debkafile: The free Palestinian Gaza-West Bank link will ease the free movement of terrorists and their weapons of war between the two territories

International coordinator James Wolfensohn and Israeli vice premier Shimon Peres are pushing hard for a Palestinian link between the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. They argue that without this link, Gaza will be a Palestinian prison. Wolfensohn prefers an overland road link – and has recruited US president George W. Bush and secretary of state Condoleezza Rice to his plan, while Peres likes the idea of a railway.
Both look away from three facts:
1. Either one would cut Israel in two.
2. The Gaza Strip is no prison without this link: wide open to the neighboring Sinai region and Egypt to the south. But the Palestinians, including the Palestinian Authority, have made no productive use of their unrestricted access. Aside from a few family visits, this opening is used for nothing but the accumulation of a mountain of war materiel and the passage of terrorists.
3. According to debkafile‘s counter-terror sources, while Israel defense minister Shaul Mofaz was discussing arrangements for the border terminals with Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak last week, Palestinian arms smugglers began digging dozens of fresh tunnels under the Philadelphi border which Egyptian troops were supposed to police. The Palestinians were simply overwhelmed by the quantities of weapons waiting to be moved in from Sinai and dug alternative routes to speed up the process. The Egyptian special police did not interfere.
An Israeli officer told debkafile that the Palestinian stockpile of weapons and explosives is far bigger than Palestinian security forces’ entire arsenal and in excess of their own terrorist requirements in the Gaza Strip. It has been piled up therefore for three purposes:
1. As a reserve in case the IDF should invade the Gaza Strip;
2. To arm the Palestinian militias due to arrive from Lebanon via Sinai. They are getting organized to exit the refugee camps of S. Lebanon, and will be joined by Palestinian fighting units Syria is pushing out across the Lebanese border.
3. The stocks will be held ready for transportation to the West Bank as soon as the Palestinian overland link by road or train is finally approved. It is obvious to everyone except the international coordinator and Israel vice premier that this link will go the way of the Philadelphi border route. It is destined to be a logistical facility for the free, unfettered transport of terrorists, war materiel, weapons and explosives from Sinai to the West Bank which will be deployed opposite Israel’s coastal cities.

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