MideastWeb Middle East Web Log

log  archives  middle east  maps  history   documents   countries   books   encyclopedia   culture   dialogue   links    timeline   donations 


Preparing for Israeli-Arab peace


A Meretz* and Israel Labor Party initiative would have funded the evacuation of settlers who wanted to leave from West Bank communities beyond the security fence. This was an excellent idea in many respects. It should have been a model for a number of preparatory steps required as necessary conditions to make peace possible. Instead, it was buried by the Israeli government.

The Arab-Israeli or Arab Jewish conflict has gone on for about a hundred years. Israel, the Palestinians and the Arab world have erected various barriers to peace and compromise that protect them behind their dug-in and fortified positions in the conflict. Some barriers are real, while others are just psychological - but just as difficult to remove perhaps. On the Israeli side, the settlements and the settlers are there to ensure that there will be no Palestinian state in the historic lands of Judea and Samaria (as they are called historically and in Israel, AKA West Bank since 1945). On the Arab side, many Arab refugees of the 1948 War of Israeli Independence have not been absorbed into Arab European countries, and remain in refugee camps indefinitely. It will take years, and billions of dollars to resettle the refugees, and until they are resettled they form a permanent and active lobby group against any compromise peace settlement. It will take years, and money, to resettle the West Bank settlers. As long as they remain where they are, with an umbrella organization to lobby for their interests, they constitute a human, as well as a physical obstacle to peace. Nor is the "lobbying" confined to political work. Refugee camps like Ein al Hilweh breed terrorists of every variety including Al-Qaeda. The Lebanese, who do not wish to integrate the Palestinians into their society, should consider carefully whether they prefer to breed Al-Qaeda terrorists. As for the settlers, Meyrav Wurmser promises us that they will not give up their homes without a fight. The Israeli government should consider whether it prefers to lure them out with money or to force them out at gunpoint.

There are good reasons why the sides will not give up these obstacles to peace. Like any fortified works, they are part of the defenses. Removing settlers or resettling refugees is "giving up a position." But there is no good reason why the United States and the Europeans, who have now so generously supported the Palestinian state in the making with a Christmas gift of $7.4 billion, should not begin devoting their attention to resettling the refugees and unsettling the settlers. According to Akiva Eldar, it will cost $90 billion to solve the refugee problem - not an impossible sum if it is done gradually. A huge sum? Each day, about 25 million barrels of oil are pumped, and each barrel is sold for nearly $100. Suppose that a tax of just $1.00 was put on each barrel. In a year, we would have over $8 billion - more than was pledged to the Palestinians with such fanfare over a three year period. We can start with the camps in Lebanon and the West Bank, which should be on their way to vanishing within a year. When the refugees begin to see concrete deliverance, perhaps they will be more supportive of peace, rather than pie in the sky promises of "right of return." When Israelis see the beginnings of actual constructive solutions to the Palestinian problem, then perhaps the political support of the settlers will collapse.

Let's prepare for peace. A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.

Ami Isseroff
* Corrected, in the light of the comment below.

If you like this post - click to Reddit!
add to del.icio.usAdd to digg - digg it

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/00000659.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 @ 05:31 PM CST [Link]


Middle East e-Zine

Midde East News

Opinion Digest

Late Updates


Middle East Glossary

Middle East Maps

Middle East Books

Middle East Documents

Israel-Palestine History

Israel-Palestine Timeline

Middle East Countries

Middle East Economy

Middle East Population

Middle East Health

Zionism History

Palestinian Parties

Palestinian Refugees

Peace Plans


Middle East


Blog Links

OneVoice - Israeli-Palestinian Peace Blog

Bravo411 -Info Freedom

Israel News


Michael Brenner

Dutchblog Israel

Dutch - IMO (Israel & Midden-Oosten) Blog (NL)



Alas, a Blog

Little Green Footballs

Blue Truth

Fresno Zionism

Reut Blog

Israeli-Palestinian Conflict Blog

Simply Jews: Judaism and Israel

Jeff Weintraub - Commentaries and Controversies

Vital Perspective


Meretz USA Weblog


MIDEAST observer

On the Contrary

Blogger News Network- BNN

Google Sex Maps

Demediacratic Nation

Realistic Dove

Tulip - Israeli-Palestinian Trade Union Assoc.

