Peace will come when Palestinians want it

I found the column by Fareed Zakaria (Herald, Nov. 25) interesting in that it was factually accurate, but the conclusions reached seem opposite to the ones I find obvious. He spends most of the column describing how Israel is richer, more technologically advanced and stronger militarily than all of her Arab neighbors, as if this were bad. He points out that Israel’s military is stronger than all of her neighbors combined, which is necessary since three times in her history she was attacked by all of her neighbors combined. If Israel did not spend as much money on her military, she wouldn’t exist today.

The report he quotes downplays the missiles launched by Hamas and Hezbollah as “no real threat to Israel.” Perhaps this is strategically correct, but I challenge anyone to live with constant missile attacks and call them insignificant. I met a friend who went through some of these “insignificant” events, and she was very shaken from hearing the sirens and knowing that she had 30 seconds to get to a shelter or risk being blown up.

His closing (interestingly, a quote the Herald put in the heading) was that peace would come only when Israel wants it. He then states that three Israeli prime ministers were willing to take risks for peace. In fact, they all made generous offers to the Palestinian Authority. Well, where is this peace, then?

The truth is that the Palestinian leaders don’t want peace. Ever since 1947, they have turned down every chance for their own country in favor of trying to eliminate Israel. The real conclusion of this article should be that Israel is forced to spend a disproportionate amount of her budget on defense because her neighbors are determined to eliminate her. There will be peace when the Palestinians want it.

Will Rottenberg