November 29, 2012

In his Nov. 22 op-ed column, “Why Israel reigns supreme,” Fareed Zakaria accurately set forth the “realities” of the Middle East: namely, “Israel’s astonishing economic growth, its technological prowess, its military preparedness and its tight relationship with the United States have set it a league apart from its Arab adversaries.” Yet in the next sentence, Mr. Zakaria repeated the oft-stated canard that “[p]eace between the Palestinians will come only when Israel decides that it wants to make peace.”

Au contraire. How could anyone with even the slightest knowledge of the Middle East conflict blame Israel for the lack of peace in the region?

The fundamental condition of any peace in this region is the acknowledgment by the Palestinians, by word and deed, that Israel, a member of the United Nations, is a sovereign Jewish state with the right of secure defined borders. That is all it would take to have peace. Ever since Israel’s founding in 1948, Arabs have not only refused to recognize the nation but have provoked numerous wars to annihilate it.

In his conclusion, Mr. Zakaria ironically and naively pointed to “wise Israeli politicians” in the past, including Ariel Sharon, who took risks “to make that peace.” Indeed, Mr. Sharon was the architect of Israel’s unilateral withdrawal from Gaza. Although a noble (and risky) idea, it brought death and destruction, not the desired peace.

H. Alan Young, Harpers Ferry, W.Va.