Hundreds of Jews were murdered in the second Intifada while the Knesset tied Sharon’s hands, but with the left in total disarray, Sharon easily won reelection in 2003 – only to force the expulsion of thousands of Jews from Gaza two years later.

But going back to Netanyahu’s passing up the “throne” in 2001. I knew that for him it was the rebirth I mentioned earlier; i.e., repentance for his past mistakes.

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Netanyahu then and there found the inner strength to commit himself to the good of the nation above all. And, indeed, as prime minister these past four years he has stood firm against pressure from the international community, including Israel’s only real ally, the United States.

Netanyahu knows there is no true peace partner. He will never allow a Palestinian state overlooking Ben Gurion Airport. For those reasons, and the ones I mentioned above, he really has been sensational.

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Dov Shurin is a popular radio personality and the composer and producer of several albums. He lives with his family in Israel and can be contacted at dovshurin@yahoo.com. His Jewish Press column appears the third issue of each month.