By: Creede Newton and Patrick Strickland
Southern Golan Heights – Heavily subsidised Jewish-only settlements, large Israeli military areas and tanks dot the rolling green hills in this part of the Golan Heights; Syrian territory occupied by Israel since the 1967 Middle East war.
In addition to the ubiquitous signs warning of landmines, remnants of Syrian life are everywhere; bombed-out homes, dilapidated schools, crumbling hospitals. Most of the region’s indigenous Syrians – an estimated 90,000 Christians, Muslims and Druze – were expelled from the 70 percent of the Golan Heights under Israeli control.
A former director general of the Mossad has declared that he fears for the future of Zionism, due to “the critical mass of the threats against us on the one hand, and the government’s blindness and political and strategic paralysis on the other.”
In an op-ed Monday for Israeli newspaper Haaretz, Shabtai Shavit, who served as the agency’s director general from 1989-1996, wrote that “for the first time” he is now “truly concerned about the future of the Zionist project.”