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Second Chance for Peace?

04/30/2003

The end of Saddam Hussein and the Iraq War has, as we anticipated, opened a window of opportunity for Palestinian - Israeli peace. The Roadmap of the quartet is meant to cure the defects of the failed Oslo Process. The roadmap got off to a promissing start when Palestinians chose Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen) to be their new Prime Minister on April 29. Abu Mazen made a strong speech condemning terrorism, vowing to fight it, and committing his government to a fair peace.

However the vulnerability of the new peace process was dramatically illustrated only a few hours later, when a suicide bomber exploded himself in a Tel-Aviv pub, killing 3 and wounding about 25. Of course, nobody can blame Abu-Mazen or the PNA for this fresh terror event. However, the Hamas and Islamic Jihad and other extremists have vowed to continue fighting despite the calls of Abu Mazen to end armed chaos and turn in weapons. On the other hand, Ariel Sharon may be counting on the failure of Abu Mazen's efforts which would relieve Israel of the need to make "painful concessions." Apparently, the Israeli intelligence community does not believe anyone is capable of restoring order in Palestinian society.

This little entry will be expanded into a full scale article in the near future. Meanwhile, please vote in our roadmap poll, and your comments are welcome below.

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Original text copyright by the author and MidEastWeb for Coexistence, RA. Posted at MidEastWeb Middle East Web Log at http://www.mideastweb.org/log/archives/00000060.htm where your intelligent and constructive comments are welcome. Distributed by MEW Newslist. Subscribe by e-mail to mew-subscribe@yahoogroups.com. Please forward by email with this notice and link to and cite this article. Other uses by permission.

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Replies: 6 comments

How do you know Abu Mazen can't be blamed for this attack...so many times with the Palestinian leadership the left hand pretends not to know what the right hand is doing. I'm beginning to wonder if there isn't some sort of weird death cult that Hamas & Islamic Jihad are worshipping, instead of Islam.

Posted by Chaya @ 04/30/2003 02:52 AM CST

I'm sure this is complete madness what I am about to say but I want to see how others will respond. Now that Bush has invaded Irak against the wishes of almost everyone in the world, why doesn't he invade Israel Palestine, kick all the settlers off the occupied land and send them back into Israel proper or to jail, arrest and imprison all the Palestinian jihadis and hezbollah, divide Jerusalem, and then re-open negotiations?

Posted by Eli @ 05/01/2003 12:21 AM CST

In the article linked to this page you write:

"The danger for Israel is that our government seems to be counting on Palestinian failure. It has not prepared for the possibility that the Palestinians will meet the requirements of the roadmap..."

Does this possibility exist?

Posted by Miranda @ 05/07/2003 01:40 AM CST

After reading the "road map", we must not be under any illusions about the future of peace in this area. A hint of that was the suicide bombing in Mike's Place in Tel Aviv.

While Hamas, Islamic Jihad and Company are reigning supreme (or seem to be at any rate by their actions),Abu Mazen's inaugural speech, while containing many positive elements, will remain nothing but empty verbage.

The success of the implementation of the road map is directly proportional to the willingness of both sides to comply.

The big questions are:

1. How much support do the Hamas and their allies have from the Palestinian people?

2. Is Abu Mazen, with the help of Mohammed Dahlan, able to control Palestinian terrorism orchestrated by Hamas and allies?

If the control of Hamas and Co terrorism is half hearted and there is no cessation of Palestinian violence, (my gut feeling is that this will be the case in the very near future)then we shall have no progress at all. As it is, Arafat still seems to be calling the tune and Abu Mazen is a sop to the US.

Posted by Shimon Z. Klein @ 05/10/2003 08:57 PM CST

Sad as it seems, I think that Abu Mazen won't control Hamas. In fact, I don't think he can without a full scale war with them. If he makes peace, then Hamas loses and they want to be on top.
Poor Palestinians, what lousy leaders they have.

Posted by Emma @ 05/14/2003 12:00 AM CST

Only when the women of Irsreal and Palestine say enough and rise up like the Protestant and Catholics did in Northern Ireland will we see peace in the Middle East. How many US Administrations have spent considerable resources to bring peace. I suggest that the only possible solution is to have the UN send in troops (without US troops) and provide a neutral peace keeping military. If Isreal will not accept that then the US should cut off all aide to Isreal. I am tired of funding Ireal's terrorist activities.

Posted by G. Harcus @ 06/10/2003 05:55 AM CST


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