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ANTI-DISENGAGEMENT BACKFIRE

Dan Schueftan: 'Disengagement Opponents Shot Themselves In The Foot Because They Didn't Act Against Right Wing Radicals'

'Hard To See Anything Now Stopping Sharon From Implementing Withdrawal'

'Israel Is Capable Of Making Painful Concessions Because She Can Depend On U.S. Not To Stab Her In the Back'

Israeli officer injured by a stone

Opponents to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's disengagement plan stepped up their protest campaign by blocking roads and in the Gaza Strip right wing fanatics clashed with Palestinians nearly 'lynching' a Palestinian youth. There was wall-to-wall condemnation of the Israeli attackers, some were arrested and all were evicted from an unoccupied building they took over called the Palm Beach Hotel. Israelis were also getting fed up with the demonstrators blocking roads with sit-down protests and some drivers took the law into their own hands and clashed with the protesters.

At week's end, public opinion polls showed a swing in favor of the disengagement; the Yediot Ahronot daily found that 62% were for with only 31% against. Maariv had 54% in favor with 31% against. Both polls showed that over 80% of Israelis opposed the violence and the blocking of roads. With less than 2 months to go before the withdrawal is expected to start, Dr. Dan Schueftan, an expert on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, analyzed the week's developments not also in Israel but also in the Palestinian and Lebanese arenas. Dr. Schueftan was interviewed by David Essing.

David Essing

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