Ariel Sharon has died, after almost 8 years in a coma.

He led a life that was complicated, and defined by the insatiable Arab desire to destroy Israel.

(1953 - Commando Unit 101 - Ariel Sharon Second from Left, Second Row)(source:

(1953 – Commando Unit 101 – Ariel Sharon Second from Left, Second Row)(source: YouTube

Sharon, among many others, didn’t let it happen, and in the course of defending Israel made some errors of judgment that are easy for historians and politicians to criticize with the benefit of hindsight.

Sharon’s crossing of the Suez canal during the 1973 War to trap the Egyptian Third Army is legendary.

Ariel Sharon Moshe Dayan 1973 Sinai

(Ariel Sharon and Moshe Dayan, Sinai 1973)

(Ariel Sharon at Suez Canal 1973)(Source: http://youtu.be/QaG-s-jHiUo)

(Ariel Sharon at Suez Canal 1973)(Source:  http://youtu.be/QaG-s-jHiUo )

Sharon never will be treated fairly by the media. Among other things, he is blamed for the Palestinian Second Intifada by touring the Temple Mount. We now know that the Second Intifada was pre-planned by Arafat, and Sharon’s visit was exploited as a public relations ploy to justify the supposed spontaneous uprising.

Sharon also is blamed for the Lebanon invasion and the mass killing of Palestinians by Lebanese Christians; rarely is it told how the PLO had turned Lebanon into a state within a state and was raining rockets on Israel prior to the invasion.

He was willing to make peace, and pulled Jews out of Gaza, only for Israel to see Gaza turned into an Iranian missile base.

(Ariel Sharon 2005, Announcing Gaza Withdrawal )(Source: http://youtu.be/Cr0Gdn-yWtc 0

(Ariel Sharon 2005, Announcing Gaza Withdrawal )(Source: YouTube )

He also was willing to negotiate and compromise, but those failures were a reflection of Palestinian rejectionism.

(Mahmoud Abbas- George Bush - Ariel Sharon at Red Sea  Summit in Aqaba, 2003)

(Mahmoud Abbas- George Bush – Ariel Sharon at Red Sea Summit in Aqaba, 2003)

Here is a pretty good biography of Sharon, covering his life, military and political careers in a fairly neutral manner: