Syria 90% Muslim Arab, 10% Christian Arab, Jewish 0%.
Lebanon 95% Arab, 4% Armenian, jewish 0%. Egypt 99% Egytptian, Jewish 0%

It was approved by the League of Nations in 1922.

A lot of water has gone under the bridge since 1922.

The Zionists wrote equal rights into their constitution.

Yup, I think we should support this democracy.

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Machiavelli_mania 3 years, 10 months ago

Boy, I wouldn't' mind of Israel was defenseless. Maybe they would stop spying on the US, would stop bullying everyone.

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Agnostick 3 years, 10 months ago

Wow. Is it just me, or is michaelmoore... no more?

Excuse me while I go check my email...

Agnostick agnostick@excite.com

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beobachter 3 years, 10 months ago

Jack, you didn't answer question.

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JackRipper 3 years, 10 months ago

But isn't is ok to go with rumors about the boats going to Gaza isn't it ok to just use internet stories for this?

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JackRipper 3 years, 10 months ago

What, you mean proof is only needed when about what Israeli's do and when a ship of aid is trying to get to the Gaza without any proof we can say they are arming terrorist and when attacked in international water they are violent because they didn't accept the pirate actions of the Israelis?

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bobberboy 3 years, 10 months ago

which will be the first to come forward ?

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bobberboy 3 years, 10 months ago

which will be first to turn the other cheek ?

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bobberboy 3 years, 10 months ago

muslims should become jews and jews muslims.

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barrypenders 3 years, 10 months ago

The 'Venerable' Helen Thomas said that the people of Israel should go back to where they came from Germany or Poland.

Stimulus, Hmm Hm Hm, and Posercare live unprecedented

Darwin bless us all

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barrypenders 3 years, 10 months ago

The 'Venerable' Helen Thomas said that the people of Israel should go back to where they came from Germany or Poland.

Stimulus, Hmm Hm Hm, and Posercare live unprecedented

Darwin bless us all

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JackRipper 3 years, 10 months ago

Yep, billions of dollar in aid and when the trade towers were hit their intelligence agents were celebrating across the river.

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Tom Shewmon 3 years, 10 months ago

I'd like to see the look on the far-left loons faces when all Jews answer a call to arms and return to their homeland to defend her. Biblically, that is the start of the end. I think Obama has hastened the call with his anti-Semite stance.

Exciting times ahead!

Who's ready?

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mr_right_wing 3 years, 10 months ago

It makes sense to me...as our world gets more and more wicked and dark, or course they are going to turn against God's chosen people. Hitler and most (notice I didn't say "all") muslims had/have the option that the children of Israel have no right to exist. (Sounds like it's straight out of satan's mouth to me.) Christians owe a huge debt to the Jews, Jesus was a Jew, Mary was a Jew, the Disciples were Jews, our Bible was written by Jews (under God's influence.) God even says that he will bless them that bless Israel, and curse them that curse Israel. (I think I'd rather be on the "bless" side!!)

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coolmom 3 years, 10 months ago

Israel deserves to be able to protect itself, It is a small country surrounded by hostility. I for one admire the get up and go.

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Agnostick 3 years, 10 months ago

[Another opinion...]

"Invasion and occupation of neighboring countries is 'forward defense.' And asking that a two-state solution be moved forward by freezing illegal settlement construction and allowing a blockade that, while interdicting arms, doesn't seek to kill civilians and restrict the import of basic necessities is to deprive a country with 150 nuclear warheads of any legitimate form of self-defense.

"This is a form of derangement, or of such a passionate commitment to a foreign country that any and all normal moral rules or even basic fairness are jettisoned. And you will notice one thing as well: no regret whatsoever for the loss of human life, just as the hideous murder of so many civilians in the Gaza war had to be the responsibility of the victims, not the attackers. There is no sense of the human here; just the tribe."

http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com/the_daily_dish/2010/06/israel-derangement-syndrome.html

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TrooGrit 3 years, 10 months ago

I'm actually shocked that Ag didn't defend his position here....you could argue it was a straw man,...which it was...or you could say he didn't have a defense, which would be true. Or, you could say he "seen the light" which is not likely. No, what i think likely is, old Ag and his agnostic wife probably went off to the country....where they could observe the God neutral beauty of nature, that God did not give us, and only nature gave us, and the landscape, that on ly someone unlike God gave is. Oh, shopping? In God we trust moentary coins? What a hypocrite! You just said you don't believe in God, yet you use currency that says In GOD we trust. What are you, AG? An Agnostic, or an athesit? Why don't you just say that you revile all that is holy? After all, an agnostic worth his salt would do all possible to reveal why GOD doesn't exist. Why do you resist?

