Apparently, Pete Rempel is just a little miffed with me, seeing as how I can't find it in my heart to give the Israelis the credit they deserve for withdrawing illegal settlers from the Gaza strip. To which one can confidently respond -- how can one human being be such an unenlightened dick?
The entire Gaza withdrawal is nothing more than an exercise in media manipulation and theatrics since, quite simply, the Israelis have already more than made up for the loss of land here with what they've managed to steal with the construction of the laughably-misnamed "security wall."
Let's see what those left-wing crazies, the Franciscans International, have to say about the so-called security wall (emphasis added):
Franciscans International, in cooperation with the Franciscan Justice and Peace Commission of the Custody of the Holy Land, would like to call upon the attention Commission on Human Rights on the deplorable consequences of the ongoing construction of the "wall of separation" which is surrounding the West Bank and Gaza
Despite some hopes by the launching of the road map, in early June 2003, the construction by the Israelis of a separation wall, which does not respect the "Green Line" of 1967, is perceived as an annexation of important parts of Palestinian homeland. The wall cuts through parts of the West Bank, separating about 95, 000 Palestinians residing in 27 towns and villages from the remaining West Bank.
So what's the rationale for sneaking the wall over into a sleazy Palestinian land grab? Gee, I couldn't begin to imagine:
... had the wall strictly followed the Green Line, it might have been possible to confine the debate to the question whether a security wall of that kind would achieve its purpose. But when it is intended that it encroach deeply upon Palestinian territory, enclosing an estimated 7 per cent of Palestinian land, including fertile agricultural land, water resources and villages, it is difficult to resist to the conclusion that it is the case of the facto annexation in which the security situation is employed as a pretext for territorial expansion.
Well, golly, Sergeant Carter -- blatant theft of arable land and water. Who'd a thunk it? And, as if you needed any confirmation:
Why, you may wonder: isn't the Wall following the Green Line separating Israel from the West Bank? – Not quite. If this had been Israel's intention, we could have had Peace long ago. The whole point is that Israel refuses to give up the West Bank, and building a Wall on the Green Line is the last thing the junta had in mind. The Wall is constructed deep in Palestinian territory, in order to rob as much Palestinian land and water as possible...
The village of Mas'ha is adjacent to the Israeli settlement of Elkana, about 7km away from the green line. On April 2003, Israeli bulldozers started to separate Mas'ha by an 8m high concrete wall from its only remaining source of livelihood: agricultural land, mostly olive trees. 98% of the lands of Mas'ha will be placed on the Israeli side of the fence. The fence also disconnects the road from Jenin to Ramallah, a segment of which will now be in the Israeli side of the fence.
It wasn't only land greed that sent the bulldozers to the lands of Mas'ha. These lands are on the western part of the large water reservoir originating in the West Bank, whose waters flow under the ground also to the centre of Israel. Out of 600 million cubic metre of water that this reservoir provides in a year, Israel withdraws about 500 million. Control over the water sources has always been a central Israeli motivation for maintaining the occupation. The first settlements, like Elkana, were located in critical locations for drilling. Since 1967, Israel has prohibited Palestinians from digging new wells, but in the lands of Mas'ha there are still many operating older wells. In isolating the village from its wells, Israel attempts both to control the water reserves, and to eliminate livelihood sources, thus forcing its residents out.
In other words, Israel can afford to make an international dog-and-pony show out of returning Gaza land to the Palestinians since, under the radar, they've already managed to steal what they really want in the first place.
And as for Pete Rempel, well ... life is way too fucking short to debate with idiots. Although I will make an exception for this doofus.
MORE OF THE SAME: As Dr. Dawg mentions in the comments, he waxed eloquent on the same topic over here, with some links worth following.