When Israel withdrew from Gaza last August, it had every right to expect that its internationally recognized southern border would be peaceful -- that the Palestinians would not terrorize Israeli citizens by lobbing Qassam rockets into Israeli towns. But unilateral disengagement was always a flawed premise for peace, and Israel is now bearing its consequences. The need to withdraw from nearly all of the occupied territories is urgent and immediate -- but it was a doomed proposition to begin the process without any negotiated security arrangements and without the Palestinians having secured the ability to forge a different political, economic, and civil scenario for themselves....Of course, the sick part of Israel refusing to negotiate is the fact that Israel has had no problem with killing all of the potential negotiating partners - a practice that the Russians used in Chechnya "effectively."
The dream of peace achieved unilaterally is clearly dead. Israel -- with international support -- must seek out voices in the region with which to engage, even ones that can’t quite accurately be described as “moderate,” and that discomfort Israelis. After all, an escalation of the current situation in the absence of such engagement -- with Hezbollah, Hamas, Syria, and Iran all involved in the mix -- offers an array of possible scenarios that are considerably worse than discomforting.
Monday, July 17, 2006
We negotiate with terrorists
...because it's the only way. Bush, Harper, Olmert etc. all need to stop pretending otherwise. Macho posturing makes us feel better, but it's just getting people killed. Jo-Ann Mort in the Prospect: