The withdrawal is an important step in the right direction, but it is timorous. It must be supported, but it can be said that and clearly that it won’t solve anything: it is only the first page of a book that has numbers of chapters, some of which will be mortal. After that withdrawal, it will be seen that the scenarios mentioned by Moshe Yaalon (former head of the general staff who resigned) and Avi Dichter (former head of Shin Beth) will be carried out. I hope that Abu Mazen will know how to destroy the terrorist infrastructure. However, it is possible that Hamas will become more powerful over the next few months. Terrorism can reemerge in Judea, Samaria, or in the Gaza. Sharon is recognized to have found a solution that is in contradiction with what has been said for dozens of years. The Palestinians are going to consider that withdrawal as a victory. They are going to say that Sharon has surrendered and that Abu Mazen will try to obtain more concessions and isolate Sharon. We must complete the Wall in a few months, for national security. Then we must evacuate the settlements to the east of there. At the same time, it will be necessary to carry out a merciless war without against terrorism on both sides, without closing the door to the renewal of the political process.
Three years ago was possible to build the Wall with support and financing of the US. We should be able to maintain Ariel and Maaleh Adumim as well as other important positions within the Wall. We should be able to save 35 billion shekels (6.3 billion Eurus) and saved numbers of lives. The public doesn’t know that 60% of the barrier is still unfinished, and that terrorists can still infiltrate. We should complete that construction, even at the price of conflict with the Europeans and even with the United States. Israel is the strongest country within a 1,500 km radius and I am convinced that it can become one of the most powerful nations on the planet. If we obtain defined frontiers, we will free up enormous energy that up to now has remained blocked. The fundamental problem is the following: there is no opportunity to establish borders to the east of the Wall. Sharon does not have the courage to go and say that to the resident of those settlements, and, therefore, there also runs the risk of losing the largest territories (in Judea Samaria). It is a good tactic, but it doesn’t have a have a strategy.
After the withdrawal, Sharon will tell the right and say that it is necessary to preserve Judea Samaria from the left that wants to abandon everything. He can modify Israeli opinion, but not the Palestinians’. There will be a third Intifada. Whole companies will have to increasingly protect the small settlements; mothers will ask why their children must die. One day Sharon will understand what he should have understood. Hundreds of people will die and thousands will be worn down so that we are permanently forced to return to a situation that is worse than the one that was still possible.

Die Welt (Germany)

" It is wird eine dritte Intifada geben ", by Ehud Barak, Die Welt, May 20, 2005. Text adapted from an interview.