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June 26, 2002
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No Palestinian State can be allowed until homicide bombings and terrorism stops

Israel Insider (www.israelinsider.com) has a good article written by an Israeli doctor that describes why he currently is against a Palestinian State.

Dr. Nathan Cherny gives some insight on how he's feeling about the Palestinian homicide/suicide bombings and how he copes with their result.

That I care for the well being of tens of Palestinian cancer patients and their families is irrelevant. As a Jew living in Israel, and, more specifically, Jerusalem, I am a potential target worthy of maiming or assassination. That is the miserable nature of the Palestinian struggle for self-determination

In the eyes of the Hamas, the Islamic Jihad, the Hizbullah, and Fatah, all of this [homicide/suicide bombings] is a justifiable expression of national self-determination. In their eyes, the path to statehood is, quite legitimately, strewn with the bodies of children, pensioners, grandparents and bus drivers.

If they had their way, it would be strewn with my body as well.

Mr. Arafat's denunciations ring hollow. The paper trail uncovered by the Israeli forces show, beyond reasonable doubt, that he is directly and intimately involved with the provision of funding to the militias responsible for this civilian carnage. You can't call for a million martyrs to liberate Palestine and still call yourself a peacemaker.

As long as my friends, colleagues, patients, their children and I are targets, the Palestinians cannot be entrusted to responsibilities of statehood.

I copy the full article below.

Suicide bombings: the perspective of a potential target
By Dr. Nathan Cherny, June 26 - 2002
http://web.israelinsider.com/bin/en.jsp?enPage=ViewsPage&enDisplay=view&enDispWhat=object&enDispWho=Article%5El1172&enZone=Views&enVersion=0&

That I care for the well being of tens of Palestinian cancer patients and their families is irrelevant. As a Jew living in Israel, and, more specifically, Jerusalem, I am a potential target worthy of maiming or assassination. That is the miserable nature of the Palestinian struggle for self-determination.

That I am here to recount these thoughts is by sheer virtue of timing. Minutes after I passed through the Pat intersection en route to the Shaare Zedek Medical Center, bus 32 was exploded by a young suicide bomber. Almost everyone on the bus was killed, most instantly. Shrapnel and flying sheets of metal killed and maimed passing pedestrians and the drivers and passengers of adjacent vehicles.

Besides caring for Israeli and Palestinian cancer patients, I teach medical students a course in Palliative Medicine, the care of patients with incurable illnesses. At any one time I usually have 10-15 students, Jews and Palestinians together. Among my current group is a wonderfully bright, sensitive and caring 24-year-old woman: Shelly Nahari. Wednesday's tutorial was cancelled. Instead my students were learning the harsh realities of acute grief as they attended the funeral of Shelly's 22-year-old sister, Shiri, who was killed in the carnage that I had barely escaped.

Jerusalem is small and the circle of my patients, colleagues and their families is wide. In this week alone, I have shared one degree of separation from four miserable tragedies.

Dr. Eisenman is a young ophthalmologist at Shaare Zedek. His wife, mother-in-law, 5-year-old daughter and eighteen-month-old son were waiting at the bus stop at French Hill, in northern Jerusalem, under brilliant blue skies when a man jumped from a passing vehicle and ran toward them. As his belt exploded, he showered all those in proximity with gore and a malicious salad of bolts and nails. The storm of shrapnel did its intended job. Dr. Eisenman's young daughter and mother-in-law were killed instantly. Today his infant son is in intensive care. This afternoon, his injured wife by his side, he buried his golden haired daughter next to her beloved grandmother.

Devora Margalit is a community nurse who helps cancer patients, and others, cope with stomas. Helping people cope with the whole new world of bags to collect their urine or feces is unromantic but vital work. In her former days she was a hospice nurse caring for the terminally ill. In the past days she has needed all of her skills in pain control as she has helped nurse her 15-year-old son who received burns to 50% of his body. His school had an ongoing project tending to a cherry orchard. Last week as they left the orchard he set of a booby-trapped gas canister that was rigged as a shrapnel laden bomb. In the past week he has had 3 operations as the surgeons gradually debride his wounds and fight infections. For now, the pain is the challenge. It is now controlled with a portable morphine pump. The future holds years of work managing skin grafts and scars.

In the eyes of the Hamas, the Islamic Jihad, the Hizbullah, and Fatah, all of this is a justifiable expression of national self-determination. In their eyes, the path to statehood is, quite legitimately, strewn with the bodies of children, pensioners, grandparents and bus drivers.

If they had their way, it would be strewn with my body as well.

In becoming the symbols of the battle for Palestinian independence, these elements undermine the legitimacy of the Palestinian cause, for they present the Palestinians as a fundamentally uncivil, lawless, cruel and undeserving society.

Suicide bombings, murder and vilification serve only to delegitimize the cause and distance the prospect of an independent Palestinian State. A community and a nation that tolerates and condones such behavior are fundamentally unworthy.

Mr. Arafat's denunciations ring hollow. The paper trail uncovered by the Israeli forces show, beyond reasonable doubt, that he is directly and intimately involved with the provision of funding to the militias responsible for this civilian carnage. You can't call for a million martyrs to liberate Palestine and still call yourself a peacemaker.

Zero tolerance is what is called for. If there is a responsible Palestinian leadership, let them join forces with the Israel Defense Forces in eradicating this sick and pernicious element in their society.

As long as my friends, colleagues, patients, their children and I are targets, the Palestinians cannot be entrusted to responsibilities of statehood.

I know that things can be different. I work with Palestinians, as patients and as colleagues. Our relationships are warm and mutually supportive. Indeed, in the awful darkness of the past 18 months these relationships have been a vital part of my coping. I know, from my first hand experience, that there is the real potential for love and respect. Though we may have political differences, we appreciate the potential for mutual benefit through cooperation. This is the human thread that sustains my hope.

Ultimately then, I support the emergence of a Palestinian state; but my support is conditional. It is conditional upon the prospect of living, in security and trust, side by side with a civil and humane Palestinian society, in respect and cooperation.

The ball is in their court.

Posted by David Melle at June 26, 2002 06:12 PM
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