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TrooGrit 3 years, 10 months ago

heh. Ag couldn't blast a fellow lib! you know that Tom. It's like why a shark won't bite a lawyer. Professional courtesy!

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Tom Shewmon 3 years, 10 months ago

And I know you'll jump right in the middle of the next Leonard Pitts race-mongering, race-baiting commentary and blast him, won't you Agnostick?

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TrooGrit 3 years, 10 months ago

The thing about the lib's on here, they flame, inflame, then whine when they are called on the carpet for their misguided facts. Let's face it, this administration did away with the term "Islamic terrorists". They do not officially publish that term any more for fear of offending Muslims. Oil spills are "man-made encroachment on the environment", mass murders by Islamic idiots are "aberrations against citizens", and corruption in government is "illegal diversion". Way to go libs. Just water every frickin' thing down until you pansies are all just "misinformed citizens". You sicken me, your moral decay has gotten us where we are.

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Agnostick 3 years, 10 months ago

Charles Krauthammer, like other pot-stirring extremists, is simply providing more "hate porn" for addicts like right_thinker, snap, bloodypadders, bkgarner etc.

Bad choices have been made by both sides... made by people easily duped by extremists of one type or another into lashing out irrationally.

There's hardly any choice, action, or influence that outsiders--including the United States--can employ to make this situation better.

There are probably hundreds of things we and other outsiders can do that will only serve to aggravate things even more.

This is merely Israel's turn at stoking the fire--the other side will strike back before too long. Same as it ever was.

Lather, rinse, repeat, ad nauseam.

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Paul R Getto 3 years, 10 months ago

As FDR allegedly said of Somoza: "President Franklin D. Roosevelt (FDR) supposedly remarked in 1939 that "Somoza may be a son of a bitch, but he's our son of a bitch." === Let's just be honest about the Israeli government. There was no 'holy land' back in the day; the Jews have been horribly abused and deserve some consideration; they are our thugs we support with US taxpayer money to keep people we like even less at bay; we helped them steal land from people who occupied it for centuries; etc. Just drop the myths and the fake history and all the other baggage and call them what they are: Our surrogate strongmen in the Middle East. We have done this many times all over the world and should be used to it.

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Tom Shewmon 3 years, 10 months ago

The left is going berzerk over Israel's totally appropriate response to interloping terrorists, but you don't hear them going ballistic over this, as they would've during W's two terms:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/37474231/ns/world_news-south_and_central_asia/

Where's Code Pink? Where's all the outcry from the leftist anti-war demonstrators? Where's the near monthly rant by Curtis D. Bennett like the ones he wrote about GWB the warmonger?

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jonas_opines 3 years, 10 months ago

"The world is tired of these troublesome Jews, six million — that number again — hard by the Mediterranean, refusing every invitation to national suicide. For which they are relentlessly demonized, ghettoized and constrained from defending themselves, even as the more committed anti-Zionists — Iranian in particular — openly prepare a more final solution."

Say what you will about the entire situation with Israel, but this paragraph is sheer babbling idiocy.

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Ralph Reed 3 years, 10 months ago

@Tom. re: you. 0759. I case you've forgotten, you've all but said, "I'm a racist," in other posts. So essentially, beobachter is simply saying, "If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck and smells like a duck, then it must be a duck." An example is seen in my response to a statement you made a on another thread. /*/ @Tom, re your 1440: You said, "...getting back at well-off/wealthy/wealthier white folk seems to be the "transformation" Obama spoke of on the campaign trail." // (My response) This, unfortunately, shows your real feelings regarding President Obama. It's not that he's a Democrat and a Liberal (more centrist, but anyway ...), but it's the fact that he's not white, read that as "Black." I won't say you're racist, but the above quote points directly to that fact. Too bad. May 2, 2010 at 10:58 p.m. (http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2010/may/02/miss-him-bushs-reputation-might-be-ready-rebound) /****/ As I remember, you took issue with my centrist comment, but said nothing to try and refute the rest of the comment.

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md 3 years, 10 months ago

The liberal bigots are out in force today!

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Tom Shewmon 3 years, 10 months ago

beobachter derives his handle from Goebbel's and Hitler's Nazi propaganda newspaper, the 'Völkischer Beobachter'. Fascists and dictators absolutely require a well-oiled propaganda apparatus. The Anointed One has his own Minister of Propaganda, Robert Gibbs, who gives the propagandist press corp their talking points and stories. How hilarious that beoB comes on here daily calling us bigots and racists.

