“With them, it is all about tanks and land and controlling territories and controlled territories and this hilltop and that hilltop,” he said. “All these things are worthless.”
He added, “Who thinks seriously that if we sit on another hilltop, on another hundred meters, that this is what will make the difference for the State of Israel’s basic security?”
Over the last year, Mr. Olmert has publicly castigated himself for his earlier right-wing views and he did so again in this interview. On Jerusalem, for example, he said: “I am the first who wanted to enforce Israeli sovereignty on the entire city. I admit it. I am not trying to justify retroactively what I did for 35 years. For a large portion of these years, I was unwilling to look at reality in all its depth.”" Ethan Bronner
I remember Olmert when he was deputy mayor of Jerusalem under that great and good man, Teddy Kollek. He would sit in meetings brooding over Kollek’s clear willingness to think of himself as the mayor of all the people of Jerusalem/Yarushalayim/Al-Quds. He did not like that attitude. His own attitude of chilly indifference to people other than his own was patent.
Now he wants to make peace. NOW he wants it. It is unfortunate that he did not experience this "conversion" before he allowed himself to be compromised by people who surely do not want to see accommodation in the Holy Land.
When he speaks of the Israelis as a people who have lost a sense of proportion about themselves he speaks the truth. That delusion lies at the heart of much that is otherwise inexplicable. pl