Sharon's strategy didn't work [Letter]

Guy Ziv perceives an absence of strong leadership in current day Israel ("Sharon's style is missed," Jan. 16). He pines for the days of Ariel Sharon and criticizes current Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as being weak and irresolute. Mr. Ziv longingly reminisces about Sharon's decision to evacuate Jewish communities from Gaza and how this differentiates him from the current Israeli government.

What the writer neglects to describe is what happened after Sharon's "bold" move. Gaza became a terrorists' safe haven. Thousands of rockets have been fired from the Gaza strip into Israel, wreaking havoc with the daily lives of the citizens who live within their reach.

How different things could have turned out if the Palestinians had chosen the path of peace after this unilateral move which at the time was cheered by the whole world. The chances of a total peace accord coming to fruition would have increased substantially.

Prime Minister Netanyahu is neither weak not irresolute. He is standing strong in the face of those who think that peace will come just because we want to believe it will. No longer is Israel willing to give up something for nothing in return. I firmly believe that if the Palestinians were willing to live peacefully with Israel, an accord would have already been reached. However, the Palestinians cannot even agree to recognize Israel as a Jewish state, let alone compromise on any of their current positions.

Michael Langbaum, Baltimore

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