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The Middle East peace program for the rest of us

02/24/2004

February 24 was the start of something big, a peace program for the rest of us. The plans hatched in secret in Oslo and Geneva and Washington have all come to naught. The roadmap has gotten to a washed out bridge. The Geneva accord is still a paper and still incomplete, and hasn't garnered the support of large segments of the Israeli or Palestinian population.

There are two missing ingredients in all these plans. The first is that no plan can work without the support of the people, and the people on both sides were unwilling to accept plans that they didn't formulate. The second missing ingredient is that nobody will agree to peace terms unless they really believe the other side is in earnest.

The One Voice initiative, launched February 24, is designed to give everyone a voice in shaping the peace agreement, using an online voting process supported by computer giant IBM. Palestinians and Israelis, everyone in fact over the age of 15, can vote from their home computer and through booths that are being set up in Universities and public places. Participants register and place of residence will be taken into account in tallying votes. The voting will go through several stages to allow consideration of basic alternatives and to refine the principles into a detailed document. Because everyone can participate, they "own" a piece of the peace treaty, and they can see that people on the "other side" are serious too.

You can vote in English, Hebrew and Arabic online by clicking here. The initiative is supported by numerous celebrities and MidEastWeb and yours truly are actively involved in it. That doesn't mean of course, that I or anyone at MidEastWeb endorse every provision that is proposed, but since we can all vote "no" for any provision we don't like or we can vote no for the entire proposal, anyone at all can support the process! That is the beauty of the OneVoice idea. "Peace" is no longer for "Israeli Leftists" or "Palestinian Moderates" only. It is a process that everyone can and should get involved in - settlers, and Jihadists and one-state advocates and transfer advocates too, because in the end, we need an agreement that everyone can support.

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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/00000200.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.

by Moderator @ 11:01 PM CST [Link]

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Replies: 1 Comment

I can't say I'm thrilled. The questionnaire is ill conceived: if one answers "no" to the first question, regarding two states, the rest makes no sense anymore.

Posted by Miranda @ 02/26/2004 02:30 AM CST


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