Sunday, May 16, 2004

The fence and Israel's security 

Whether or not you hate the fence Israel is building, either in the abstract or for its twisting path through occupied territory, it is making Israel more secure. See this graph from Josh Harvey, via Meryl, which sets forth in stark relief the steep increase in the proportion of intended attacks that were thwarted since the commencement of construction of Israel's security fence.

There are a couple of observations worth making. First, it may be easier for Israel to make peace, or at least refrain from the harsh reprisals that have attracted so much condemnation, if it achieves real security behind its fence. Second, the graph is powerful evidence that the stated reason for the fence -- security -- is valid, and it undermines the anti-Israel argument that the fence is nothing but another attempt to establish "facts on the ground" and deprive Palestinian Arabs of even more of their patrimony. It may be that, but it also actually thwarts terrorism, which is very gratifying.


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