by Caroline B. Glick
Provoked by the Palestinians' escalating missile campaign, on Sunday evening the Ashkelon Parents Association voted not to send their children to school on Monday.
Ever since the outgoing Kadima government ended Operation Cast Lead in
The proximate cause for the decision to close down schools was the weekend missile strike against a high school in
As Ashkelon's children settled into their living rooms instead of their classrooms on Monday morning, a few hundred kilometers to the south representatives from 80 countries and international organizations convened in Sharm el-Sheikh to pledge billions of dollars in aid to Hamas-controlled Gaza. The
Also on Monday, The Jerusalem Post reported that the
TO UNDERSTAND HOW it came to pass that six weeks after Operation Cast Lead, the
The main rule of politics that has guided Kadima since its founding in November 2005 is never be perceived as failing. For the past three years, with the active collusion of the local media, Kadima has managed to control the flow of information to the public and so successfully covered up the abject failures of its strategic policies. Its success in last month's elections is testament to its extraordinary capacity to spin and obfuscate information.
THIS KADIMA PRACTICE was first implemented in the lead-up to the 2006 elections. At the time, the media worked with Kadima to suppress information about the strategic significance of Hamas's electoral victory in the January 2006 Palestinian Authority elections. They also blocked reportage and public discussion of the massive build-up of Iranian-supplied arms in Gaza following Israel's withdrawal from the area in September 2005, and the transformation of Gaza's disparate terror cells into Hizbullah-trained and styled paramilitary brigades.
The need for the cover-up was obvious: An open discussion of post-withdrawal developments in
Both the Palestinian cross-border operation in June 2006 that led to the kidnapping of Cpl. Gilad Schalit to
For Kadima it was clear that to survive the events of the summer of 2006, it needed to develop a story line to hide the truth. In
For anyone with even a vague notion about strategy, it was clear at the time that the only way to protect northern
For Kadima's leaders however, a reconquest of south
So instead they opted for defeat. Rather than fight Hizbullah to victory, they attacked their domestic political opponents by claiming that only warmongers would support a reconquest of south
The US-mediated ceasefire, which legitimized Hizbullah as a political force and paved the way for its rearmament and takeover of the Lebanese government, was a disaster for
Although all the spinning in the world couldn't convince the public to support Kadima's planned unilateral withdrawal from Judea and
A SIMILAR PATTERN unfolded with Kadima's handling of Operation Cast Lead. Here too it was clear to any semi-sentient observer that the only way to defend southern
But for Kadima, which owes its existence to its leaders' execution of
And so, rather than fight to win, Kadima again fought for US intervention. Livni and Olmert claimed again that only warmongering extremists supported reconquering
Then, as elections approached, Kadima declared that deterrence had been achieved and pulled IDF forces from
In the lead-up to the elections, the international diplomatic backlash against
NOW, AS THE LIKUD-LED rightist bloc is forming the next government, information about
Kadima's favorite Palestinian "peace" partners in Fatah are leading an international campaign to indict IDF commanders as war criminals.
While last weekend's bombing of yet another Israeli school was met with international indifference, international leaders lined up to have their photographs taken outside the UNRWA school in Gaza that the IDF attacked in January after Hamas combatants used the building as a missile launching pad against Israeli civilians.
Then there is the US-backed international campaign to force
IN THE MEANTIME, Kadima pretends that there is nothing to worry about. As The Jerusalem Post reported on Friday, both Livni and Olmert refuse to actively oppose the international campaign to criminalize IDF commanders because doing so would involve criticizing Fatah leaders with whom they claim to have such wonderful ties. Similarly, the Obama administration cannot be criticized because that would mean that Kadima has failed to maintain
And that's the point. With its policy of never acknowledging failure, Kadima's strategy for dealing with the aftermath of Operation Cast Lead has been on the one hand to ignore what has happened, and on the other hand, to blame Likud for what is transpiring.
Rather than attack Hamas and Fatah in international forums and so defend
Netanyahu's view is clear. Surrendering control over Judea,
Likud's position is indisputable. But it is also a denunciation of Kadima's governing strategy. So Livni denies the truth to advance her party's interests and condemns Likud for recognizing reality.
In so doing, she has paved the way for an international boycott of the Likud-led government. The Palestinians and their allies throughout the world are already arguing that there is no difference between Likud and Hamas since both of them reject the so-called "two-state solution."
As we absorb the spectacle of world leaders lining up to give their money to
Caroline B. Glick is the senior Middle East Fellow at the Center for Security Policy in
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