Those of you who grew up in Israel, might remember a children’s TV show, Yosef HaMespaer, starring a bald, heavyset man who sat on lots of pillows, Alladin style, and told fairytales. I actually don’t remember much of the show itself, but reading Jeffrey Goldberg’s interview with Martin Indyk, I felt like I was reading a fairytale.
The show’s opening “credits”:
Indyk outdid himself in this one. Even though not a single question was a tough one, he still managed to show that one’s tenure as an ambassador to the Middle East does not actually necessarily lead to any understanding of the region.
There is much more, here is just a taste. First, speaking about evacuating Jews who live on the other side of the fence:
I don’t believe that force would be necessary if the evacuation is presented to the Israeli public as part of a package that would include the following elements: financial compensation equal to that provided to the Gaza settlers; resettlement in the blocs that would be incorporated into Israel by agreement with the Palestinians; an end to the territorial claims of the Palestinians; security arrangements that ensure that all violence and terrorism against Israelis ceases; international guarantees of freedom of access for Israelis to Jewish holy places in Judea and Samaria; and peace with all the Arab states.
I’m not sure where to begin. The evacuation from Gaza in 2005 had overwhelming public support, and it did not go over very smoothly. Does Indyk truly believe the next one will be easier? The notion that the Arabs will cease to make any demands on Israel defies history. There is simply nothing to support it. There is even less evidence that if Jews do not control the area, ” international guarantees of freedom of access for Israelis to Jewish holy places in Judea and Samaria,” will be worth more than the paper they would be written on.
However, the subject most near and dear to my heart, ” financial compensation equal to that provided to the Gaza settlers.” So Indyk thinks there it will be easy to evict people from their homes if most Israelis support the plan, and if evictess themselves will be kicked to the curb, only to be tossed half a bone about a year later?
When asked which conflict would prove to be more “durable,” the Sunni-Shi’a dispute or the Arab-Israeli conflict, Indyk’s response seemed to rewrite history. Maybe the intra-religious conflict will last longer than the inter-religious conflict, but the “Arab-Israeli conflict has actually progressed toward resolution.” At least not in the way he thinks it has. For most of the conflict’s duration, it indeed has progressed towards being resolved – because the Jews decided winning was a good thing. However, since Israel’s leaders have decided capitulating to your enemy is a good idea, we have had two terrorist organizations sprout up around us (Hezbollah and Hamas), and continue to weaken Israel, daily, with something called the “peace process,” otherwise known as – “How to get the US President a Nobel Peace Prize.”
If it weren’t so damaging, Indyk’s stupid, yes, stupid, analyses would make for some good entertainment.