Yaalon: Israel is strong
By Ted Belman
Boogie Yaalon, Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Strategic Affairs, gave a talk last evening in the Great Synagogue in Jerusalem I was there. He appeared to be talking about the government’s position rather than his own.
In point form he said;
– Time is not working against us, as many say. It is working in our favour because me make use of time. We build, we develop. we grow, we invent, we have babies. Time works for those who make use of it
– Israel will continue to build in Jerusalem and the settlements
– We keep emphasizing our security needs to the exclusion of our rights. This must change.
– The Arabs are not going to agree to our basic requirements, so there is no solution. Not all problems have a solution. That’s OK. Our policy is to manage the problem. In this regard, [I got the feeling, that Israel’s policy is to play the game while managing the problem and using time, rather than to abort the peace process. The later course would just add to our problems. Steady as she goes.]
– The Arabs know they can’t beat us with terror or with military might. They thought we would fold like a house of cards but now see that we are unified and willing to take the hits.
– In the short term, the turmoil among our neighbours, is no threat to us. In the long term, with the move toward Islamist governments, it may. He believes this movement started in 1979 with the Iranian revolution.
– If Iran got the bomb, it would be a game changer. It must be stopped. It is not just our problem, it is problem for the west.
– Those who warned of the coming diplomatic tsunami were wrong.
– The government is taking about the death penalty but he wasn’t sure if there is enough support for it.
All in all, it was a very upbeat messager.