On the Face

Israel Palestjnen (Dutch)

Middle East Analysis

Israel: Like This, As If

Middle East Analysis

Mid_East Journal

Z-Word Blog

Dvar Dea

SEO for Everyone

Web Sites & Pages

Israeli-Palestinian Procon

End Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: One Voice


ATFP- American Task Force on Palestine

Americans For Peace Now

Shalom Achshav

Chicago Peace Now


Peacechild Israel

Bridges of Peace


Israeli-Palestinian Conflict



Zionism and Israel

Zionism and Israel on the Web

Israel - Palestina:Midden-Oosten Conflict + Zionisme

IsraŽl in de Media

Euston Manifesto

New Year Peace


Christian Zionism

Jew Hate

Space Shuttle Blog

Israel News Magazine


My Ecosystem Details
International Affairs Blogs - BlogCatalog Blog Directory

Link 2 us
We link 2 U.
MidEastWeb- Middle East News & Views
MidEastWeb is not responsible for the content of linked Web sites

Replies: 3 comments

The bill to buyout West Bank settlers was at least as much a Meretz initiative as Labor. The legislation was jointly sponsored by Meretz MK Avshalom Vilan and Labor MK Colette Avital. Ehud Barak was a very recent convert, announcing his support without even bothering to contact Vilan and Avital.

Has it been derailed in the Knesset? I hope it's not really dead.

Posted by Ralph Seliger @ 12/18/2007 05:57 PM CST

Sorry for slighting Meretz. I think the bill is pretty much dead, as it will not get government support. Objectively, it had no chance, since there are many higher spending priorities - reinforcing Sderot houses, ending the university strike (nobody talks about it, but it is still going on)- and many many others.

Posted by Ami Isseroff @ 12/18/2007 07:02 PM CST

Ami's math is as poor as his analysis. 25 mil. barrels per day taxed at $1 per barrel would yield $9.125 billion a year, not $8 bil. In talking about evecuating the "settlers", not once does he mention evacuating Israeli Arabs who identify with the Arab "nation". Not once does he mention why the terrorist breeding grounds exist in the first place. Not once does he even display an awareness of the Islamofascist supermecism which is the dominant force in Islamic tyranies. People should not propose solutions if they are incapable of comprehending the problem.

Posted by Paul Winter @ 12/19/2007 07:34 AM CST

Please do not leave notes for MidEastWeb editors here. Hyperlinks are not displayed. We may delete or abridge comments that are longer than 250 words, or consist entirely of material copied from other sources, and we shall delete comments with obscene or racist content or commercial advertisements. Comments should adhere to Mideastweb Guidelines . IPs of offenders will be banned.

Powered By Greymatter

[Previous entry: "It's the Gaza strip, stupid"] Main Index [Next entry: "Prophet and Loss Statement: 2007"]


Thank you for visiting MidEastWeb - Middle East.
If you like what you see here, tell others about the MidEastWeb Middle East Web Log - www.mideastweb.org/log/.

Contact Us


Editors' contributions are copyright by the authors and MidEastWeb for Coexistence RA.
Please link to main article pages and tell your friends about MidEastWeb. Do not copy MidEastWeb materials to your Web Site. That is a violation of our copyright. Click for copyright policy.
MidEastWeb and the editors are not responsible for content of visitors' comments.
Please report any comments that are offensive or racist.

Editors can log in by clicking here

Technorati Profile

RSS FeedRSS feed Add to Amphetadesk Add to Amphetadesk

USA Credit Card - Donate to MidEastWeb  On-Line - Help us live and grow