Excerpt from “Fighting Terrorism”, 2001 Edition, by Benjamin Netanyahu, page 110-112.
If one needs a textbook case on how not to fight terrorism, Gaza is it.
For if hitherto Israel had shown the world how terrorism could be fought; now it showed how terrorism could be facilitated.
From 1993 on, the Israeli government committed many of the mistakes that a state could commit in the war against terror. It’s fundamental mistake, of course, was to capitulate to the terrorists’ political demands.
Seeking relief from PLO terrorism by giving the PLO land, it directly encouraged and emboldened a new rash of Islamic terrorism under the PLO umbrella aimed at obtaining even more land. (Later it would negotiate the trading of additional tracts of strategic land for a temporary halt in terror. Thereby practically ensuring terror will reappear once the Palestine state is established and Israeli concessions are stopped.)
In Oslo, Israel demonstrated to the PLO and its imitators that terrorism does indeed pay.
Equally, the Israeli government severely impaired its operational capacity to fight terrorism by committing no fewer than six classic blunders:
1. It tried to subcontract the job of fighting terrorism to someone else – in the case to the terrorists themselves.
2. It tied the hands of its security forces by denying them the right to enter or strike at terrorist havens, thus creating inviolable domains for the terrorists actions.
3. It released thousands of jailed terrorists into these domains, many of whom promptly took up their weapons and returned to ply their trade.
4. It armed the terrorists, by enabling the unrestricted flow of thousands of weapons in Gaza, which soon found their way into the hands of the myriad militias and terrorist gangs.
5. It promised safe passage for terrorists by exempting PLO VIPs from inspection at the border crossings from Egypt and Jordan, thus enabling the smuggling of terrorists into Gaza and Jericho, and from there into Israel itself.
6. It betrayed its Palestinian Arab informants, many of whom were murdered by the PLO, leaving Israel without an invaluable source of intelligence against terrorist operations in the evacuated areas.
All these errors produced one essential outcome: Gaza become a zone in which terrorism could operate without fear of retribution.
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