Letters to the Editor

Israel must be involved in creating Arab state

This week, against all legal and legitimate norms, the representatives of the Arab people and their descendants, living in Judea, Samaria (and Gaza) will go to the international community at the United Nations demanding to be recognized as an independent state.

Those same Arabs refused that option in 1948, from 1948 to 1967 and after 1967. They went to war instead, repeatedly, attempting to realize their goal of the eradication of the reborn nation state of the Jewish people.

When that goal was said to have changed, Israel was forthcoming in beginning to work toward establishing, for the first time in history, a Palestinian Arab state. Israel's hopes and expectations of peace, however, were dashed against the rocks of Arab intransigence and terror.

Based on past actions and current behavior, Israelis do not believe that the original goal, now to be developed through the so-called "Policy of Stages," has indeed been abandoned. While Israel has taken, and is prepared to take even more "risks for peace," Israel's suicide cannot be part of the bargain.

If the Arabs want a state, they can have it. But it must be through a negotiated agreement with Israel, which will be the sole decider of its requirements to be able to, in the words of President Barack Obama, "protect itself, by itself." Not Turkey, not the U.N., not the U.S., Israel must decide.

The world and the Palestinians have a choice. Israel does not. If peace is truly the goal, that choice must be carefully made.

William Bilek

Hilton Head Island