Israel: December 17, 2003


 Israel continues to concentrate on stopping suicide bomber attacks, with increasing success. In the last ten weeks, over twenty suicide bomb attacks had been stopped, either because one or more of the attack team was caught, or security measures forced the team to turn back. While suicide attacks are only two percent of all Palestinian  attacks, they have caused 55 percent of the Israeli 910 deaths and over 6,000 injuries. Politically, this has been dynamite, as over 80 percent of the Israeli casualties have been civilians (voters). Moreover, 60 percent of the Israeli dead were killed within Israel and Jerusalem. Israel has found that the most energetic security measures are most effective at blocking the Palestinian attacks. The inability of the Palestinians to unite and negotiate has led the Israelis increasingly to unilateral measures. The security wall is apparently going to be followed by withdrawal from the more exposed settlements and sealing Israel off from Palestine and Palestinians. Over the years, the Palestinians have consistently went through the motions of negotiating, but have never been able to agree on terms, or show any signs of carrying the terms of any agreement. Meanwhile, the anti-Israeli propaganda calling for the destruction of Israel continues to be heard within the Palestinian territories. There used to be a large pro-"Peace with the Palestinians" group in Israel, but the suicide attacks have greatly reduced their numbers. An Israeli politician that talks security gets votes, speaking up for Palestinians gets you ignored in Israel. Meanwhile, the Palestinians are still split between those who want to make a deal and those who want nothing less than the destruction of Israel. 


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