Binyamin Netanyahu: 'What are we receiving in return for this withdrawal?

From a resignation letter by the former Israeli finance minister, addressed to the prime minister, Ariel Sharon
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The Independent Online

What are we receiving in return for the withdrawal? What are we receiving for uprooting families with their children, their homes, their graves! We will receive an Islamic terror base.

After the terrorist attacks in New York, Washington, London and Sinai, the world understands that it is necessary to fight terror and not make compromises. And yet Israel, which showed the world how to fight terror, now goes in the completely opposite direction.

In recent months I hoped that the government would open its eyes and change direction. But the opposite has happened. A balanced government that reflected the will of the people in the last elections has turned into a government that carries out policies that oppose the principles of the Likud and the mandate which we received from our voters.

All this time I remained in the government despite my growing opposition to the withdrawal. I did this to minimise the dangers and damages resulting from the unilateral withdrawal. And I did it out of responsibility to my position as minister of the Treasury. We are in the middle of carrying out a revolution of reforms and privatisations, which will strengthen the state of Israel and its economy.

Today we have reached the moment of truth. I am not prepared to be a partner to a step that ignores reality and blindly advances the establishment of an Islamic terror base that will threaten the state. I am not prepared to be a partner to an irresponsible move that endangers the security of Israel, divides the nation, sets the principle of withdrawal to the '67 lines, and in the future even endangers the unity of Jerusalem.

Therefore I advise you of my resignation from the government.