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May 30, 2003 - Image 14

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2003-05-30

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

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Feeling Betrayed

With support for road map, Sharon strikes
blow against his right wing.

MATTHEW GUTMAN

Jewish Telegraphic Agency

Tel Aviv

p

porter of a democratic Palestinian
state, Sharansky — who voted
against the plan on Sunday —
argued that starting to apply the
road map before the Palestinians
democratize betrays both Israel and
the Palestinians. "The Palestinian
state cannot be a down payment
prior to discussion of everything
else," he said.

rime Minister Ariel Sharon
plunged a rhetorical sword
through Israel's political
right wing on May 26,
severing it into roughly two halves.
With three candid sentences a day
after his cabinet approved the road
International Bias
map peace plan, Sharon managed to
Many
Israelis believe the European
split the center-right empire he had
Union, the United Nations and
painstakingly constructed over the
Russia — America's partners in the
past three years.
diplomatic Quartet that drafted the
"The idea that it is possible to
road map — are biased against
continue keeping 3.5 million
Palestinians
under occupa-
tion — yes, it is
occupation. You
might not like
the word, but
what is happen-
ing is occupa-
tion — is bad
for Israel, and
bad for the
Palestinians and
bad for the
Israeli econo-
my," Sharon said
at a Likud Party
meeting
Monday.
"Controlling
An Israeli holds a sign during a demonstration in front of the
3.5 million
Palestinians can- Israeli prime minister's office in Jerusalem on May 25.
not go on forev-
er," Sharon con-
Israel. Their participation eventually
tinued, ignoring the dropped jaws
will put Israel at loggerheads with
and jeers among the flock he shep-
the United States, Sharansky predict-
herds. "You want to remain in Jenin,
ed.
Nablus, Ramallah and Bethlehem?"
"Today, it's more difficult to say
The political fallout was quick. In
`no' than yesterday, but saying 'no'
Sharon's own Likud Party, almost
tomorrow will be that much more
every legislator took the opportunity
difficult," Sharansky warned.
to lambaste the prime minister. Uzi
But it's doubtful that even voices
Landau, a veteran Likud legislator,
as persuasive as Sharansky's will
said the speech and the road map
change Sharon's mind or quash the
were "worse than Oslo," a put-down
initiative.
nearly akin to an accusation of trea-
Asher Cohen, a political analyst
son in current Israeli politics.
from
Bar-Ilan University, says the
Even Knesset rookie Gila Gamliel
right won't sway Sharon — but it
joined the fray, wondering whether
also won't abandon him. "We've seen
"it would have been better if we had
this type of trauma before, which
accepted Oslo."
Cabinet Minister Natan Sharansky has split and then destroyed" the
governments of former prime minis-
put it differently. A longtime sup-

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