Finn dAbuzz wrote:
Earlier you acknowledged that Israel offered reasonable terms of peace, one time. Now you are saying never. Which is it?
Finn, I thought I was clear. The one time that the Israeli leadership was ready to make a real attempt at a fair peace, it was under the government of Yitzhak Rabin. Rabin was shot by a a member of the Jewish hardliners who were horrified at the idea of living next to a sovereign Palestinian state of the type we are discussing.
The murder of Rabin was remarkably successful. The Israeli extreme right wing successfully shut down any chance for the type of Peace plan that Rabin was promoting. Since the assassination, the country has been led by the political forces opposing Rabin.
They will also have to give up the Right of Return and their claim for the whole of Jerusalem. Neither it seems to me is anywhere near important enough to prevent them from gaining an independent sovereign state so I return to my conclusion that their leaders don't actually want one.
We agree about the need for the Palestinians to compromise. And we agree that their refusal to pre-emptively recognize Israel's right to exist is both morally wrong, and a political mistake.
We also agree that a two-State solution will necessarily involve the Palestinians giving up the Right of Return and their claim for the whole of Jerusalem.
You are correct on both of these points.
If the rest of the world stopped interfering with the process, there would be a settlement within 12 months. It might not be entirely "fair" for the Palestinians, but that isn't driving the interference. We only need to observe the world's apathy concerning much worse situations to realize this is true.
The Palestinians can have peace and their own nation, but they continue to block all chances of it with their demands and their conduct. It is all on them.
This is an interesting argument for you to make.
I am an American. I am upset with the role that the American government is taking in propping up the Israeli hardliners.
It is my opinion that if the American government could tell both sides to accept the 1967 borders (with a few adjustments), then it would happen. It would mean the US putting pressure on both sides to be reasonable. We would use our leverage over the Palestinians... and we would also use our leverage over Israel (based on the billions of dollars of military aid and financial support we give them).
It is also my opnion that the problem is primarily that Evangelical Christians in the US, who view the Israeli/Palestinian conflict in Biblical terms. These religious views impact our culture. As Oralloy has so clearly stated, too many Americans see this in religious black and white terms where "Israel is always the good guys" and "Palestinians are always the bad guys".
The US can not support peace in the Middle East if a significant part of the electorate continues to think this way. It make it politically unfeasable to do what is right if some day (hypothetically speaking of course) we need to pressure Israel to stop doing something wrong (this is sarcasm for the sarcasm impaired).