This is likely to be one of those posts where I paint a picture of the week ahead and then find myself re-reading this on Wednesday with red face embarrassment. As far as Israel is concerned, this is destined to be one of those 'as soon as you read the news, it's immediately out of date' kind of weeks. They occur fairly regularly around this neighborhood.
It's quite clear that this is do-or-die (unfortunate phrasing!) week for the orange crews across Israel. Both the anti-Disengagement thousands and the Israeli authorities remain steadfast. I am hoping that our brothers and sisters will exhibit patience, tolerance and understanding to one another as they did so well 2 weeks ago. Like the IDF however, I imagine that the orange brigades can not keep its 'army' standing for more than a few days. (Contrary to what it might appear, people do have other things to do). More importantly, we are now just over two weeks from D-day and it's not hard to imagine that emotions and tension on all sides will be overflowing after a short time in the hot Israeli sun.
Supporters of Gush Katif want to flood the area with orange. Sharon will want to avoid this at almost any cost.
I am just not too sure what to write at this stage. Politics aside, it is very difficult to watch this internal tension and distress evolve day-to-day and I can not see any solution to the dilemmas that will present themselves tomorrow - that is, beginning with whether to declare the protest as illegal.
Equally as difficult to read, is the chutzpadik requests coming from the Palestinian side. Look - I'm all for promoting peace and trying to build a level of trust but come on!!! Following on from Abbas' recent request for Armored Personnel Carriers, ammunition and weapons, now we are jolted by a PA request to have Palestinian armed soldiers situated around each Gush Katif settlement during disengagement.
Now, I'm not stupid. Sure, I can see the Palestinian desire to have the areas completely (?) guarded from Palestinian looting etc on 'the day after' but other than that, such a move would only slow the Disengagement process, risk enflaming emotions and massively increase the risk of serious violence between Israelis (civilians or soldiers) and Palestinian soldiers. And besides, whether you wear blue or orange, can you honestly say that Gush Katif residents deserve to be escorted out by a team of PA troops, many of whom have been known to get involved in deadly attacks on Israelis?
And of course, the PA wants Israel's plans for Disengagement. As has already been noted elsewhere, it would take about 34.5 seconds (or less) for those plans to be arrive to the hands of Hamas, Jihad & Brothers Co.Ltd.
I am a big fan of big Zionists and of those who have built this country from its roots. Shimon Peres is one those men who deserve some respect. Sadly, it appears he remains lost somewhere along the way. He is one who is currently in favor of giving weapons and ammunition to the PA. Sharon has rejected this (at least until terror ceases he says).
I just can't fathom the concept. We've spent 5 years trying to convince the world that the PA uses donated weapons for terror. Now we're looking at restocking the arsenal. You don't have to be wearing orange or vote rightwards to feel more than a touch bewildered by this scenario.
PM Rabin z"l said from the outset: "We're giving them guns. If they turn those guns on us, that will signify the end of the peace process".
Unless you can enlighten me, (feel free!) it seems to me that we want to be fair players and make it a better, more exciting contest. Aren't we nice!