Israeli cabinet minister Natan Sharansky resigned on Monday because he opposes Israel's unilateral withdrawal from Gaza, he said in an interview.
Sharansky said he objected to the lack of linkage of the Gaza withdrawal to specific reforms to create more freedom in Palestinian society.
Sharansky said he also objected strongly to separating the Israeli economy as much as possible from the Palestinian one, arguing that Israel will not find real security in physical borders or walls, but only in a Palestinian state that is truly democratic and free, politically and economically.
Sharansky wants international aid linked to the promotion of a free Palestinian press and economy, new school textbooks that do not promote anti-Semitic or anti-Israeli themes, the dismantling of terrorist organizations, and the replacement of squalid refugee camps with decent housing. "It won't happen by itself," he said.
Folks, Sharansky is one of my heroes. Israel has lost a powerful voice, with his resignation. Nonetheless, Sharansky's resignation was necessary; he is a man true to his beliefs and as a Jewish man, it will maintain him as a prominent Jewish voice in a country where being proud of one's Jewish heritage has become a crime.