Netanyahu should admit Israel doesn't want peace
By Gideon Levy, Haaretz Correspondent
Dec 17, 2009
Tomorrow will mark six months since the prime minister's foreign policy speech at Bar-Ilan University. It's now time for another historic speech. In the near future, the prime minister needs to convene the right audience, find a fitting site and deliver the speech of a lifetime. We don't want peace, he should say, going down in history as the first Israeli leader to tell the truth, the whole truth. In contrast to the superficial "two states for two peoples" speech, this time his remarks will be full of significance, showing real intent. The speech will inspire a great deal of trust and more than a little sympathy for a man speaking the truth.
They won't again be able to lambaste Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for tricks and verbal sleights of hand. There will no longer be a need for his tiring and ridiculous maneuvering. Instead of hopelessly contorting his face because of so many winks and nods, he will be able to stop winking in all directions.
In his speech we will hear what is going to happen. It will end Netanyahu and Israel's deceptions. The truth is liberating. Such a step will free the prime minister from domestic and international pressure. There will be no further need to freeze construction in the settlements and in the next minute declare them "national priority zones." There will be no further need to send apologetic inspectors on bizarre treks across the West Bank. No further need to rip up construction-freeze orders in front of the cameras and argue that we are a state of laws; that now there is a freeze, but it will be immediately followed by massive construction.
The settlers will have no further need for their ridiculous protests or for lying down on the road screaming in unison. Netanyahu will no longer have to call them "brothers" and then bring in the police against them. There will also no longer be a need to continue using the phrase "without preconditions" while decisively changing the situation on the ground over and over. And there will be no need to support a referendum bill and then immediately order that its passage be delayed, as is the case with Netanyahu.
The curtain will fall. The performance will be over. It will then be possible for the makeup, masks and costumes to be removed and to follow the straight and narrow. Then, maybe for the first time in his life, Netanyahu will be convinced of the power of truth.
An Israeli leader who speaks the truth will also free himself of international pressure. The world will understand that it is dealing with a deep, continuing recalcitrance over peace that no pressure can overcome, so the world will throw up its hands and surrender. Some of the Arabs will do the same. They will all know there is a North Korean leader in Jerusalem who is as stubborn as a mule, that most of his Israeli subjects don't want the likes of him and don't want change. The world, which has bought Israel's web of lies and excuses, hasn't opened its mouth. This includes Europe, which is incapable of coming to a single firm and courageous decision, and America, which dances to the drum of the Jewish lobby - they will also be happy to be relieved of this deceptive burden.
Because that is the truth. We don't want peace. It's as simple as that. It's good for us to wallow in the current situation. There are no terrorist attacks so there are no Arabs. Life is a bowl of cherries, so why change? Society is comatose. It doesn't object and doesn't even ask, led like a flock of sheep, not asking why we need a freeze if at the same time more and more of its funds will be allocated to the settlements in huge quantities.
They don't ask why it's okay for the West Bank settlement of Kiryat Arba and not for Kiryat Shmona. They don't care at all what is happening in their backyard and don't wonder why the whole world disapproves of us. They just want to enjoy life, and who cares about two states or the end of the occupation? Netanyahu should speak this truth in his high-profile speech.
After we are freed of the burden of fraud, we can consider without hindrance what we really want to do: to build and build in the territories, to remain forever on every hilltop and in every valley, in the Golan Heights, and of course, in the "holy sites." And everything is a holy site. And we want to deepen the occupation and be even more cruel to the Palestinians.
Maybe they will finally fulfill our dreams and disappear. We can enact more and more racist laws and unequivocally say no to the Syrian president, who is driving us crazy over his desire for peace, and no to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, who is in despair and failing. We can completely stifle the remaining good intentions of U.S. President Barack Obama and show contempt for the world, as we would so much like to do. Netanyahu, speak the truth, and you'll see what one good speech can do.