Israelis Divided Over Prospects of Peace With Syria Frida Ghitis Monday, Jan. 22, 2007 For now, Israel has possession of the Golan Heights. But the matter is far from settled. Israel has not annexed the territory, but Israeli hawks maintain the land is crucial for the country's defense against a dangerous and determined enemy in Damascus. Doves, meanwhile, argue that no defense is better than real peace. The diverging opinions came into even sharper focus after Jan. 16, when the Israeli daily Ha'aretz revealed a leaked account of secret peace talks conducted between the two countries.