IMRA's Weekly Commentary On Arutz 7

Aaron Lerner - June 1, 2000

(Broadcast in English on Thursday nights at 10:00 PM on 98.7 FM and on 711 AM throughout Israel - recording available on

This evening we celebrate the anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem. An event that, in many respects, marked the completion of unfinished business from Israel's War of Independence.

Frankly speaking, I feel uncomfortable sharing with you the many concerns that I have this evening, because I genuinely believe that the reunification of Jerusalem under Jewish rule for the first time in over two thousand years is an event of epoch proportions that rates right up there with most events recorded in Scriptures.

So, in that spirit I will try to seek out the silver linings in what appear to be extremely dark clouds.

#1 Pollard

I wanted to talk about the odd decision this week by the news giant CNN to feature material defaming Jonathan Pollard. I was going to suggest that a large news organization like CNN certainly must maintain good relations with the intelligence community - it gives them an edge on getting to the stories.

My silver lining? CNN doesn't need a piece defaming Jonathan Pollard to fill its broadcast schedule - there are enough stories this week for two or three CNNs. If they chose to run the material out of cooperation with others, then this would indicate that someone of importance believes that something is about to happen regarding Pollard and they want to head it off.

Let's hope they are correct and the much-too-long story of Pollard's incarceration is brought to an end.

Are you listening Hillary?

#2 Barak

Let's consider what appears to be the incredible lack of planning and thinking that we have been witness to in a government run by someone whose military background would make one expect the opposite to occur:

The electronic fence spanning the Israel-Lebanon border won't be completed until the end of this year.

The supply of armored buses for the northern settlements also are many months behind schedule.

Ehud Barak's office says that they did not yet consider the need to address the security ramifications of handing over Abu Dis to the PA in terms of the need for fencing. This when Barak was ready to hand over Abu Dis weeks ago.

Barak's team is toying with the idea of postponing the most difficult issues, thinking that writing down on yet another piece of paper signed at yet another ceremony that declares that all differences will be settled via negotiations will somehow keep a lid on the situation indefinitely.

Each day there are reports of additional Israeli concessions. Additional Israeli proposals to square the circle. All this while the papers report on the preparations that the Palestinian army is making for war. And they make no bones of their plans to use those weapons. As Hassan Asfour, who is participating in the Stockholm talks, threatened on Voice of Palestine on May 29, that "the Palestinian people are accumulating an extensive ability to fight, and we hope that will not have to be reflected in a blow-up."

So where is the silver lining?

Can Ehud Barak really be so blind to what is happening?

Can the most decorated soldier in the history of the IDF not realize that the concessions detailed in the Sharansky letter are a formula not for "peace in our time" but instead certain disaster?

So just for tonight, for the sake of the holiday spirit, I will assume that the greatest fears of those Arabs who believe in high intrigue are really true: that Barak has figured out how to do what appears to be a striptease without ultimately taking off his clothes.

OK, So I may be stretching a bit. But this is a holiday.

By the way, the beauty of this theory is that it has absolutely no impact on our obligation to fight Barak's concession parade. After all, even if it is all a show, we have a role to play for the show to be genuine.

And so, let me close by wishing all of us that by the same token that our generation had the honor to witness the return of Jewish rule over Jerusalem, so to will we have the honor to witness the completion of the redemption of the Jewish People from exile.

Happy holiday.

Dr. Aaron Lerner, Director
IMRA (Independent Media Review & Analysis)

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