I used to think Ariel Sharon, the Prime Minister of Israel, was an absolute right-wing fanatic. I'm learning to like him more and more.
One of the worst foreign policy moves in Israel is the tolerance of settlers -- essentially religious fundamentalists who believe that Jews are entitled to live on certain parcels of land, and will move (or settle) into land where Palestinians live, no matter what the consequences.
That's one of the huge sticking points of the Israel-Palestine conflict. There are others, but this is a big one. George Bush (or George the First) conditioned some big foreign aid loan to Israel in 1990 on a promise not to finance any additional settlements, as I recall.
And this week, Israel, led by Ariel Sharon, supported by a majority of the Israeli people and bitterly condemned by the fundamentalists, is pulling out the 6000-some settlers on the Gaza strip.
You've got to believe that the Palestinians are grateful for the withdrawal and that support for the terror campaign against Israel has got to dry up with moves like this. Congratulations to Sharon.