Friday, January 06, 2006

Ariel Sharon

Those of us who believe in miracles are praying for one. And those of us who don’t believe in miracles wish that we did.

That's the last line in a brief tribute to Ariel Sharon linked by Pieter Dorsman at Peaktalk. As the old man is struck down, likely soon to die, pundits are being fairly respectful (with at least one boorish exception).

I expect after he is gone there will be an avalanche of vitriol because what Sharon did in life is sure to have repercussions long after he is gone. They called him Arik.

It is deeply sad to realize that Arik has been taken away in his finest hour. His new centrist political movement Kadima was leading the polls, capitalizing on the bankruptcy of Labor’s failure to achieve peace and Likud’s equal failure to let an iron fist look for a similar result. Ariel Sharon got that like no other and staked not just his political life on it.
But Arik is not dead. Like Deng who spent his last decade in near oblivion, his very presence may lurk in the background, although democracies are not well-suited to have a strong man in the background dictate the ways of a lesser god.

History however may have thrown that unlikely scenario into the hands of Ehud Olmert, who now has to carry forward Ariel’s mission, and with it the future of the state of Israel.

From the other link...

Left-wing or right-wing, even if you felt like men like Yitzhak Rabin or Ariel Sharon were wonderful — or if you felt that they were completely wrong, completely misled, overly violent or completely corrupt, you never doubted for a minute that their absolute top priority was the security and well-being of the State of Israel and its citizens. Every success and every mistake they made flowed from his deep determination to see this country survive, thrive, and succeed. With figures like these as Prime Minister, we felt that there was someone watching over us. And when they vanish suddenly, whether by the hand of an assassin or the fickle hand of fate, it leaves us devastated, deeply insecure and very worried about the future.
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem.

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