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Brit Tzedek v'Shalom

Jewish Alliance for Justice and Peace

Letter to the Editor: Let there be peace in the Middle East

The Cambridge Chronicle

April 28, 2009

By James Adler, Boston Chapter

In the spirit of the Cambridge Holocaust commemoration, may I make a heartfelt (and I believe tough-minded) plea for a strong regional peace process between beleaguered Israel and her neighbors?

Large nations that are built on ancient civilizations, like Iran, as well as similar ones such as Egypt are always going to feel entitled to have nuclear capabilities and, ultimately, no matter how hard we try to stop them, they eventually will get them in the same way China and India and Pakistan have.

An Israeli attack on Iran to try to stop this would endanger Israel further because Iran would just bide its time and strike back whenever it could — even with a stolen rogue bomb from the former Soviet Union. Furthermore, an Israeli attack could so intensely radicalize the Islamic and Arab streets as to evolve Egypt and the Arab world into nuclear powers and radical Islamist states.

It is often said truthfully that, unlike with the Arabs, Israel cannot afford to lose even one single war because a single lost war could mean its destruction — would mean another disaster of Holocaust proportions.

But without a regional peace and security arrangement, how will wars involving Israel not continue to happen until Israel eventually loses one of them?

For example, it would take just one Iranian (or even a future Egyptian) bomb. Or one stolen rogue bomb. Or simply one lost war of any kind.

This is why Israel needs long-term regional peace and security, such as based on the Arab League peace plan, which would be accepted only as the beginning, not the end, just the beginning, of negotiations toward peace. And would also serve as the most realistic and best possible regional counterweight to Iran.

The Arabs and Iranians already have their peace and security:

· They do not need President Obama, Hilary Clinton, and the United States Middle East peace envoy George Mitchell.

· The key here is that it is not the Arabs, but Israel, that needs peace and security. It is Israel, and not the Arabs, who should be overjoyed that President Obama and Clinton and Mitchell are trying so arduously to accelerate the peace process between Israel and her neighbors.

This is the best — the only — way to guarantee that there will never be a Shoah-scale catastrophe for Israel and, over the long run, to ensure her peace and security.

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