Report: Israel Must Retain the Golan

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CBNNews.com - JERUSALEM, Israel - The Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA) published a paper by former national security advisor Major-General (ret.) Giora Eiland, stating that ceding the Golan Heights would endanger Israel's security.

The JCPA, headed by former Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Dore Gold, released the paper Wednesday.

"[The] present border line is the only one affording plausible defense for the State of Israel," Eiland wrote.

The paper explains why security arrangements for ceding the Golan, considered in the late 1990s, were flawed.

The two main issues addressed at that time were 1 maintaining an early-warning system on Mt. Hermon and 2 ensuring that the Golan would be demilitarized.

Eiland said neither demilitarization nor an early-warning system would protect Israel and "would create a considerable depreciation of Israel's defensive capability."

The general also stated that Syria's substantial missile cache and its propensity for chemical and biological warfare had replaced the former threat of ground forces.

Neither does the general believe that Syria would forego its close relationship with Iran, nor would a peace agreement with Israel influence the situation with Palestinian groups or with Hezbollah.

"The greatest strategic threat to Israel is posed by nuclear weapons in the hands of Iran. The continued existence of such a threat will not be influenced at all by whether there will be a peace agreement between Israel and Syria," the general wrote.

Residents of the Hula Valley and IDF fortifications there would be again be within easy range of Syrian mortars and artillery, much like southern Israel is to Palestinian rockets fired from northern Gaza following Israel's pullout from the Gush Katif Settlement Block in the summer of 2005.

Source: The Jerusalem Post

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