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The Choice is Clear

April 14, 2002

by Tamara Hall

Yasser Arafat is a terrorist. He recruits children to kill children. He inspires women to kill women. He encourages soldiers to kill civilians. Arafat must be stopped.

Israelís 6 million citizens occupy only 8,019 square miles, a space smaller than New Jersey. Hostile Arab and Muslim nations inhabit millions of square miles surrounding Israel. These nations are united in a belief that Israel has no right to exist. Sixteen-thousand Israelites have been killed in the past 19 months. The casualties are proportionally much greater than the carnage experienced by America on September 11. Yet the same people who justify Americaís war on terrorism are demanding that Israel seek diplomatic solutions to terrorism. Such hypocrisy is scandalous.

During the first week of December, Israeli intelligence provided Arafat with a list of 33 terrorists who were planning a bloody attack on Israel and demanded that Arafat show his commitment to peace by arresting the terrorists. Arafat did nothing. On December 12, those terrorists killed 10 Israelis. The Israeli cabinet wisely concluded it was a "foolís errand" to negotiate with Arafat because he had exhibited no desire to control the terrorists operating from his territory.

World leaders urged Israel to practice restraint.

In March, Israeli naval commandos discovered an arms-laden ship on the Red Sea. The ship contained 50 tons of Iranian made weapons, which were headed to Arafatís Palestinian Authority. The captain of the ship was a senior officer in the Palestinian naval police and the weapons included missiles capable of hitting most Israeli cities. Importation of the weapons was a clear violation of treaties and a virtual declaration of war by Arafat.

And world leaders urged Israel to practice restraint.

Palestinian suicide bombers chose the holiest of Jewish holidays to murder women and babies as they exited church, families as they prepared to sit down for the Seder dinner and innocent citizens as they took part in the mundane chore of grocery shopping. Arafat criticized the attacks on American television while urging his followers to "sacrifice themselves as martyrs in jihad for Palestine" on Palestinian television. Arafat declared no knowledge of the suicide bombers while sending letters of congratulations and money to their families.

And world leaders urged Israel to practice restraint.

It is lunacy to believe civilized people can negotiate with terrorists. Israel is under attack and Ariel Sharon has a responsibility to defend innocent citizens.

Support for Israel amongst political leaders has been inadequate. America voted for a U.N. resolution that demands Israel stop defending itself. 33 members (nearly 80% of whom were Democrats) of the US House of Representatives voted against or voted "present" on a resolution expressing our solidarity with Israel in the fight against terrorism. The Bush administration praised the Saudi "peace" plan, even though the "peace" plan is a death certificate for the state of Israel.

Ironically, the most vocal supporters of Israel are Christians. Israel is not a Christian nation. Christianity is based on the belief that Jesus is the Messiah. Jews reject both the deity of Jesus and the God-authored words of the New Testament. However, Jews and Christians share a common enemy. Two million Christians have fled the Middle East due to persecution by radical Islamic forces in the region. Muslim Fatal gangs desecrate Christian cemeteries, churches, convents and monasteries. Palestinians who convert to Christianity are harassed and intimidated. Christians and Jews are further united by a belief that the Old Testament is the word of God. The Old Testament clearly declares Israelites are Godís chosen people and the land of Canaan is their promised land.

As the war in the Middle East continues to escalate, we must remember that the intentionally targeting of women and children is not the moral equivalent of military action that accidentally results in civilian deaths. One is terrorism. The other is a repugnant, yet unavoidable upshot of war. Israel is fighting the same strain of Islamic radicalism that murdered 3,000 Americans on September 11.

The world will soon be forced to choose sides. America will be called upon to prove allegiance to a loyal ally. No doubt the cost will be high, but the choice is clear.

"The mere absence of war is not peace." President John F. Kennedy, State of the Union, January 14, 1963.


Tamara Hall has a B.A. in Speech and English Education and a Masters Degree in Education/Counseling from Montana State University. She has a diverse background in education and business which includes work as a college instructor, speech coach, television commentator, and account executive for a television station and film company. She owns her own business, Communications Plus. She writes a regular column for her local newspaper. Tamara is married and has three children, and lives in Bozeman, Montana. Her first book, When Life Kicks - Kick Back: Survival Skills for Personal Crisis and Lifeís Challenges, was published in 1997 and is in its fourth printing.

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