Benyamin Ben Eliezer is an Israeli Labor Party politician and the Minister of National Infrastructure in the Kadima Party-led coalition government, headed by Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. In a radio interview broadcast on Thursday in Israel (there is a 9 hour time difference), and reported in the Jerusalem Post, Ben Eliezer remarked:
"I admit and confess," Ben Eliezer said, "I was with those who strongly supported [former prime minister] Ariel Sharon, and today I say with my head held high: We erred, we made a very big mistake."
Regarding the ongoing Kassam rocket fire at Israel from the Gaza Strip, Ben Eliezer said there is no escaping the need to act and to respond to the barrages. That presumably means the possibility of the Israeli Defense Forces reentering Gaza in force. Of course, the supposed unbearable burden of the IDF protecting the Gaza settlements was one of the rationales that Ariel Sharon and his supporters offered for the disengagement.
It is therefore difficult to understand how Ben Eliezer can say he erred with his head held high. Many of the settlers removed from the Gaza settlements are still without jobs or permanent homes. Perhaps Ben Eliezer should have realized his error before these Gush Katif children lost their homes:
Or before the synagogue and homes on this beautiful Gush Katif street were reduced to rubble and the families that lived in them sent into exile:
Or before this farmer's greenhouse was destroyed: