Skip to comments.Sharon denies claim he'll cede 90% of Judea and Samaria, split Jerusalem
Posted on 12/13/2005 4:11:44 PM PST by avile
Sharon denies claim he'll cede 90% of Judea and Samaria, split Jerusalem By Israel Insider staff and partners December 13, 2005
Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon denied in a statement the published claim of his adviser Kalman Gayer that he would make wholesale concessions in Judea, Samaria, and Jerusalem if elected to an additional term. "The remarks attributed to Kalman Gayer absolutely contradict my positions and my views. If those remarks were indeed made, they were made by Kalman Gayer alone and they are complete nonsense. United Jerusalem will remain Israel's capital forever. The Roadmap is the diplomatic plan that will lead Israel in the coming years and whoever says otherwise does so on his own behalf and does so in complete contradiction of my position; this is how these remarks must be treated."
The articles in question, Rebel With a Cause by Dan Ephron quotes Vice-Premier Ehud Olmert as saying that Sharon left his party due to his intention to redraw Israel's borders: "analysts believe it was a combination of politics and personality-his determination to recast Israel's conflict with the Palestinians and his irrepressible urge to always charge ahead-that pushed Sharon to leave. "He's prepared for a major accommodation in the [occupied] territories that Likud could not accept."
The Newsweek article goes on to quote Sharon's political strategist Kalman Gayer as saying that Sharon's deal is "strikingly similar to the proposal Israel's dovish Labor government made at Camp David five years ago, an offer Sharon denounced at the time as 'dangerous.' In theory, Gayer says, Sharon would accept a Palestinian state in Gaza and 90 percent of the West Bank, and a compromise on Jerusalem, in exchange for peace. But the Israeli leader does not believe Palestinians will be able to deliver peace or make other compromises -- like forgoing the right of refugees to return to their old homes in Israel -- in his lifetime. In the meantime, Sharon wants to 'lay the contours of an agreement with the Palestinians,' according to Gayer, by creating a Palestinian state in half the West Bank and implementing confidence-building measures.
"How," Ephron asks, "might Sharon achieve this?" He answer that "Though [Sharon] swears off further unilateral moves like the dramatic withdrawal from Gaza, many analysts are skeptical. They believe he wants to turn the barrier Israel is now building in the West Bank into the country's long-term border-without reaching a deal with the Palestinians-and to dismantle scores of Jewish settlements east of the fence. The move would allow Israel to incorporate several large settlements into its territory and absorb nearly 80 percent of the settlers. 'No one believes him when he says he won't make any more unilateral moves,' says Dan Ben-David, an economist at Tel Aviv University and a political commentator in Israeli media. 'There's an economic principle called "revealed preference" that says a person's motives are revealed by his actions. If Sharon wasn't planning another disengagement, why would he leave Likud?'"
After Israel Television Channel One Mabat announced Wednesday evening that it had a scoop -- the Newsweek report -- that a senior advisor of Sharon reveals that Sharon intends to ultimately divide Jerusalem in negotiations but will first unilaterally retreat from half of the West Bank so that a Palestinian state can be formed in the vacuum, both Sharon's office and Gayer issued denials.
Sharon's advisers hastened to extinguish the flames, claiming that Gayer explained he had given the reporter background information, but denied the quotes attributed to him. Haaretz reports that there has been tension between Sharon and Gayer since Tzachi Hanegbi announced last week he was joining Kadima, a move that Gayer tried to prevent. The advisers said yesterday that Gayer was good as a pollster, but he was not part of the prime minister's policy-deciding forum and that his remarks, "which had anyway been denied, were not important."
But, as IMRA Aaron Lerner observes, "given that the Israeli public knows that Mr. Sharon strongly opposed unilateral withdrawal from the Gaza Strip in the last election campaign, it is not clear what his office can possibly say to convince people that his denial is genuine. It should be noted that the denial from Mr. Sharon's office simply states that he is committed to the Road Map -- without addressing what he will do if (or rather when) there is a stalemate in the Road Map after the elections because the Palestinians refuse to fulfill their security obligations."
Haaretz reports that Likud's Limor Livnat and Gideon Sa'ar advised voters to "believe those who speak English rather than the denials in Hebrew ... This is proof once again that Kadima's path is the path of the left and of withdrawal."
Benjamin Netanyahu said, "Sharon's aides are revealing what he is trying to hide but everyone already knows that Sharon will divide Jerusalem and bring the Palestinians back to the 1967 borders."
National Religious Party Chairman Zevulun Orlev declared: "Kalman Gayer says aloud what Sharon says behind closed doors. It is possible that Sharon once again plans to deceive the voters who remember that he said Netzarim's fate was the same as that of Tel Aviv.
Sharon the liar.
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