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 3 years, 10 months ago

So by Chuck's logic (OK, I know, there is no logic involved,) Palestinians should be blockading Israel.

But why aren't they doing so? Because they are held hostage in ghettos of Israel's making, thanks to $3 billion in US tax dollars every year.

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cowboy 3 years, 10 months ago

The only people who can solve this is the state of Israel. Find a peace , there will have to be concessions and pain. Only Israel can make the deal.

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Mixolydian 3 years, 10 months ago

True. Beobatcher previously stated that he wished Hitler had succeeded in wiping out the jews. He is a worthless piece of foulness.

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Flap Doodle 3 years, 10 months ago

If it has done nothing else, this business has let several posters on this board let their true colors come shining through.

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Tom Shewmon 3 years, 10 months ago

Regarding ideology, the far-left in America are no different than terrorists organizations. MediaMatters is comparing the flotilla attack to the civil rights activists, the ones taking supplies to Hamas as the good guys, Israel as the bad buys. Glenn Beck is doing a tremendous job once again, exposing the lunacy of the left/far-left and the dishonesty and biases of the corrupt liberal media. The corrupt lamestream media simply can not report honestly, for it goes directly against their strictly liberal agenda. I'm sure a large share of our esteemed LJW far-left neighbors (some who claim they're not far-left, but than I'm a right-wing extremist--lol!) follow mediamatters quite closely.

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beobachter 3 years, 10 months ago

Israel is nothing more than a USA sponsored terrorist organization founded by UN.

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jaywalker 3 years, 10 months ago

Damned if they do, damned if they don't....

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barrypenders 3 years, 10 months ago

People with 'Arabic' names just don't like Israel and will blame them for everything. 'Hate' and 'Profiling' of Jewish people is an 'Emotionality' that has gone on for years.

Why would PADs stop 'Hate' and 'Profiling' now?

Stimulus, Anti-Semites, and Posercare live unprecedented

Darwin bless us all

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igby 3 years, 10 months ago

America, can invade another country like Iraq, to protect it's interest and national security and when the Jew's get attacked by terrorist on either side they bomb the crap out of them and the world blames the Jews. The Jews can bomb them until the cows come home, and search these ships for weapons.

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michaelmoore 3 years, 10 months ago

Good article in support of Israel.

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Richard Heckler 3 years, 10 months ago

Israel leadership is more on the level of a terrorist and has been for several years.... the bottom line.

======================================================== Below is an example of special interest USA tax dollar spending as our military people are forced to KILL innocent people all for oil pipelines!!!

Plans to build a pipeline to siphon oil from newly conquered Iraq to Israel are being discussed between Washington, Tel Aviv and potential future government figures in Baghdad.

The plan envisages the reconstruction of an old pipeline, inactive since the end of the British mandate in Palestine in 1948, when the flow from Iraq's northern oilfields to Palestine was re-directed to Syria.

Now, its resurrection would transform economic power in the region, bringing revenue to the new US-dominated Iraq, cutting out Syria and solving Israel's energy crisis at a stroke.

It would also create an end less and easily accessible source of cheap Iraqi oil for the US guaranteed by reliable allies other than Saudi Arabia - a keystone of US foreign policy for decades and especially since 11 September 2001.

Until 1948, the pipeline ran from the Kurdish-controlled city of Mosul to the Israeli port of Haifa, on its northern Mediterranean coast.

The revival of the pipeline was first discussed openly by the Israeli Minister for National Infrastructures, Joseph Paritzky, according to the Israeli newspaper Ha'aretz .

The paper quotes Paritzky as saying that the pipeline would cut Israel's energy bill drastically - probably by more than 25 per cent - since the country is currently largely dependent on expensive imports from Russia.

US intelligence sources confirmed to The Observer that the project has been discussed. One former senior CIA official said: 'It has long been a dream of a powerful section of the people now driving this administration [of President George W. Bush] and the war in Iraq to safeguard Israel's energy supply as well as that of the United States.

'The Haifa pipeline was something that existed, was resurrected as a dream and is now a viable project - albeit with a lot of building to do.'

The editor-in-chief of the Middle East Economic Review , Walid Khadduri, says in the current issue of Jane's Foreign Report that 'there's not a metre of it left, at least in Arab territory'.

To resurrect the pipeline would need the backing of whatever government the US is to put in place in Iraq, and has been discussed - according to Western diplomatic sources - con't http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2003/apr/20/israelandthepalestinians.oil

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